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Introduction to SEO

SEO is mentioned everywhere when it comes to marketing, but what does it all mean?

When it comes to wanting to market your business or blog online, you need to understand the basics of Search-Engine Optimization, or otherwise known as SEO. There are many different rules surrounding SEO, and it is one of the most critical aspects of marketing any business or blog! This is the reason that it is crucial that you take your time to research into how it works properly, which is time-consuming, we know. That is why we’re here, compiling all the basics into one place for you, so you don’t have to spend hours of your busy day looking for it!

While there is no sure-fire SEO strategy or route to take to success, using SEO and having a successful website go hand in hand with one another. That’s why we’re here to save you from unnecessary stress by putting all the information in one place for you.

Basics of SEO

Whenever you put anything into a search engine, those words which you used are linked with millions of webpages and brings up the most relevant one based on your search. The idea behind SEO is to make a website more visible by placing it at the top of the list, therefore increasing the chance that people will click on the site. Search engines are designed to give the user exactly what they want depending on their search. For example, if somebody were to search for ”Mobile Phones’, the first thing that comes up will not be laptops. Instead, what is shown is a website which specialises in mobile phones while also having an apt description. SEO ensures that the search a user makes is relevant to what they want and is one of the best ways of bringing traffic to your site.

Keywords are one of the most significant factors of SEO, as it is the way that search engines categorise how relevant your page is to a user. These keywords refer to the most important themes of your business or blog. For example, whether it is to do with baking or toys. Not only are keywords used to refine the search, but other defining features of a post such as headlines, titles, or links within the webpage.

Why Is Keyword Research So Important?

 As mentioned beforehand, keywords are a crucial part of incorporating SEO into a website. Keywords are specific phrases or sets of words which best describe the overall theme or idea of your business or blog. So, for example, a post about a nursery could have the ‘terms’ Nursery’ ”Children’ ”Kids toys’ spread throughout it, depending on what the post is about, of course. These words are ones which people will use when typing in their search, so they should be words you use in the content of your website.

 When choosing your keywords, you need to think about things like how relevant they are to your website, as well as what other people as your competitors will be using. An excellent way to check this is to type the keywords you plan to use into google and see what turns up. If what is shown is what you’re aiming towards, then you’re on the right track! Otherwise, you might need a little bit of tweaking. Google AdWords is another fantastic tool you can use, type in your keyword, and you can see the traffic that is generated by each keyword. As soon as you have picked and double-checked what your keywords are, you should feel more than confident in knowing that you’ve got keywords down. You may have to change keywords further on, and that’s no problem! A little editing here and there only serves to prove you’re confident in what you’re doing, and so you should be!

Important Factors

Now, while keywords are essential to a successful SEO strategy, they aren’t the be-all and end-all of your website. It would be best if you also considered things which make up your website that a consumer would be looking at if they were searching for information online. If they are looking for how to remove a stained shirt, and the title resembles nothing about it, they aren’t going to click on that website. Some of the most important things to check for your website are:

  • Titles
  • Meta Description
  • Images and Videos
  • Target Audience
  • Headings and Subheadings
  • Links

One thing to keep in mind is that one single factor will not define your SEO success, but instead, success revolves the entirety of your content.

So, it would help if you didn’t focus on every single little thing when writing and micro-manage your work because it will end up reading like a robot. SEO should be something you don’t think about every time you go to write something.  Trying to cram in keywords, creating unnatural sentences, or using content which you have copied from somebody else is one of the most annoying things to both write and read. You should focus on editing and reviewing your writing after the majority of the message is written, but don’t waffle on! The last thing you want to do is to have to read fifty sentences of nonsense to get what you want to know.

Tools and Services of SEO

Making a start towards understanding SEO is great to further your marketing efforts, but it is crucial that you consider using SEO tools and services as well. More often than not, search engines will actually provide these services for you to use readily; including but not limited to: Google Analytics, Google AdWords, Google Alerts, Google Trends, Google Webmaster, Doubleclick Ad Planner, Google Site Map and Google Page Speed.

If you have too much on your plate; rather than use Google or online SEO tools, there are companies which work towards doing all of this SEO work for you. So that you can describe what you want, and they do all the hard work for you. Still, it is vital that you understand what SEO is down to its basics. Otherwise, those people who you hire will end up not being able to work to the best of their abilities.

Finally, you have to remember that SEO is never-ending! It doesn’t end the moment that you post some content. Instead, it is something that you have to keep up to date and relevant by consistently posting new content that will engage your readers.

By becoming a member of ICAP you’re joining a community of like-minded professionals and business owners in the children’s activity sector working towards excellence

Pip Wilkins

Pip Wilkins is the Chief Executive of the British Franchise Association (bfa). With 25 years’ experience in the franchise sector, Pip has worked her way up within the Association, gaining insight from all areas of the business and the franchise industry. She is well-known and highly regarded in franchising for her dedication and depth of knowledge. Pip regularly speaks at conferences and seminars both domestically and internationally, as well as writing on franchising matters for national, local and franchising trade press. Pip is also a regular judge for the annual bfa HSBC Franchise Awards, the Franchise Marketing Awards and Global Franchise Awards. Pip represents the UK at both the European Franchise Federation (EFF) and World Franchise Council (WFC). The bfa has grown to be one of the largest franchise associations in Europe, and one of the most successful associations in the world.

Theo Millward

Theo Millward is a graduate of Lancaster University with a BBA in Management. In 2016 Theo purchased UK swim school, Swimtime from the founders which teaches 20,000 children a week. Following a multi-award- winning digital transformation, during the global pandemic, Theo and his team founded Franscape, a saas that digitally transforms Franchise brands. FranScape won New Business of the Year at the UK Business Awards.

Andy Georgiou

Andy is the Founder of ICAP and a leading UK Franchise Business Consultant. He is fiercely committed to helping children’s activity providers build successful and profitable businesses. With qualifications in Business Management, Digital Media and Marketing, he has helped build, advise and grow leading 6 and 7 fiqure children’s education, sports and activity brands in the past 17 years.

Frank Sahlein

Frank has been active in the Children’s Activity Center industry as an athlete, coach, business owner, consultant and business broker. He is a native of San Mateo, California and graduated from San Jose State University in California (USA).
Frank was a pioneer of the Children’s Learning Opportunity Center concept from 1976 – 2016 at the Wings Center in Boise, Idaho (USA) – a blend of Sports Instruction, Arts, Education, Entertainment and Outreach programs.
As a business management innovator, Frank has delivered over 1,000 presentations for a variety of Children’s Activity Center industries such as gymnastics, swimming, cheerleading, dance, martial arts/ninja and child care/education.
3rd Level Consulting is a Business Development and Service Provider Partner for private industry companies, associations, and organizations in the USA, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Panama.
Two-time recipient of the National Business Leader Award from USA Gymnastics, Frank is the author of “Building Your Business Potential” and “Designing Your Empowered Life”. He is the creator of the SmartEDGE™ Business Applications and Management Certification Courses. He is the co-founder of LEAP Learning and the MetaSpheres Corp, and is the founder and Executive Director of the International Association of Child Development Programs.
His passions include his beautiful wife Lourdes Gonzalez, family, friends, fitness training, transformational reading and travel.