10 SEO Tips for Beginners + the Worst Mistakes
Last Updated on May 20, 2021 by Anita Hendrieka
Today’s topic is a pretty exciting one. I’m giving you the best SEO tips for beginners! Now let me be clear, I did not like SEO at all when I first started blogging and it was mostly because I didn’t get it.
I didn’t know how SEO would work with my blog and I didn’t implement SEO probably until around six years into my travel blog. When I first started blogging, I didn’t even know what SEO was. I didn’t even think it was something to worry about.
When I started to learn about SEO and the importance of it, I started to see the incredible opportunity that it gave my blog. I was mind blown. How had I not been doing this the whole time? That’s when things started to change for me.
SEO is important whether you are a blogger, a coach, a product-based business, service-based business – it’s so important for everyone to know about SEO. It doesn’t matter what kind of business you have. SEO is your friend, and it is also free.
Let’s talk about 10 of the best SEO tips for beginners, especially if you’re just starting.
Why SEO is important for your online success?
SEO was intimidating at first, but once you start using it, your blog will rocket skyrocket. It gives you an incredible opportunity to jump in front of your ideal audience.
It gives you access to unlimited traffic. There is no limit as to how much traffic you can get to a website when you are implementing SEO correctly. You can have as many page visitors as you want.
It is the true way to grow a blog or your online business in 2021. Content marketing has changed a lot over the years. I was in a Facebook group the other day and someone asked, what is the best content marketing strategy in 2021? I said, blogging, of course, that’s what I specialize in.
She replied and said, is it still a trend in 2021?
Blogging is not a trend. As long as Google is around, blogging is around. Blogging is never going to go out of fashion.
I have noticed that a lot of business owners don’t see the incredible opportunity that a blog can have for their business. When you’re implementing SEO, there can be an incredible opportunity for you. Although I have
Top SEO mistakes to avoid
1. Focusing just on the keyword.
Whack a keyword into your blog post and you’re done, right? No, it goes way deeper than that. There are so many bits and pieces with SEO, so many moving parts, and it’s really important to understand all of it.
Just picking a keyword and putting it in Yoast and, throughout a few times around your article won’t help it. That is only a tiny part of SEO.
2. Relying too much on Yoast
Another mistake that I see with SEO is that you are relying on Yoast to tell you if you’re doing SEO right or wrong. Yoast is a plugin you can add to a website. It can kind of tell you if you’re doing SEO ‘right’. It gives you a traffic light score. Green is yes, your blog post is SEO optimized. It’s looking incredible and you don’t need to do anything else, it’s awesome, you’re going to rank for sure.
Then there’s an orange light, which tells you, yeah, you could rank, but you know, you have some things to fix.
Finally, there’s a red light that tells you that your article isn’t optimized correctly, you’re doing it wrong etc.
A big mistake that I see is that you might be relying on Yoast too much. You’re implementing the keyword into Yoast and it’s giving you this green light so you’re like, yeah, cool, I’m doing it right.
Nope, stop relying on Yoast to tell you if you’re doing SEO. It goes so much deeper than that. Yoast should be a guide, not the final score.
3. Not knowing your niche and the topics that you specialize in
When it comes to SEO, it is important to look at what is your niche and what topics you specialize in within that. It’s becoming a lot more competitive this year to rank for certain topics and niches. I always tell my clients; they need to be more specific.
Travel is not a niche anymore. Food is not a niche. You need to delve deeper into that. You need to niche down way further and that’s how you’re going to see results. You need to know what your niche is which is a mixture of:
- What you’re passionate about
- What you’d like to do
- What you’re good at
What kind of topics and questions are people asking you about? What are people wanting information on? When you have a mixture of that, then that’s a good niche to go for. You need to be specific these days.
4. Using the wrong SEO tool
The last mistake when it comes to SEO is not using an accurate SEO tool.
There are a lot of tools out there for SEO, but a lot of them are completely BS. They’ll give you weird or inflated numbers.
You do have to be aware of what tools you’re using and if they are accurate as well. The #1 keyword tool I recommend is Keysearch. I have been using them for years and it’s also the one I refer my clients to use. It’s affordable but most importantly ACCURATE. And they have some incredibly useful features apart from the keyword research section.
10 Best SEO tips for beginners
1. Know your niche and what you specialize in
Tip number one, we’ve kind of talked about this already a little bit above, is to know your niche and what you specialize in. This is incredibly important.
In my blogging course, the Blog Machine, finding your niche is one of the first modules. We niche down to be less competitive. You cannot build everything else on your blog unless you know exactly what your niche is, who you help and what you help them with. It’s that simple.
2. Use specific keywords
The second tip is don’t be too general with your keywords with SEO, because general means were more competitive.
Let’s say that I was going to Google and I was typing in ‘New Zealand’. If you wrote a blog post on New Zealand, do you think that you could get onto page one for that keyword? Do you know how many other articles, blog posts, photos and YouTube videos are with the keyword ‘New Zealand’?! The answer is A LOT.
When I first started blogging, I used to type into the little Yoast box general keywords like ‘New Zealand’ if I did a New Zealand article. That was way too competitive, be more specific.
Let’s say your niche is Albania travel, maybe that’s something that you talk about a lot on your blog. I want you to break that down further. What kind of questions people are asking when they are travelling to Albania? The number one question that came up again for me was ‘is Albania safe?’. It was always one of the first questions that people asked me. So, I wrote a blog post on it.
If you’re struggling with what to write about and you don’t know what questions people are asking when it comes to your niche, I would suggest a couple of things.
Number one would be to join some Facebook groups within your niche. If I talk about Albania travel a lot, I will join a lot of Albania travel Facebook groups. When I would join those groups, I would look to see what questions people are asking within the group when it comes to travelling the country.
That’s how I found some of my best keywords. I would take the questions and for every single question that I would come across, I would put it in a Google doc. Then maybe once a month, I would do keyword research and I would see which questions were the most searched for and which were the easiest to rank.
The second tip is a website called Answer the Public. What you can do is you can plug in a keyword from your niche, and it will give you a whole lot of suggestions on other keywords and questions that people ask within your niche.
3. Be the reader
This is very important because when you’re thinking of a keyword to use, you need to be thinking of the one that most people are searching for.
You want to think about your reader when they come to the laptop and they’re going on Google and they have a question about Your niche.
If I wanted to know what the best beaches around Albania were, I might type it in many different ways such as
- Beautiful beaches in Albania
- Beaches in Albania
- The most incredible beaches in Albania
Think about what kind of language and how they would word things. That will help guide you when it comes to keywords.
4. Use Keysearch
My fourth tip is to use a comprehensive tool like Keysearch. Keysearch is my favourite tool in the universe. It’s a keyword research tool, but it does more than just giving you keyword suggestions. There are a couple of features that I love about key search.
The first feature is that you can track your rankings. There’s a section within Keysearch where you can type in all of the keywords that you want to rank for on your blog. Every Friday I go to my Keysearch rank tracker and I see how I’m ranking. If a blog post hasn’t ranked for around six months, then that’s when I would actually go and update it and maybe change the keyword or maybe add some more keywords in and see what I can rank for.
You must be tracking those rankings because they’re going to give you a great idea of what is working and what isn’t.
Another feature I love is under the competitor analysis section called ‘Organic Keywords’.
You can input your competitor domain and see what keywords they are ranking for. If they are in the same space as you, it means that you can have a look and see what keywords maybe you could use in the future. You’re getting suggestions from the keywords that they rank for.
Lastly, there’s the keyword research tool which is incredibly helpful. I highly recommend Keysearch if you’re looking at a keyword tool and want to take SEO seriously. It’s not a free keyword research tool, it’s $17 per month but the investment is worth it!
5. Invest in learning more about SEO
Tip number five is to invest in learning the ins and outs of SEO. You’re not going to learn SEO in a weekend. It took me a while to learn about SEO and how to implement it within my website.
You should be investing time and money into learning about SEO because what you’re going to get out of it is life-changing. You’re going to get more traffic, more income, more sales, grow your email list, make affiliate income, gain dream brand sponsorships and attract your perfect readers.
6. Use Yoast as a GUIDE
Use Yoast, but don’t take it as fact, take it as a suggestion. I don’t want you to not use Yoast, I just want you to not rely on it. You shouldn’t be relying on Yoast to tell you if you’re doing SEO correctly, you should know if you’re doing SEO correctly, by looking at your rankings, by tracking that and seeing how you know your keywords are ranking over time.
Yoast is a great guide.
7. Track your keywords and how they rank
Tip number seven is to track your keywords and how they rank over time. I was just talking about this before within tip number 4 by using Keysearch.
There is another way that you can do this as well. You could set up a Google spreadsheet or you could use something like Asana. You could track your rankings and how they are going, every week but it’s much easier to use Keysearch.
Also, use the Google search console. If you connect that to your blog, that will tell you how your organic traffic is going and how you’re ranking. If you haven’t connected to Google search console, then do that today!
8. Update your blog posts
Be sure to update the blog posts that you have published already. Sometimes we can forget that a blog post is an evergreen piece of content and Google loves when you update things. Google loves your stuff to be updated, fresh, new and helpful for the person reading it. When you update blog posts, it gives this kind of alert to Google to say, Hey, I’ve updated this blog post because it’s still really relevant today.
if you’ve had a blog for a while and you haven’t implemented SEO before or you weren’t doing it correctly then, this is something that will skyrocket your traffic. I promise you. If you do have any blog posts that are not SEO optimized, I would recommend going back and update them and SEO optimizes them THIS WEEK!
9. Go for less competitive keywords
Tip number nine is to go for the lower competitive, less searched for keywords rather than the ones that get thousands per month. If you can find the keywords that are searched for 200 to a thousand times per month, they can sometimes be incredibly easier to rank for.
You’ll hopefully rank for them and get on page one of Google fast. Go for those kinds of lower competition keywords.
10. Use related additional keywords
Did you know you can rank for more than one keyword?! You can have the main keyword, but then you can have additional keywords scattered throughout your article as well so that you can rank for more than one keyword. There is an article that I have, where I rank for over 30 keywords in this one blog post.
When you’re doing keyword research, it’s a great idea to find the main keyword and then try and find some really small ones that are similar.
Imagine if you could rank for 20 keywords and they were all searched for a hundred times per month, that’s potentially 2000 visitors to your site per month. The more keywords you can rank for, the more traffic and income you potentially get!
I hope those SEO tips for beginners were helpful. If you do have any questions when it comes to SEO, then let me know in the comments below.
Whether you are a blogger and want to become a full-time blogger, or you’re an online business and you want to implement a blog or optimize your sales pages and your website, SEO is your friend and is not something to be scared of.
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