All texts are on your website, the design is of high quality and everything works properly. Yet you have the idea that you can attract more visitors to your site.
There has been a technique for this for years, under the name SEO. This is a form of search engine optimization, so that your website will hopefully show off on the first page of Google within a few months. But this does require a few things, such as extensive keyword research.
These are the words you want to be found on. Have you not done anything with this strategy yet? Then it is time to optimize your website on all fronts. But what exactly is SEO and how does it work?
Keywords are the basis
SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization. You pronounce this as the letters themselves, but specialists sometimes say it without a pause between the letters.
As indicated, SEO is the technique to give your website or a page a better place in search engines. Think of Google and Bing.
The basis for this is the use of keywords. These are the terms you want to be found when someone starts their search through Google. There are some important parts where you should definitely include these keywords:
- Title of your texts (also called headings).
- The body of the lyrics themselves.
- The title of your images.
- Meta texts and meta titles.
- Online advertisements.
- Google AdWords.
On-page and off-page SEO
The above options come under on-page SEO, or everything that happens on your website itself. But there are also strategies outside your site that contribute to better online findability.
These fall under the heading of off-page SEO, a logical name given the method.
An example of this is link building. With this you exchange the link with a relevant page, such as that of a competitor. Google sees this as a positive vote, as it were, giving you an edge over the rest.
Research on SEO
In this process you are really not completely dependent on tools alone, you can also come a long way yourself. Associate, use synonyms and see what your competition is doing.
For example, look up a text from a popular company in your industry. Read the text of the homepage and focus on which words are more common.
Please note that this own research is a time-consuming job. Especially if you are just starting with SEO, it is wise to read carefully about the application of this strategy.
Are you too busy as an entrepreneur? Then hire a specialist. This expert not only searches for the best keywords, but also processes this directly in the texts.
Also keep in mind that the world of SEO is constantly changing; after a few months, the user may use different keywords. The SEO specialist will then help you to implement this optimization in the texts of your website and the advertisements.
Why is SEO important?
For 95% of the search for a product or company starts in a search engine. To get to the attention of your target group and generate leads, you just have to be at the top of the search engines.
Even if people end up making the purchase offline. Search engine optimization / SEO marketing is therefore essential for lead generation .
More clients with SEO
SEO is an ideal way to promote your business at the right time. There is (almost) no form of marketing that is so powerful.
Because search engine optimization lets you show your business when it really matters, you forge the iron when it’s hot.
Your customer is looking for your product or service and you are there, at the top of Google, waiting for him.
You get more turnover when you meet the needs of your customers in the right way and at the right time. The best way to do this is to answer when the question is asked.
And that is exactly what a good SEO strategy does.
What is the purpose of SEO?
With SEO you work on the positions in the search engines. At least that’s what is known about it. Yet an SEO strategy is not about your search engine rankings, but about supporting your business goals.
You only get real results if you have a clear idea of what you are using it for.
Of course, it’s infectious to read other success stories about how great SEO is. But who says that the strategy used also works for your company?
The success story of someone else is never a guarantee for the same result. This is also the reason why many entrepreneurs put time, money and energy into SEO without success.
Before you start with search engine marketing, you need to immerse yourself in the buying phases of your customers. You can of course prey on the perfect search terms, the terms that your competitors are already found on and on which you would like to score.
But who tells you whether your competitor is using the right strategy?
A number 1 position in Google does not mean that she (or you) will get extra customers with it.
How does SEO help you get customers?
Consider your own purchasing behavior. What’s the last thing you bought?
How did that go?
You felt a need, you broke down, you were looking for change or you started looking for a solution to your problem.
Each customer goes through different steps before contacting you or showing one of your products.
If you want to use SEO for more customers, you need to find out which steps these are. What information do your customers look for before evaluating their choices.
How do they determine to be with you or your competitor?
By coming to the attention of your customers at the right time, you will not only gain their trust, they will also be more loyal and satisfied.
After all, we don’t want to sell something just once, but keep customers for life.
If you keep the focus on your customer, respond to the right buying phase and choose smarter keywords than your competitors, then your sales will not only increase, you will also gain significant ground.
What does SEO mean in practice?
There are about 200 ranking factors according to our industry, but let’s be honest, only at Google itself are a few people who know exactly how many there are. What we do know is that all these factors can be divided into 3 main categories:
Where technology and content should mainly be tailored to the visitor of your website. If your visitor is satisfied and finds what he or she is looking for, then in theory the authority should naturally increase over time.
Your website must be technically in order. Things you should think about include:
- the structure of your website.
- the correct use of headers.
- user-friendly urls.
- fast loading time.
