While businesses have become increasingly savvy about including SEO in their marketing plans, most have not yet developed an effective SEO strategy. In my experience working with SMBs and multinational corporations over the past 18 years, I’ve found that organizations might have started implementing a strategy when they last redesigned their website, but typically, over time, it has devolved into little more than a trivial exercise known to very few, if any, in the organization.
If this sounds familiar, then it’s definitely time to design a profitable, comprehensive SEO strategy.
What is a comprehensive SEO strategy?
For your marketing initiatives to be successful, it’s essential for your company to identify its unique value proposition. What sets your products and/or services apart from those of your competitors? Why should a consumer choose to do business with you? What is the primary reason people should buy from you or hire you, beyond price, years of experience and the services or products you offer?
Once you’re clear on your unique value proposition and goals for the future, you’re ready to develop a comprehensive SEO strategy that will build brand authority, drive incremental organic traffic and convert site visitors into customers. This strategy will include:
• Website content that supports your unique value proposition
• Specific keywords related to your brand/value proposition
• Website architecture and design that enhances search, user experience and conversion rates
• A plan to develop and distribute original, valuable content across multiple channels (content calendar)
• A plan for sustaining and improving your SEO
Why should my business have a comprehensive strategy?
Without a comprehensive strategy and plan for sustaining and improving SEO, other pressing issues take precedence, and good intentions about SEO fall by the wayside. You might, for example, do some keyword analysis, on-page optimization and blogging, but not really have time for redesigning your website or developing valuable content. While this limited effort is understandable, it deprives you of the opportunity to reap the full benefits of your website, putting you behind savvy competitors in search, conversion, brand authority and marketing ROI.
In contrast, implementing a comprehensive SEO strategy could put you ahead of the competition. If your website is search and user-friendly, if it is the authoritative source for information about your brand, if you are developing valuable content related to your brand and if you keep improving your website and distributing this relevant content, then you will ultimately be building brand authority, converting more site visitors into customers and increasing your bottom line.
How do we sustain a profitable, comprehensive SEO strategy?
Partnering with a digital agency that has successfully helped businesses implement and sustain high-performing SEO strategies is probably your best bet for ensuring your company is positioned to reap the full benefits of SEO. If, however, such a partnership isn’t feasible, make sure your in-house marketing team has the capacity for identifying and leveraging your unique value proposition, conducting keyword research based on customers’ needs, using analytics to review and improve SEO and adhering to a plan to develop and distribute original, useful content.
In businesses of all types and sizes, I’ve found that sticking to a content development plan is probably the most difficult part of sustaining a comprehensive SEO strategy. People have a hard time continually creating authoritative content that is useful to their customers. Typically, they resort to reiterating sales propositions, repurposing their website content or paraphrasing a competitor instead of actually creating content that appeals to customers’ emotions and needs for authoritative facts.
I always recommend telling your organization’s stories and incorporating enough facts to make them real to customers. People love hearing good stories, and your organization probably has many to tell (e.g., innovative ways customers use your products, successes your clients have achieved, improvements you’ve made in your services, etc.). Published strategically on your website, on social media, in press releases, in blog posts, on YouTube, in paid ads and on other platforms, these stories will bring you the valuable inbound links, brand authority and increased search impact you need to be successful in today’s highly competitive digital environment.
What should we do now?
Too often businesses invest in fancy websites but don’t implement a sustainable SEO strategy to maximize their ROI and bottom line. If you want to harness the power of the internet to increase profitability in 2018 and beyond, now is the time to integrate a comprehensive SEO strategy into your marketing plan.[“Source-forbes”]