Once upon a time, SEO was a three letter word that had shady connotations. It was the Wild West of Googledom, and many unscrupulous webmasters took advantage of certain tactics that lured many website owners into agreeing to implement these on their domains.
However, SEO need not be the unfriendly or downright sneaky thing you do in the middle of the night– the way some dieters sneak into the kitchen to down a pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream.
In the craziness of chasing after elusive page ranking, many have overlooked the basic function of a website.
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Websites are for users!
Customers, business owners and so on. In short, websites are for people, not search engines. In no other area of your brand’s presence is this more true than in social media marketing. Second to that are the actual websites of eCommerce businesses.
While it is simple advice, many still overlook the fact that getting an organic listing on a search engine is an effort that takes old fashioned time, sweat and elbow grease. But not necessarily all done by you!
You can still take advantage of some automation and help from outside. Just remember in the end, if you’re not offering something useful to the person on your site, growth will be slow to come by.
We’re talking about going back to basics, and here’s how to do it:
Offer unique and interesting content:
As a business owner, you of all people know the ins and outs of your niche. Whether it’s a piece of interesting trivia or just an anecdote about a famous person in your field, putting content out like these, as appropriate, will help create a connection to your users.
Sowing the seeds of unique content will reap enormous benefits in years to come. Be patient, and start crafting those blog posts and videos to provide truly relevant content that leads to more clicks.
Write for users, not for search engines:
Say your niche is in selling affordable, handmade bamboo window shades. Do you create content for your site where keyword is king, and sacrifice comprehension to your potential buyers? Writing for search engine results and writing engaging, interesting and satisfying content shouldn’t be at odds with each other.
Finding the right balance and making users want to click more and spend more time (and hopefully money) on your site is an essential skill to master. Our advice? Put the human experience first and then work in your SEO practices around that.
Building trust is what “optimizing”really means:
You may have heard that producing a content-rich website is the holy grail of optimization. In a way that’s true. People prefer to linger on pages that have a variety of information to choose from.
Inserting video, audio and pictures, in addition to your copy will generate more curiosity and pique interest. Take care though, when deciding what content to place. How many times have we seen a stock photo placed into an article that didn’t quite capture the essence of what was being said? Or a video link that didn’t quite explain or support the main idea beforehand?
Taking time to ensure your web content, links and photos support what you’re trying to say makes users more comfortable with the message you’re trying to get across.
People can sense when a webpage is hastily made versus well thought out, and will correspondingly react with their own level of attention or lack thereof. Well curated content will build trust and that is what optimization boils down to.
Organic SEO is adaptable
Think of your website as a living organism. It should be responsive to changes in the marketplace, buying habits and other trends we may not even be able to anticipate today.
While social media marketing seems common sense now, not so long ago it wasn’t seen as businesslike for a corporation to have its own Twitter account. In response to customers wanting to feel like the organizations they do business with as being approachable, many corporate websites started getting official Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts.
Did the job title ‘Social Media Manager’ even exist a decade ago? You get the point. SEO practices that guarantee a high pagerank today may no longer be relevant in five years.
This means that for your website to be adaptable, you’ll need to create a strong base of marketing, keyword research and participating in various online communities to build a robust website that can weather algorithm changes and other trends still to come.
Having an organic SEO approach is the best way to ensure your page ranking steadily increases. Rather than look for the next tactic out there, we recommend investing in quality content and optimizing for when it matters, instead of taking a gunshot approach to SEO.