SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) should be looked at as a 3 step process, each of these 3 steps is a very distinct part, and you will find that your campaign will be successful unless you complete all three.
The first step in the process is choosing your keywords that you want to target. To do this successfully you should start by putting yourself in your customer’s shoes and think, what would they type in if they were looking to buy the products or services you sell. Once you have some ideas you should look at how competitive the keyword term is, as getting your website to rank on the first page for a very competitive short tailed term such as “photographer” could take many month or even over a year. This would normally be too long to wait for a small business to see a return on their investment in SEO. Alternatively selecting a longer tailed keyword such as “wedding photographer in Newcastle” that has a much lower level of competitiveness could see you rank on the first page within a couple of months. This longer tailed keyword would also be more like to send traffic that you can convert into a sale.
The Second Step is onpage SEO. As far as Google is concerned “Content is King” so making sure that you have high quality, unique and engaging content that supports your chosen keywords is very important. If you don’t mention on your website that you offer “wedding photography packages in Newcastle” Google not see your website as relevant for that search and ranking on the first page will be impossible. The Google Panda update was launched to act as a quality score for the content of your website, so make sure you do not have any duplicate content, headers or titles.
The third step is link building. This part of SEO has probably seen the biggest change of the last couple of years thank to the launch of the Google Penguin Update. Before Penguin link building was all about getting the maximum number of links to your website. It was almost as simple as the more links you had the higher you would rank, but now that has all changed. Back links can now have a positive or negative effect on your ranking depending on how Google sees them. Google is looking for a natural profile in your links, so getting a ton of links one month and then nothing for a few months would be like waving a big red flag at Google. Link quantity is no longer as quality, so a few very high quality links is the way to go. Multi tiered link building is used to build a small number of links from high quality places. The links are then made more valuable by building links to them. This way the number and quality of the link pointing at your website can be controlled. This also has another advantage, Brand management. By building links to your pages such as facebook and twitter you can get them to rank for your company name. This can allow you to capture many of the first 10 places in Google for your name and stop your competitors from hang on your coat tails.