It is critical that we understand the industry, where the client is and wants to be, and their goals for success. We will ask a variety of questions. For instance: Is location important for client acquisition (aka: geo-tags)? Do you have seasonality in your business? We may also ask for access to Google Analytics and WebMaster Tools (for existing sites) to see how your site has performed historically. The client may also provide their list of top 10-20 phrases as guidance for the keyword research phase.
We use a proprietary tool to search for relevant and related keywords based on our fact finding session. The keywords must be relevant and not too vague. This tool is unique in that it provides us with the number of monthly searches, competition ranking and CPC (applicable for Google Ads). The most important part of this tool is the competition ranking element, which gives us a quantifiable number for how difficult it is to appear in the top 10 (first page) of Google search results. This number is based on the value of the sites who currently appear in the top 10 results for Google. These are your soon to be competitors.
Once the keyword research is complete, we export the data into an Excel document to allow us to properly analyze and sort it. First we break the data into categories that are relevant to the organization of information on the site. Then we rank each keyword based on the number of monthly searches and competition data. Once complete, we sort the document to display the keywords from most desirable to least in each category. This information is then reviewed with the client to ensure we have covered all aspects of the business.
The Keyword Analysis is used by the SEO expert to optimize all pages and posts on the site. This includes SEO title, SEO description, Keyword density within the content, image alt tags, Categories and tags (optional). We also continuously update any additional content, such as blog posts.
Once we have 90-120 days of data, we can start analyzing the initial results from our SEO efforts. We use Google Analytics, Google Search Console (aka: Webmaster Tools) and a paid 3rd party tool called Rank Manager. All of these tools provide important information about your organic traffic that allow our SEO experts to make the proper recommendations for the next steps in your SEO campaign.
Google is full of misinformation and misleading information regarding SEO. The SEO world changes so quickly it is hard to keep up if you don’t do it every day. And it’s not like Google sends out an email with their latest algorithm changes. Our SEO experts have years of experience optimizing websites and completely understand the core mission of Google search – “To provide a search result that gives the user the answer or information they were looking for”. Our team also has a much broader view of the SEO world because we have hundreds of client’s analytics and Rank Manager reports that we see weekly. There are just some things you should leave to the experts and this is one of them.
This used to be the case. Unfortunately, the internet is saturated with content and Google continually changes their algorithm to provide the best user experience possible. You must do your best to provide unique, fresh, valuable content that your users want to share and other sites want to link to. This requires a continual effort and the highest level of optimization. You aren’t trying to beat Google. You just need to do better than your competitors.
This is called “black hat” SEO. Black hat SEO is a combination of unethical SEO methods trying to trick the search engines to improve your standing in the search results. This typically ends in a penalty for your site. Black hat techniques include keyword stuffing, using private link networks, hidden text or links, content automation, duplicate content and many other tactics. AVOID THIS AT ALL COSTS!
The beauty of the Keyword Analysis is that it allows us to see which phrases are completely unattainable from an organic search point of view. If you are in the medical field and are competing against WebMD and the Mayo Clinic, you are not going to out rank them. As a result, we would not optimize your site for these difficult phrases. Instead we would use more attainable phrases to bring traffic to your site and we would recommend a Google Ads word campaign for the more competitive phrases.
SEO is a long term strategy to gain organic search traffic. It requires regular effort and patience. When your site is first optimized you can expect to start seeing results within 90-120 days. This gives us a starting point and enough data to determine the next steps. Depending on how competitive your industry is, you may see results within 6 months to a year. Other industries (medical, legal, supplements) may take 2-3 years. Results vary depending on a variety of factors including the industry, competition, and your budget.
Make sure you have a clear vision for your business. Providing content and structure allow us to properly analyze your site and develop the most accurate keyword analysis possible.
Don’t waste your money on optimizing your site if you don’t intend on following up with a blogging or link acquisition strategy. You will have spent money on the initial efforts but won’t get the desired results.
Once the site is optimized, we need 90-120 days of data to determine the next steps and SEO strategy. During this time you should be adding unique, fresh content that is properly optimized. This usually comes in the form of a blog post. For most business websites, 1 blog per week is ideal, according to Google’s current algorithm.
