7 Startup SEO Tips
Startup SEO is hard. You’re an unknown brand, and often on a completely new domain that Google has yet to trust. Here’s a few tips that I tell startups to do to get ahead of their competitors and start generating more organic traffic from Google and Yahoo.
1. Press links are golden links
Press links are true gold when it comes to SEO. Why? Two main reasons: They come from authoritative sites and they are nearly impossible for competitors to replicate.
2. Hire a freelance blog writer to boost content output
Most startup founders struggle with blogging. If it’s not a core strength, it’s difficult to get meaningful output.
Consider hiring a once-a-week freelance writer to get started. Find someone who knows your industry and can write based on just a title suggestion. You will need to provide guidance, try this tool for generating easy title ideas for your writer: idea generator.
Do not hire a general writer, make sure to hire someone already writing within your industry.
3. Use PPC Data to generate content ideas
If you’re running a pay-per-click campaign on Google or Bing and tracking conversions, start tracking your high converting keywords and crafting content pieces around them.
This strategy works great when you have a little bit of a budget to test with. It can really boost your ROI on your content since you already know that those topics will convert well.
4. Don’t outsource SEO
This is the biggest mistake an early startup can make. Unless you can cut a deal to trade services with a well-respected SEO, stay away. There are too many slick talking SEOs out there that love to prey on un-informed founders. Read up and commit to doing your own SEO work. If you’re running a startup you can learn the basics of SEO in a few days. The real hard part of SEO is the execution. Don’t get too hung up on the minutia.
If you have the budget to hire a in-house SEO, most SEOs view In-house SEO jobs as a step up from agency work. You’ll be able to hire a quality SEO by providing a stable salary and challenging problems to tackle.
5. Leverage offline relationships
You have startup swag, right? All those t-shirts and free pens can be fantastic ways to build links and relationships. The best links I’ve ever gotten have been from meeting someone offline. People link to people they know and like. And it’s much easier to be liked and known in the real world than online.
6. Make videos to complement content pages
YouTube can be a tremendous source of traffic. A video can really spice up a content page and the competition for video results is significantly low. You can quickly get videos ranking in Google for phrases as opposed to content pages with the same phrases.
Pro-tip: Write the content page first, then use that content to create an easy script for a video using a screen cast.
7. Measure your SEO progress
Google Analytics is great for tracking your traffic metrics, but sometimes you need earlier insights into if your SEO efforts are working or not. Tracking rankings of your top keywords is one way to quickly measure the authority of your domain and also allows you to see any significant Google updates:
By combining analytics and rankings data together you can see very interesting insights into your SEO performance.
What SEO tips would you share to other startups? Let us know in the comment section below.
About the Author
Scott Krager is the founder of the SEO software company SERPs.com. He lives in Portland, OR and likes turtles.