Who wouldn’t want more people to find their website? You may have heard some buzz around the acronym SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and have a general sense that, as someone with a website and looking to build their business, you should learn more about it. Or you may think I just made a typo while writing “CEO.” Either way, we’re here to help!
If you aren’t a coder you may need to get some help making sure your site is optimized for search engine crawlers, but if you have an OfferingTree website you are in luck – many SEO best practices are built in!
So what is SEO? If the user is searching for apple seedlings there is no reason for your yoga schedule to show up. But if your website consistently shows up when people are searching for yoga in your city, there’s a good chance they will visit your website.
While full blown optimization can cost a large investment in time and resources, there are some basic ways you can improve your SEO without being an SEO ninja. Below I list some straight forward non-technical steps you can take to improve your search engine performance as well as some technical steps. Both are important, but remember that doing some of these steps is better than ignoring SEO. Try and do as much as you can, but don’t worry if you can’t do all of these tactics. Some improvement is better than none – remember, every step you take is progress!
Non-tech steps to improve your SEO
Create quality content
Search engines employ crawlers, which are computer programs that read and analyze web pages from the entire world wide web. They used to be fairly basic and a savvy web developers could use coding tricks to fool the web crawler and increase search engine rankings. Today, web crawlers have become much more sophisticated and are using artificial intelligence to determine the authenticity and value of the content on a web site. One of the most important factors in ranking the page is the value of the content. One of the best way to improve the likelihood of showing up in search results is to provide quality content. Blogging is one great way to do this. For example, If you’re an expert in wellness, share your knowledge and experience. Provide a reason why a prospective student or client would want to read your blog. This will build trust and authority, which will hopefully encourage them to sign up for your offerings.
The reality is that we are all busy and sometimes writing isn’t the most fun use of our time. But if you can find the time and motivation to create content on a regular basis that fits your lifestyle, then you will be rewarded by more website traffic and more students. You don’t have to blog daily or even weekly. Just be consistent so you can keepyour audience engaged and the search crawlers interested.
Share links to your site
One of the important factors in search engine rankings is the number of links from other sites that directly link to your website. Don’t be shy about telling the world about your website. Make sure you have a link to your site on your social media sites (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest… all of them). You should also create business listings with a link back to your site on high-quality business listing websites such as Manta, LinkedIn, Hotfrog, Angieslist, Merchantcircle, and Google business listings. Another good way to increase links to your site is through forums like Reddit and Quora. When you provide value in an answer or conversation, put your link at the end of your response. People won’t mind the small plug if you are a contributing and helpful member in the forum. Finally, if you have videos on Youtube, make sure to fill in the title and details section while in the video editor. Include a link to your site and make sure the description accurately describes the content of the video.
Become an authority
Share your knowledge, experience, and wisdom with other sites that have a large following. There are blogs and expert sites that accept external contributions. This is a good way to get more exposure and to become an authority on your area of expertise whether that’s health, fitness, or wellness. It also contributes to the first two tactics outlined above because you are creating quality content and you can insert a link to your site. Both will help with SEO, but the main benefit is that you can reach a much larger audience than you normally can reach on your own site.
We hope this is a useful start in beginning to think about SEO strategies for your practice! To read more about this topic and dive deeper into some technical tactics you can take to strengthen your SEO game, read Get Your Site Noticed With SEO Part II. As always, we’re here to help so feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit offeringtree.com.