Are you a website owner who, would like to have a greater insight to your own website keyword rankings but you don’t know where to start?
Well I’m going to guide you through how to get your site ranking better and give you an insight to the tools us professionals use to manage SEO.
Achieving strong SEO rankings for websites is a complex process in a competitive marketplace and generally requires a dedicated SEO professional to complete this work for you, however the good news is, as a website owner, there are many things you can do without an SEO expert to assist your site’s organic rankings.
So here’s my SEO DIY guide to achieve organic rankings for your website:-
Selecting keywords for SEO
First things first! What are the keywords you want your site to rank under? Think like your clients think. What would they type into a Google search when looking for businesses like yours?
Now you need a good SEO tool to help analyse the best keyword combinations. You want to choose a SEO tool which shows you variations on the keywords you have selected, whilst also showing you the keyword search volumes, meaning the number of times each keyword is searched. When selecting your keyword, you want to choose a combination of keywords with large search volumes but also some niche keywords with lower search volumes. The reason for this is that keywords with lower search volumes will be less competitive and therefore, most likely, easier for you to rank under.
In terms of a reliable and easy to use SEO tool, personally, for my clients I use a tool called SE Ranking. There are a lot of others you can choose from, however for me, I find SE Ranking has access to excellent and reliable keyword ranking reports and auditing reports with an easy to use interface. At $5 AUD per month with no annual contract it’s a bit of a no brainer … or you can just use their free 14 day trial however you’re going to want to track your keyword rankings over a longer period of time and we’ll discuss this in a minute but now you have your keywords you need to run a website audit.
Essential to your site’s performance is that your website’s SEO set up is optimised correctly without any errors or issues which may be causing blocks in your site’s communication back to the search engines. SEO is all about ensuring your website is feeding the correct information back to search engines. Right now, if your site is not ranking, it is probably because you have your front door closed and the blinds down … it’s time to open the door and let the search engines know you’re open for business!
The first step to assessing and resolving any issues is to generate an SEO audit report on your website. An audit can be automatically generated via a good search engine analysis tool and will automatically assess all the important SEO factors required to allow search engines to find your website and provide recommendations on what needs to be improved.
These factors include:
- Domain overview
- Website health check
- Page analysis
- Meta analysis
- Content analysis
- Links analysis
- Image analysis
- Optimisation across all devices
If you are using SE Ranking, run the website audit and start working your way through the results. Your audit will give you an overview as a % showing you just how much or little work needs to be done on your SEO setup. You may need to go through some of the results with your website developer but as a starting point have a look at the “health check” overview before going through your pages analysis, images analysis and meta analysis. For the moment this is where you should focus your attention as these are updates you can manage yourself. You’ll need access to your website CMS and if you don’t know how to add an image alt information, or meta data, just ask your website developer and they should be able to let you know. I provide my clients with training videos showing them how to do these updates, so if you run a WordPress or Joomla website, send me an email and I can provide you a training video.
Keeping track of your keyword rankings
Keeping track of your keyword rankings is easier than you think but what you need to remember is SEO is a long term and ongoing strategy for your website. Rankings don’t happen overnight and your rankings will fluctuate. You need to focus on your rankings improvement over time, rather than day to day. Personally, I work on a month by month basis with my clients so that they can see improvements over each month. When a site is first starting to rank, the rankings my go up one day and then decrease the next however generally you want to see an increase over the month when the month is looked at as a whole.
To measure your rankings you, again, need a good SEO tool which will keep track of this for you. Your ranking tool should show you your daily rankings plus your rankings over a time period you choose. When using SE Ranking I can view my client’s website rankings in a table and a graph for the past 4 days and I can generate reports showing me any date range. Generally I look at the past month and then the entire duration that we have been working on the site’s SEO.
This is by no means a comprehensive guide to SEO and it is not meant to be. This is a starting point. Before moving onto other aspects of SEO you need to create a strong foundation for your website’s SEO. You are looking for long term and lasting SEO results and this is the best place to start. I’ll cover more specific SEO strategies in another blog soon!
