Although the word ‘SEO’ gets thrown around a lot, not many people have a full understanding of what it really is. In its most basic form, SEO, otherwise known as Search Engine Optimization, is a process that works to enhance the visibility of a particular website in the ‘organic’ search results – the ones you don’t have to pay for. It helps your website get the traffic and recognition of your target audience, raising brand awareness and allowing people to engage with your company. Expectantly, it creates ‘leads’ that can be converted into loyal customers and raise profits.
When developing an SEO strategy, there are a number of things that should be considered; you are not merely trying to get anyone to visit your website. The plan is to help those that are searching for the products or services that you offer to find you. In this way, you are able to create awareness of your brand among those who have a genuine interest in the area you specialise in. As simple as this sounds, it does take quite a bit of preparation to make sure that you get it right.
The first step is to figure out who the target audience is. Once this has been decided, a quality SEO plan requires you to conduct keyword research. Researching entails finding the most commonly searched phrases, which also have low levels of competition online, and using them in your content. These phrases are key to your strategy, helping you to target the keywords that everyone is looking for, but few sites actually have.
Once search engines recognise that your site features what multiple users are searching for, your page rank should increase. Of course, the quality of the content you post must be very high, as simply peppering your page with keywords is not enough to communicate the value of your company. It is important to differentiate yourself from other competitors within the market by providing something that is relevant and unique. This leads into the next step of the SEO plan – valuable content.
The content you create must be new and fresh, adding value and relevancy to those who are searching for it. Writing irrelevant content around your keywords is confusing and will attract the wrong audience. Although your website traffic may increase, the number of conversions or leads you receive will stay the same as before, and the time spent on your site by those who have found it will be minimal. Setting up a blog is a great way of providing the content your audience is looking for and ensuring that you are ranking for your chosen keywords.
Link building is another important aspect of a successful SEO plan. Search engines look fondly upon sites that have a lot of backlinks, as it appears their content is worthy of being linked to, and henceforth worthy of being found. Linking to your company website via social media platforms or creating some guest blog posts can help get your site ranking and increase traffic.
Lastly, it is important to measure the SEO efforts and strategies that have been implemented in order to see what is and isn’t working, so you can tweak the plan to achieve the best results possible.