SEO Starter guide for Small Business
Hiring the right Search Engine Optimizer (SEO) can significantly improve your site and save you a great deal of time. Having the wrong one can potentially damage to your site or worse, your reputation.
It could be the biggest decision you’ll ever make for your website. So, before you start off, the first step to take is to research the potential advantages, what to expect and the services that a knowledgeable SEO can offer which should include:
- Analysis of your website content and structure
- Content supervision
- Keyword research data
- Online business development campaign management
- Knowledge of specific markets and marketplaces
- SEO Training
Google searches return two types of results – the organic search results and paid advertisement results. But advertising with Google does not guarantee search result rankings. To learn more about this topic, check out Google Webmaster Central or read about our paid online advertising management services.
A good starting point before hiring an SEO is first to become a knowledgeable online consumer and then get an overview of how search engines work. Google Webmaster Guidelines and Google 101: How Google crawls, indexes and serves the web can help you learn the basics.
When is the best time to hire an SEO?
Hiring an SEO at a time when you’re planning to launch a new website or when you’re thinking about website redesign is always a better time to ensure that your site is optimized for the search engines. To make sure you’ve hired a good SEO, it’s a good idea to ask questions that will show their expertise within this field.
While SEOs can help improve your site, a select few often employ aggressive or unfair marketing practices. Such practices may negatively affect you site’s presence in Google which could lead to its removal from their index.
The following are some things to be aware of when hiring an SEO:
1. Nobody can guarantee your site’s #1 ranking on Google.
Be careful of SEOs that promise rankings on Google. The search engine giant doesn’t keep a special relationship with any company. There is no such thing as “priority submit” to Google. Your site will be indexed when you submit it directly through their Add URL page or via submission of a sitemap.
2. Be wary of SEO spam.
Beware of SEO firms and web consultants or agencies that send you an email out of the blue promising to boost your rankings. We have all gotten these emails and there is no SEO “quick overnight fix” that will immediately boost your ranking to #1.
3. Be wary of “free-for-all” links.
Never deal with SEO’s that advertise the power of “free-for-all” links and submitting your site to thousands of search engines. Most of these practices don’t actually affect rankings in the results of popular search engines.
4. Be doubtful about a company that is secretive and don’t provide clear explanations of what they intend to do.
It is important for you to understand the activities that an SEO is making to your site. You deserve to know how they intend to help you.
5. Choose with care.
So you’ve decided to hire an SEO – make sure they are an SEO that follows good and honest practices.
6. Common abuses a website owner may encounter.
As a website owner, it is important to be aware of “shadow” domains that route users to a site with the use of deceptive redirects. Such shadow domains are mostly owned by the SEO themselves. If problem arises, the SEO may then direct the domain to a different website that turns out to be owned by the SEO.
7. Make sure to understand where your money is going.
Google never sells better ranking in their search results. However other search engines do offer pay-for -inclusion results with their organic search results. Some SEO’s tend to manipulate this. So, always ask where your money goes.
8. Finally always keep watch on the following negative SEO practices:
- Guarantees ranking, yet provides long keyword phrases you would get anyway.
- Generates traffic from “fake” search engines, spyware, or scumware.
- Doesn’t even recognize the difference between actual search results and ads that appear on search results pages.
- Places links to their other clients through doorway pages
- Owns shadow domains
- Operates with multiple aliases or falsified IP addresses
- Suggests to sell keywords in the address bar
Here at Roja, we are committed to SEO best practices, honesty, transparency, and diligence. Contact us to learn about how we can help your search engine ranking.
We Keep SEO Top of Mind
Interested in a new or redesigned website? All of our website design or website redesign packages come with our basic SEO package included – at no extra cost. This ensures that your site is built with SEO in mind and gives you a head start on climbing to the top of the major search engines from the first day you launch!