Published on February 24, 2014
Search Engine Optimization... How it Can Help You
WARNING: This isn’t an introduction to SEO or a lesson on how to “game” Google’s many search variables
SO MANY VARIABLES!
WARNING: This isn’t a lesson on SEO tactics
SEO TACTICS ARE BORING What is the difference? STRATEGY SUPPORTING TACTICS Content Op)miza)on -‐ Keyword Research -‐ Header op)miza)on -‐ Site organiza)on and/or IA restructure -‐ Meta Data -‐ Content Distribu)on Campaign Op)miza)on -‐ Link tagging (to track site visits) -‐ Keyword Research (to target keywords in links) -‐ Webmaster Tools and Analy)cs -‐ Backlink analysis (of compe)tors, too!) Technical Op)miza)on -‐ Webmaster Tools and Analy)cs -‐ Site restructure -‐ Content audit (check for dupe pages, etc.) -‐ Image/video tagging -‐ Back-‐end coding tac)cs (robots.txt, 404 error pages, etc.) SEO tactics such as including Meta data or setting up Webmaster Tools are more effective when they’re coordinated with an overarching strategy.
This is about When SEO Can Help You, and How
(RE)DEFINING SEO Search Engine Optimization has not been strictly site-based for years, rendering most of the definitions Google provides obsolete. Site-based SEO is the most common tactic deployed for optimization; to put it in plain English, you must prepare the house for a party if you’re going to send out invitations. Since SEO is about more than just the site, I propose this new definition. SEARCH ENGINE CONVERSION OPTIMIZATION: The process of optimizing all searchable online assets and campaigns in order to drive as much qualified traffic as possible to the most valuable pages of a site.
This is Your Campaign
And This is Your Campaign On SEO The goal is not to be just another egg that is online The goal is to be the most informative, easily found egg that is online
How Can SEO Help Users (and Search Engines) Find Your Eggs?
Paid Search and SEO
PAID SEARCH AND SEO: The Difference Paid Organic
PAID SEARCH AND SEO: Complementary Tactics Landing Pages and Keyword Optimization User goes directly to the Dosage page, which was optimized with “Dose”, “Dosage”, “Dosing”, etc. Potential Results: - Better Click-Through-Rate; targeted landing pages for specific search terms can improve CTR - Lower Cost Per Click; As your on-site keyword authority, measured by the Google/Bing algorithms, improves, your CPC will decrease - Increased Search Share; If the page is optimized well organically, you can “own” the top spots in results for both Paid and Organic, which increases clicks on each result (per Google data)
Social and SEO
SOCIAL AND SEO: Gaining Value from Links Social actually emerged from SEO, so there is a unique relationship. Briefly, here is how and why Social became its own discipline: - SEOs found you can improve Organic Search ranks by increasing links to the site - Over time, Google devalued links that were not clearly user-generated; “Link Farms” became SPAM factories, and Google results were being too easily manipulated by buying - rather than earning - links - Only links from “bad” sites became detrimental, and the most effective way to increase user-generated links was (and is still) through social sites and tactics - This first meant placing links on sites like Wikipedia, Reddit and StumbleUpon, but has greatly evolved as Social has grown up
Media and SEO
MEDIA AND SEO: Tracking Success Online SEO for Media is not about optimizing the actual creative; it is about tracking the ad’s success in order to optimize it’s placement in the future. We can even track offline placements that use QR codes or vanity URLs. It is also about ensuring that there are quality landing pages - as with Paid - for the user to land on that match the Banner Ad’s language and topic. Again, this is true even for offline banners. Potential Results: - Refined Placements; Tracking allows you to more easily see which placement generates the highest conversion - Better Engagement; With corresponding landing pages, banner ads will be more effective at engaging the user once they’re on the site - Consistency Across Platforms; If specific language is used in offsite branding and ads, the same language should have a home onsite
MEDIA AND SEO: Leveraging Offline Placements Offline, Saladworks uses the phrase “Fanatic’ly Fresh” Searches for the phrase “Fanatic’ly Fresh” return Saladworks.com because the term is used prominently on the site When updating site content for SEO, always ask for all assets, offline included
PR and SEO
PR AND SEO: Optimizing Online Distribution There are two key ways SEO can assist PR teams: 1) Optimization of release content; adding keywords where possible, providing Meta data, and ensuring linking text is keyword-focused 2) Tagging links and reporting data that may be valuable BusinessWire (and to a lesser extent PRNewswire) has services that can do the rest!
Creative and SEO
CREATIVE AND SEO: Content and Asset Optimization Two Words: More Impressions! If you paint a Mona Lisa, but hang it randomly in a forest, how can users find it? If you are not optimizing content and not naming and tagging videos or images well, you are hanging your art in the middle of a forest with no map or markers to help people to find it! SEO cannot make your creative better, but it helps ensure that users will find it. It’s the Mona Lisa!
Dev and SEO
DEV AND SEO: Getting the Site Indexed Classic on-site SEO requires updates to coding and things like: - URL structure/naming - Image naming/tagging - Content updates - XML site maps - Robots.txt files Many updates are made only to communicate directly with the search engines instead of users. In other words, on-site SEO - outside of content - is very boring. It’s also better understood; we know that if we alter X, than Y will likely happen. On-site SEO is science. Off-site SEO is art.
DEV AND SEO: Optimizing Search Results The benefit of good on-site SEO, aside from top rankings, is how those rankings appear. Tools from Google are available to make your results appear as you would prefer. Meta Title Meta Description Search Snippets are controlled via Webmaster Tools Title should be mostly branded; if the keyword searched is in there, it usually helps CTR (organic CTR is tracked in Webmaster Tools!) Description should be a call to action, similar to a Paid Ad; also good to use keywords, as inclusion here also helps CTR Search Snippets (additional page links) should highlight top pages and/or most vital information, such as new pages with promotions
CONCLUSION: WHY CLIENTS NEED SEO 1. It acts as insurance for their online spending When a client asks us to build them a site, the goal is to get people there. SEO ensures that the site will perform to its maximum capability and will be trusted by search engines 2. It elevates online campaign performance Paid costs can be lowered or conversions made more efficient; banner placements can be tracked and optimized based on performance; content can better target search engines along with consumers 3. It makes our work better Determining an SEO strategy can help tie content strategies to social, media, PR, and other online campaigns, helping to make the user experience more coherent 4. It reveals strengths and weaknesses online The up-front competitive research and analysis needed to perform proper SEO often reveals issues that will lead to larger project opportunities, and not just for SEO but for Paid, Media, Creative, etc.
TOOLS FOR SEO Any Questions? Contact Josh Spiegel: JSpiegel@StarGroup1.com
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