The term "digital footprint" has been around for quite awhile now, but what exactly does that mean for your business? Basically, it's the digital trail that your business leaves behind on social...
5 Surprisingly Straightforward Ways to Improve SEO
Looking for ways to improve SEO? Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has traditionally been defined as a process for achieving favorable website rank in online search results. But as the scope of Internet usage has evolved and expanded in recent years, this definition of SEO has broadened considerably.Today, SEO is a combination of diverse strategies for influencing search engine perception of your company’s total online presence on websites, blogs, and social media.
While its primary goal continues to be achievement of page one rank in search results, the SEO process has become significantly more complex. In order to improve SEO, you must do more than align your website content keywords with your customers’ probable online search terms. Effective SEO now requires content to be relevant, original, and credible as well.
Search engines strive to meet the needs of their users by producing high-quality results in response to each online inquiry.
To measure quality, search engines use complicated algorithms that evaluate source credibility and content originality as part of the search process that matches web page content with user search terms. These algorithms are proprietary and are frequently revised as search engines find new methods to objectively assess what are often very subjective ranking criteria.
To improve SEO, it is not necessary or even advisable to design content according to search engine algorithms. Instead, create content that is highly relevant to your Buyer Persona, make sure it is both original and accurate, promote it through social media, and place it within a website structure that is easy to navigate. By providing real value and positive online experiences for your target customers, your website will also meet search engine requirements for high quality content and source legitimacy.
Search is a complicated and evolving art and science, so rather than focusing on specific algorithmic tweaks, we encourage you to focus on delivering the best possible experience for users.
To improve SEO, keep these six basic guidelines in mind:
- A thorough understanding of your target market provides the foundation for successful SEO. Allocate sufficient time and resources up front to define Buyer Persona and gain complete understanding of the business problems that prompt your prospects to search for solutions. Leverage that knowledge to improve SEO.
- A well-researched set of keywords is an absolute prerequisite for attracting the right buyers to your website. Buyers begin the purchase process by going online and searching for what they need; their search terms are the keywords that you must build into your website’s content. Online tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner are available to assist you in identifying effective keywords with high search traffic.
- A content-rich website is essential for successful SEO. Content must be original, up-to-date, accurate, well written, and highly relevant to your current and prospective customers.
- Share your content through social media. Google+ and LinkedIn are particularly effective for cross-promoting B2B content, with the added benefit that search engines treat “likes” as indicators of content relevance and credibility.
- Use structured data markup for your blogs, especially for content that has minimal text like video. Structured data markup is a set of code and meta data that is added to a website page that describes the intent and content to search engines.
- Issue press releases which are optimized for SEO with links back to your website from news and trade publication sites. Search engines place value on inbound links from high-traffic sites that have earned trusted status.
Countless online resources are available for SEO guidelines, tips, and best practices.
As a first step, we suggest going straight to the search engines themselves for reliable, up-to-date, primary source information. The following links provide recommendations directly from Google, Bing, and Yahoo for creating website content that their search engines will discover, deem useful and trustworthy, and rank highly:
For Google: Webmaster Guidelines
For Bing: Webmaster Guidelines
Bing Webmaster Tools (Requires Microsoft Login)
For Yahoo: Content Quality Guidelines
For a free, easy to understand, and very informative online tutorial about SEO, we highly recommend MOZ’s “Beginner’s Guide to SEO.”
SEO is one of several key components of an effective Inbound Marketing program. To learn about the others, we invite you to download our recently published whitepaper “Stand Out From the Crowd: 24 Marketing Tips To Set Your Company Apart.”
Bristol Strategy is a full funnel inbound marketing agency and inbound sales agency offering the full complement of services to enable our clients to surpass their business objectives by transforming the way they engage with their buyer on-line. Reach out to us to learn more about how our experience and capabilities can help your business grow.