seo checklist

SEO Checklist For Small Business Websites

The easiest SEO Checklist to follow for SEO best practices checklist for ranking your business towards the first page on the search engines.

In the beginning, when I first started HFB Advertising in 2006, I was doing a lot of keyword stuffing to get ranked and it worked great.

Doing advertising, graphic design services and starting my own website I was happy with the traffic coming to my website.

After the Google algorithm updates, I wasn’t so happy anymore. I was sad 🙁

I started to learn SEO this took me sometime like years to learn and understand. Still learning.

I also still refused to do SEO for my own website.

Why you ask.

Well as a small business owner I didn’t want to learn another technical skill I enjoy being an advertising designer.

But after outsourcing my SEO services to companies that claimed to be the greatest and best this came to another added expense with little effort to show or explain an SEO strategy to me.

So I started to learn and see the mistakes that were going on.

As I write this and understand SEO more and more with the changing algorithm updates for search engines namely Google because it drives the most traffic and has the biggest audience SEO is more about user experience then anchor text and keywords.

When you write more articles the keywords will come naturally to the article and then it will be picked up by the search engines.

Today I am able to give you what I learned and share it with you.

How to do SEO on your website

There is no trick to SEO, being an SEO expert, a business that can get you to rank higher or faster than you if you know what to do.

With this SEO checklist, you will know what to do.

Knowledge is the key to a high ranking website. So is the time that is needed to be put into it.

SEO for your business is to educate your audience on products and services.

By doing this and sharing your content with your audience in return your audience will share this with others, therefore, creating natural links to your website that search engines crave This is only one part of a countless list.

Hence you will rank higher in the SERPs.

That is basically the whole idea. Many people build it up like you have to be a magical wizard but you really don’t just have to do what is necessary to get your content out there by using this SEO checklist will help you.

Once you choose the main keyword the search engine will then understand your business and build more keywords around your business.

I like to call this your “keyword umbrella”.

So basically a keyword umbrella is a bunch of synonyms that relate to the main keyword.

Search engines do this automatically by looking at my own keywords.

If you try to research a difficult keyword it will take a long time to rank.

You can start off with an easier keyword and continue to grow and expand.

How do you know if a keyword is difficult or not? Good question.

Install free tool SEOquake into your browser and head over to Google and do a search for your keyword.

See the keyword difficulty underneath after you install it.

seoquake keyword difficulty

This being 85% it will be hard to rank on the first page. So you will research until you find a lower keyword score but remember the lower the score the less traffic you will get.

That doesn’t mean it is not relevant.

More traffic doesn’t always mean more sales. Without targeting the right keywords.

Don’t make this mistake know the difference between informational and buyer keywords. Use commercial intent keywords if you have products and services.

Informational is great for how to but you may not get sales just traffic.

You can also download the Moz Bar to see all the site metrics, DA score, age, rank, whois

moz bar

This is great for linking to a high DA site or asking to write a guest post for them.

By following the SEO checklist below you will be doing technical SEO to make sure everything is done correctly.

The SEO checklist is a great starting point for small business website owners.

First, in the order, you start your page with how to optimize a website.

There are many ways to improve SEO but with these site optimization tips, we found it to be a web page optimization best practices to start.

Start now with the SEO checklist.

SEO Checklist

SEO techniques that move the needle

On Page SEO

___Find a keyword to target

___Title description add keyword

___Description add keyword

___H1- H6 add a keyword – H1 tag is the most important to the least important H6.

___Image alt tag add keyword

___ Page word count at least 1000, 2000+ is good to get all the LSI keywords to surround the main keyword

___ Link to other resources not using your keyword from that page to authority sites about the topic

___ LSI generator gets additional sub keywords to use on that page to go with your main keyword. Think synonyms.

___Use a keyword density checker so you don’t over stuff

___https secure your website through cPanel now. A feature called AutoSSL check with your hosting company

___Make sure website is responsive-ready

___Keep page speed under 5 seconds

___Internal linking to other pages starting building out links internal

___Image optimization

Off Page SEO

___ Add a sitemap use a sitemap generator upload sitemap to your site directory. If using WordPress there are a bunch of plugins we use Yoast and does it automatically. Add sitemap to Google Search Console to track performance.

___ Add google analytics for tracking

___Backlinks from high DA sites – is the easiest and fastest way to get to the top of search engines

SEOreviewtools check competitors see where they are linking to and try to get the same backlinks

___Blog outreach to write an article on high DA sites – like Forbes, Entrpreuener, Inc, and niche industry sites. Remember one link from a high DA site is worth a 1000 or more low DA sites.

___Link exchange outreach ask to swap links to articles that are already written between you and them

___Social media promotion articles from your own blog. Keep on promoting all the time old and new then never stop. Keep the promotion carousel going.

___Make a scholarship program to get on education sites it gets to be done for as little as $500

___Scour the internet to find broken links then contact the webmaster in exchange for a link to your article and check out Wikipedia

___Use article roundups and contact the webmaster to see if they can add your 2 cents. Search keyword + weekly roundups

___Press releases introduce new client’s, products, services.

___Create infographics for sharing use Embedly so people can embed the content on their website so you can get backlinks

___Directory listing – only the major ones for local citations

___HARO – Help A Reporter Out

___BuzzSumo – Find content discovery and influencers to share with

___Anchortext – Use your brand company name for anchor text on other websites or as blog author linking back to your site

Once you did this use a free SEO audit tool. See if you did your SEO checklist correctly.

Don’t make this mistake know the difference between informational and buyer keywords.

Use commercial intent keywords if you have products and services.

Informational is great for how to but you may not get sales just traffic.


How to do SEO without buying subscriptions like Moz, Ahrefs, Majestic SEO, SEMrush.

These are all great services I’m not saying you shouldn’t use them but there are alternatives if you don’t feel like paying for a service.

There are a ton of free resources out there to do SEO on your own and learn. But how do you see the competition and ranking factors of your website?

Mmm. That’s a good question.

As like most of us you search the Web to research and find things.

If you need services and products, you buy them.

All the services above give you a little taste of what they can do for you using their free resources.

I like to use SEOreviewtools they offer so much for free.

Here is my takeaway on SEO:

  • Write awesome content and make infographics
  • Do on page SEO
  • Do off page SEO
  • Share awesome content – to get natural backlinks
  • Guest post on high DA websites

It’s really that simple. Hope by using the SEO checklist we made it easier for you.

This takes a lot of time and effort it’s not a sprint but a marathon.

I just want to pay it forward because it is working so well for my own website after years of not knowing that’s why I made this SEO checklist.

SEO best practices for beginners and experts because we are always learning and sometimes forget the basics.

Have a question leave it below.



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