Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the buzz-term we’ve been bombarded with for several years now. It’s formed an entire industry and has helped businesses both large and small get found all across the globe. It’s also an invaluable tool that is sure to become increasingly important in the coming New Year. To cut through the clutter and confusion that these three letters can often bring, here are The Top Five SEO Resources to add to your favorites for 2013:
1. Inbound Writer (http://www.inboundwriter.com)
Inbound Writer is a plugin that can be used on your web site or blog that is specifically designed to optimize your content for better SEO. Once installed, it will analyze the content on each of your web pages and point out easy and immediate tweaks you should make to score higher in search engines. Simply put, Inbound Writer acts like your personal SEO guru. It reviews your existing web content and tells you how to make it better in several simple steps. Best yet, you can try it for free and you definitely don’t need to be a tech expert to understand how to use it.
2. SpyFu (http://www.spyfu.com)
In checking your own SEO, have you ever continued to stumble across a competitor’s web page that seems to always rank above yours? Clearly they’ve decoded the puzzle to the most effective keywords for your industry and to compete you need to know what these are to target them as well. Highly recommended by Forbes, Entrepreneur, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post, SpyFu takes the guesswork out of finding your most profitable keywords and eliminating bad keywords by analyzing your competitors. For an advertising campaign this helps to maximize your ad dollars and for your website this helps to maximize your organic SEO. SpyFu is a paid service, but offers a free trial period.
3. WordTracker (http://www.wordtracker.com)
If you’re ready to get serious about SEO then WordTracker should be on your list of essential resources. This makes the often confusing and arduous task of keyword research strategic and straight forward. Just because a keyword is ranked as the most popular in your industry, doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for you. WordTracker analyzes all the facts like competition, Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI) and specific data sources to give you an expert opinion on your choice of keywords.
4. Search Engine Roundtable (http://www.seroundtable.com)
Search Engine Roundtable is a unique blog that offers insightful and education information on SEO straight from the world’s most popular conferences. Every couple of months a different SEO conference takes places and Search Engine Roundtable provides an easily digestible version of the content covered for your benefit. This is a great blog to earmark and check in on regularly. You can gain valuable SEO information for none of the cost of attending the conference in person.
5. Search Engine Watch (http://searchenginewatch.com)
Also a blog, Search Engine Watch provides what its name describes – a pulse on the emerging trends and useful information for SEO. In addition to search engine related information, you’ll also gain a broader understanding of online marketing, pay-per-click advertising and the businesses and apps that affect them. This blog will teach you the various aspects of Search Engine Optimization far beyond the basic definitions.
With these five resources, you should be adequately prepared to make 2013 the best year for your SEO. Together, they should provide a solid foundation of education and understanding as well as the tools you need to advance your strategy several steps forward. Whether you handle your SEO in-house or outsource to a specialized firm, it is still invaluable to personally understand what these three letters stand for and how they can impact your web site or blog. ~Stephanie