6 Steps From Semalt To Create A Good SEO Strategy For 2022
In recent years, SEO strategy has begun to be viewed in a completely different way. Previously, it was seen as a strategic plan that only large teams in large companies could afford. Today, that belief is no longer valid. More and more small businesses and bloggers are beginning to understand that without creating an SEO strategy, they won't get far.
What is the importance of preparing a good SEO action plan?
Preparing an SEO action plan is essential to systematically increase your website's visibility in search engines. With its help, you can, not only increase organic traffic, but also better understand your target market and thus promote your brand more effectively.
Contrary to appearances, preparing a website positioning strategy is not an extremely difficult task. It is important to avoid one huge mistake of focusing on the secondary things and forgetting the most important ones.
What is it actually about? Well, the Google search engine uses hundreds of different factors to determine rankings. It's impossible to focus on all of them. When creating a (basic) plan, we should only think about a few (a dozen) of them.
Today's guide should clear all your doubts when it comes to an effective SEO plan. You will learn what the discussed strategy is, why it is needed and what to remember when planning it. In the end, you will learn 6 steps on how to properly create it.
What is an SEO strategy?
An SEO strategy (also known as an 'SEO plan' or 'positioning strategy') is a document that summarizes the process of planning and analyzing the actions and assumptions needed to improve search engine ranking.
The most important goal that an SEO strategy helps to achieve is to increase the visibility of the website. This visibility is composed of the overall strength of the domain and the number of visits (from organic search results), as well as the TOP10 keywords and the external links acquired.
A carefully prepared and properly implemented plan can be an effective way to increase website traffic in the long run. In addition, it increases the conversion rate and improves overall sales.
In short: An SEO strategy is a document outlining a plan to get more organic traffic.
Why is it needed?
A positioning strategy is needed because it summarizes the weaknesses, shows the direction of development, and allows you to evaluate the progress. As a result, it contributes to time savings, increased productivity, and a higher ROI than in its absence.
Here's a longer explanation of why such a strategy is important:
Weaknesses: Not everyone will admit it outright, but all businesses have natural weaknesses. Creating a plan helps find them, and then work out ways to overcome them.
Development: It is much more difficult for us to 'get lost' when we have a clearly defined goal from the very beginning. Planning the SEO process will ensure that we will not waste time thinking too much during its implementation.
Progress: Correction and change of action should only happen when we analyze the progress so far. Without an established strategy, it will be harder for us to track the results and answer the question of whether we are going in the right direction.
Good to Know: Joe Barker said, "A vision without action is just a dream. Action without vision is persistence. Vision combined with action allows you to change the world." These words perfectly describe the meaningfulness of an SEO strategy.
What to remember before, during, and after planning?
While an SEO strategy is a document that indicates a roadmap for future activities, it is not really just about the future. Everything starts with an analysis of past actions.
Here's what to keep in mind before, during, and after creating your strategy:
Before: Before you start creating a plan, you should do a comprehensive analysis. Know your SEO strengths and weaknesses. Also, check your website's technical SEO, set an initial monthly budget, and a specific goal.
During: When preparing your strategy, you need to divide your budget into parts - determine how much you will spend on off-site and on-site factors. Based on your previous analysis, also sort tasks by priority - from the most important to the least one.
After: After you have finished creating your strategy and implemented your initial changes, you should start tracking the results. Based on them, you will be able to adjust the plan, if it turns out that it was wrong and will not allow you to achieve the set goal.
SEO strategy: 6 steps to creating a good plan
As you can see, website optimization without a solid strategy will not produce the best possible results. Fortunately, creating such a plan is not "incredibly" difficult and is doable even for amateurs. All you need is basic SEO knowledge, goal setting, and good keyword research.
How long does it take? Preparing a basic SEO plan - depending on the size of the website and the competitiveness of the industry - may take you from a few to several hours.
If you stick to our 6 step process, you will save time as you will learn what is really important in the basic strategy and what can be left out at first. So let's get started!
Here are 6 steps to create a good SEO strategy:
1. Prepare a technical website audit
A technical website audit is the first step in creating your strategy. This is an extremely important 'document' that explains the technical operation of the site and indicates what needs to be changed.
Such an audit identifies weak areas where your website performs worse. One of its most important elements is the part devoted to page loading speed and its performance results.
If your website doesn't load fast enough or loads with errors, it will lead to an increase in your bounce rate. This, in turn, will lead to a decline in search engine position in the near future (once the Web Vitals analysis is introduced).
Conducting an audit and then fixing the errors found and improving the loading time will create a strong foundation for further actions included in the SEO strategy.
To perform such an audit, you will need a powerful SEO tool such as the Dedicated SEO Dashboard. Indeed, this tool is developed by SEO experts and is equipped with several features to accomplish several tasks regarding SEO.
The SEO-technical audit is one of the competitive advantages of this tool. With this feature, you can perform a complete analysis of the site. Everything from technical audit to speed and plagiarism check.
Brainstorming is the basis for further planning. You can even say that without it, it will be difficult for us to take the next steps - including preparing a keyword list and setting realistic goals.
Start by defining who belongs to your target group, what interests they have, and what they are looking for. This will allow you to create a list of topics related to the service or product you sell. These topics, in turn, will help you build your keyword list.
Each of these topics is a kind of pillar that serves as the basis for categorizing your keywords. For example, if you sell swimming pools, the phrase "pools" will definitely be one of those pillars. It can be broken down into categories (e.g., "garden pools"), then sub-categories (e.g., "children's garden pools with a cover"), etc.
Performing a brainstorming session aimed at defining the target group and compiling a list of topics will make it easier for you to search for keywords and save time.
3. Search for keywords
After your brainstorming, it's time to use your ideas while doing Step 3 - Keyword Search. It is another important aspect because you won't get a lot of organic traffic if you don't analyze key phrases, their difficulty, and their popularity.
For each of the previously saved topics, add from a few to a dozen related keywords by categories. Divide these categories into subsequent related subcategories that go 'deeper' into a specific topic (example in step 2).
All these phrases will differ in terms of competitiveness and popularity. So you need to choose the ones that will be most profitable for you. What does it mean? The ones that are easiest to come by due to low competitiveness, while having a solid number of searches per month.
Preparing a keyword list is another part of your SEO plan that will help you choose and compete for the most profitable keywords related to your business.
To achieve this list, you can use one of the features of the Dedicated SEO Dashboard called: Google Search Analysis. Indeed, this feature is specifically designed to show you the relevant keywords and any necessary information about each of them. What is even more interesting about this tool is that it also gives the traffic generating keywords of your competitors. This makes it much easier for you to implement your SEO plan.
4. Create new pages and prepare the content
Now is the time for you to use the topics and keywords you previously prepared to create new pages and articles. You will need unique, high-quality content that will interest users and substantially exhaust specific topics.
It is unlikely to get all the phrases within 1 page. Therefore, you need to consider how to divide the collected key phrases between different subpages, and then update the content on them or create new subpages.
Also, remember the incredibly important part of content creation - understanding the search intent. Not adjusting the content of the website to the user's expectations will make it much more difficult for you to get high positions. Then, unfortunately, you will not see the expected traffic and effects of your SEO strategy.
Based on the keywords you have collected, update old or add new subpages and articles. Prepare high-quality, distinctive content that responds to user intent.
5. Set up a blog and use content-marketing
It's time for you to learn how to create a blog and then plan a separate content marketing strategy. You shouldn't ignore this stage, because each new subpage or article gives you a chance to get more keywords and increase the visibility of your website.
Not every article written by you must belong to the so-called thematic cluster. You can write on slightly different topics, as long as they interest your audience and are related to the industry. However, try to do keyword research again in order to find the most 'profitable' title.
If you don't like writing or don't know the basics of SEO, you can learn it, for example with the help of dedicated tutorials, such as the guide on internal linking or a post with tips on how to write texts for a blog. You can also outsource it to a content marketing agency or copywriter.
Creating a blog will be the basis for a content marketing strategy that increases the visibility of your domain. It will increase the number of acquired keywords and the popularity of the site.
6. Measure the results of the strategy
Of course, measuring the results of an SEO strategy is not a development stage, but rather a verification stage. Regardless of this, however, we include it in our guide, because many people forget about it or do it incorrectly.
By monitoring analytics, you can see a lot of data that verifies the effectiveness of your campaign. The most common determinant is of course the number of organic visits, but you must not forget about data such as the number of keywords obtained, conversion rate, or domain strength increase with the help of, for example, Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
As well known, positioning requires a lot of time and effort. At the very beginning, the effects of your work may be negligible or even imperceptible. So wait at least 2 months before drawing conclusions and starting a possible correction of the strategy.
Measure the results of your SEO plan to analyze the progress and make necessary changes over time. For analysis use, among others, the number of visits and the conversion rate.
An SEO strategy is a document that presents the present and future image of your website. It will help in analyzing the weaknesses of your current website, and then in choosing the direction and goals you want to achieve.
Using the plan in practice will allow you to increase the visibility of the website in the search engine, gain new recipients, and in particular have a positive impact on your company's revenues.
Creating such a strategy in the basic version will probably take you about a few hours. The most important aspect of creating it is brainstorming, thanks to which you will create a list of topics and keywords on which to base your content creation strategy.
As you can see, this task is not the most difficult. Especially if you know the basics of SEO or are reading our blog on an ongoing basis.