SEO 101-Introduction to Search Engine Optimization

What is SEO (Search Engine Optimization)?

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Marketing is a method of generating online traffic for your website using the optimization of web content to draw unpaid traffic through search engines like Google. This is an ideal choice – especially for businesses who are on a marketing shoestring budget – who have skills in content creation and writing. Or, one can hire a copywriter or SEO firm to do it for them.

Google is the biggest search engine in the world, counting millions of searches daily. By tapping into SEO, you can position yourself in the top search results (SERPs) by creating content around specific key word searches in your market niche. The idea is to get to the top search results on the first page of Google’s search results for your target key words.

SEO is essentially the art of getting your website on the first page of Google’s results for search terms relevant to your online business. Say your niche is “adult toys for couples”, you will naturally want to get your content to appear on the first page of Google for those search results.

How do you do that? First,  by creating content about “adult toys for couples”, like a web article, blog post or video, and then, getting backlinks to that article so Google knows it is an authority page.

That is basically what SEO is all about, connecting the dots behind the scenes to get your website more clicks!

The better you are at SEO, the more traffic your website will draw and therefore,  more sales generated for your business so you can ultimately make money with your online business.

Domain Authority

What is domain authority (DA)? Domain authority is a score of your website’s “authority” (how well it ranks in the SERPs) from 1-100 created by the SEO software company, MOZ, give your site based on backlink quality and quantity, as well as site authority. Other metrics measured include website age and social media score. The greater your domain authority score, the more likely you’ll be able to increase web traffic and SERP rankings.

Google ranks how relevant a website is to its searches in terms of domain authority. By boosting your domain authority, you stand higher chance of getting in front of the search engines.

When you first start your website, you begin with a domain authority of 1. In that case, it is all about creating optimizing content on your site based on your key words, so you can come up in Google.

To raise your domain authority, you can do a site audit to find out what kind of backlinks you have and if they are good, or spammy.

To find your domain authority, you can use an online SEO tools, such as SEMrush or Ubersuggest, to do a site audit to see where your site stands in your niche based on your key words, other competitor sites, and your own sites usability. This is a very important first step when it comes to SEO.

How Do You Rank Your Site In Google?

The top three factors that Google looks at when choosing where to rank your site are: The authority of your domain; external link (backlinks) anchor text, and the strength of those external links (quality of sites).

The authority of your domain depends upon the quality of your site, content, usability, site speed, quality of backlinks and many other factors.

The more “quality” backlinks you get to specific content pages on your site, the better those pages will range in Google.

Backlink Strategy

Getting high-quality links from authority websites is crucial for boosting your domain authority. A great SEO strategy for building backlins is Backlinko’s skyscraper method.

“The skyscraper method is an SEO practice where you find content that ranks well for keywords you’d like to rank for — if a competitor’s content ranks number one, then they’ll have a ton of backlinks. Then, you create content that’s better than the top ranking posts and use SEO tools to find all the sites that have linked to your competitor’s content. Finally, you ask the most relevant sites to replace your competitor’s link with a link to your improved content.”–Hubspot.

You can also earn high-quality links by simply asking other authority websites to link to your top content that is relevant to their own.

Keyword Research

Keyword research is an essential part of SEO. After you have done a site audit and found out where your website may need optimization and any issues you may have, the next task is doing key word research.

First, you want to find the keywords that are the most sought after in your niche and target them in your web content.

The winning formula for good keywords are:

1) High search volume (how many people are searching for a given term)
2) Low competition (how many websites are targeting these key words in their SERPs)

As a general rule of thumb, getting about more than 1000 organic searches a day is a good bet for a highly searched keyword. However, you want to make sure that the competition is low for any key words you choose, unless you have a large budget and lots of time to build content and backlinks on that particular key word.

For instance, trying to compete with the key words “sex toys” would probably be quite challenging, but trying to compete with the key words “sex toys for married couples” may be something you could target more effectively. This is called a key word phrase or long term key words, which are longer key phrases with reduced search volumes but very low competition. These should be targeted as well.

SEO Basics

As mentioned earlier, SEO is the art of making your web content highly optimized so that Google “likes” it. So how do we optimize your website, exactly?

There are two type of optimization techniques: Onsite optimization and Offsite optimization.

Onsite optimization deals with the things you can tweak and modify on your own website to make it more relevant to Google searches, such as site speed. Offsite optimization deals with interactions with websites outside of your own. This could be in the form of getting backlinks or social interactions through social media.

The SEO trends are constantly evolving,so it is important to keep up with Google’s rules, algorithms and trends.

SEO Onsite Optimization

As mentioned earlier, onsite optimization deals with the things you can edit on your own website to make your web content more likeable by Google.

The first thing you must know is keywords. In short, every page should have about 2-5% keywords density. So sprinkle your keywords where appropriate but don’t overdo it. For better optimization, keywords or key phrases should be present in the titles of blog posts (H1), H2 and H3 tags, the first sentence of the first paragraph and also a few times in the body.

Keywords can also be made bold or italicized intermittently for emphasis. Linking to internal articles on your site that are relevant to the article is also important, showing Google you have more content pertaining to that topic and therefore are a credible authority in your niche. Links can be worded with anchor text links (keywords and phrases). Images can also use “alt” tags with SEO key word terms when possible.

If you have a WordPress blog, an excellent SEO tool (plugin) is at your disposal called “Yoast“, which shows you how to optimize your content and articles as you build your posts and pages.

Offsite Optimization

Offsite optimization deals with the factors outside your website that can contribute to SEO. One of the main components of offsite optimization is getting backlinks.

A backlink is someone else’s website linking back to yours. Sites with higher ranks that are considered an authority that link back to you give your site more “Google Juice”. The key is to get as many high page rank, RELEVANT websites linking back to you.

Quality is much more important than quantity when it comes to backlinks. Don’t sign up to a link farm or buy the promise of getting 1000s of links for your site quickly, as that could actually be detrimental to your site, and make it go don’t in the SERPs for spammy links.

Getting Backlinks

The way to build backlinks is to build public relationships by establishing yourself as an expert in your niche. Being social on social media and replying to comments is a great way to get started. While this may not build traffic, it does build branding and authority, so people will start linking to you and sharing your content.

Guest blogging on other sites is also an excellent way to get backlinks. By establishing yourself as an expert, you can get quoted on other blogs on a particular topic.

Building your email newsletter list is another way to connect with people and get quality backlinks.

Other ideas include creating infographics, interesting studies that people will share, and linking to other quality sites you would like to be linked from. Then reach out to those sites to let them know you enjoyed their article so much you shared it with your readers. This again, is building a relationship, so in the future, they may link back to you.

Finally, comment on other blog posts. This helps build a social presence and authority.

Ultimately, getting backlinks comes back to creating quality content that is better than your competitors. So, instead of Dildos 101, create the Complete Guide to Dildos for Beginners and pack it full of rich, interesting content!

Scoping Your Competition

When you do a site audit, another area you can research is your competitors. By scoping your competitors,  you can learn what key words they are ranking for, what pages of theirs are high in Google’s SERPs, and how you can compete–by creating better, higher quality, kick-ass content! That’s where Sexperteaze comes in, as we are known for creating awesome, well-written content that comes up consistently in Google searches. Building excellent content that outranks your competition is a key strategy of SEO.

Advanced SEO Techniques

Creating a sitemap and getting it indexed by Google is another important part of SEO onsite optimization. This is especially important if you have a lot of pages and posts that you want to rank in Google.

SEO Mistakes To Avoid

SEO marketing can be a very powerful tool for generating  traffic. But if you use it incorrectly, you’ll end up doing more harm than good. Here are some SEO marketing mistakes you
should avoid at all costs:

1) Over-doing the keywords: If you put too many keywords in your article for SEO purposes (called keyword stuffing), you’ll end up coming off as spam by Google and this will hurt your rankings.

2) Dabbling with black-hat SEO techniques: These techniques are bad and can get you banned from Google.

3) Not having good coding: If you are designing your website yourself and mess up the coding in your website, Google spiders won’t be able to read your site efficiently and this can hurt your rankings as well. That is why it is good to hire a professional to help you build your site with SEO in mind from the onset.

4) Usability. Search engines value user experience (UX). Google collects data on the way users behave when they get to your site. How easy is your site to navigate? Does the site hierarchy make sense? Is the navigation menu have categories and sub-categories to direct the user to the content they are looking for? Is the content and site simply designed, laid out well and easy to read? Is it mobile-friendly? Do objects shift around on the site? Are links easy to see and clickable? All these factors are important when thinking of site usability, so make sure your site is geared towards your visitors.

5) Becoming a link farm: Getting backlinks are important but if you get a ton of useless backlinks from irrelevant spammy sites or use “link-getting softwares”, you’re doomed. In short, success in SEO marketing lies in adhering to good SEO practices. There are no shortcuts to success.

6) Copying other site’s content: This is a bad no-no, and is called content theft or plagiarism. Not only is it bad manners and illegal, but Google knows when you copy content (also known as duplicate content) which is the same content on up to two different sites, or even on the same site. Make sure your content is 100% original and if you are buying articles or posts, put it through a plagiarism tool to make sure it is indeed original.

7) Content spinning: This is another type of content creation which basically takes an article and spinning it (rewriting it) using a content spinning tool, or by a human web spinner. While it is cool to look at your competitor’s articles and create content better than theirs, it is not cool to take their article and rewrite it. These types of articles usually sound ridiculous when read (grammar is incorrectly applied), and does not sound like they’ve been written by a human. Many non-English writers will try to use this method of writing articles which does not work. If you are writing for an English market, make sure you hire an English writer/speaker.

8) Hiring a writer who does not specialize in Adult content: While it is easy to get any writer to pen an article about “Dildos 101”, if you seek informed, quality content, always go to an expert. I wouldn’t ask a Math Teacher to teach creative writing. Sexuality and Sexual Education are very complex subjects, so you want to hire someone who is qualified.

Domina Doll is a certified Sex Coach and Sexuality Expert who has been writing about sex, sex toys and sexuality for over 20 years. She and her team are very knowledgeable in their niche, which translates into top quality, expert articles that rank high on Google. This is not only important for SEO, it is also important for your customers. You don’t want your customers to get outdated, or even worse, bad sexuality advice! Domina also knows how to write marketing copy, and how to create a customer journey that takes the customer from their pain place (what they need or are searching for) to pleasure (your solution that fixes their problem). This means, you also need to know where your customer is in their journey and in your sales funnel. Basically, you want to get them from A to B to C (C being a purchase or other call to action).

And, don’t forget, content is king! Your SEO strategy should be focused on creating excellent, original content that kicks butt.

Conclusion

SEO is an excellent strategy for generating traffic via Google’s search result. That said, you won’t get traffic instantly by writing a few blog posts. The process of building traffic via SEO marketing is a long one, and you’ll have to consistently produce good web content which meet Google’s standards and also is up to date with relevant information.

So how does one generate traffic through SEO?

There are a few ways.

  • For one, you can hire a ghost writer or SEO company (that’s where Sexperteaze come in!) to create awesome, kick-ass content based on your best possible key words so you come up in Google searches. This cuts you out of the equation and gives  you more time to focus on other important factors in your business, such as customer relations and sales.
  • You can also ask to have your blog posts linked to websites or relevant news or magazine sites as part of your backlinks strategy (as long as they are organic links).
  • Another way is to hire an SEO consultant (like us at Sexperteaze!) to help you optimize your web content so that the SEO and build your backlinks for you (the right way!) which will bring in long-term steady traffic for your website.

Traffic generation is a long term process, and not a get rich quick scheme. So, if you find an SEO company promising you to get on Google’s front page within a month or two, it is bogus and be wary. Or, if they promise to get you thousands of backlinks quickly, that is another sign you are working with an SEO company who will do you more harm than good for your company.

At Sexperteaze, we only use white hat SEO techniques that Google loves.  By following Google’s guidelines and continuous updates, your site is sure to succeed without risk of negative backlash.

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