Five Basic Steps to Great Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

A search engine optimization, or SEO, campaign is a required part of online marketing. While the actual methods have changed over the years, SEO is still the primary way to make sure that your website gets highly listed on major websites such as Google and Bing. If you’re interested in developing an excellent SEO campaign, here are five steps you need to bear in mind.


1. Know Your Industry

The best way to provide stellar SEO is to make sure that any content on your website is of high quality and provides insight into the business area that you have expertise in. This means that you need to know your industry and show that knowledge to your customers. The same goes for any external personnel or freelancers that you hire — anybody who provides meaningful content to your website needs to have strong insider knowledge of your industry.


2. Research Keywords

One of the biggest myths in SEO is that keywords no longer matter. People believe this because Google and other search engines have put several algorithms in place to prevent the keyword stuffing that plagued the Internet in the early 2000s. That doesn’t mean that keywords are not essential anymore — it just means that you need to make sure you use them in an intuitive and useful manner. Remember to also be aware that keywords are now key sentences in a way. For example, if somebody is looking for car repairs, they are now more likely to ask a search engine, “Where can I get my car repaired in northern California?” than to type in, “car repair California.”


3. Optimize Your Whole Website

Once you have determined the keywords that you plan to use, you need to make sure that they are incorporated into every aspect of your website. Every page on your site should have a clear and direct purpose that ties into your keywords. This is more than a matter of just stuffing the keywords in wherever possible — it is also essential that you make sure the information flows well for your customers.


4. Perform Content Marketing

Once you have the framework that you plan to build around, you need to create informative, relevant content that can move your site from a one-time stop for potential customers to a place that people will visit again and again. Content marketing can take many forms, including blogs and free eBooks that you can provide to customers. It is important to utilize SEO in all this material and make sure the information is updated regularly. Also consider creating a private blog network, and send out guest blogs to high ranking industry websites in return for a backlink.


5. Social Media

Almost as useful as SEO in driving people to your website, social media is an essential tool that should be utilized by every business in the modern day. Like SEO marketing, social media should be content-driven, with the goal being to inform your audience and provide useful information to them that is relevant to your industry. Note that social media networks are now searchable, so be sure to use your keywords in your updates whenever possible.


If you follow these five steps, you will have a rock solid SEO campaign that will attract customers. Moreover, it will help you build something sustainable for years to come.

Khuram Zaman

Khuram Zaman is the CEO of Fifth Tribe, a leading digital agency serving the Washington DC Metropolitan Area based out of the 1776 Startup Co-working Space. In his professional capacity, he has provided digital marketing services to clients as diverse as the Department of Defense, Kaiser Permanente, Oxfam America, Ernst and Young, and The Hult Prize. His writing has been featured in Forbes, Entrepreneur.com, and Business2Community. Khuram is the host of the Campfire: Impact and Innovation live podcast on Youtube. In his free-time, Khuram serves as a mentor to startups through the Peace Tech Accelerator, the Halycon Incubator, and is also a Entrepreneur in Residence at Georgetown University