SEO can often seem confusing, complicated and expensive when you first hear about it. That’s probably why so many business owners try and go it alone, running their SEO campaigns and creating their content.
Unfortunately, like all skills, there’s only so much you can achieve when you have no experience. Similarly, without the years of experience that we have, business owners are going to need tens of hours each week to even make a dent in their competition.
However, in this article, we’ll be looking at what we like to call MVS, minimum viable SEO, and explaining what businesses should do if they only have a limited amount of time. Finally, we’ll finish by explaining why the vast majority of companies should hire an agency like ourselves.
What is Minimum Viable SEO?
MVS or Minimum Viable SEO is the lowest amount of SEO that you can perform to see any notable results. The reality of the current SEO landscape is that you need to invest time and money for months until you can begin to see serious results.
But with some business owners deciding to try and manage their SEO themselves, with an insufficient time allowance, they need to be extremely efficient with their time.
Hence, minimum viable SEO is what we would recommend a small business with zero budget and limited time does. If you have even a small monthly budget, you should hire an agency like ourselves. This is the last resort and won’t be nearly as effective as having experts work on your business.
The most important step in any SEO campaign is the research that you perform before the battle starts. This will involve spending tens of hours scraping keywords to create a significant list of terms that you want to target.
Once you have this list of terms, the real fun begins. Next, you should start analyzing the competition of the keywords. In general, most people can perform keyword research. But most business owners will struggle to analyze the competition of the keywords.
What this leads to is businesses chasing keywords that they couldn’t possibly rank for, or keywords that will have no value anyway.
To analyze the competition you need to look at countless factors like the number of referring domains, the anchor text of the links, the authority of the domain etc.
That’s just the off-page SEO.
Next, you’ll need to consider how they have written their content, how well it’s optimized and how much better you can do. Finally, you must weigh all of this up and come to a conclusion about the competitiveness of the keyword and how you will perform.
Once you’ve got your content published, you’ll want to start a link building campaign. On-page SEO is vital, but for most local businesses, links are where you will separate yourself from the competition.
The large majority of local businesses will build little to no links to their website, let alone to the pages they want to rank. This means that even just a few strong, well-placed and correctly anchored links can make a huge difference.
The reason that we suggest guest posting over other methods is that it also allows you to create relationships with others in the industry, something that’s critical for small businesses.
It also gives you more freedom over where the links will point and the anchor text you can use. But most importantly, it’s relatively simple and intuitive. You reach out to websites and offer to write content for them, the same way you wrote for your website.
Content marketing is a must for any small business, but especially for one that only has a limited amount of time to commit to SEO.
When content marketing goes correctly the vast majority of the marketing is done by other people, i.e. fans share the content for you, and that gets it published on blogs, newspapers and in publications.
Also, even if your campaign fails you’ll still have a great piece of content on your site that can rank for terms and even the worse content marketing will attract a few visitors who could potentially convert into paying customers.
Hiring an Agency
That’s it. Technically, in the right industry, just those steps alone could put you on the first page for your keywords, presuming you put in the effort and the time.
However, it’s going to take countless hours of your time, and it’s not a sure thing.
But hiring an agency like ourselves will ensure that you have experts working on your side. We’ve been involved in SEO for years and know it like the back of our hands. This means that what would take you 6-months might only take us a few weeks.
Get in contact with us today and find out how we can work together to make your business a success.