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Marketing Mojo: Be a friend to win with SEO

September 8, 2020 -  By
Person working on computer (Photo: Hakinmahn/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images)

Photo: Hakinmahn/iStock / Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Any way you look at it, we live in an SEO-dependent world because internet is the go-to destination for timely information that keeps our lives running smoothly. In a perfect world, search engine optimization should be a win-win for consumers and businesses that share mutual interests and objectives. However, sometimes there is a communication gap, and the process falls short.

Google currently employs hundreds of ranking factors to give people the best possible information as quickly as possible. Most of the factors fall into three categories:

Authority – Proven expertise leads to higher search rankings.

Relevance – Search intent unlocks the matchmaking process.

Trust – Forming relationships is ultimately SEO’s purpose.

Proving your credentials in these three areas is enough to earn Google’s attention. This is how it has been since it was founded. The key distinction between then and now is Google is becoming increasingly smarter.

Therefore, to win at SEO, businesses need to get smarter, too. Imagine that Google wants to help its friend connect with your business because it believes you are the perfect solution to his or her problem. How would you use your digital marketing assets to do that — to be so approachable, prepared and easy to work with that you leave no doubt? Be the path of least resistance by considering these points.

Content structure is the new SEO. Google and human beings need site structure to help them find what they need. This includes how content is organized on your website, how quickly it loads and other items like that. If your site is confusing, Google and its users will move on.

Back in the day, people read blogs to discover useful content. There was even a service, Technorati, that ranked blogs according to their perceived authority.

It was easier back then because solid content was uncommon. Nowadays, there’s limitless content and much of it is exceptional.

Therefore, the SEO play is to be exceptional, too, by organizing your content into potentially high-ranking pages that act as standalone websites. Organize, update and combine those old blog posts into useful guides that address your prospects’ most pressing buying concerns.

SEO is content optimization. There is no point in talking about SEO without a conversation about content because content signals your relevance, authority and trust.

Keywords, backlinks and other traditional SEO tactics are of little value without content’s rock-solid foundation.

Winning the SEO game is fundamentally a communication strategy. It’s using data, stories, visual media and everything else to clearly communicate capabilities and qualities that make it attractive to its ideal audience.

Referring sites are power boosters. More important than what your site says is what other people are saying. This is social media, Google My Business and other powerful sites that transfer authority to your website by linking to it.

You simply cannot win at SEO without the help of others. Content has to be shared to find a larger audience.

Of course, paid advertising such as Google and Facebook Ads are also ways to find that audience. The trick is making it your own so you can recoup your investment.

Simplify SEO with these steps

1. Do a strategic assessment. This step includes keyword research, competitive analysis, core competency messaging, testimonials, social profiles, accurate and accessible contact information and so on. Many companies offer free basic assessments. My company, Landscape Digital Institute, is one of them.

2. Make a plan and execute it. Now that you have identified the gaps to close, take them one at a time by starting with the most painful gap, which is usually lead generation. The solution is often smoothing out the customer experience to effectively communicate its value and distinction.

If you are attracting quality leads but not converting your share, you may have a selling problem. To convert leads, marketing should act as a salesperson would by making human connections.

That’s SEO in a nutshell. It’s not spamming or manipulating, but, sadly, you can still find websites playing that old SEO game. Be a friend to SEO, and you’ll win more business.

This article is tagged with , , , and posted in 0920, Business
Jeff Korhan

About the Author:

Jeff Korhan is the author of Built-In Social, founder of Landscape Digital Institute, and a Duct Tape Marketing Certified consultant. He helps green industry owners, marketers and sales teams craft and communicate branded customer experiences that sell. Learn more at www.landscapedigitalinstitute.com

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