SEO is one of the most powerful marketing techniques you can use. In this guide, we’ll show you how to start SEO, so you can enjoy the benefits for your business. We know you’re just starting out, so this isn’t a long and complicated SEO tutorial. It’s a simple guide designed to give you some basic SEO knowledge. If you need to, you can follow the links we’ve included to learn more details.

What Does SEO Stand For?

SEO is short for Search Engine Optimisation. People use search engines like Google to look up content online. If you optimise your content and website for the search engines, they may rank you higher. A higher ranking on the results pages can equal more visitors to your website.

Tip: If getting more visitors sounds good to you, then check out our guide to increasing your website traffic.

Start Search Engine Optimisation

What if we told you that you can start search engine optimisation today? It’s true – just follow the 3 steps below.

Perform Keyword Research

Keywords are the phrases people use to search for content on the internet. Google matches these keywords to the phrases used on webpages and in blog posts. Including keywords in your content can help you show up higher in more searches.

But how do you know which keywords to include? That’s where keyword research comes in. You can use SEO tools, such as Google’s Keyword Planner, to discover which keywords people use most often.

Tip: The SEO experts at ahrefs have put together this list of the best free SEO tools.

Make Your Content Search Engine Optimised

Once you know which keywords people use, it’s time to include those terms in your content. Important areas include your pages’ meta titles and descriptions, the headers on your pages, and the hyperlinks pointing to other pages.

Google likes websites that include multimedia content. Adding relevant images can help your site rank higher. If you do so, you should remember to add search engine optimised image names and alt tags.

Tip: You might be unfamiliar with these terms. That’s OK! We’re just covering the SEO fundamentals here, but this in-depth guide to SEO by Neil Patel explains all the details.

Make Your Website User Friendly

Google doesn’t just look at the keywords you use in your content. They also judge on how user-friendly your website is. Google tracks page-load speeds (the time it takes a webpage to load in a browser). Generally, fast websites outrank slow websites. Speeding up your website is one of the most important technical search engine optimisation steps you can take.

You can increase the time spent on your site by adding more content, and by improving the quality of that content. Adding hyperlinks between your pages is also important. This will encourage visitors to read all of your content – not just one page. As well as adding outbound hyperlinks to allow crawl bots to travel outside of your site once their finished indexing. Crawl bots are a tool search engines use to help them index websites. Find out more about crawl bots and what you can do to keep them happy on this Googlebot blog article.

Learn More About SEO

So far, we’ve answered the question what does SEO stand for, and shared some simple advice. You can build on your new knowledge by exploring our SEO tips for small businesses. For even more ideas, you might like to read Moz’s guide on how to start SEO.

Good luck!