It’s not just search engines that fluctuate. The way that people search for and digest information online is ever-evolving, and can sometimes cause marketers to lose sight of the bigger picture – getting caught up in niggly things like recent algorithm updates or keyword stuffing instead.
The tips outlined below are some lesser known, tried and true tactics that have pretty powerful leverage over search engines when employed properly – whatever is happening with the latest Google revamp or search trend.
Improve Internal Communications for Better Search Visibility
Often, trying to make SEO part of a company’s DNA can be tricky. Surprisingly, this may not be due to budgeting issues, but departmental communication breakdowns. Because of this, we see a lot of missed opportunities within companies and organisations from a search perspective.
Getting your team on the same page in terms of messaging is essential to SEO success. One of the simplest ways to keep everyone on board is to provide a universal keyword list, to be used following some internal training on keyword implementation and usage. But never just set it and forget it… along with the overall keyword strategy there should be periodic meetings where the overall results are reviewed, revised and, if needed, refined as a collective.
Analyse Your Competitors for Keyword Ideas
I’m guessing you’re already well aware of who the main competition in your industry is. But do you know who your rivals in search are? They may not be who you think…
Your top competitors in search are the ones who rank above you for your targeted keywords, regardless of whether they are a business competitor. So, the task is to identify those outperforming you in terms of SEO.
Once you’ve pinpointed your targets, you can analyse their websites for any new keyword opportunities you might be missing. These can then be added to your own site – particularly any low competition / high search volume keywords you might have overlooked previously.
Always Choose People over Search Engines
It’s not keywords and rankings that define your marketing and success, it’s your audience. A lot of marketers can get so fixated on beating algorithms that they lose sight of what matters most – connecting with their audience.
To put it simply, if you’re not adding value for people, they are not going to be interested in supporting your brand. If they are not supporting your brand, search engines like Google will take notice. It’s important to remember that Google’s main goal is to provide people with the best results for their query – not supply you with more web traffic. Audience engagement drives more web traffic than keywords every time. That said, you can’t exactly ignore the algorithm either… and therein lies the sweet spot.
When you create content that is not only optimised for search, but also is thoughtful, helpful and relevant to your target audience’s needs, it ranks itself. People will like it, share it and engage with it and that lets Google know you’re worth a higher ranking in the SERPs.
Focus on Keyword Relevancy
Quality over quantity, that’s my motto when it comes to keyword strategy.
Sometimes we can get so caught up in trying to rank for every possible related keyword, we lose sight of the ones that matter most (and confuse the search engines in the process).
When building a keyword strategy, we advise concentrating on 10-20 highly-targeted terms, then applying these to the relevant pages throughout your website and in the right posts on social media. If you are new to building keyword lists and unsure which to concentrate on, we recommend using Google’s keyword planner to identify the most lucrative ones based on high search volume and low – medium competition.
Added tip, you don’t usually need to concentrate too much on your company name as you will most likely rank for that pretty easily. Also, if someone is searching for you by name, they are probably already converted.
These tips may not be the standard advice you’d expect when looking for SEO pointers, but they are incredibly effective. Using these strategies can significantly bolster web traffic, particularly when combined with our media ownership principles.
Whatever your SEO plan though, always remember, there are human beings on the other side of the screen, so your best bet is always going to be crafting something they are interested in reading.