Many of our clients have issues getting their Search Engine Optimization campaign started in the right step. SEO isn’t hard, its just common sense, and content creation. No one is interested in going to a boring site including Google-bot!
The first question you should be asking yourself is, “What is our end goal?” Your end goal might be to sell your product or your service. How would you achieve that? Who is buying our stuff anyway?
Do you know who your audience is? If you know this question, then you’ve already solved 50% of your problems. All you have to do is find where they hang out on the internet! Do you have any idea how they might be searching for your product? Perhaps keywords that they might be using? Keep these thoughts for a minute, we’ll come back to them later!
Your Website, Links, and Content Strategy
So you’ve got this website, a showcase of your handy work on the internet. It exists, but does anyone besides you look at it? Maybe not? This is where link building and content strategy comes in.
Let’s explain link building first. The internet works by links. Links are like the roads that connect you to the store. The web browser is your car. By clicking on a link, you can go anywhere you choose to on the internet.
So, if no one is linking to you, then obviously no one is going to your site. So you need to have links from reputable sources to your website. The quality of the link matters a lot more these days. A link from a NASA education page to your little science experiment page is worth more than 100 links from Joe Nobody’s.
Though meaningful links are nice, having links in general can help you in the beginning!
Here are couple of easy ways to gain quantities of links (from mostly Joe Nobodies):
1. Submit articles to places like http://ezinearticles.com/
2. Start a conversation with peers on Twitter and share stories.
3. Read other blogs and comment on them to create links back to your own.
4. Submitting your website to Online Directories
5. Reach out to people interested in your content. Outreach is the original link building!
Quantity helps too, just not very much.
Unfortunately, just having inbound links isn’t going to bring in the customers. It does make it easier to rank higher if you have greater Domain Authority (more quality links give you greater Domain Authority).
But once they get to your site, they need to be convinced that you’re the right company for the job. How do you go about that? The second big word here is Content Strategy. The idea of content strategy is to have a plan for what to put in your website so that when people arrive, they have useful/entertaining pieces to check out in relation to your business. To convince people (and now a days Google) that your website is worthy, you need quality content.
This brings us back to link building. The best way to link build is to provide worthy content that people will naturally want to link to. Below are potential blog post types to consider:
1. Your Experience and Expertise | Share everything you got
In our case, we share a lot of high quality how-to style tutorial entries to other developers as well as customers on our site. The content is made more unique by adding images. The best way to help people is to let them know more about you and your process. Make them feel that you’re worth hiring and that you know the inner workings.
We post code examples on our site because we know that while we can come up with them and maintain them, not everyone can. Thus we’re not really giving away the experience or expertise, just proving them.
You can also do internal links in these posts to previous blog entries or other parts of your site to improve internal linking
2. Top 10 list of ideas with images for each — Easy!
This is a good one! We’ve done top 10 favorite web site designs, tools, etc. Below is an example for a law firm:
“10 contract writing mistakes ”
“5 things to check for identity theft”
“5 worst insurance companies to deal with”
“10 ways to judge a lawyer”
“First 5 steps to suing people”
(I’m kidding about the last one FYI)
You don’t want to saturate your blog with these “Top 10” style posts, so make sure to place different post types between them. EXAMPLE: https://y-designs.com/blog/10-cloud-services-we-love.html
3. Current Controversial Subjects with both pros and cons including technical details
This is a very good way to get people talking in the comments section. We’ve done this recently and have got about 5 to 20 comments depending on the subject. Sharing this also against your peers in the industry via Twitter/LinkedIn/Google+ will generate buzz. The best thing to do is to stay neutral but offer comments which hit the hard parts intelligently.
To learn more about link building: Link Building Guide
To learn more about content creation/strategy: https://y-designs.com/blog/rebuilding-our-site-pt-3-new-content-strategy.html
Now, back to your Audience and Keywords
Keep in mind that while you might be linking and making relevant content, you still have to link from/share the content to the right people for it to be read and further shared.
So, figure out who you need to share your content with. Think about who might appreciate your content. We know for a fact that the guys over at Joomla and Joomlaworks (people who make one of the CMS systems we use) appreciate the work and thought we put in to documenting the software that they make. This in turn gets shared with the rest of the world via Twitter. This gathers readership and potentially Domain Authority as people link to your article.
Another less direct way is to make sure that your blog entry/article has great keyword targeting. This means that the article uses the keyword that you are aiming for multiple times (not too much though!) and has the keyword as part of its title, H elements, meta description and other important properties. If your keyword targeting is done correctly, and your sitemap is shared to Google, they will pick you right up! (within a week usually) Obviously this depends on your Domain Authority, how fresh the article is, and whether or not people find your article useful.
The most important thing here is to get writing whenever you have downtime. If you have nothing, you have nothing to share anyway! We can help you get copy writers, but they generally are never going to be as good as the subject experts like yourselves; they’re very good at editing and making you sound more intelligent. Also, it is best to write blog entries using a word processor before posting.
We found that once we started writing good blog entries, people naturally wanted to link/share the material on social networks. That said, whenever you make a new entry, you should share them on Twitter and other social networks to get the conversation started. Learn about hashtags and your audience/peers before sharing!
Remember, being lazy, and buying links from fake blogs will hurt you in the end. The only way to get real traffic is to write your way into it! Google is watching you 😉
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