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Getting Started with Advanced SEO

When you’re building your online presence, finding ways to drive traffic to your website can help you grow your audience, increase sales, and establish your brand in the digital marketplace. If you’ve already taken steps to optimize your website for search engines, advanced SEO can give you greater influence over where and how you connect audiences with your brand.

Advanced SEO is accessible to anyone with the right context and tools — it just requires a little extra knowledge of search engine algorithms and the tactics that influence them.

Read our guide to advanced SEO and learn five tools to improve search engine optimization.

What is advanced SEO?

Advanced SEO is an umbrella term that covers many different elements of search engine optimization — from content strategy and link-building, to structured data and other aspects of technical SEO. Improving SEO on Squarespace and other platforms can look like starting a blog, updating website metadata, creating links to your website from other places on the internet, and more.

Whether you’re launching a new website or optimizing an existing one, it’s never too early or too late to implement advanced SEO tactics and grow your online presence.

Five effective advanced SEO tactics

  1. Establish a content strategy

Creating a content strategy that includes blog content is one of the most effective ways to increase traffic and integrate advanced SEO into your website. Launching a blog and optimizing it to align with searcher intent will help the right people find your brand online. 

If you’ve already done keyword research with tools like Google Search Console, you can develop content to leverage those keywords. For example, if you run a design agency and people find your competitors by searching “website design consultations,” you might publish an in-depth guide to preparing for a website design consultation. This content is not only useful to prospective clients — it also signals your authority to search engines and helps searchers find your services online.

You can also poll your social audience about topics of interest as you develop a content strategy for your brand. Search engine keywords are informed by the language people use to find specific topics and information online, so going straight to the source can help you identify the wording and content that will resonate most with your target audience.

Over time, you can update blog content and landing page copy to stay relevant to searchers and responsive to algorithm updates. Search engines like Google prefer content that’s been recently published or updated, because it ensures they’re surfacing the most up-to-date information in their results. A good content strategy will continually signal topic authority to search engines, clearly direct visitors to take a desired action on your website, and ultimately support your larger website KPIs.

Not familiar with KPIs? Learn how to measure your website traffic and performance to establish goals for your brand.

2. Prioritize link-building

Link-building is the process of building links from other websites that direct back to your own — also known as backlinks. When other sites link to yours, it signals to search engines that your website provides valuable information or products. Link-building also creates more opportunities for searchers to find your website outside of search engine results.

To start link-building, you’ll need to ask other websites to link to your own. This can involve cold outreach to other businesses or press outlets, pitching content ideas on relevant platforms, or simple follow-ups with websites you’ve already connected with. If you’ve previously been interviewed by a press outlet, you can request that they include a link to your website in the feature, or pitch an article to an industry blog or news outlet that would include a link to your website in your author bio. The more links that point back to your website from other authoritative sites, the more search engines will take notice.

3. Implement structured data

Search engines index your website by crawling your site’s code, metadata, and the content on your landing pages. Structured data, which is a systematized approach to organizing your website’s information, helps search engines easily understand your website’s content. Structured data lives in the HTML of your website, which means it isn’t visible to your visitors.

On a blog page, structured data can look like clearly labeling the blog title, author, date of publication, and other information with callouts in the HTML. Using structured data helps create “rich results,” which search engines are more likely to feature in snippets at the top of their result pages. There are many standardized structured data markups for web pages, so you don’t have to start from scratch. Visit Schema.org to find markups to implement on your website.

All Squarespace website templates come with built-in optimizations that make it easy for search engines to index your website. Get started by verifying your website with Google Search Console.

4. Research competitors 

Spend time understanding how competitor brands are approaching SEO by auditing their content, link-building, and target keywords. When you have a holistic sense of how they’re driving traffic, you can identify areas for improvement in your own SEO strategy, and opportunities for differentiating your brand. 

For example, if you’re launching a clean beauty makeup line, make your brand stand out in search by emphasizing that your products are vegan and cruelty free, and targeting associated keywords in your website copy.

Not sure who your competitors are? Plug common keywords into a search engine and see which brands pop up first.

5. Leverage social media

Your SEO research can help you optimize paid social ads, drive more qualified traffic, and ultimately improve ecommerce conversion rates on your website. Use Squarespace Analytics and other keyword research tools to identify the terms your brand is already ranking for, and measure the impact of your paid ads over time. If you don’t see keyword rankings improve and diversify — meaning that your site is now being found through a broader range of keyword sets — consider pivoting your paid social approach to ensure you get a good return on your ad investment. 

If you’re still building up your social presence, start driving social engagement with a Bio Site, and create high quality video ads in just a few minutes to kickstart your social media marketing efforts.

Looking for more tools to improve SEO? Learn how to write effective website copy.

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