Warren Buffett once said, “If you have the mindset of a farmer, you can be a great entrepreneur.”Although it’s easy to imagine that the Oracle of Omaha can’t so much as sneeze without being quoted, this statement transfers beautifully into every facet of one’s business interests.In fact, it goes as deeply as search engine optimization, especially in the area of the appropriately named organic SEO.
To start off, a farmer typically needs land (except for hydroponics, which is beyond the scope of this article).A good field of soil is not unlike a good field of interest – trying to rule broad ideas such as “peace” or “puppies” tends to result in an epic fail.Just the same way as no farmer could ever hope to grow every type of crop known to mankind, trying to have EVERYTHING in your site is a recipe for having NOTHING in your major readership.
So try niching it down.If your subject is peace, think “peace rallies in the St. Louis area.”There’s a good chance that if you can find some peace rallies in St. Louis to write about, you can rule that niche – and when people want to know about the St. Louis hippie scene, they might just turn to you.
Consider also that as your niche cred grows, you can slowly expand outward into other niches.It’s rather like mint plants, spreading across a field and basically taking over.It puts the “organic” into organic SEO when people are suddenly asking you about things that you never thought to write about – like how we might achieve peace in the Middle East.
Now, let’s look at how similar the organic SEO process is to growing a garden:
1. Prepare the soil
Relax, I’m not gonna tell you to shovel fertilizer – there are plenty of scammy cats who do enough of that for everybody.What I mean is, take some time to think about where the absolute epicenter of your knowledge base resides.Niche it down to the point where you’ll be excluding a LOT of people – because those who remain will be hyper-loyal… you might be the only game in town (or at least, the only one who isn’t just pitching some piece of junk).
2. Plant the seeds
Write your content.Don’t worry if you’ve just got a main page, an opt-in box and a few articles.Rome wasn’t built in a day, and you shouldn’t expect your customers to flood in.Hunter-gatherers have quick results – you’re a farmer, and farmers think long-term.Just write what you want (that someone wants to read about), and make sure it’s the best you’ve got.
3. Water and fertilize them
Submit your site to the search engines.This should not be a paid process, and it should not take more than half an hour of your time.Keep in mind that your keyphrases and keywords will help you a lot… and that you have time to edit anything about your site before the search engines get around to it, if you have a better idea in the interim.
4. Wait, and let nature take her course
Growing a garden is not watching a horse race.It is not exciting, and it does not end quickly.SEO is a garden – it can take over a month, just to get indexed (which is rather like seeing those first tiny sprouts popping out of the ground).And at first, you probably slightly mis-identified just exactly which keywords/phrases you need to use.It’s no problem – wait and see who finds your site, how long they stay, and all that.
5. Figure out what you did wrong, and grow better next season
You’re not perfect – sorry to break that to you.You will make mistakes – you’re taking risks, after all.And mistakes are going to teach you a lot, both about how you think and about how your target readers think.Take corrective actions, like adding more relevant content, and let things progress.When dealing with a force like Mother Nature (or the Internet), all you can do it steer; the forward motion will never be under your direct control.
Growing your web site, especially through organic SEO, is just like growing a garden – so get to work, and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty!