Recently I was asked for some advice by someone looking to start thier first online business. This person reminded me a lot of myself, because I had no clue what I was doing when I first started online. In response, here are a few things that first come to mind.
You can start a successful online business without implementing SEO. Conversely, however, you’re not going to be very successful online if all you’re counting on is SEO. With that said, search engine optimizing a high-quality website can grow it tenfold.
SEO is still a relatively new practice; one that is constantly growing. So the way one professional defines search engine optimization can be completely different than the way someone else does.
Since I’m writing this post primarily for the typical newcomer, based on my experience, I’m going to assume most people outside of the industry think of SEO as the practice of getting their website top rankings in the search engines, and that’s it. But to me, it is a lot more than that. I’ll explain later. Considering the above definition though, SEO, without offering anything of value, is not enough to be successful online.
Here is a list of the mistakes I made with when I jumped into my first online endeavor:
You can still be successful with an affiliate website. However, you need to offer additional value, i.e., a lot of additional content people can use. Perhaps really good product reviews, how-to guides, or a glossary. I think you get the idea.
Today, I think of SEO quite differently than I did in the beginning; I worry about my search engine rankings as well as bounce rate, conversions, unique visitors, return visitors, natural links, popular content, user experience, subscriptions, new customers/clients and of course revenue and ROI. Just to name a few important KPIs.
Starting an online business takes a lot more than what I can explain in a single blog post. Just take your time, do your research, provide great value, and don’t try to monetize too early.