Search engine optimization… a lot of people know the name, they might even have a provider they’ve hired to help boost it, but few are able to recite exactly what it is. At the end of the day, though, most people realize that it’s important. If any of the above describes you, no worries, here’s a quick guide that explains what it is and how to tell if your provider is delivering for you!
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is simply the act of leveraging what you can in order to rank higher when someone searches for you online. There are 3 types: on-page, technical, and off-page. Here’s a quick summary of each:
On-page SEO – In other words, the content that is on your site can help you rank higher! For instance, if the headings and copy on your site refer to the things people are typing in when searching (keywords), you’ll appear really relevant to those searches and Google will rank you higher.
There are also hidden tags and descriptions for each page and things like the photos on your site that should be optimized to include those same keywords. Basically, these things help search engines, like Google, determine if your website is relevant to a search.
Technical SEO – These are some of the less tangible things that can affect your search ranking. For instance, if your site loads faster and is mobile-friendly, search engines will rank it higher. In fact, in August of 2018, Google stopped ranking sites that aren’t mobile friendly, so this stuff is kind of important. HERE is a blog that takes a deeper look at that. They’ll also take things like your site structure and security into account.
Off-page SEO – If you guessed that these are factors beyond what’s on your website, you’re correct. Another way search engines can determine if you’re rank-worthy is by assessing your back links – in other words, links to your site from other places on the web. Examples of this are links from your Facebook page that point to your website, or a listing on a Chamber directory that clicks through to your site. These help establish legitimacy.
So, now that we know a little bit more about SEO, it’s a good time to talk about managing it. Many companies hire a SEO provider, but it is possible to manage yourself. HERE is a prior blog we wrote that might help you determine what you can address versus what might be best left to the pros.
Regardless of whether you are doing it yourself, or if you have hired an SEO provider, the key is to be addressing all three forms of SEO each month and analyzing those results. Here are two, simple, baseline things to look at:
Monthly results – It’s important to inspect what you expect. In other words, are your SEO efforts paying off? The simplest way to figure that out is to review your results.
At the very least, you should be aware of where you’re ranking when potential customers are searching for you. I mean, that’s the goal right?! The second thing you should assess is what actions are taken each month to boost your on-page SEO, your technical SEO, and your off-page SEO. A good SEO strategy means tweaking the copy on your site to reflect keyword trends, reassessing your off-page SEO on a regular basis, and working to establish back links from other sites.
Quarterly trends – The goal of SEO is to achieve and maintain a great search ranking. A sure-fire way to test for that is to utilize trend reports every quarter. Did you grow or maintain your average search ranking? If so, great! If not, it might be time to ask questions and determine if your SEO strategy is helping you achieve growth.
At its most fundamental level, this is what SEO is and how to manage it. Of course this is just the tip of the iceberg, but hopefully you have a clearer understanding of the basics. If you need help with your SEO efforts themselves or if you need help assessing whether they’re paying off, the experts at Hookd Promotions are always here to lend a hand! Send us an EMAIL or give us a call at 715-396-1661 to request a free consultation anytime!