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SEO a real beginners journey

How our website went from page 100 to 1 in 2 weeks

Before I give you the long version I must stress that I really was out of my depth at the start, I didn’t even know what SEO stood for, and once I did I was a little overwhelmed but I persevered and within 2 weeks our website

 (designed and created by myself) was sitting pretty on page 1 on google searches, before I write how this happened let me show you where we sat on day 13


Window cleaning in St Albans

Yes, it might be near the bottom of the page but page 1 it is without any cost too. 

Following is my journey



Around 9 months ago I was travelling home from work and I receive a call from my brother telling me I was going to join his business as an administrative manager, he was growing his window cleaning company to the point where he was having to spend 3 hours every day after working just on admin, following up quotes, chasing invoices etc.

So after a funny negotiation on my hourly worth we came to an agreement and I left my old job and started working for him, shoot 9 months forward and mainly through social media advertising for free along with leaflet drops we’d increased the work to a point where we needed another member of staff to join the 2 we already have and with 2 big commercial contracts in the works Steve, my brother decided we were going to re-brand and push the growth even more, so I was going to have to create a new website and he gave me a challenge.


The Challenge

Along with building our new website, to which I had no experience in doing so, I was challenged to rank on page 1 of google, I had no timeline to do this in and little to no budget, I just had to make it happen, thanks Bro!


Where to start?

So I started with the obvious search “how to rank on page 1 of google” and the following snippet started my journey

SEO search


So, a quick search of “what is SEO” opened up a whole new and very daunting world, I explained my findings to my brother and he said I’d better find a course and start learning, now it’s been far too many years since I was at School so again, thanks Bro!


Education time

Right here we go, “learn SEO for dummies” where do I start?

I see a heavy amount of companies willing to train me, for a fee of course, I see others willing to do all the hard work for me for in some cases a crazy amount of money.

I do notice one that says free! I’m not gullible and why would these guys be free, but of course I check them out and I’m so glad I did, now I’m starting to sound like an advert but I promise you it’s not and these guys won’t even know I exist, but this site has been the making of my journey.

They have so much information and training courses including, and for free, a course on SEO

If you’ve ever done some sort of online training you’d quickly recognise the format, lots of video’s lots of information, little quizzes at the end of each section and then finally a big scary exam.

During this course I made so many notes, my memory isn’t as good as some and this really helps me. In fact, I ended up with 6 a4 pages worth of notes and even now half of it doesn’t make sense.

I take the exam and pass with 3 incorrect answers, I won’t lie quite a few were answered just from memory or referring to my notes without actually fully understanding what I’d answered but with SEO the more you use it the more you start to recognise, and this follows into new areas you had no knowledge of.



Here’s my Certificate and one I’m very proud of.

SEO Certified



So now armed with all this knowledge and my shiny new certificate I have to actually put this to use. We registered our new business name and bought a domain and email to match. The next 2 weeks is a mix of learning how to use WordPress, plugins and implementing SEO as I do.


I also researched some good tools to keep a track of our rankings and to measure how strong our SEO is, the biggest of these is a plugin, I have tried 2 of the highest ranked plugins, Yoast and All in One, and they’re both very similar and they literally tell you where you’ve gone wrong, not using your key phrases often enough for example to offering little bits of advice.


Next Stage

Once the website was up and running and set out in a SEO friendly manner using the info I’d learnt from HubSpot and using the Plugins I had to move onto getting the page to rank higher, at this point I was around page 20 already but that’s still a far way off.

I knew the importance of a couple of key strategies gathered from HubSpot and other searches, mainly using Backlinks, having other websites link to your website creating authority, and Blog posts.



The easiest of these to set up is social media, create an account and post from it, then also mention the new business page from your own personal account, maybe create an advert on the site, but this will create a back link and there’s lots of social media sites out there, do them all.

Slightly more challenging is creating blogs, this gives your website content, tells google you’re active and you can even share them with other blog sharing platforms like

Do some research on how to create a Blog post and share it.

The next stage can be frustrating but rewarding. There’s a lot of advertising platforms out there who let you advertise with them for free, having your company registered with the website and some photo’s could lead to work but it creates backlinks. The issue this causes is that these platforms will call you and try to sell you a premium service, have your business show up on the top page etc, some of these are very expensive too, if you have a budget for them great, but if not just be polite and end with maybe in the future we’ll have a budget to use your services.

Lastly you can check what backlink your competition is getting using sites like


You type out their URL and it’ll list some back links they have, and you can then check them out and see if you can engage with them, this may show you some social media or advertising sites that you weren’t aware off. Your own backlinks may take a while to show up using these sites if you check on yourself.

There are other methods which I’ve not yet to use but really help rank high including publishing guides and infographics to websites, becoming a source for reporters and blog sites and many others but these can be time consuming.


Long Story Short

So, using the basics above within 2 weeks we hit page 1 albeit at the bottom of the page and with no spending involved, it takes a fair bit of time and it’s very important to keep content via blogs going, even if short, best practise 300 words type blogs, keep creating backlinks and promote your page on social media. If you have a budget this becomes even easier. Of course, having someone see your site show up doesn’t mean they’ll click and even if they do they might not stay on your site for long, that’s down to design and keeping them engaged, and that’s the next challenge for me.


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