SEO is Not Hard

SEO is Not Hard

A beginner’s SEO tutorial with step-by-step instructions that will get you ranked every time.

SEO In One Day

SEO isn’t nearly as difficult as people make it out to be; you can achieve 95 percent of the results with only 5% of the effort, and you won’t need to pay a professional SEO to get started, nor will it be difficult to rank for well-chosen key terms.

SEO, out of all the channels we’ll be examining, is the one with the most misunderstandings. Some of it is subtle, but some of it is widely disseminated and accepted by so-called SEO professionals who have no idea what they’re talking about.

SEO is really basic, and unless you’re a very large firm, it’s probably not worth it to get someone else to do it for you.

How Google Works

Let’s take a look back at how Google got started, how it’s evolved, and how we can learn how to get ranked on Google to gain a better understanding of what we need to do for SEO.

The Early Days of Google

Einstein was the inspiration for PageRank, Google’s first ranking algorithm. While at Stanford, Larry Page and Sergei Brin noticed how frequently scientific articles alluded to well-known works like Einstein’s theory of relativity. These citations functioned almost as a vote: the more times your work was cited, the more important it must be. They could theoretically select which publications were the most essential and rank them if they downloaded every scientific paper and looked at the references.

They discovered that, thanks to links, the Internet could be examined and rated in the same manner that references might be used instead of links. As a result, they set out to “download” (or crawl) the whole Internet in order to determine which sites were connected to the most. The best sites were, ideally, the ones with the most links. They could also rank the pages that talked about “university” if you did a search for “university.”

Google Today

Google operates in a similar manner now, albeit with far more subtlety and nuance. Not all links, for example, have the same weight. A link from an authoritative site is far more valuable than a link from a non-authoritative site (as measured by the number of links pointing at it). A link from the New York Times is probably worth around 10,000 links from low-authority sites.

Ultimately, Google’s goal is to identify the “best” (or most popular) web page for the words you type into the search bar.

This simply implies that we must first make it plain to Google what our page is about, and then we must make it clear that we are popular. We will win if we do so. To do so, we’ll use a really basic procedure that works every time with far less effort than you might believe is required.

Gaming the System

Google is a brilliant business. The algorithms they build are incredibly sophisticated; consider that Google’s algorithms are presently powering automobiles that drive themselves throughout Silicon Valley.

If you go too far down the SEO rabbit hole, you’ll run into spammy methods for speeding up the process. Instructions to build spam or spin material, linkwheels, PBNs, hacking domains, and other automated applications like RankerX, GSA SER, and Scrapebox

Some of it works for a brief period of time, but Google is smart, and it is getting smarter. Every day, it becomes more difficult to beat Google, and Google becomes more adept at shutting down bogus websites. Most of them don’t even last a week before all you’ve worked on vanishes. That is not how things should be done.

Instead of churn and burn on the Internet, we’ll concentrate on generating Internet equity. So, if you see a high-priced SEO professional advising you to build links using software and spun material, or if you see a blackhatter exploiting the system, just know it’s not worth it. We’ll establish authority and drive traffic quickly, but we’ll do so in a way that won’t disappear or cripple your site in the future.

On-Page SEO

Making it clear to Google what our site is about is the first stage in getting it ready to rank.

For the time being, we’ll concentrate on ranking for one keyword that isn’t our brand or company name on our home page (landing page). We can expand out into other terms and start to dominate the search landscape after we achieve that and get that ranking, but for now, we’ll stay laser focused.

Keyword Research

First and foremost, we must determine what that keyword is. The amount of traffic and difficulties we’ll get from this endeavour will vary depending on how successful our site is and how long it’s been around.

The Long Tail

The “long tail” is a concept that we should be familiar with.

There are a few large hits that garner the most attention, and the graph begins to decrease dramatically after a few hits. According to the long-tail theory, as our society becomes more varied, the yellow end of the above graph will stretch forever and get higher.

Consider Amazon. They may have a few best-selling items, but the majority of their retail revenue comes from a wide range of items that aren’t purchased nearly as frequently as their best-selling items. Similarly, if we were to rate the popularity of songs played in the last ten years, a few hits would receive the majority of the plays, while an immense number of songs would receive only a few. The long tail refers to the less popular products and songs.

