Modern day search and the quest for the best
Search engines are becoming far more in tune with the results users actually want to receive. No longer are we writing for the spiders that crawl all over our websites, indexing as they go. Now we’re writing to appeal to our target audiences, and that can only be a good thing. Let’s face it, no matter how hard we tried, we couldn’t appeal to every single element of Google’s core algorithm and, while we know we can’t appeal to everyone out there, we have a much better chance of understanding the people we’ve worked hard to profile and target.
So what’s the deal on today’s SEO success, and what expertise do we need to get there?
In two words, Google is looking for user experience. You’ll hear many people say that anyone can write content for SEO success these days – that as long as it’s unique, it doesn’t matter if you’re a copy writer, a digital professional or a business owner wanting to make more of their website. But while there’s an element of truth in that, making your copy stand up and grab attention away from the millions of competitors teeming around the internet can prove a tricky bit of work. And there is still some coding and architectural strategy that you’ll need to do too.
Here are seven useful tips to help your business to rank successfully online:
Get a good content management system (CMS)
Most content management systems these days are built with SEO in mind. It’s worth investing in to make sure your website is built on a good system that will allow you to upload, refresh and remove content easily, so you can continuously improve your website.
Make user experience your #1 priority
There are a number of factors to consider here, but reviewing your website and the journey your customer takes to get from the landing or home page through to a sale is vital. You need your users to get through with as few clicks as possible – it’s never a good experience when you’re trying to buy something and you’re taken from pillar to post before you can.
Go big on brand
So now your users can find what they’re looking for, but what do they think of your company and your products? It’s so important to make sure you’re giving the right impression, and that your products match with your customers’ needs.
Google has been favouring websites that are optimised for any device since April 2015. And with the UK retail industry missing out on £6.6bn a year due to lack of investment into its mobile offering, according to research by Centre for Retail Research (CRR) and VoucherCodes.co.uk, it’s clearly vital for a healthy internet presence.
Write great content
So we no longer need to artificially include the dozens of keywords we were squeezing in just a short while back, but we do still need to know what our customers might be searching for, so that we can include relevant content that will bring them to our sites.
And while you may not need an English degree to write your online content, it needs to be carefully thought out in order to flow correctly, to be compelling and to start your customers on the journey through your site. Plus you should proof and proof again for any errors. What’s more, you need to keep them coming back, so refreshing your site with new and interesting content needs to be a regular thing.
Use social to become an authority
A while back the best tactic for getting Google to see you as an expert was to sneak links in here and there, but these days you need to have as much presence as possible in other areas of the web.
It’s all about building relationships with people, starting a dialogue and adding guest blogs that will help to raise your own profile. Of course, if your content is good enough, other sites will start to share it too, helping to create those all important inbound links.
Support it with your PPC
Finally, just because there’s been a gear shift with the way Google ranks your site, you shouldn’t suddenly shy away from PPC and Adwords campaigns.
Helping you to be more specific in your own search for online custom, these tools will enable you to reach out more effectively, and to take customers to very specific areas of your site.
While it could be seen as relatively easy to do it all by yourself, we find many clients outsource their content writing, social media and PPC to us so as to benefit from professional expertise and priceless knowledge learned from experiences along the way. Of course, we are also there to help in analysing target markets, competitors and audiences, offering the chance to dig deep into data and get the best from your communications.