If you already have a green light for SEO, it’s time for the next step: set your goals and prepare resources for the trip.
How to set SEO goals
The ultimate goal of SEO is to reach prospective users through organic search and convert them into customers. But this is a top-level goal, and it’s quite hard to work with because it doesn’t tell you how you will get there.
A much more efficient approach is to divide your grand, top-level goal into smaller “bites” that can get you closer to the outcome.
You can envision your SEO goals as a pyramid, with the outcome at the top and smaller goals that lead there at lower levels. The idea is to start at the bottom and work your way up.
For example, let’s say your goal is to rank in the top three for a keyword in six months. The goal pyramid for this outcome could look something like this:
Pyramid split into 3 sections. Outcome at the top, then performance, then process.
As you can see, we dissected something that cannot be done by one single action (ranking higher for a keyword) into smaller, doable tasks that have a high chance of influencing the outcome.
Equally important to setting smaller, doable steps is defining how you will measure them. In the above example, we’re using Ahrefs’ Site Explorer to measure how many backlinks we get.
Learn more: How to Set the Right SEO Goals with 3 Examples
Resources you’ll need
Resources mean costs, and startups need to be careful about them. While SEO doesn’t require any ad budget or super expensive tools, this is not a costless process.
SEO needs these things in order to work:
If you’re a team of one with no budget for building a team or outsourcing, there is no other way besides learning all those things and doing the work yourself on top of anything else you’re currently doing. But no worries. With the right advice, prioritization, and tools, this is doable.
If your startup has some budget for an SEO-related role, here are your options:
Dividing the workload like this whatsapp number list allows both the vendor and the affiliate to focus on their strengths. The improvements are similar on desktop and mobile. Most of the focus in 2021 was on mobile results.
Hire someone with all the above skills – They are either superstars or people who just owned various marketing operations, possibly in another startup. Superstars will probably be outside your budget, but the latter should be quite possible to find. After all, content marketing and SEO are closely related.
Hire someone who has experience in writing and an interest in SEO – Then give them some time to learn SEO on the job. There are many excellent learning materials online, like our completely free Ahrefs Academy or this very blog.
Hire someone with some success in SEO and give them the ability to outsource – An experienced SEO professional should be able to create a content strategy. Still, they may need the ability to outsource parts of the process (like content creation or link building) to move fast.
Next stop: tools.
Fortunately for startups, there are a lot of free and freemium tools in the SEO realm. We’ve already gathered a list of the 45 best ones in this article.
With SEO tools in a startup, you basically have two options:
Go with free tools (as far as you can) – You can do a lot with free SEO tools, as I will show you in this guide. The caveat here is that you will have to use different tools with different workflows, and data will always be limited.
Try different premium SEO tools – Once you’ve done so, upgrade to the one that suits you the most. If you include those early in the process of implementing SEO, you’ll have premium data and premium features that will help you (and your team) work more efficiently right from the start.