The existence of popular search engines like Google has dramatically changed the way that people look for service or products. Yet given the potential rewards on offer for sites that optimise well for search, relatively few companies give it the attention that it deserves. This, of course, creates opportunities for those that do.

The importance of having an overview of SEO

‘So much of your marketing starts with people searching for something. So it’s such a critical thing to get right,’ says SEO consultant James Pybus. ‘Whether you are a digital marketing director or own your own business, it’s very important that you understand the foundations of your digital marketing. You could compare it to accounting: even if you employ an accountant to do the actual work, it’s still important for you to have a good grasp of how your accounts work.’

Even though there are massive potential benefits of getting SEO right, people are understandably sceptical about it,’ says Adam Bunn, Director of SEO & Social at digital-growth agency Greenlight. ‘For some, it’s a case of wondering where to start. I think it actually used to be easier for small businesses to compete on SEO, because there weren’t so many factors in the algorithms that would favour large, well-known brands. However, SMEs are more niche and can be more agile. So that creates huge opportunities for success with SEO.’

Step-by-step actions to build your SEO foundations

Our two-part guide will begin by walking you through keywords and how to research those that will be most effective in attracting your target audience. You’ll be able to benchmark where you are at the moment for these terms, so that you can measure the results of actions going forward.

From there, our guide will look at how to optimise each relevant section of your website and its pages – to maximum effect. We will then take a look at link building – another crucial aspect of SEO, and how to optimise your site and server.

‘It’s a mistake to think that SEO is something mysterious, complicated or necessarily expensive. There’s a lot you can do yourself to build good SEO foundations that will hugely benefit your business going forward,’ says Bunn.

Read our SEO digital marketing guide for SMEs – Part one followed by our SEO digital marketing guide for SMEs – Part two

To view all our digital guides visit our digital marketing guides for SMEs hub

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