A passive income.
Isn’t that the dream?
Before online marketing existed, businesses had to rely on tactics like advertising (which can be costly) or in-person networking (which has limited reach) to get new customers.
But nowadays, you can do SEO to generate a steady stream of highly targeted leads to your website that are looking for exactly what you’re selling.
A website with good SEO is like an automated sales machine that’s working 24/7 to make money for your business.
Once you’re ranking, you’ll get qualified leads coming in on an ongoing basis…even while you sleep.
The top three positions in the SERPs get 50% of the clicks, which means significantly more traffic, leads and sales than the lower-ranking positions.
So, here are five simple SEO tips and tricks to help you take out the top spots!
5 Practical SEO Tips and Tricks to Help You Make Sales While You Sleep
1. Start with a Solid Keyword Strategy
Regardless of what niche you’re in, you should always start with a well-thought-out keyword strategy.
Keyword research is important because it reveals the exact search phrases that people are typing in to find your product or service. Your goal here is to optimize for the most profitable keywords so that you can reach the most people searching for businesses like yours.
Google’s Keyword Planner is free to use and shows you Google’s own data, which makes sense because you’re optimizing your site for Google.
You can use this tool to discover what people are searching for and how often. The search volume estimates make it easy for you to focus on keyword phrases that get the most search traffic.
To get started, sign in with your Google account and then just enter a keyword phrase. The tool will show you other related keywords that people are using and you can then pick a selection of the highest volume keywords most relevant to your business that you can target on your website.
Here’s an example of the keyword results for “seo tools.” If you were selling an SEO tool, you’d probably want to consider targeting “seo checker” as well, because it also has a high monthly search volume and is relevant to what you’re offering.
2. Analyze Your Competitors’ Backlinks
Asides from keyword research, another important task you need to do is perform a backlink analysis of your competitors.
Backlinks are one of the most important ranking factors in SEO and a backlink analysis will allow you to see where your competitors are getting their links from, to better inform where you get your own.
Are they using guest blogging to build their brand? A backlink analysis will show you exactly where they’re guest posting.
Are they getting reviews from bloggers that you don’t know about? A backlink analysis will reveal which sites your competitors are getting reviews and links from.
Who else is linking to your competitors? A backlink analysis will reveal a list of sites that you can also reach out to for link building.
The best tool for this is Monitor Backlinks. As well as monitoring your own backlinks, you can also monitor the backlinks of your competitors—all you have to do is enter their domains under the Competitor Links tab.
Then, you’ll be able to see their full backlink profile, ordered by most recent.
Links that have the “Common Backlink” tag show you domains that you also have a backlink from, so you wouldn’t target them again.
The coolest thing about Monitor Backlinks is once you’ve entered your competitors’ domains, their backlinks will be automatically monitored on an ongoing basis and you’ll be alerted whenever they acquire new backlinks.
You can then pursue these backlink opportunities yourself to keep up with your competition—without having to manually check up on how their links are going.
3. Link Internally
Building internal links gives your SEO a nice little boost and is often overlooked in favor of building external links from other sites. But, linking internally between pages on your own website can be a great opportunity to drive link juice to your most important pages so that they rank higher in the search engines.
Check your keyword rankings on Monitor Backlinks to see what content is ranking and what could use a boost with internal links.
Under the Rank Tracker tab, if you scroll down past the graphs, you’ll be able to see the specific keywords you’re ranking for and your position for each.
I recommend sorting the “Ranking” column from highest to lowest to see at a glance what you’re already doing well for, and then work your way down.
Perhaps, for example, you have an article that’s ranking fifth and you want to boost it higher. Or maybe a page is at the top of the second page and you want to give it the push it needs to get onto the first page.
Try adding internal links to those pages from the higher-performing pages on your site. The strength from your high-ranking pages will pass to your lower-ranking ones, and might be just enough link juice to boost its rankings in SERPs.
This is one of the easiest ways to get an SEO quick win, especially if your site is well-established and already has a good amount of external links. Telapost, an SEO agency, helped one of their clients move from position #8 to #2 for their target keyword phrase in two months using just internal linking.
4. Start (and Keep Up) a Blog
If you really want to dominate in the search engines, start a blog and become an authority with your target audience.
Blogging also increases the number of pages on your site, which increases the potential for internal links and attracting more external links. People that have been blogging for years are extremely difficult to displace in the search engines because they’ve built up an inventory of content and they keep getting more links to it each day.
By comparison, their nearest competitor has under 40,000 backlinks.
So how do you get links to your site from blogging? Here are a few tips and tactics:
1. Spend time creating really useful content that’s better than everything else out there. Then use email outreach to promote your article to relevant audiences.
2. Build relationships with other bloggers by commenting on their blogs and sharing their articles. Other bloggers love it when people engage with their content. Do this regularly and eventually they’ll become curious about who you are and check out your blog, too.
3. When you’re starting out, find other blogs and communities where your target audience is already hanging out. Guest post on those blogs regularly and participate in those communities. Guest posting will provide links to your site but more importantly, it’ll let other people find out about you. If you’re consistently creating great content, people will link to your articles without you asking them to.
5. Build Brand Awareness and Publicity (Not Just Links)
Most influencers and well-known brands get lots of natural links, and some don’t even bother with link building. Building brand awareness and publicity can be a powerful way to get natural links to your site and dominate the search engines.
Here are a few ideas that might be worth pursuing:
Host events and send out press releases
Events often attract links, and you can promote your event to the local media by issuing press releases. Look for local journalists that cover events similar to yours and send them a copy of your press release. If you have the budget, you can also submit your press release to a distribution service like PR Newswire.
Some businesses also collaborate with charities and non-profits to get their name out there and connected to a good cause. Contact a local charity and offer to sponsor them or provide a donation—it’s a good way to get local backlinks from the charity itself and the media, while contributing to a cause you believe in.
Build relationships with influencers
Influencers publish content on high-quality sites and often link to each other’s content. Build relationships with influencers by linking to and sharing their content on your own blog and social platforms, as well as engaging them in conversation on social media.
If you’re also creating awesome content, then they may also link to you.
Participate in communities with your target audience
Participating in forums and other communities might not score you direct links, but it’s a great way to build relationships with your target audience. Besides the active members in the community that engage with you, you’ll also get exposure to a much larger audience of people who are passively reading posts in the community.
Communities don’t have to be only online, either. Many influencers speak at conferences and other events to connect with their target audience and get their message out, so keep an eye on industry events in your area.
With higher rankings comes more organic traffic, and before you know it, your website will be generating leads while you sip your morning coffee.