Minimalist Marketing

Top 4 Most Agonizing SEO Questions Answered

This post is going to cover the following questions:

  1. What are the 3 most essential factors that impact SEO ranking?
  2. What is something simple that you can do on a monthly basis to improve SEO ranking?
  3. How much should you expect to pay for good SEO that actually ranks you?
  4. How do you rank e-commerce websites with lots of different products?


I will try to make it as un-boring as I can.


1) What are the 3 most essential factors that impact your SEO ranking?

This is basically the 80/20 of SEO. The 20% of factors that are responsible for 80% of your rank.

Everyone wants you to believe that SEO is so complex. Its not. Sure, you can study the other 80% and overwhelm yourself with all kinds of SEO odds and ends. But that stuff is really only 20% of your ranking.

It comes down to 3 main things (and these are the absolute first things I do with a new client so I can get them results right away):


#1. Have a great page that you are targeting with a specific search phrase. The page MUST have content. The more valuable and interesting to read, the better. If you can say something that doesn’t just echo what 5000 other websites have already said, you have found the golden egg. Put the phrase on your page a few times. Title your page with your phrase. Put your phrase in your meta tags. Put in the URL if you can.

#2. Get links. Good ones. Don’t bother with any crappy link. Just aim for high quality links, even if its just one per month. You will be so far ahead of your competitors if you do this.

#3. There actually isn’t a 3rd thing. The first 2 are the absolute most important, and I wouldn’t bother focusing on anything else unless you’re in some kind of super competitive industry where that last 20% is going to matter.

2.) What is something simple that you can do on a monthly basis to improve SEO ranking?

First I want to make one thing clear: on-page SEO is not an ongoing task. Do your on-page SEO once, and be done. Please don’t ever pay anyone monthly to do your on-page SEO. The amount of “experts” who charge monthly for on-page search engine optimization makes me ashamed for the industry.


Ok, but what can you do monthly? Get links.


There are 2 ways to get good links:

  1. Buy them
  2. Build them


(you can also beg for them, but I hate doing that so I’m just not even going to talk about it)


Buying links requires A) knowing someone who has editorial access to the websites you want a link from and B) money. If you have the those 2 things, you are set.


Building links requires A) knowing where to build and B) some time to write a great piece of content that will feature your link.


If you buy or build ONE AWESOME link to your website every month for a year, you will be so happy with the results. You will cry of happiness and wonder why you didn’t just do that earlier. You will be swimming in all your extra profit. I digress.


3.) How much should you expect to pay for good SEO services?

Payment for SEO is kind of weird. First, there is no set standard, it can be $99/month to $10,000/month. Second, it is largely based on the value the SEO provides the client vs the actual work being done.


Let me explain that.


Lets just say it takes me 3 hours of work per month to get your therapy practice ranked #1 on Google. Thats not a huge time investment for me. But guess what? That #1 ranking just won you 15 new clients. How much money did I just create for you? THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS.


This is why SEO is super expensive in high profit industries like dentists, law firms, loans, carpet cleaning. Its because that #1 spot is worth high 5-figures every month.


My mentor Mike Dillard has a philosophy that you should give your customers 5X the value that they paid.


So this is how I structure the pricing in my agency. We estimate how much money we can earn you by having a #1 ranking, then divide that number by 5. That way, you’ll be earning 5X what you’re paying. Fair, right?


But obviously, not everyone prices SEO like that. And most people selling SEO aren’t even doing SEO.


So how much should you expect (or be willing) to pay? I would say 20-50% of what you expect your ranking to earn you. So if you’re a photographer and you expect (based on traffic and conversion rates) that your #1 ranking will earn you $1000 in new income per month, you should be paying $200-500/month for it.


If your ranking will bring you $10,000/month in new sales, you should expect to pay $2000-5000/month for that spot.


4.) How do you rank e-commerce websites with lots of different products for sale?


This is something that almost every single new and hopeful e-commerce business person struggles with. How to get those damn products to rank????


The problem is that your products don’t have enough content on the page, and they aren’t targeted to a specific keyword phrase that gets search traffic.


You need to make a separate page on your website that has the sole purpose of bringing traffic IN. Do this by providing a valuable article on something related to your keyword.

If you sell wooden baby toys, you need an awesome article called “10 Reasons why wooden baby toys are the absolute best” and that is the page you will rank in Google and build your links to. Not your individual products.


You can also work on building up the authority of your domain to a point that all your products rank naturally. Think Walmart or Amazon. They don’t need SEO to their product pages because the domain is so strong that the pages rank on their own.


But this is a long game and will take forever and ever, and you will be competing with the giants. Its easier to just rank a highly targeted page that provides more value than your competitors. And because the “giants” don’t have to SEO their product pages, it actually makes it easier for a high value page to outrank them.


Alright, thats it for today.


Hope this helps.

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