I've been helping small businesses for almost a decade now with building powerful websites that allow for simplicity in their daily workflow, but there are three letters that seem to freak out my clients more than anything else I say... SEO. Search engine optimization is like that workout routine that you know everyone says you should be doing, but don't they understand that you are a busy business owner that's lucky to sit down for lunch without interruption let alone dedicate time and energy to getting noticed by Google.

To that, I say I get it. In fact, I find it difficult to work our own SEO into the daily grind from time to time, but I give myself grace when I need it. As we all know, life and business can sometimes seem like a triage on the battlefield where picking what gets your attention can feel painful, but necessary.

Allow me to help you with three simple steps to daily SEO that will improve your rankings and usually take less time than that pot of coffee takes to brew. That's why I call it brew time tips, you guys.

A quick back story on Brew Time Tips. This is a new series of blog posts that is specifically helping those of us that are too busy with everything else out there. If that's not you because you find that everything seems to fit easily in your schedule, then this isn't for you. But, for everyone else this series will help you with quick impactful tips and that's it. A quick read that lists actionable tasks to achieve ideal results.

So, you should know that this is not the detailed focused stuff that will blow you up the results page, but it is something that you can do in a brief amount of time and it will help your SEO out. If you want intense SEO techniques, then reach out to me and I'll be happy to get you enrolled in our DIY SEO training where the results of our previous clients speak for themselves.

For now, though, let's get to easy stuff that Google likes...

SEO BREW TIME TIPS

  1. Run a free site audit and fix the errors
  2. Compress your images
  3. Add free accessibility software

1 | SITE AUDITS

There are tons of online resources that will give you a free website audit, but I have yet to find one that is as easy to understand for the novice that Neil Patel's SEO Analyzer tool. I mean it is legit easy, thorough enough to give you a breakdown of site errors and issues such as load time(more on this later) improvements based on device, word count analyzer, keyword suggestions, backlink breakdown, and more. It's thorough, fast, and FREE!

Yes, this is Edwin Marie's score and we fixed all our errors. The cool thing is you can, too. Neil's tool is really easy to use.

Once you run the audit, which is less than three minutes usually, you can view a list of simple improvements that are ranked as being easy, moderate, and hard tasks plus the audit tells you how much of an impact each error plays into your SEO ranking. I mean, it doesn't get easier and faster than this because you can find the simple tasks that give you the most bang for you buck regarding effort and time needed.

I always attack the "Easy Difficulty" tasks first and focus on the "High SEO Impact" tasks in that group. Then I move up the difficulty list.

2 | COMPRESS IMAGES

Page load speed has become an increasing point of emphasis when it comes to site rankings. Simply put, Google wants to recommend websites that site visitors are willing to engage with, explore different pages, and spend time getting answers to their questions. It's pretty easy to understand why because if Google recommended websites to you that loaded really slow, you'd get frustrated and start using Ask Jeeves (shout out!) all over again.

With a fairly easy series of edits to each page, you can make your site load quicker than before and keep site visitor focused on yoru content and not your slow loading. The easiest of these quick fixes is compressing your photos as these are BY FAR the biggest culprits in page load speed. Here's your simple task.

  1. Take a photo that's on your site and download it or find it on your computer.
  2. Resize the image with your free photo editing software on your computer (YouTube this how-to for your specific type of software) based on the area it is needed to take up on your site. Here's a rule of thumb, if you need the image to take up the entire screen, then make sure the photo is at least 2000px wide and use that as your dividing number. For example, if the photo takes up about a 1/4 of the screen, then keep the images width to 500px. Simple, right?
  3. Next, do to Compressor.io and upload your image. Don't worry, this site is dummy proof as you can only hit one button named "TRY IT" and then it will prompt you to upload your image.
  4. After a few seconds, download the compressed image.
  5. Rename the image to what you do - ex: wedding photographer Washington, DC
  6. Replace the image on your website with the new image

That entire process should take you less than a couple of minutes per image and that's even a stretch. I figure you can get two to three pics done during Brew Time. Sweet.

This is a simple tool that is fast and, of course, free!

3 | ACCESSIBILITY

If you are not working on getting your site ADA accessible, then you are potentially exposing your website to litigation as seen by many larger companies over the past few years. Dominos jumps to mind as the highest profile case.

Here's the deal, websites are not as easy to navigate for site visitors that are visually impaired, physically disabled, etc. Making sure your website is still accessible to this sector of the population, 20% by many measurements, is smart business and honestly it's the right thing to do. Just like a physical business needs to have ADA compliant building structures, websites are expected to soon have similar protocol when being built.

It is also expected that search engines will start ranking accessible websites higher just like they did with websites that have SSL certificates a couple of years back. For those that don't understand SSL certificates, you probably have one if your website begins with HTTPS instead of HTTP. Most platforms provide this service for free these days.

So, now you know the why. Here's a simple way to get your site accessible for free. But, let me preface this with a simple statement: 

The plugin I'm about to recommend does not make your site fully accessible, but it will make your site more accessible and that's the point. For a fully accessible website, contact us and we can get your site covered. It's going to cost money, so here's the free version...

The read arrow points to what a site visitor can press to make your site more accessible.

Userway is a free software that let's you add some code to your website to show a popup widget which those with an impairment can use to better navigate your website. IT'S NOT PERFECT and you should understand that there is a real chance litigation still occurs if your site structure is not properly configured. But, again, it's free and it is better than nothing.

It works by analyzing your site's existing code so that it can offer an easy interface to edit the way a site is viewed, heard, and more. I know I've said that this tool doesn't cover you from a possible lawsuit, but it is a big step forward for businesses and the web in general. I fully expect better tools to come along, probably at a cost. Until then, there is no reason to not have this tool on your site and it will take you less than five minutes to follow the simple steps to get your site up to date.

BREW TIME SHOUTOUT

We all need a little love sent our way and this is my chance to highlight some of the people out there that are working on their websites to make them just a bit better which is better for everyone. This time around, I'm going to mention my girl, Brittney Rossie. She's a brand strategist that helps businesses with complete branding, site design, build, and more all on a very easy to use platform, Squarespace. I still use SS for small projects, but Brittney really helps businesses use Squarspace's suite of tools to the max. Love this girl!

" Derek has blown me away with not only his insight and excellent service but also with his patience and teaching style. He has made sure I understand exactly what is happening with my site and visibility efforts and after just a few months working together, I see improvement already."
Brittney Rossie | Brand Strategist

I worked with Brittney for a few months and that's all she needed to start seeing results. Shoutout to her and all the good she's doing for businesses across the U.S.

Author
Derek Entrekin
Derek has worked in web design and SEO since 2012. In 2018, he created Edwin Marie Web Design as an affordable and modern web design company serving small businesses. He frequently offers keynote speaking engagements across the country as well as private and group training for entrepreneurs.

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