In my years of business experience, I can say that search engine optimization is my most favorite digital marketing strategy when it comes to getting leads. Unlike in social media where your contents are shown in people’s newsfeed (whether they are directly interested or not), your contents or links indexed in search engines are only displayed to people who are actually looking (searching) for them.
I find social media marketing as a great strategy for getting brand awareness and building customer relationship, while I find SEO as an effective way to getting leads. In fact, almost all my previous clients have found me on search engines. But of course, not all businesses are the same -what’s effective for me will not always be effective for others.
No matter how digital marketing evolves, SEO will still be a vital part of your grand marketing strategy. If you want to increase your search engine rankings, organic traffic and conversion rate, here are 5 SEO strategies that will make Google and other search engines love you more.
1. Help search engines serve better.
If you want Google and other search engines to provide your website with constant traffic, help them fulfill their purpose better. Search engines exist to help people find what they are looking for. And they need website owners to help them fulfill that purpose for existing. Apparently, if your SEO practices are ruining their very essence of existence, they will certainly kick your websites out of their search engine results pages (SERPs).
Here are some actionable tips and tactics you can do to help Google and other search engines do their job better.
- Use Google to search for questions that are highly relevant to your business or brand. You can use long-tail keywords that are specific to your geographical location, industry or even time.
- Check Google SERPs if there are already indexed websites or pages that have already provided high-quality and accurate answers to your questions.
- Visit the top 10 websites or pages indexed by Google based on your search query or keywords to manually check their content if they are really answering your questions.
- Based on your observation, identify the questions or search queries that Google lacks answers.
- Now, it’s your turn to help Google by creating valuable content through your blog posts and landing pages that indeed answer search engine users’ questions or queries.
By creating more content and pages that help search engines provide the best answers to their users, your search engine visibility, organic search traffic and leads would increase. To make that strategy more effective, find search queries or keywords that have a competition level that you can win.
2. Help search engine users find more relevant content in your site.
Maximize the traffic that search engines have referred to your site. Don’t just provide your visitors a single content that answers their questions. But create several related contents that your visitors might be interested as well. In other words, you have to give your visitors extra value or bonuses that will make them stay longer or return in your site.
Here are some tips on how to make your site more valuable to your visitors who came from search engines:
- Create high-quality articles or content that are relevant to your most visited pages.
- Link those content to the other relevant contents within your site. In other words, improve your internal linking.
- Link your pages or content to highly relevant content from other websites. In other words, improve your external linking. Citations and references can improve the credibility and value of your content.
- Use images, info graphs, videos and other rich media to convey your messages better.
- Put some information or a short bio about your content’s authors so your visitors or readers can instantly know who they are talking or dealing with.
By making your site richer and more valuable, search engines will be more inclined to drive traffic to your site. It also increases your bounce rate which gives a signal to search engines that your site is worth visiting.
3. Maximize your strengths and fix your weaknesses.
Capitalizing your SEO strength can boost your traffic and conversion. Fixing your SEO weaknesses can increase your search rankings further. Using basic tools such as Google Analytics and Google AdWords Keyword Planner will help you identify the pages and keywords that give you more traffic. Using Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools), you can also diagnose errors on your site and fix them to conform with Google’s standards. There are also several free and paid tools that you can use to analyze your SEO campaigns and generate intelligent reports. Here’s a good list of SEO tools compiled at Search Engine Land.
The following are some tactics you can do using that strategy to drive more traffic and earn more customers:
- Identify issues and errors in your site using Google Search Console, then fix them.
- Using Google Analytics or other equivalent tools, recognize the keywords that you rank high on SERPs and the pages on your site that receive the highest traffic.
- Create more quality content that are related to the keywords that you are ranking well.
- Create more quality content that are related to your most trafficked pages, then link them to each other.
- Ask your clients or customers how they have found you. If they have discovered you using Google, ask them what search queries (keywords) they’ve used to find you.
Capitalizing the gateway where your customers or clients have found you is a great tactic to increase your sales. So don’t forget to ask.
4. Create great content, conversation and relationship.
Many will claim that they key to successful SEO is creating great content. However, great content won’t last without creating great conversations and building great relationships. Effective SEO is not only about writing valuable articles, creating useful graphics or producing awesome videos that can encourage user satisfaction and backlinks. But effective SEO also involves interacting with your content’s users and building good relationships with them.
Here are some tips on how to combine great content, conversation and relationship to form a powerful SEO campaign.
- Reply comments in your blog posts or in your guest blog posts to keep the discussions alive.
- Reply comments and feedback on the links from your site that you shared in social media to increase engagements.
- Leave engaging comments on related blog posts. Use your real name and start connecting with the authors and bloggers.
- Join related groups and online communities to exchange ideas, learn from the members, and start making close connections. Consider making collaborative content with your connections.
- Reach out people (influencers and potential customers) whom you think will find your content useful.
- Recognize worthy people (top people in your industry) in your content or blog posts.
- Focus on building friendships with the people in your industry instead of focusing on building inbound links.
5. Integrate your SEO with other marketing strategies.
SEO won’t be an effective digital marketing strategy alone. It has to be integrated with other online marketing strategies such as content marketing, social media marketing, mobile marketing and paid online advertising. Your SEO has to be holistic and implemented to achieve your long-term goals. Here are some actionable tips to integrating other online marketing strategies in your SEO campaign:
- Make your website mobile-friendly.
- Optimize your social media pages and profiles for search engines. Complete your information (address, website, contact numbers, etc.) and keep your pages active.
- Create content and relevant stories that can go viral.
- Create evergreen content such as “guides” and “how to” articles that will remain useful for your target audience for a long time.
- Invest in paid advertising like Facebook ads and Twitter ads to boost your content’s social engagements (likes, shares and comments).
- Invest in Google Adwords to gain more search engine visibility.
- Utilize your big data for analysis, reporting, reevaluation and making better decisions.
SEO may change and evolve but it will still be one of the most effective online marketing strategies that businesses can implement to achieve their goals such as generating more relevant traffic, attracting potential customers, increasing sales, and maintaining customer loyalty. If you wish to be loved by search engines, help them to function and serve their users better. And most importantly, help their users (the people) to not only find what they’re searching for but also to get a little bit more.