Search Engine Optimization: Business Owner Basics

By Juanita Brazziel | Business

SEO Marketing in Washington DC
[vc_row type=”in_container” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ width=”1/6″][/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ width=”2/3″][vc_video link=”https://vimeo.com/196361592″ el_width=”70″ el_aspect=”43″ align=”center”][/vc_column][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ width=”1/6″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row type=”in_container” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]Learn how to implement basic SEO into your website, Shopify/e-commerce or Amazon store/product/book.

1. Hi thank you for that introduction. I know it’s election day so I hope that you got out there and voted. But before we get into it I’d like to ask you a question. All of you are business owners or aspiring business owners, yes? So it’s safe to say that one of your goals is to make money, yes? Okay, so let us resolve to know that no matter who’s in office tomorrow, we will still be focused on our goals, yes?! Let’s get started.
2. Tonight we are going to cover what SEO is and a few areas: Titles & Alt text, Meta Description & Tags, Keywords & Anchor Words, Link Building and Content. Then we’ll discuss why it’s sooo very important to small business, particularly local small businesses. And lastly I’ll give you a few takeaways before I open it up for questions.

3. Is it okay if I tell you a little about myself before we get started? Thanks! As you heard my name is Juanita Brazziel and I served in the US Army. I was an IT specialist and worked on servers, computers, radios, satellites, you name it I did it. I transitioned into web design in 2011 and began doing it professionally in 2013. After working with other companies I founded Grace DMV SEO in 2016. I am a certified Google Partner, certified in CompTIA’s Security+ and CASP. Which probably means nothing to you unless you are in Cyber Security. But the big thing that makes me who I am is my innate desire to help others succeed. The amazing thing is when I help local businesses market themselves better, I also help employees stay employed, customers get quality products/services and provide value to the community as a whole. You can follow me on Facebook @ JuanitaBrazzielBiz and on Twitter @GraceDMVSEO.

4. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results. BLAH BLAH BLAH basically…

5. Really search engine optimization includes EVERYTHING! Let’s see all of those things

6. SEO includes keywords, titles, website design, content, ALT text, social media, anchor text, product descriptions, link building, local citations, videos and a lot more. So you can’t be singular in focus or you wont get the results that you desire.

7. But tonight we are going to focus on these Titles & Alt text, Meta Description & Tags, Keywords & Anchor Words, Link Building and Content. As I mentioned before these are the foundation to your SEO journey. Here are examples of what each are and how you can begin using it.

8. Titles. I’m sure you all can read that but for the cheap seats in the back, title tags describe a web page and are about 50-60 characters in length. This is important to SERPs (search engine results page, what you see after you google something). And it also informs your customer/client what your website is about. You see the location where we are now Impact Hub DC has some work to do.

9. ALT text is the description of what an image is and shows in the absence of a picture that hasn’t downloaded or can’t render for whatever reason. This is a very important thing and is used by Google/Bing/Yahoo and others to aid in having your website found by those search engines. So all pictures must have a description.

10. Meta Descriptions are some of my favorite areas and leave a ton of room for some creativity. As you can see both sites take advantage of the 150-160 characters. Some have said that this has low importance to SERPs but I say it’s always better to play it safe than be sorry. Use up those meta description characters.

11. Keywords, keywords, keywords. If you’re in discussions with an marketing agency and ALL they want to talk about is keywords, keyword stuffing, keyword optimization percentages – RUN! Now don’t try to toss me out the building just yet. Keywords are very important but are not the sole visibility factor. Out of 100, they are weighted at approx. 25. Because they can be used in every instance that I will mention they prop up other areas making them more valuable. 2 quick tips: don’t over use keywords and make your usage seem natural otherwise you won’t have to worry whether Google’s going to penalize you (they will) but before then you’ll lose visitors due to the user experience being poor.

12. Anchor text can be divided into two subcategories: contextual and branded. Contextual anchors use various descriptive words normally used in articles and are linked back to a page on your website. Branded anchors are just what you’re thinking. They use your company name and also link back to page(s) within your website. They can also be linked to your social media.

13. Ahh the grand puba, link building. Link building is the greatest and worst thing ever. So often I see websites with terrible links to sites that contain negative or unrelated content. And poor business owners barley know the difference. One day they’re showing up on Google and the next penalized due to poor linking practices. How do you recognize the best digital marketing agency for your company? SEO companies should be willing to provide you with the links. These links will be to sites that have authority and not to things that would harm your brand. Now I don’t want you to expect to know our process, that’s like asking what’s the recipe to Bush’s baked beans. You’re never gonna get it. Link building can make or break e-commerce or local business websites. Ensure that you choose wisely.

14. Content, it’s everywhere nowadays. And you need to be certain that you have your fair share of content out there. Content includes blogs – both video and written, pictures and newsletters. Content allows you to create links from your social media back to your website, from authority websites back to yours and it develops awareness about your brand. While one of my favorites, you don’t have to be the original author in order to reap the benefits of the content…ever see a viral video/photo?

15. Search engine optimization is so important because your future customers are already searching for what you provide. Whether you are trying to sell more products on Amazon or Shopify or if you’re trying to get to the first page of Google, you need to include the things mentioned before.

16. Again it’s important, why because 87% of people are using search to find products, services, and ask questions. And they’re primarily using it from their mobile devices.

17. Highly targeted traffic brings home the opportunity to get the bacon. SEO is a long game that has results that last and for all you PPC users know that as you stop paying the traffic stops coming.

18. All of these and more are tools/methods in order to conduct SEO but they are not why you do SEO. SEO is all about getting organic traffic, organic reach, organic sales, and branding. So when someone tries to sell you only on keyword ranking you’ll know that they’re trying to get you to use your money as kindling to start a fire instead of improve traffic and overall branding. Google wants a complete user experience.

19. Local citations are the key to local businesses…we didn’t talk about this but this is needed to get seen in many other avenues and it’s where your clients/customers are searching for you at. People love to check out reviews, make sure you have good ones. Here’s a hot tip: if you have any negative comments, reply to them in a none aggressive manner. Talk about how you will improve their experience next time and how this is unlike how you do business. You don’t get to erase the negative comment but it does show that you are proactively doing something about it.

20. So this brings us to the last takeaway and that is this:
What you focus on you will get…
If your only goal is to beat your competition you’ll miss out on the guy that’s been busting his/her butt to just be the best. They’ve been taking action to see themselves at their finish line, while you’ve been focused on just doing the minimum…BUT NO MORE. When you’re ready to implement what I taught you into your Wix or WordPress websites or Amazon products And how to have that competitive edge over all those who have failed to come here and those who think SEO is irrelevant contact Grace DMV SEO.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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