search engine optimization
June 4, 2015
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Search Engine Optimization

If you’re serious about SEO, you should be committed to spending 12 months and $36,000 to $60,000 to start your SEO campaign. – Forbes, April 23, 2015

 

Want to buy a car? It all starts with researching for the information online. You not only get the required information about the product, but you might get some additional information about its unique features as compared to competitor’s products and related deals leading to better decision making and higher satisfaction.

For example, I want to buy an electric car so I search online for electric cars. I go to google.com and type a keyword ‘car’. Second time, I type two keywords, ‘electric cars.’ Third time I type kay phrase, ‘Electric car company sale in Bay Area.’

The third search key phrase is more targeted and will drive more focused results aligned with my phrase. There is mechanics behind how my search results were displayed. None of the search results are preplanned by search engines. All your webpages are indexed by search engine. When the user types the search key or the key phrases, the search engines crawls through the indexed pages looking for the relevant information on the pages that match the users key phrases and then the pages are displayed

I’ll briefly touch on the following:

  • What are the fundamentals of SEO?
  • How do you make your website Search Engine Optimized?
  • How to measure the results of the SEO?

Fundamentals of SEO:

  • The acronym for search engine optimization is SEO.
  • SEO is not related to paid advertising.
  • SEO means making modifications to Web sites so that they have a higher likelihood of appearing well in the organic listings of search engines.
  • The results are based on algorithms, which mean mathematical equations that are unique per search engine. Despite the differences in search results per page, every engine has a common goal: to provide the best results possible.

Optimizing your website for Search Engines:

Organic search results are driven by the search engine’s algorithms. This determines how relevant a site seems based on key phrases searched and the popularity of a website as well. SEO is not one time process and gets enhanced over time. Being patient, true to your strategy, continuous analysis and implementing strategies based on this analysis can lead to better SEO results.

We plan and execute SEO strategy for three fundamental aspects:

  1. Architecture
  2. Content
  3. Linking

We will start by setting up the excel spreadsheet for the SEO project. Please see the sample below.

seo-planning-example-spreadsheet

 Organizing your content in spreadsheet helps with the following:

  1. Give you one place to organize the content of your site for SEO
  2. Helps in guiding the changes
  3. Excellent source for the copywriters
  4. Streamline workflows across the website production team, content teams, business owners to optimize the SEO results and constantly improve upon them
  5. Living doc changing nature of the search landscape and keep on track of the SEO month after month

How search engine indexes your content

Search engines discover new content for your site from a XML sitemap. XML sitemap is a listing of your page’s content in a format that search engines can easily read through. Once you’ve generated your sitemaps, you can submit them to the search engines. And this gives you one more way to let them know when you add or change things on your site. Search engines will always try to crawl your links for additional content and index it.

Planning for keyword and key phrases

We need to define the key phrases that you want to be searched and found on. Plan your priority key phrases before any search optimizations are executed. List the key words that describe your organization, your products, and your services. Please note the difference between word key phrases versus keywords. There are billions of websites on the World Wide Web. Focusing our SEO energy on broad key phrases, versus specific little keywords, are going to give you a better chance of attracting qualified searches.

Setting Rules for website and pages

You can set rules to specify which areas of your website the visitors can see. Also, specify rules for different browsers and search engine crawlers.You set the rules in robots.txt file. You can learn more about robot file creation by visiting robotstxt.org.

Content Optimization

How to optimize the content for the search engine algorithms?

Search engines can get complex trying to map the key phrase entered by humans in search box to the content on your page. Hence, writing the way you would write for a human is the best way to optimize for these algorithms.

Header tag is the markup used for the main visible headline of your page. Search engines are programmed to know this. The purpose of using header is to give the reader a clear idea of what the content on the page is about.

Title and Meta tags are excellent ways to optimize your content. One reason for thisis that the title tagis also the title that’s usedon the search engine’s results page listing hence we try to optimize the titleso that search engine identify the theme of our page. In the title tag you can specify what you want to appear as the title of the page when searched via search engine. Tools like the Moz Title-Tag Preview Tool can help you to visualize and testhow your title will lookon a search engine results page.

URL of the page is optimized to mention the keyword phrase we’re targeting for that page. Hyphens instead of spaces or underscores in the URL to separate the words. This is important as it helps the search engines to understand these words correctly.

We have many different types of content and different strategies to optimize it. To optimize code for non-text elements use micro-formatting from schema.org.

Local Search Success

Google My Business is a place where businesses can get themselves a robust and feature-rich online listing for free. When you create a business listing on Google My Business, you’ll have the opportunity to provide basic information about your business, photos and even more. Users will be able to leave reviews for you, and as an administrator, you’ll also get to see statistics about your visitors and the searches that they’ve done to bring them to your page.

Measurement SEO and Effectiveness

Major challenge faced in SEO measurement is determining if your campaign is succeeding or failing. Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics, Web Trends, or IBM Digital Analytics can help you with the measurement and insightful information. You’ll want to invest some time and resources into making sure that your web analytic tracking is implemented and configured properly, and recording data accurately. This means that you’ll probably need to go beyond adding JavaScript on your pages.

If you have an E-commerce business, then you should be looking at revenue,average order values, and other transactional data.But even if you don’t sell your products online,you’ve still got lots of things to track.You can look at leads that come in the form of newsletter subscribers, social followers,event or demonstration signups, phone calls, driving directions to your brick-and-mortar store, contact forms,or anything else you can relate back to the transactional data.

Measure all of the important business goals so that you can look at conversions and conversion rates from the traffic your SEO is generating. Collecting the right data, reporting on your KPIs in a meaningful way, and analyzing the data to really understand what’s happening with your current SEO strategy and applying improved SEO strategy is a foundation for success.

Hope this SEO information is helpful to get started with planning and execution of the SEO strategy for your website.

 

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