Often you hear people say, “if I only knew then what I know now”, and how things would be different if I could have applied the pearls of wisdom from the start, instead of just random knowledge. Similarly in SEO there is a frequent disconnect between SEO techniques, tactic, strategies and the reason for implementing them to begin with.
Based on this notion, it’s time to separate the wheat from the chaff and discuss keywords, search behavior and real SEO tips you can use to produce tangible results. Consider this invaluable SEO Wisdom as we seek to enlighten those new to SEO with our first tactical conclusion.
Your Website Needs Distinction
This is more than just a bold statement, in fact, by the time you read this, your website has lost business to a competitor for a keyword that either 1) they optimized better than you did or 2) from the consumer visiting your website and then purchasing from a competitor (because your page failed to convey urgency or intent).
Competition is real, so ignore the facts at your own risk. If your website is dependent on commerce, then you need to own your topic within the context of your own Web site. Pages should optimal, meaning that they are structured to convey relevance.
Not only should this structure make sense to the end user, but also to search engines through solidifying topical intent with links, preferred landing pages and supporting pages with context to pass on ranking factor to critical areas of the website.
What happens when someone is using a search engine and does not find what they are looking for? They go back to the search engine they were just using and execute another search until they either (a) find what they are looking for (b) they find its close cousin and spin off on another search tangent or (c) simply move on.
Deliver What Consumers Expect or Risk Abandonment
To rally back to the point, in today’s fast-paced value driven society you can serve as a resource or a destination online. If you fail to provide what users expect, if you fail to convey trust, confidence, or competence, then your website will simply be a memory.
Did I mention you only have 10 seconds to pass the initial synopsis of (a) is this what I am looking for? or (b) will this page suffice? Which determines the degree that a prospect investigates your offer?
This by far exceeds any degree of SEO and is the reason why you are using SEO to begin with. So, if you ignore this critical step, your website will only be a speed bump or a pothole on the information highway as eager consumers find alternative websites more fitting for their immediate needs.
It doesn’t matter if you’re an early or late adapter, don’t miss the boat or you’ll be playing catch-up for months (or years), depending on the keyword.
Wikipedia is great, but how’s that going to help someone when they’re searching for a product or service? The fact is, different search queries yield different results, but the distinguishing factor is intent.
Now here is the SEO pearls of wisdom part of the post. Starting with the the fact that you may not always be first on a page for a keyword, however, you can have a larger percentage of keyword market share which means that each keyword has to perform less to drive more converting keywords to your pages. That was one pearl, so lets move on to other SEO solutions learned from trying things the hard way…
Never Bite Off More Than You Can Chew
Naturally, you want to rank for the most competitive keywords with the highest volume of traffic, but what you want and what you get all depend on (a) the resources you have at your disposal and (b) how long it will take to implement and achieve measurable results.
It’s better to start a campaign and build rapport with search engines and search engine spiders before opening the throttle wide open and targeting the most competitive keyword or…
Don’t Overlook GEO Targeting
If you website doesn’t have enough steam to capture aggressive national rankings, use a tiered ranking system within your own pages to snatch up as many relevant GEO targeted terms.
Although there is not always significant search volume from such regional and local modifiers, they are a great source of mid-tail to long-tail traffic but the ultimate goal is to reinforce enough continuity within your website to topple the main root / national phrase.
Focus on Market Share Not Just Keywords
Keywords are only great if people actually use them in the first place “exact match” or click on related keywords “broad match” from a search tangent. It is much easier to target a plethora of keywords and keyword modifiers based on user intent and how they may utilize specific phrases when in need.
For the record, commercial keywords and educational keywords have an immense gap between them (one pays the bills and the other one gets you a pat on the back with “good post”) which is nice, but ROI is a prominent objective online.
Ideally, your website should have enough content to support the keywords or enough links to support the website popularity required to breach the top 10 results.
Add Content to Increase Relevance
Your website is scalable, if you know your pages are light on keywords then start building logical bridges in keyword context through internal links and additional subfolders and / or pages or posts.
If you are adding a substantial amount of content quarterly to your website or blog, eventually the worth of those pages will yield link weight which you can wield any way you chose through linking or redirects.
Manage Each Keyword as Its Own Campaign
You need to find out who is the main authority for your main keywords and implement a plan of action to consistently build value, relevance and popularity for that keyword.
Nine times out of ten, people forget the first rule, they bite off more than they can chew and end up with lackluster results across a broad array of organic keywords.
Guard yourself from this process and chart your rankings, hits, conversions, inbound links from other sites and results for each keyword that you would consider in your top 20 most coveted list and make sure you are taking actions daily to main them from getting rolled of the page from your competition.
Get Creative With Your Link Building Methods
Sure, you could try traditional methods like article submissions, directories, keyword-rich contextual blog links, etc. but collectively they have a limited shelf life as search metrics are constantly in a process of fluctuation.
You will constantly need to innovate new ways to attract quality backlinks from editorial and authoritative sources (unless you want rankings to recede). The other alternative is to strengthen your on page SEO to offset the brute force link tactics of bullying your way to the top of search results.
Other methods for building links include developing unique and useful industry-specific software (taking a top down approach to your market) and attracting the usage and links from authority sites such as APPLE, WORDPRESS, DRUPAL, Mozilla, etc. or create a widget so useful, your cherished competitors may actually use it.
In which case if a link is embedded in the widget, software, css or page, there is a constant source of IP ranges and websites providing link flow back to your website.
These points are distilled from years of acquiring rankings for ourselves and our clients that most only dream about, so use or dismiss them at your own discretion. The main takeaway for a successful SEO approach is, consistency, flexibility, relevance, popularity and conversion, any way you slice, dice or address them they are crucial for long-term SEO results.