5 easy SEO tips to maximize ROI

The SEO and internet marketing climate is consistently changing, and businesses that adapt to these changes stand poised to surpass their competitors in revenue. From new algorithms to growing competition, effective SEO and internet marketing strategies are more important and complex than ever.

Is your business fully optimized to remain at the top of Google and other search engine results in the face of changing standards? If you aren’t sure, the time has come to implement an iron-clad SEO strategy.

How SEO is Changing and Why It’s Important for a Business’ Bottom Line

Search engine optimization (SEO) has evolved significantly over the past few years. Many businesses previously enjoying top spots in search engine results have found their approaches no longer as effective. The result of an outdated SEO strategy is often lower search rankings, fewer site visits, and lower ROI. The changes to which companies must continually adjust include:

-Algorithm updates. Google updates such as Panda and Penguin have changed the criteria by which the search engine ranks websites. Previously effective tactics (such as “keyword stuffing” and link building schemes) now draw penalties for websites.

-Increased competition. As more companies jump on the SEO “bandwagon,” the race to the top of search engine results becomes more grueling. Businesses can no longer afford to take a halfhearted approach to the building and maintenance of their websites if they want to keep their target audiences’ attention.

For companies of all sizes and in all industries, it has become apparent that achieving a high return on investment for marketing dollars requires a systematic and strategic approach. Be sure to read my previous article on how to calculate ROI within SEO marketing.

Your 5-Step Progression to Higher ROI:

From the newbie to the seasoned professional, creating and adopting an SEO strategy is a process requiring significant detail and follow-through. Because businesses simply can’t afford to leave any aspect of SEO to chance, use an intentional and methodical approach incorporating several steps. These include:

Define your audience

In the midst of planning and implementing an SEO plan, it can be easy to forget the importance of identifying and reaching the right audience. However, failure to do so represents a crucial mistake that will impact every part of your SEO strategy.

Perform extensive market research and identify the demographic and geographical characteristics of the audience you wish to reach. (Google Analytics is a useful tool for carrying out such benchmarking.) After gaining as much insight as possible into these individuals, consider the actions you want visitors to take once they’ve reached your website. A clear idea of your audience and objectives helps inform your next steps.

Perform keyword research

Considering the crucial role keywords (or search phrases) play in the success or failure of an SEO and internet marketing strategy, your next step towards successful optimization should be identifying which keywords your target audiences are most likely to utilize. A useful method for carrying out keyword research is to use an Excel sheet to organize each keyword category. Divide it up by whichever distinctions you plan to make, such as:

-Website sectioning. If you plan to divide your SEO approach by page, you will want to keep your keyword research for each section separate.

-Persona groups. When you plan to target two or more distinct audiences, they will likely perform searches differently than one another.

-For more complex SEO tactics, you may wish to delegate various keywords to separate audiences.

One of the important factors to track for each search phrase is search volume. Understanding how (and how often) individuals perform searches will help you create a strong keyword strategy.

Optimize your website

Virtually every aspect of your website is vital to its SEO performance. When your links and navigation work correctly and each page contains quality content, web crawlers can easily identify your website as relevant to searchers. This is what helps search engines place your site at the top of users’ search results.

Each page should have its own keyword-based theme, revolving around the topic you most want to convey to visitors. While keywords are important to drawing (and keeping) the right audiences, beware of “stuffing” the page with awkward prose. Too many keywords not integrated grammatically into content can achieve the opposite effects of what you had hoped.

Use off-page SEO strategies

Search engines also measure a website’s relevance and quality by how many inbound links it has generated from other authoritative websites. Although “link schemes” exist to superficially inflate numbers of inbound links, search engines can easily identify and penalize such measures. The best way to increase linking is the old-fashioned way: Building relationships.

Techniques for organically growing your website’s inbound links include:

-Leading industry websites. Contact authoritative websites affiliated with your industry and make a case for why linking to you would benefit their audiences.

-Industry groups. Organizations and associations in your industry may be willing to include your website in lists of resources they provide to their website visitors.

-Quality content. Crafting informative and prolific content for your website in the form of blogs, static articles, social media, and other resources not only increases your favor with search engines – it also increases the likelihood other authorities will discover your content and choose to share it of their own accord.

Measure and use analytics data

When it comes to SEO strategies, the sooner you know how well they are working, the sooner you can adjust your approach. Setting up a Google Analytics account and defining which metrics you would like to track will help you evaluate your SEO results in real time.

Each day, week, and month, you should identify which performance indicators you will examine. Use a spreadsheet to keep track of how particular changes affected search traffic results. Tracking software or a related service can help you manage this process more efficiently.

Maintaining Your SEO Approach for the Long Haul

As standards continue to change, businesses will need to revisit and tweak their SEO methods regularly. However, these 5 steps represent a time-tested progression you can adapt based on prevailing algorithms and trends for many years to come.

Have you implemented a 5-step strategy to ensure your company’s SEO success? At CC&A, we’re committed to the success of your business and want to help you achieve measurable results. Our comprehensive internet marketing services help your business’ online presence promote brand awareness, engage your audience, and boost client acquisition.