Let's talk SEO! Taylor Bradford from Boss Girl Creative
Super Simple SEO for Your Business
We know SEO can be a daunting topic, so we wanted to give you a breakdown on the best ways to use it for your business. Taylor of Boss Girl Creative, has taken her years of blogging experience and turned them in to a podcast helping creatives learn all about blogging and SEO.
In this episode, she gives you the overview of SEO, Google Analytics, and the Google Search Console. Don't worry! She doesn't go into the techy stuff, but just the basics you need to know to get started!
Taylor has a long background in blogging. She started her blog "Tales of a Used Car Salesman" in 2008. After falling in love with the Pioneer Woman in 2011, she changed the name of her blog to “Goings on in Texas” which had nothing to do with Texas and blogged 5 days a week until April 2016. Taylor had started a 40 post series called #Bloggeredumacation on her site in 2014 that became really popular. She heard her first podcast and decided to use #bloggeredumacation as her starting point for her own podcast.
She also purchased other courses specifically towards podcasting. She got the green light from a lot of her friends, but launched to crickets initially. Taylor knew she had to re-think and treat it like a business with her built in audience from her blog. She went from B-school to Fearless Launching and Boss Girl Creative went live in July 2015. Most of her episodes are solo episodes where she teaches the basics of blogging and SEO for online entrepreneurs.
What is B-School?
Marie Forleo has an 8 week program of intense education to get your business started. Although it is pretty expensive, she adds new modules for it every year, so there are new things to learn each year. Taylor recommends signing up through an affiliate because then you get even more 1:1 attention.
What is SEO?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and most people talk about in terms of Google only. It is how your website ranks in Google and allows you to show up higher and higher in Google Search.
Google Analytics is there to show you about your readers and statistics about your pages/posts. It will also show you the information on your referral traffic and where your people are coming from. You can use all of this information to determine who your audience is, what they want, and where they hang out. This allows you to determine where to spend your time and energy. Installing Google Analytics is pretty simple as they guide you through the process for each web platform. Be aware that it could take 24-48 hours for data to populate, but don’t start analyzing the data until you have 30 days worth of data. Even if you aren’t planning on doing anything with the information now, go ahead and set it up ASAP.
Google Search Console
Just like Analytics, Search Console is free and you need to set it up. Taylor loves this tool so much. Google will show you exactly what people are searching for that allows them to find you. It will even show you the click-through-rate (CTR) for these search terms. There are 10 spots on each Google page (not including paid ads) and the Search Console will show you where you are showing up for that keyword/phrase. Once you know where you are showing up and what you are showing up for, then again, you’ll know where to spend your energy when creating your posts and pages.
Taylor recommends having 3-4 pillar content pages and using your Search Console results will give you topics for your pillar pages. Each time you write a post on one of your pillar topics, you need to link it back to your pillar page. This shows Google that you are constantly updating that topic and creating NEW content for your readers. Google loves active and new content and will continue to rank these pages (plus, backlinks to your own pages is great for SEO too!)
How to actually optimize your website
If you don’t know your WHY for your business, Taylor believes you’ll have a very hard time optimizing your website. For Taylor’s vintage rental business, she knows that she needs to tap into Google’s local features. This includes claiming her local business profile which tells Google she wants that local search. As she builds out her site, Taylor continues to use the tags for “Dallas Event Rentals” to rank in local searches. If you’re a blogger, this will be different, but her point is the same - what are you doing and why? Make it clear to Google. Taylor recommends using more words on your home page because that is the first place Google starts to rank you and you need to give them more information on what you’re about from the get go.
When you are building out your pillar pages, those topics are also your keywords and phrases that you want to to be ranked for on Google. Think about the different types of photography you may offer, and build content around those as your keywords and pillars. Since most photographers are looking for local clients, you need to include your location in your posts and pillars as well. Your keywords and pillars go back to your overall “what do you want to be known for”. Here is an example - “Toronto Photographer” would be the overall who, but then you can create your pillars around ‘Toronto wedding photography’ and ‘Toronto childhood photography’.
Find your ranking
To find out where you rank, you need to get off your own computer because Google knows when you search on your own computer. Google will return your own site higher for you, because they know it is you. Go use a public computer at your local library or Best Buy and do a search. You will never know where you exactly rank, but this is the closest way you can find out. Some of this information you can find out if you’ve activated Google Search Console. Taylor is wary of paying for services that offer to give you your ranking because you can find out so much for free from Google.
How to get started with SEO
Start a blog. You don’t have to put out a post every day, but it is an easy way to get some local rankings by writing about other vendors too. When people search for those other vendors, they’ll find you too. Most people in the wedding industry don’t blog the way they should so just by starting, you’ll be a step ahead.
Focus on one social media platform first. Find out where your people are hanging out (Facebook, Instagram) and get active there. If you’re people on on Instagram, use the location tagging feature and tag the venues and cities so you can get found there too.
Don't forget to join the Focus(ed) Business Owners on Facebook to discuss your thoughts on this episode!
More About Taylor
Taylor Bradford is host & creator of the Boss Girl Creative podcast & community. In 2011, Taylor started a blogging tip/tricks series entitled #bloggingedumacation on her lifestyle blog, Taylor Bradford Blog. After writing over 40 lessons, she decided to take her lessons and advice and turn them into a podcast which launched in July 2015. Her podcast teaches the whats, whys & hows of blogging business & being a creative entrepreneur. Taylor has a passion for teaching and helping other Creative Entrepreneurs. She has a knack for business and a life-long dream of sharing it with her fellow Boss Girls.