6 Step SEO Strategy for Free Google Traffic (Step-by-Step)
Free targeted Google traffic is the holy grail of digital marketing, at least the channel with the biggest Return on Investment (ROI).
The challenge of course for business owners is you have no idea how to get the #1 Google rankings you want, so you call your local SEO agency.
The problem with this is, the barrier to entry is so low, it's easy to start an SEO agency.
The way local SEO agencies win your business is simple...
They overload you with data and analysis that looks impressive on the surface, but it's more show than go...or something like that :)
Let me give you a simple strategy that will work for 90% of small business owners, and at the very least will give you a solid SEO foundation for your site and a new stream of monthly search engine traffic without the costs per click.
#1 - KEYWORD RESEARCH
Don't assume you know the best keywords or search terms to target, get the raw data first.
At the end of the day SEO is not free, the resulting traffic is...there's a difference.
Why would you spend on average $1,000 and 15 - 20 hours of your time targeting and ranking a search term that turns out to have less than $100 worth of monthly traffic.
Head over to Neil Patel's free tool called Ubersuggest and punch in your search terms.
This free tool - my opinion - uses Google Ads Keyword tool data and spits out stats faster than logging into Google Ads and navigating to the keyword planner tool...quick win.
Then - and this is critical - run a small $10 - $20 Google Ads campaign against your chosen terms to find out 100% from the horses mouth the amount of search engine requests there are per day for your terms.
Now you are 100% sure which search terms you want to target for your SEO campaign, high five :)
#2 - COMPETITION ANALYSIS
If you're a small business owner starting out selling running shoes, you don't try take out Nike from day one, do you?
Then do your homework and understand what your competition did to get to the top of the search engine rankings before your jump head first into a sea of sharks!
This is as easy as looking at the type of content they created by reviewing their sites manually, then entering their URLs into a free word count tool to get an idea of exactly how much content they created.
I recommend using WordCounter.net
It's also a good idea to use Ubersuggest again to get an idea of how many sites link to each of your competitors, because links work like votes and you're going to need to get more than your competition to win the election, so to speak.
Ok, so now you have all your info, time to start planning your content strategy.
#3 - CONTENT DEVELOPMENT
If you ignore everything else I say regarding content, remember this...
Google rewards engagement.
That means the better your site entertains, informs and delivers high quality content to your visitors, the longer they will stay around (onpage time or onsite time) and you will be rewarded accordingly by the almighty Google.
At the end of the day Google wants to serve the best quality content to their users.
That's another reason they trust brands more than mom and pops and why you should aim to build a brand and not game Google.
Here's how to quickly research content ideas for your website...
Start off by entering your target terms in the Google search field.
You'll notice closely related terms appear in the dropdown menu, make a note of these terms...press enter.
Scroll to the bottom of the search results page where you'll find more related search terms, write these down too.
Now head over to Buzzsumo and enter your keywords again.
Take note of the questions and topics around your terms.
What are people asking, what are their pain points, what are the solutions?
Take note of all of these because you're gathering puzzle pieces for your content strategy.
Now you should have a good variety of topics and search terms closely related to your content.
Remember to use the following when compiling your content...
How to Lists
Data and Stats
Quick lists and menus
Images and Media
Mobile optimised design
Personally I aim for 2,000 to 3,000 words of content for competitive search terms as I love ranking for the longtail search terms and random things I would never have thought of.
It's like an extra 15 - 20% traffic boost for doing nothing.
Now that you have wicked cool content, you need to make it wicked popular content too.
How do you do that?
You need to get links from other websites pointing to yours...remember the voting analogy I used earlier, this is how to do it...
#4 - INFOGRAPHICS
For most small businesses targeting medium competition terms one good infographic placement at a directory like Daily Infographic is enough to get you the links you need.
The cost at this site is $300 once off and it's well worth the price.
Because bloggers visit the site for ideas and inspiration, and they're the ones you want to link to your site.
By creating a cool infographic you open your content up to considerably more shares and references, all counting nicely to your popularity score - awesome!
If you don't know how to design an infographic you could get a really good one made for you for between $300 - $600 at a site like Upwork (don't go cheap here, they'll not have the effect you need.)
If you're a DIY type you can reference FreePik.com and search for their PSD files under infographics and you'll get hundreds of pre-designed templates you can edit and customise yourself.
That's what I do 90% of the time and it works great!
Next up, you need to create Social Signals for your content, because remember, Google rewards content that acts like a brand, and brands have social signals.
#5 - SOCIAL SIGNALS
My strategy here is pretty simple.
Break the big master infographic I designed into smaller chunks that work perfectly as social media posts...then drip release them over the course of 1-2 weeks.
That's a Gary Vaynerchuk content deck tip.
And it a good one!
Do this and your social media signals for your content will be on point.
#6 - PRESS RELEASE
Yes I said it!
Press Releases don't work I hear you crying.
Untrue. They don't work if they're a bland attempt at self-promotion.
They work a damn sight better if you plan them to provide bloggers with content by using stats, data, research, tips, lists and any other source of easy to digest info that will give them something to write about...and then credit you in return.
That's where you get another round of bonus organic white hat links for $200 or so.
For the vast majority of business owners this strategy alone will be more than enough to take you to the top of the search engine rankings for your target search terms.
If you come up short you'll have a solid idea of the work required to top up the engine to power you to number one.
You'll have a great SEO foundation and the total investment will easily outweigh the costs of paying for every click on Google Ads.
(Although I love Google Ads too, but you need a killer content funnel.)
If you have any questions or would like me to implement this strategy for you, contact me and we can get it done before you can say, damn that was great service!