You also need to be acquiring links back to your site. Our SEO and Link Acquisition experts work with the client to establish a list of influencers within or related to the industry. This is another long term effort but is one of the most valuable elements in your SEO campaign. As you can imagine, people with websites, especially those who understand SEO, are not in a hurry to giveaway links from their site.
Think of these links as votes. If you get more votes than your competitor (from reliable sources), you will rank higher in the search results. This does not include links from social media. You will also want to avoid links from sites that practice black hat SEO or that may be under penalty. You also want to make sure you are greedy with links from your site. When you have outbound links from your site to another, you are essentially voting for another website.
The above steps are crucial in developing your SEO footprint. Once your initial site ranking is established, we will help determine how to grow its value to drive additional SEO traffic. This is unique for every client.
What typical changes are needed if clients don’t see great results?
What is considered good? What is considered bad?
What is a typical increase in traffic from no SEO to having it done right?
If someone gives you an answer to any of the questions above, I wouldn’t trust them. There is no way to know exactly how much improvement you will see. There is no such thing as typical. Good and bad are relevant – What one business might consider good, another might be appalled at.
After your site has been optimized, we need to wait 90-120 days to review the data. This will provide us with enough information to analyze and make recommendations moving forward. Remember, this is just the very beginning of your SEO footprint. If you are consistent in your SEO methodology, provide valuable content to your users, and acquire links back to your site, you will see consistent growth over time.
Some industries are more difficult than others, and may take longer to see results. Depending on how competitive your industry is, you may see results within 6 months to a year. Other industries (medical, legal, supplements) may take 2-3 years. Results vary depending on a variety of factors including the industry, competition, and your budget.
There is only one thing we know for sure about SEO: Content is King!
No SEO effort should ever be undertaken without a detailed understanding of traffic and competition. We use the latest tools to create hyper-accurate analyses. The keyword analysis is used to determine the most critical phrases to be used for the site and track the success of the SEO campaign. It also helps the content development team determine the most productive content and link acquisition strategies.
We create content and link acquisition strategies that are customized to meet the goals of our clients and stay within their budget. This includes unique content within the blog and social media posts that are trending, educational, entertaining and most importantly, shareable.
We have a diverse programming team that can handle nearly every programming language (HTML/CSS, PHP/MySQL, .ASP, .NET) and most popular content managers (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal). Our developers specialize in ensuring that all content and elements within your website are properly optimized.
Our expertise of SEO compliant design allows us to review existing websites and create detailed instructions for optimization. We can provide support for in-house programming teams or our team can implement and execute the changes. If you have any questions (or just want a second opinion) we can make sure your website is on the right track.
We provide a complete suite of web design services. All our web designs are fully SEO compliant. Our clients use these services to enhance existing websites and create new websites with a robust SEO footprint.
Our development team specializes in building SEO compliant websites. Our programmers have built hundreds of optimized websites in nearly every programming language and most popular content managers. We can also build our own custom content management systems and specialized custom applications.
This is one of the most important and difficult aspects of SEO. The days of link farms and paying for links are over. You must acquire links from reputable sites through partner relations, guest blogging and organic acquisition. Our SEO team will help build a custom strategy for your business to properly acquire these very desirable links.
We have a talented staff of in-house content writers who can create both static content for your pages and articles for your blog. These writers specialize in creating high quality, optimized content that is intended not only to boost rank, but acquire critical inbound links.
If you have a news or media site and have an in-house writing team, we can train them! We will teach them how to get the most out of their articles and how to properly optimize their posts. We can provide editors who can review your in-house authors efforts and give them feedback.
All SEO campaigns must include detailed monitoring and reporting to determine the progress and success of the campaign. We utilize Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools and Rank Manager to track traffic, user behavior and phrase rank. These metrics allow us to adjust our strategy and report back to you, the client, with our recommendations.
The ultimate goal of every campaign is to increase traffic and maintain/increase the conversion rate (quality of the traffic). At numerous points during the campaign we discuss the progress with our clients so that they can gain a detailed understanding of ROI and we can make the necessary adjustments to keep improving the overall SEO footprint and web presence.