By now, you’ve probably heard about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) which must be kept in mind when uploading content. So, why is it important, how does it work and what are the benefits your business stands to gain when you have good search engine optimisation?
Before we start, the aim of SEO is to essentially make your content or website rank higher on a Google results page. The further up the page your piece appears, the higher the SEO. But how does Google determine your SEO score?
Well, the first major change to how Google calculates SEO came in 2013 with the introduction of the Hummingbird algorithm. Hummingbird aimed to calculate where posts would rank by placing greater emphasis on natural language queries, considering context and meaning over individual keywords; while also looking at content on individual pages of a website to best direct readers.
Following Hummingbird, the RankBrain algorithm was confirmed to be in use in October 2015. RankBrain was the first machine learning based algorithm and helped Hummingbird to make quicker and more intelligent search results by making educated guesses on what people will search based on familiar words. It is considered as the third most important algorithm behind content and links.
Shortly after in January 2016, the Panda algorithm was incorporated into Google’s core algorithms to help filter out bad content from web page results. To do this, Panda assigns a content quality score to pages and down-ranks sites with spam, thin or poor content.
When put together, the three algorithms make life much easier for customers to filter out the bad content and keep the helpful or useful stuff. Handy for them, right? However, while it is useful for those in buying positions, it makes life a bit more difficult for those who are trying to market or sell.
This is because more emphasis now needs to be placed on factors such as the quality and meaning of the content, the length (800 words are suggested) and, essentially, how ‘human’ the interactions are. While meta descriptions, featured photos and other web pages linking to your page are also important factors.
Therefore, businesses and likewise are now having to put more time and effort into their web pages and content production in order to improve their SEO.
In the world of instant information it is essential to get a good SEO ranking to make your business stand out form the rest of the crowd. We’re all guilty of clicking the top result and not properly browsing through the Google results page.
However, as previously discussed, there is good reason for doing so. Getting as far up the results page as possible is a great way to attract new customers and become a trusted source in your industry.
Remember, 74% of people tend to buy from the place that first provided them genuine value and 93% of a buyers’ journey is completed online online. Therefore, if you can couple a good inbound marketing strategy and good SEO, you are creating the perfect concoction for a successful business. Read more about the buyer’s journey.
Look at it as a snowball effect. The better your SEO, the further up the results page you are, the more customers you attract, the more reviews you get, which leads to more customers. It really is a good way to organically grow your business and maximise your selling and marketing potential.
Even if your web visitors don’t become customers instantly after visiting your site, you can view them as marketing qualified leads and get to work on trying to attract them back and moving them through the sales funnel.
However, focusing on improving your SEO, website and content creation is almost pointless if you’re not tracking how well they are performing. By doing this, you can see what is working well and helping to boost your site up the results page and where you need to pay more attention to or even stop production altogether.
Through a content management system, you can track how many visits your site receives, when you receive them and even how long people are on your site for, helping you to really channel your resources into the right area.
If you’re not sure on which customer management system you want to use for your business, then HubSpot may be worth a look. The marketing system allows you to do an array of things related to content production and SEO and really helps you to focus your efforts on what you need to do to improve your place in Google’s search results.
Tips for improving your Search Engine Optimisation score:
- Make sure you have a good META description and try to include the keyword from your title
- Make your blog posts at least 800 words
- Create pillar pages and link your blogs to them, the more links you have the better
- Make your content interactive and meaningful; remember Google values ‘human’ interactions
- Include featured photos in your post
- Try asking your customer’s for feedback get good reviews, this will really help boost your SEO
Unfortunately, improving your SEO score isn’t a quick and easy job. It will take time to lay the foundations and you’ll need to continuously build upon them and even change the entire structure at times. But Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your business be.