Did you know that Google holds 92.41% of the worldwide search engine market share? In contrast, Bing only holds 2.46% and Yahoo holds 1.48%. Now more than ever it is essential to be in Google’s good graces, but how can you do that? Through an effective search engine optimization (SEO) campaign, Google will begin to notice your efforts and reward you.
Read on to learn all about running a successful SEO campaign.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is necessary for any digital marketing strategy. SEO can accomplish many goals including boosting page rankings, obtaining more leads, and increasing company visibility.
An effective SEO campaign needs a long-term, yet adjustable, strategy. The overall goal should be to increase search engine rankings and bring in more traffic.
SEO is a cost-effective solution to digital marketing because it can reach more than one marketing goal. An SEO campaign strategy should be unique to your company’s need, but should follow these basic tips:
Checking the health of your website will allow you to figure out what you need to prioritize in your campaign. If your domain has any issues, they should be addressed with the help of SEO. Some common issues that affect the health of your website include images without alt attributes and broken links.
You can see what your competitors are doing to help you build your own SEO strategy. What is and isn’t working for them? When you research the answers to these questions, you’ll come up with a strategy that works for your industry.
Without high-quality content, you won’t be seen as a reputable company. You can build real authority with blogger content, social media content, and more if your posts are of quality.
First, you’ll need to find the keywords that your target audience is searching for. Once you identify the correct keywords, you can create content that drives traffic. The content must align with the keywords to keep visitors from leaving your site. High-quality content is one way to ultimately drive sales.
Link building seems like an easy concept to master. Unfortunately, many businesses run into issues with backlinks. Instead of focusing on how many backlinks you have, make sure the links are of quality. Links from reputable sites can help boost your page rankings.
Companies should be on various social media platforms. It isn’t enough to create an account and post every so often, you must focus on social media engagement to see real results.
Sharing content through different social media channels can help boost page rankings. Be sure to measure how well your target audience engages with the provided content.
SEO campaign management involves taking your strategy and implementing it into the business. To create the best SEO campaign for your organization, consider these key steps:
Before implementing a local SEO campaign, you need to analyze how your website is currently set up. Understanding this basic information can help you build a better site overall. There are a lot of outdated website platforms companies may use without knowing it. This is a problem because you may not rank at all on search engine results. A more modernized platform is easier to optimize, faster, and more secure. You can customize your site how you want to create an eye-catching design.
If you are currently using an outdated platform, don’t pay someone to optimize it for you. This can be a confusing and complicated process that may end up failing. Instead, switch over to a modern platform. The next thing you should analyze is the current design of your site. It may be best to ask several opinions on this because some tend to be attached to their design and unwilling to change it when necessary.
Don’t be like this. A website design that is hard to use and not beneficial for SEO purposes won’t drive in the traffic you need to succeed. An outdated platform or design issue must get fixed before trying to optimize a site for SEO. An SEO campaign manager will struggle to make a difference if you have these site problems.
We’ve touched on keyword usage already, but we cannot stress the importance of finding the right words enough. During your keyword research, you must find the queries related to your customers and your site.
To begin finding keywords, answer these questions:
Keyword research doesn’t stop there. You must sort the keywords by importance and create new content in logical groups/topics. This may lead to a dramatic change in the content on your site. Don’t worry, this is a good thing.
There are keyword research tools out there to help you see which words competitors are ranking for compared to what your business is ranking for. If you want to rank higher for the same keyword, you must build new content around it.
Multiple keywords are necessary to drive more traffic. It is necessary to find possible variations of keywords that your customers may be looking for as well. Pro tip: Choose keywords that have a higher search volume and that you rank well for already.
You know which keywords your target audience is searching for now, but what do they expect to find when they search for those keywords? A proper content marketing strategy is necessary to avoid missing out on search rankings. This strategy will help with content optimization. You must optimize your content by using the right keywords in a beneficial way to your audience. You cannot throw keywords into your content without providing valuable information.
If you run an air conditioning and heating business, a keyword you may use is “HVAC maintenance.” The content should be built around the keyword and made into a relevant topic. If customers are searching for “HVAC maintenance” they expect to find content specifically about that. To be considered an expert in the industry, the content you create must be accurate and researched.
For the best chance at appearing in the top search rankings, you’ll need to factor keywords into different items on the page, including:
Your keyword needs to get placed thoughtfully into the page content as well. Make sure you don’t overdo it with the keyword. A keyword loses its spark when it is used too many times. Your customers will get the idea with two or three keyword instances.
To start the campaign, you will perform an SEO audit. This audit goes through your website to identify the areas and pages that need improvement. An audit can determine your weaknesses along with your strengths so you’ll find out what you need to change and what you should continue. Depending on the tool you use, an SEO audit may run differently, but it should go something like this:
A page inventory looks at page URLs, meta descriptions, and meta titles. This is what an SEO campaign will initially target. Through page inventory, you can see if the URLs make sense to Google. If your titles and descriptions are not already optimized, you’ll need to add this to the to-do list.
If your website has accessibility issues, they will be uncovered during an SEO audit. Google Search Console is a free tool you can use to find ongoing technical errors on your own.
You should have the Robots.txt file on your site to avoid duplicate content. However, it could be blocking important pages that you want users to see. An error like this will get noted by Google Search Console. Google will then run through your sitemap, the map it uses to follow and get through the site. A sitemap file will be attached to the root of your website. If you don’t find the sitemap and submit it to Google yourself, Google cannot continue to monitor issues or let you know how to fix them.
Lastly, you may have 404 technical errors on your website. This is when users and search engines are unable to access the content they are searching for on your site. A user may come across this error for different reasons. One is they have a bookmarked page that is not live anymore. Another is that they put the wrong URL into the search bar.
Errors get stored in Google Search Console to redirect users to the correct page and better their user experience. You will only see this data if you have been using Search Console for some time. Those that just set up Google Search Console must wait to collect 404 error data. The way redirects get created is based on the kind of website you own.
A tool that overviews on-site optimization will determine if there any optimization errors. Common errors include meta title issues, meta descriptions issues missing alt-text, and structural problems. Take note of any issues you come across and fix them during the optimization process.
To have an effective SEO campaign down the line, you must improve from your first SEO campaign. Without monitoring the results of each campaign, you won’t know how to better the next one.
You should define goals based on the needs of your website. When you track your results, you’ll know exactly what you are looking for. There are multiple metrics to consider when monitoring campaign results. The main quantifiable measures are:
How many visitors come to your site through a simple organic search? This is what organic traffic measures. When you use the correct keywords and create content around them, these numbers should go up. If they don’t, you may need to go back to the drawing board on keyword research and content creation.
Users take little time to decide if they want to engage with the content on a site. Something as simple as website design or slow page loading could turn them off to exploring a site further. The bounce rate determines how many visitors leave your site without engagement. A high bounce rate means visitors are leaving right away because your content isn’t up to their expectations.
The clickthrough rate (CTR) states how you are getting user attention from the search engine results page. It measures the number of users proceeding to your site after the search and how many clicks it takes to get there.
If you haven’t caught on already, keyword rankings are a big metric. They can measure how well your keywords rank against the competitors who may be using the same or similar words.
SEO should boost your site’s authority in the eyes of Google. The search engine will determine your quality based on the backlinks used. Google will penalize a website that has low-quality pages. These “zombie” pages don’t add any value and bring in zero traffic. Through metrics like site authority, you can determine if any of your pages are holding you back. Those that bring in no traffic need to be deleted.
Once removed, you should see a boost in search engine traffic. This is a sure way to improve how much organic traffic your site receives.
Page loading speed is an easier metric to uncover, but it is just as essential as the others. Pages that are slow to load will lose potential customers. In fact, 53% of mobile users abandon sites that take more than three seconds to load. They’ll move on to a competitor that can provide them with quicker results.
New backlinks get measured based on the number of unique domains you’ve reached. If you see an increase in how many referring domains and backlinks you have, you’re in good shape.
You now have a strategy and have defined the goals you want to reach. The implementation of SEO can now begin. You’ll begin by checking the first audit done on the website. Fix any optimization error issues first.
Create new meta descriptions and titles. Ensure these aren’t only optimized for the user, they should be optimized for search engines as well. The keyword of choice needs to look natural within the text. After cleaning up some of the simple issues you come across, you can begin to fix accessibility issues. If you have any pages blocked by Robots.txt, fix them now.
You also need to submit your sitemap to Google if you haven’t already. Finds ways to redirect 404 errors that were found during the audit. The last step is to fix other technical errors you found to ensure the site is ready for search results. Using an all-in-one tool can provide you with optimization opportunities and ideas.
After getting rid of the errors on your site, you can begin working on local SEO. This technique allows a company to promote their business to locals when they are looking for services. Why is local SEO important? Around 2 in 3 smartphone users are more likely to purchase from a company that customizes information to their location. Local SEO uses major search engines and directories like Yelp to push your business to the top.
To take advantage of local SEO, you’ll need to properly set up your Google and Bing business listings. The address must match the one on your website. You can optimize this listing by adding your own description, profile picture, images, etc. Don’t forget to verify the listings you create. When you claim a listing, no one else can edit it without your permission. Other business citations on Yelp and other directories can promote the listings on the search engines.
We discussed how link building needs to be part of an SEO strategy, but how can you implement it into your SEO campaign? If you’re unfamiliar with the term, link building/creating backlinks are done by attracting inbound links to your website through other reputable sources. The linking site’s topic needs to be relevant to yours.
For Google, backlinks are a major factor in ranking at the top. This is why we stress using quality links instead of focusing on quantity. When you have poor backlinks, Google will penalize you and cause your rankings to plummet. Make sure who you are linking to is relevant.
Check sites that are currently linking to your content pages. Make sure they aren’t going to bring you down in the long run. If you find any of these sites to be toxic, you can remove your links from them. Organic backlinks are hard to come by. This is why you should incorporate link building into social media and content creation. When users are sharing your content on social media, you may receive organic backlinks in return.
There are other ways to get backlinks that require more time, effort, and research. If you want your SEO campaign to succeed, you should consider trying them.
By doing some research on topics similar to your industry, you can identify and, hopefully, repair broken backlinks. If you notice a broken link, report it then suggest a link to your site instead.
You can create a guest post with backlinks to help build your reputation. There are many popular blogs out there that allow guest blog posts to help increase traffic to your site and theirs.
Creating visuals, like infographics, is surprisingly another way to get backlinks. Many find that consuming information through a visual is easier and tend to share their findings. Get enough shares and you’ll have more organic backlinks from it.
If you have an informative article that you know people will enjoy but are having trouble bringing in traffic on your own, you can submit your content somewhere else. Find a site that has related content and see if they will add your article. You can also send out an email regarding your latest content to the people already subscribed to you to further promote it.
Typically, the last step of an SEO campaign is deciding to publish similar topic content or build topic relevancy. Topic relevancy can benefit your SEO campaign in two ways.
One way is that Google ranks individual pages based on the website content is on. The second way is that authoritative websites are those that rank high because of a particular topic.
What does this mean? It means you should slowly begin to relate content to new content that you don’t have an online presence for yet. You can’t expect to create a single post on a new topic and see the same results. When creating this type of content, you should link back to other posts with an anchor text. This can help improve rankings for certain pages.
An SEO campaign is a marathon, not a sprint. There is a lot of time that goes into running a successful campaign. Finding the right SEO tools is key to the process. Search engine optimization is technical and requires a lot of knowledge. If you aren’t well versed in SEO, even after reading our in-depth guide, hiring a marketing agency is the right step to take.
Don’t forget about SEO because you don’t have the time or skills to create a campaign yourself. At David Taylor Digital, our professional team knows exactly how to help your business with SEO among other things. Contact us today to let us get to know more about your business and its SEO needs.