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The answer to ‘when is SEO a must?’ is, simply, always. Whenever you are posting something online whether it’s a blog, a status or a web page, SEO is always going to be needed.

For those who don’t know, SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation; it’s a way of using the most searched for phrases, known as keywords or phrases, to increase the standing of your site or post on a search engine. The easiest way to figure out the best keywords for you is to use sites like Google AdWords, which shows you the ranking of the same phrase typed in different ways. The aim is to use as many of the high ranking phrases as you can without overloading your piece with them, as Google sees this as phrases dumping and will remove your post.

Integrating SEO into your website is quite simple, and becomes easier the more you do it. You will want to have some vague and some specific phrases on your homepage – like ‘photography’ and ‘equine photography’ to raise your standing on both searches. If you are having your web content written for you, then you content writer will be using SEO for you anyway. If you’re feeling this yourself, look at some tutorials and blogs focusing on how to apply SEO for your best effect.

The key place to use SEO in your blog posts is in the title and the first paragraph. However, if everyone started using key phrases as their blog titles, all blogs would be the same. When writing a blog you can often fall into the traps of ‘Top Tips’ or ‘Top 10’ which can seem to be highly searched for phrases, but in reality, not many people search for top tips, just things that may be included within them. Ideally, you want to include your SEO within the first paragraph of your blog. This can be quite easy as your chosen key phrase is probably the topic of your blog.

When advertising your blog, using that same SEO within the status or tweet can help. But you don’t want to replace your blog title with it. The best way to use SEO on social media is through hashtags. Use one or two high trending hashtags to boost your posts’ popularity.

So, if you wrote a blog called ‘Gluten Free Christmas Pudding – Go GF This Winter!’, your post might read something like this:

‘Thought about going gluten-free this Christmas? Well don’t miss out on all your favorite treats – try this recipe for our GF Christmas pudding – you’re guaranteed to love it! #Christmaspudding #Glutenfree.’

You don’t need your blog title in there, as it will be shown on the link. You’re giving your blog a tiny bio of what to expect, one that matches the tone and language within the blog, and have included the key phrases ‘Christmas’ and ‘Gluten-free’ in both the body of your text and as hashtags. Easy peasy.