Our site won’t outrank ultra-competitive terms right away, but by being more specialised, we’ll be able to start attracting highly targeted traffic with a lot less work.

We’ll call the terms we’re looking for “long-tail keywords.”

Finding the Long Tail

We’re going to use a combination of four tools, all of which are free, to locate our ideal long-tail keywords.

The process looks like this:

  1. Use UberSuggest, KeywordShitter and a little bit of brainstorming to come up with some keywords
  2. Export those keywords to the Google Keyword Planner to estimate traffic level
  3. Search for those keywords with the SEOQuake chrome extension installed to analyze the true keyword difficulty

Don’t be intimidated; it’s actually rather easy. For this example, we’ll assume we’re looking for a keyword for this book (and we’ll almost certainly need to establish a website so you can see whether we’re ranked there in a few months).

Step 1: Brainstorming and Keyword Generating

We’ll only identify a few keywords that appear like they might work in this step. At this point, don’t focus too much on culling the list because most poor keywords will be automatically removed as part of the process.

So, as this is a growth hacking book, I’ll give a few terms that would be appropriate:

Hacking your business’s growth

Marketing for expansion

Internet promotion

Guide to Growth Hacking

Growth hacking book A growth hacking book is a book about growth hacking.

What is the definition of growth hacking?

Instructions for growth hacking

This is a fantastic place to start. If you start to run out of ideas, go ahead and do it. In only a few minutes, it will spew out thousands of permutations based on a single keyword. To begin, make a strong list of 5–10 items.

We’ll now enter each keyword into UberSuggest. I got 246 hits when I type in the first one, “growth hacking.”

By selecting “view as text,” we can copy and paste all of our keywords into a text editor, resulting in a massive list.

Repeat the process for each keyword you’ve come up with.

We’ll presume you have more than 500 keywords now. If you don’t, try starting with a keyword that’s more generic and broad, and you’ll have that many in no time. You should have at least 1500.

Step 2: Traffic Estimating

Let’s move on to the following phase now that we’ve generated a decent list of keywords. The next step is to see if they have sufficient search traffic to merit our attention.

You’ll notice that some of them are so far down the long tail that they wouldn’t be of any use to us. “5 internet marketing methods,” for example, was on my growth hacking list. We’re probably not going after that one, but instead of guessing, we can rely on Google. This is where we’ll begin filtering information.

Google Keyword Planner is a tool that allows you to find keywords

Although the Google Keyword Planner is designed for advertisers, it does provide us with a general estimate of traffic volumes.

These statistics are likely only directionally correct, but they’re enough to begin us on the right route, as Google makes no guarantee of correctness.

You’ll need an AdWords account to utilise the tool, but if you’ve never used AdWords before, you can sign up for one for free.

Select “Get search volume data and trends” after you’ve logged in.

Click “Get search volume” after pasting in your long list of terms. You’ll see a lot of graphs and data once you’ve done that.

Unfortunately, the Keyword Planner interface is a pain to work with, so we’ll simply download our data to Excel and play with it there.

Now we’ll pick which types of traffic we’d like to pursue.

This fluctuates depending on how authoritative your site is. So, let’s try to figure out how easy it will be to rank.

Enter your URL into SEMrush and look at the total backlinks in the third column: As a general rule (this may change depending on how old your site is, who the links are from, etc. ), this is the maximum level of “difficulty” you should pursue based on the number of links you have.

The quantity of backlinks

Difficulty Level Maximum

< 30:<40




Sort the data by difficulty and remove everything that is too challenging for your site (don’t worry, we’ll get to those terms eventually). For the time being, you can just delete those rows.

Exact Match

It’s worth noting that Google refers to this volume as “precise match” traffic. This means that if a keyword has a tiny variation, we will observe it if the words are synonyms, but not if they are used in a phrase, resulting in traffic that is lower than expected.

Now, using that disclaimer, order the visitor volume from highest to lowest, and choose five terms that seem to fit.

Here are some of mine:

growth hacking strategies

growth hacking techniques

growth hacking 101

growth hacking instagram

growth hacking twitter

Mine all look the same, but that may not necessarily be the case.

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