One of the biggest mistakes that a startup website can make is to totally ignore SEO right from the start. It is definitely a substantial task to execute, especially if you’re a new comer to online marketing, but we feel it’s an effort worth making, even at a minimal level. The primary reason why is that you’re giving Google an incorrect message right away. They will attempt to index your pages, and if your pages are lacking any SEO, often times they are either not able to index, index the page incorrectly, or because on-page SEO is such a big part of the search algorithm, rank them so far down the search results they might as well be invisible. That’s a shame, as there are some very easy methods for getting started with SEO that don’t call for a full-blown SEO firm to get done.
So what is Minimum Viable SEO?
Priceonomics.com coined the term, “minimum viable SEO“, which means basically what it says: what can you get by with in terms of SEO to start. Even though this is by no means an ideal strategy, it’s a lot better than doing nothing. Below are some of the things they pointed out, with a few of our own ideas tossed in.
Decide on a keyword strategy – This should help you see not just what your site structure should look like, but also how quickly you’ll be into profit. One option is to go after the long tail of search, meaning keywords which are typically 3-5 words long, often with product or model numbers. They don’t get a ton of searches daily, but are infinitely easier to rank for. Add a few thousand of these up, and you win. An alternate way to go is to go after a single keyword, like “auto insurance San Diego” you’ll typically be trying to rank only your home page. If you’ve got a business with a local presence, be sure you have local geo-modifiers on your keywords, as in the above example.
Use bread crumb navigation – You’ve seen this on many web pages. It is a set of links that show where you’ve been on the site, and where you are now. This is great for the searcher, (which Google likes) and covers a good deal of internal linkage. Here’s what it usually looks like: Home > Tablets > Apple > Ipad 2 3g
Use accurate title tags – Making certain the title tag on your page is accurate; which means that it is the keyword you wish that page to be ranked for, is perhaps the most important SEO task you can do. Using local geo-modifiers is very important here too.
Performing minimum viable SEO is a good way to start, and infinitely better than not doing anything. Just don’t let it end there!