So many of you know that we do this blog just for fun. However, for our business, our website is very important for bringing in new customers and clients for the company. Without it, our business would just shrivel up and die 🙁
SEO is the abbreviation for search engine optimization. It is the act of optimizing your website as well as getting backlinks to your site so that it will appear in the searches for keywords that pertain to your business.
I recently had to dive deep into SEO and what it was all about as our main company branched off and created another, with almost no money. Thankfully there is a bunch of information on the web that can help you do your own SEO for your websites and social media properties.
One place that I found a lot of great information about SEO is Search Engine Land. Here is a post about SEO has changed so much over the past few years and will give you a good start in understanding what it is and how it has changed:
The evolution of SEO
The job of an SEO has certainly evolved over time due to Google cracking down on spam techniques, the rise of mobile, changes in the SERPs and so on. But what does an SEO really do these days, and how has this role changed over the years?
A look into the past and present
On-page optimization: When performing on-page optimization in the old days, SEOs would map two to five keywords per URL and optimize the page elements (title, meta description, headings, body content and so on) for these keywords.
But things have changed. Now, with advances in semantic search and machine learning, a page can rank for a lot of related keywords, not just the keywords for which you optimize the page. This is a better way of doing things, as having content that fulfills the needs of what users are looking for (rather than just being the best match for a given keyword string) is a better experience.
Modern-day SEOs should have a solid understanding of not just content creation, but also content promotion. Whereas previously it was all about optimizing existing landing pages based on search volume and striking distance, SEO today is a mixture of optimizing existing content and creating, optimizing and amplifying new content that meets end-users’ needs to enforce your brand and capture social signals and links to rank higher in the SERPs.
Devices: Back in the day, it was all about optimizing for desktops because that was the primary device used to surf the web.
Today, mobile devices have quickly become the way that people consume content. While the desktop is still relevant, digital media consumption on mobile devices has skyrocketed in the past several years and will continue to grow. According to comScore, mobile now consists of 65 percent of digital media time. Additionally, in 2015, mobile officially surpassed desktop in terms of Google searches performed.
SEOs must focus on optimizing the mobile experience, particularly apps, and making sure that mobile pages load within two seconds.
Local: Google has changed its local results so many times during the past several years — from the 10-pack to 7-packs, and now the 3-pack. In the old days of local SEO, it was easy to spam the listings by incorporating keywords into the business name, getting links from spammy directories, fudging the exact location of the business and so forth.
Now, local is all about positive reviews and (thanks to the Pigeon update) some of the more traditional ranking signals like relevance and page content.
Social: Before the days of Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, online social sharing largely took place via email and instant messaging — places that fell largely outside of the scope of SEO campaigns.
Today, social media is ubiquitous, and digital marketers who neglect this channel do so at their peril. Social media and SEO must work hand-in-hand to increase brand exposure, connect businesses with their audience and drive consumer engagement. The modern-day SEO must utilize social networks to promote content to earn both shares and links for maximum exposure.
Links: Links have always been a significant factor in determining search engine rankings, but link building as a discipline has changed dramatically over the years. Finish Reading “The Evolution Of SEO“
So that covers a lot on how SEO has changed.
Probably the most important thing to get right when doing any kind of link building is that you get your anchor text correct. Anchor text are the words or images that are used to hyper link to your site. If you over optimize them you will get a penalty.
Probably the best thing to consider now for anchor text is long tail keywords. It really helps especially for what is now voice search where people speak their search into their phones.
Here is a good article from Brick Marketing that explains more:
Why Long Tail Keywords are Important
Keywords are the foundation of an SEO campaign and are at the center of every SEO decision that is made. When conducting keyword research the most important things to pay attention to when selecting keywords are the relevancy and the search volume. For a small business or one that is just getting a website up and running, it’s not advisable to go after the high search volume keywords because it will take years to even begin to see any traction.
Your best bet is to focus on keywords somewhere in the middle, that have search volume but aren’t as competitive. These keywords could be long tail variations of keywords, or keywords that include 3 or more words in the phrase.
Here are some reasons why website owners should utilize long tail keywords in their SEO campaign:
There’s Less Competition
Broad keywords may have a high search volume but think about the number of sites that will rank for something extremely broad like “software”. If you operate a small B2B software company, you’ll never rank for something like that due to competition from large and well established companies that also sell products in your market. Instead, focus on your specialty. Maybe you sell accounting software for mid sized companies. “business accounting software” gets less search volume than “software” or even “accounting software” but there is much less competition for this long tail keyword.
Higher Conversion Rate
People that search using long tail keywords typically are looking for something very specific and have already spent the time doing research and narrowing down their search. Broad keywords don’t convert as well because searchers are still typically in research mode and might not even know what they want. If “business accounting software” brings someone to your page that describes your accounting software packages for businesses, that page is much more likely to convert. Finish Reading “Why Long Tail Keywords Are Important“
We actually have found a lot of great information on the web to help us in our own SEO efforts. One great place we found people to follow on the topic is Flavors.me. Check out 2 of our favorites for SEO: