Dumb SEO Questions

(Entry was posted by Jo Acharya on this post in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Thursday, March 10, 2022).

I`m not ranking anywhere close to page 1 for most of my keywords

Hey so I`m a real beginner and so far (a few months in) seeing hardly any fruit from my SEO efforts. I`m not ranking anywhere close to page 1 for most of my keywords.
My SEO strategy is below. I know it`s basic, but can you tell me if it sounds roughly right or if you can see any problems with it?
1 Choose an article topic that fits within my niche and create a page for it
2 Find a few long tail keywords regard to aspects of the topic where there is a bit of traffic and a few websites with relatively low DA on first page of Google (though my own DA is still much lower)
3 Use keywords as h2 section headings within the article
4 Use keywords in the page SEO and if space throw in a couple related to my overall niche (prob 7-8 keywords in total)
I should add that I`m not looking to make megabucks from this site, just to make sure the people who would find my articles helpful can find them! It`s just me running the site and the SEO.
So, is there a fundamental problem with my SEO strategy, or should I focus on building backlinks to increase my DA and give me a better chance of ranking?
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Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions G+ community.

  • Ash Nallawalla: Your main problem is that you need to demonstrate EAT. If you decided to write about Orlando, for example, and a niche of Disney parks there, you will have no hope of ranking, even if your content uses the best keywords. In other words, there are other reasons why sites rank. People need to look at your site to be more specific with their advice.

  • Jo Acharya: Ash Nallawalla I don’t know what EAT is?

  • Ash Nallawalla: expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness.

  • Jo Acharya: Ash Nallawalla thank you

  • Christine Hansen: Just had a quick look into your site - 1 minute - and I haven`t figured out what it is all about?!?!? Your front page is all over the plate. Every single page has to be dead clear to the viewer what it is about. Your front page start out with links to social media... then 2 CTA`s, then some links stuffed under "news". Then we have some sort of short explainer in a vague color and some hefty blocks of more links... and that is it. As a customer, I`d leave. CTA`s and links just do not cut it. Have a serious look at USP - Unique Selling Proposition - and really unfold your USP into all pages, all text, all images, and everything you do. And please have a second look at your webdesign - too many hefty banners and boxes.

  • Jo Acharya: Christine Hansen Thank you, those are good points. Most of my traffic right now is from social media ie ppl who already know what I’m about but you’re right, someone who didn’t know anything about me would be confused by the homepage. That’s helpful feedback.

  • Christine Hansen: Jo Acharya Let me know when you have changed your front page, and I will have a second look.

  • Jo Acharya: Christine Hansen thanks so much. I will have a think about how to organise it better and make it a clearer introduction to the website.

  • Michael Martinez: Forget Expertise, itativeness, and Trustworthiness.

    Forget keywords.

    Forget Domain Authority and all other SEO metrics.

    What you need to do is create the kind of Website you yourself would find interesting and helpful.

    These SEO formulas aren`t going to do you a bit of good if you`re just blindly trying to fill in the blanks.

    What can you offer (via your Website)? What do you bring to the conversation with your visitors?

    Why do you want to involve yourself in whatever topic(s) you have chosen? What passion is driving you? Write about THAT.

  • Jo Acharya: Michael Martinez yes that’s definitely my priority! I’m a writer, so what I really want to be doing is writing quality content that will be valuable to people. But the other stuff still matters right? I could write the best articles on the internet but…

  • Michael Martinez: Jo Acharya "But the other stuff still matters right?"

    Not really, no. People believe in it but there`s no definitive way to establish E-A-T. It`s just something for people to talk about. I`m tired of arguing with people who want to believe in the E-A-T fairy.

  • Jo Acharya: Michael Martinez Are you saying that if I write better content than others on my topics then Google will figure it out and rank me even if I`m not paying attention to keywords, backlinks etc?

  • Ash Nallawalla: Jo Acharya I will leave you with the thought - why would Google consider your content to be better than that of others? Who is in the top 10 now and is your content better than theirs? If so, then what else are they doing that you are not?

  • Michael Martinez: Jo Acharya What I am saying is that you should create sincere content, that`s the best and most thorough content you can make.

    There is no list of E-A-T "things" or "factors" that you can check off as you create content or build out a site.

    All the SEO advice I`ve seen to date that includes explicit things to do to "improve E-A-T" or however people want to describe it - they`re all nonsense.

    Since there is no E-A-T algorithm there are no E-A-T signals. You can`t tweak it, fake it, or make it. Google can`t identify it (algorithmically).

    So until you`re ready to think about search engine optimization metaphorically, just don`t waste your time with SEO formulas.

  • Jo Acharya: Michael Martinez making the best content I can has always been my number one priority. I just want to make sure I`m not typing into a void lol!

  • Michael Martinez: Jo Acharya Let`s go back to one of the points in your original ask:

    "Find a few long tail keywords regard to aspects of the topic where there is a bit of traffic and a few websites with relatively low DA on first page of Google (though my own DA is still much lower)"

    How do you define "long tail keywords"? I can almost guarantee you that whatever definition you`ve picked up from reading SEO blogs doesn`t agree with the various definitions used by Google teams.

    But what I can also say with confidence is that if you`re creating content that earns at least a few search referrals per month, you`re already on the right track.

    Rather than looking for low-volume, low-competition queries, you should think about how you can create content that complements and adds to the ongoing discussion about the topics you care about.

    There ARE things you can learn to do to tweak your content so the search engine algorithms reward it better. But you need to strengthen the value you place on your own content before you start playing the Big Game. Without adding real value to the discussion, about the best you`re most likely to accomplish is gaining empty traffic.

    And then you`ll be back asking why with all that traffic you aren`t meeting your objectives.


View original question in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Thursday, March 10, 2022).

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