Why use stock photography?
High quality photos will make or break your website. Quality photography makes a huge difference to the overall impression of a website has the power to make your brand, tell your story and sell your product. In the competitive world of websites first impressions count and quickly creating consumer trust is essential.
As a web developer I often face the challenge of clients providing website photography which is low quality, an inaccurate representation of their product or brand or photography that is potentially in breach of copyright restrictions.
Simply put great photography will have a positive impact on your website. If you do not have professional photos of your business the use of stock photography will enable you to incorporate high quality imagery to your website either for free or for a fraction of the cost of a photo shoot. Stock photography is therefore a very cost effective option to ensuring your website boasts high quality images and positively portrays your brand.
What are the best stock photography websites?
I’ve been sourcing stock photography for my clients websites for over 10 years and to save you some time here are my favourite stock photography websites:
My #1 pick is Adobe Stock – it’s one of the largest stock image sites with over 100 million really beautiful images and videos housed in an easy to use interface. They offer a one month free trial where you can download 10 images for free with no commitment to continue.
With over 190 million images and 10 million video clips, Shutterstock are my next go to stock image website due to their huge variety. Images can be purchased in bundles of 5 images or a monthly subscription.
UPDATE 13 SEPTEMBER 2018
Please note recently this platform has been experiencing significant technical issues as we no longer recommend using it. We are currently road testing some different platforms and will update with our top picks as soon as possible. If you would like to receive a notification when this is updated please subscribe to our mailing list via Subscribe on the right hand side of this page.
Want more Instagram follows but still have a life that doesn’t involve you being permanently attached to your phone?
INSTAGRAM AUTOMATION IS THE KEY!
Automating some of your Instagram activity allows you to target potential followers with automated likes or messages that act as an introduction to your Instagram account.
Instagram automation tools handle some, or all of your Instagram activities on auto pilot so you can:
- Schedule Posts
- Auto Comment
- Auto Direct Message New Followers
- Auto Like
- Auto Follow
- Auto Unfollow
- Auto Repost
Instagram automation isn’t for everyone and the key is ensuring you don’t become an annoying spammer. Here are my recommendations when automating your Instagram activity:
- Start by only automating Likes. By automating accounts you follow you need to consider your feed (see below) so start with likes and see how you go.
- Add a well written auto reply which is not salesy. This is a message your new followers receive as a direct message. Here you need to build interest and trust … the building blocks to starting any good relationship!
- Add new automation rules slowly so you are more in control and comfortable with the automation behavior.
- Monitor your automation behavior closely.
There are a lot of Instagram Automation Tools available so you can trial them for yourself and choose the right tool for you. I’ve trialed most of them and for me Gramto is my personal favourite. Gramto has a really easy to dashboard which allows you to manage multiple Instagram accounts from the same place. It takes no time to set up and get started and customising and managing your activity is very straight forward.
An effective way to use Instagram Automation is to automate your follow activity by auto following accounts by hashtag, places or people. Following other uses is a great way to gain new followers however when automating you need to be aware that you will start following potentially thousands of Instagram accounts. You need to consider the impact of this on your feed if you are following thousands of accounts.
If you are going to automate comments you need to be very careful in the way you structure your comments and the accounts and hashtags you automate the activity to. Remember that the automation tool will post for you without allowing your manual approval. It is important to ensure you do not post responses which could you inappropriate or damaging to your brand. This can be tricky to navigate so when starting with an automation tool it is best to start very slowly with automated comments. In the dashboard of Gramto you can view the comments which your account has responded to so I suggest always keeping an eye on this to ensure your activity is relent.
* IMPORTANT NOTE *
Please do not ever buy followers. Instagram automation connects and engages you with genuine Instagram accounts that follow you for a genuine reason. Purchasing followers will increase your following temporarily with spam Instagram accounts and have absolutely no value to you. If you are thinking of purchasing Instagram follows please contact me to discuss so we can develop strong and lasting followers for you.