- using an SSL certificate.
- use of sitemaps.
Unfortunately, not every web builder knows how to take this technical basis into account for an easily findable website.
The users of Google are / your target audience is looking for something. To contact details, a product, information…, content.
The better your website meets that content need, the better users of your website will appreciate it and send signals to Google that your website is ‘brilliant’. Consider those signals:
- visiting multiple pages on your website.
- do not immediately leave your website and return to Google ( bounce rate and pogo picking ).
- sharing your content on social media.
- or the for SEO’s ‘holy grail’ of appreciation: placing a link to your content / website.
Despite the fact that there are people who claim that Google is so smart nowadays that they can map your content to the information needs of your target group, you absolutely cannot ignore keywords.
So there are 3 steps to get to the ideal content:
- Analyzing the content needs of your target group. You do this in the content strategy
- Link that content need to a keyword research
- Processing those keywords in web text that is tempting to the reader .
Where Google used to have its own indicator for authority (namely PageRank ), nowadays we use Domain and Page authority or Domain Rating . This authority is largely determined by external inbound links.
Ideally , visitors to your website will find the content on that website so beautiful and your website so user-friendly that they will voluntarily link to your website. In practice , everyone knows how important links are to your ranking in Google and almost everyone nowadays charges money for them.
Something that Google struggles with enormously, because for the time being they cannot determine the authority of a website other than through links, but this is of course relatively easy to manipulate.
In our view nothing wrong with that, because all media is manipulated and PR agencies have been providing paid exposure for their customers for many years.
Hence, link building is still an important part of search engine optimization.
Because a little organization can also find a web builder who can deliver a technically excellent website and optimizing content is no longer rocket science…., So how does Google know which website best matches the search query?
Make sure you have everything in order
Don’t be blind to technique, content or authority as something that stands on its own.
Make sure that you continuously serve your target group as well as possible through your website and also ensure that your website is mentioned on as many other relevant websites as possible.
Call it link earning, content marketing , link building or PR, but you need those links.
Also do not have the illusion that SEO is a one-off project or easy. SEO is something you have to keep working on, just like your target audience group.
SEO starts with keywords
Google is (especially in Dutch) still focused on keywords. A keyword analysis should therefore be included in every serious content plan .
After you have mapped out the information needs of the target group, you match it with the right keywords. Then you write good web texts around that information and keywords, so that your information is actually found and appreciated.
In fact, Google is not yet very smart in Dutch, this is because we are of course only a small country worldwide.
A good example of the limited knowledge of our language is the fact that this page, which you are now reading at # 1 in Google, stands for the search term ‘SEO meaning’ with the ‘curve’ sentence below highlighted as a snippet.
“The literal SEO meaning is Search Engine Optimization , so search engine optimization in Dutch.”
The real language purists therefore have to turn a blind eye every now and then if they want to reach the top positions.
A concrete SEO plan
The SEO strategy must of course lead to a concrete SEO plan. So that everyone involved knows what needs to be done to beat the competition in Google. Among other things, the SEO plan should state on which keywords the focus will be and how that will be achieved.
For example, is a landing page needed with good content, should content be created or optimized.
SEO marketing in practice
In practice, the technical aspect of SEO is usually tackled first. Is everything correct in terms of indexing, speed and encryption?
Then it is checked whether there is (sufficient) good content on the website around the keywords. And then the domain and underlying pages are strengthened in terms of authority through internal and external links.
The best SEO advice … Don’t just score in Google
Why would you only want to be found on Google, if you can keep in touch with your customers?
You are number one with that great keyword, your visitor clicks, but then what?
What do you do if someone doesn’t buy?
With only SEO, you can only hope that you will ever see that visitor again.
By incorporating SEO into your marketing mix, you know why someone has not yet bought.
Excite your visitors again via your newsletter, Google ad campaign or your LinkedIn message.
Really smart SEO participates in your complete market approach.
If marketers have shown for years that it takes several contact moments before you really convince someone to become a customer, then you will also understand that SEO will work, but never as effective as when you incorporate this into your complete marketing mix.
With social media marketing you ensure that you show your company in different phases. By not only focusing on your social media channels, but by incorporating the strategy into your marketing mix, you complete the picture.
Attract new visitors to your website with smart blog posts, stay connected with your social media strategy and use your advertising campaign for the final push.
A nudge in the right direction
So SEO involves quite a few time-consuming strategies. Yet it is not impossible to apply all of this. Certainly not with the help of a specialist.
Via this website we tell you more about SEO, how you work per strategy and what the pitfalls are.
So we give you, as it were, a push in the right direction in the field of SEO. Would you like to know more? Read our informative blogs.