Is there still some value in SEO these days? Do people still have faith in SEO? Is it possible for SEO to exist on its own or does it need to be merged into other marketing methods? If you’ve ever wondered about these things, and want to know how customers perceive SEO services today, this post is a must read for you.
Why are people still investing in SEO despite the risk?
As an internet marketer, who also invests in SEO, I think SEO, as a business investment, still holds and provides tremendous value to all types of marketing endeavors.
Because average SEO brings almost nothing to the table, and could even work against you, it is important for your business to follow the principles of high quality SEO. Because of this reason, some select SEO experts who truly know the SEO have started charging a ridiculous price for their services. Despite the cost and the risk, people are still investing in SEO services because a) More than half of all web traffic starts from Google b) search engine traffic converts like crazy. There is no good substitute for such traffic.
SEO vs. PPC : Which is best ?
As a person investing in search engine marketing, you may want to discuss which method is best to go with: pay per click advertising or organic search engine optimization. Depending on your goals and budget, there are advantages and disadvantages to both.
Here is why SEO offers better benefits compared to PPC:
Long-term return on investment ( ROI )
Winner : SEO
SEO might take longer to achieve the desired results, but they are results that last much longer. Because SEO is made to increase the value of your web site, it has a permanent effect on your rankings. As a result, it tends to bring more traffic and potential customers from time to time.
Winner : SEO
85 % of the total clicks happen on organic links rather than sponsored links, so SEO tends to bring in more traffic than PPC.
A PPC campaign is highly dependent on the level of competition on the keywords and funds allocated for the campaign. Organic SEO is considered free in the sense that you do not pay directly to Google to rank your site. But since it is a highly specialized area, most of the business owners will not have the time, skills and resources to optimize their site on their own. It often helps to hire a SEO consultant or SEO marketing company to do this task effectively.
A good SEO consultant can help you with the following tasks:
1.Onsite optimization (here is only small part of what can be done)
The title tag is what most search engines will show on their search engine results. The title tag should be interesting, relevant and appealing to the reader. One or two keyword phrases, that are most important for your site, should be present in the title tag. The title tag should also be as close as possible to a sentence that is readable.
Page copy is the text that the visitor to your website will be reading. If possible, each page should contain at least 200 words. Text on each page should contain the keyword phrases that are readable and logically placed. You can also use keywords and phrases that have been used in the title tags and meta tags.
Most people still believe that meta tags are good for search engine optimization. However, experts believe that they have lost the effect they had in past.
Image Alt attribute
Each image can help the page rank if it contains the attribute ” ALT ” , also known as ” alt text ” . An ALT attribute can be added to any image and will show up on computers where image viewing is turned off. This attribute should also be used to describe the image, and not just as an opportunity to stuff the keywords. Limit yourself to 2-3 keywords per image.
2. Keyword planning
In order to be listed properly in search engines, every page of your website should be optimized for search engines. Because the keywords are essential for this process, choosing the right ones and using them in an efficient way is crucial. The steps below will help you choose the best keywords for your website :
In many cases, it is recommended to target a long tail keyword that best describes your product. Competition on the Internet makes websites targeting general keywords rank poorly.
Think like your potential customer
What would you search if you were to buy your own product? You have to choose keywords that are intuitive to the needs of your customers.
Check out the competition
Do a search in the search engine, using keywords that are already known and click through the top websites displayed. View the HTML source code and see what keywords they are using in their meta tags.
Run the numbers
Google Keyword Tool, which is available at http://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal, is one of the best free tools available for you to choose keywords on the web. You can use the keyword tool to see how many people have searched for your keyword in the last month, and the average number of searches overall. Use this tool to test the keywords you have selected and choose the ones that are popular among Google users.
3. Competitor’s research
Competition research is an important part of any SEO campaign and the research you will be required to do will depend on the depth of the competition you have. It will help you decide if your website can match with the top 10 websites displayed for the keyword you wish to target.
Here is how competition research can be done effectively
Links – Analyze your competitor’s links to find the possible linking opportunities for you. It is not necessary to link with every site your competitor has a link from. But make sure that you note the authoritative sites linking to your competitors.
Content – Do you have enough content to match with your competitors? While Google rankings are not an exact science, the quantity and quality of the content will be a key factor.
Number of pages- Number of pages do not always have to be exactly the same, but the big difference could indicate a problem.
Ads per page – If your competitors have lesser ads than you, you may want to consider reducing the number of ads on your website. It is not recommended to overwhelm your content with many affiliate links or ads.
4.Backlink profile analysis
Analyzing the backlink profile of your competitor is the initial step in determining what makes them rank well for the keywords they have targeted. Backlink profile analysis is also a way to see what’s making your competitors do well in SERPs. However, mimicking their link profiles won’t take your site too far.
Not all links are beneficial. Linking to spam sites that are deceptive or fraudulent will certainly cause a damage to your page rank. Here is how you can gradually start building links for your website
Inbound links are links on other websites which direct users to your website. Here is how you can build good inbound links:
Go fishing for links
Link Baiting is just like fishing. Come up with a good reason for people to link to your site. It can be writing good content, some exclusive news or exploiting platforms like digg.com and del.icio.us (delicious.com).
Attract natural links
Writing good content, having a good website and offering good products and services are some of the ways you can grow your backlinks organically. Though not the fastest, this is among the most powerful ways of growing inbound links to your website.
Start posting links
You do not need to have a website to post a link on it. You can post a link to your website on web forums, classified sites, blogs and social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace and LinkedIn. There are many, many sites on the internet where you can have your links posted without ever asking them for permission. Take advantage of them.
SEO is still a unique selling proposition that many companies do not have. Today everyone has a nice design, good content, social media presence and good marketing strategy. After all this, the only thing that is able to provide a competitive advantage is SEO. Especially when you have access to few skilled SEO specialists that are there.