By Monica Simmons
My husband and I recently went through the arduous journey of buying our first home. Sitting in my newly purchased house, surrounded by bare walls, enjoying all the hard work we’ve done and planning ahead for all the work we still have left to do, I started contemplating the many way]s owning a home and optimizing a website are similar.
A Solid Foundation is Essential
We certainly wouldn’t have bought a house that was structurally flawed. A solid foundation is key for both a house and SEO. The right foundation in SEO involves thorough keyword research, proper onsite optimizations, correctly implemented structured data, and quality backlinks.
You Must Perform Regular Maintenance
Mowing the lawn, weeding, cleaning the gutters, changing air filters, changing batteries in the smoke detector…these tasks aren’t the most fun to do, but they’re necessary to keep your house looking nice and running smoothly. It can be easy to overlook some of the basic maintenance tasks while trying to stay on top of ever-changing google algorithms, but it’s important to regularly check Google Search Console, Google Analytics, and Bing Webmaster Tools. These tools enable you to fix issues right away and catch sudden drops in traffic or page indexing.
It Can Be Fun To Take Risks
Sometimes you must knock down a few walls to see the amazing possibilities of an open floor plan. Similarly, in SEO, it’s important to take risks by running tests. Rewrite meta descriptions, move words around in a header, add or remove images, try a new call-out. If you have the resources, test a whole new layout for the website. Some tests will fail – in that case, reverse what you did – and others will succeed – which can result in more traffic and leads.
You’re Never Really Done
What I’m learning is that owning a home means the work is never really done. You finally got the bathroom repainted, now your refrigerator is broken. Or you finally have the time and money to put that fence up in the backyard. Likewise, whether it’s by choice or chance, there’s always something else to fix, test, audit, and implement on your website. As SEO continues to evolve, and we get smarter at figuring out what Google and the searcher wants, there’ll always be something to perfect.
It’s Important To Celebrate Success
I will always love the look of a freshly cut lawn. There’s something inherently satisfying about such an immediate improvement. Even if it’s a temporary success, I encourage you to celebrate ranking increases, traffic gains, and higher conversions or leads. You may not be able to have a champagne toast, but it never hurts to enjoy the little victories.
Because tomorrow – or in an hour – something else will break or Google will roll out another update, and the hard work begins again!
About the Author
Monica Simmons is an Account Executive at ChoiceLocal. She enjoys helping small business owners succeed. When not working, she is probably laughing at the wild stuff her 3-year-old daughter says or literally Netflix-and-chill-ing with her husband.