Sometimes companies come to SEO consultants with significant problems in the ability of their websites to be found in search engines. These problems may stem from website architectural issues, lack of keyword strategy (and the application of that strategy), or marketing strategy that does not take into account (or even prohibits) the ability to acquire inbound links.
On occasion, SEO consultants find something unique, something different, that no one else on the marketing team realized. This is rare. There is no SEO pixie dust or black magic coded in a dark basement.
Experienced SEO’s might swap stories of simple changes that led to significant results, such as the rework of an incorrectly written robots.txt file. Those examples are based on years of experience, and dozens, if not hundreds of site audits. Not the norm and not something to ever expect.
In most cases, especially in today’s search environment, challenges with SEO are closely related to an organizations overall marketing strategy. The execution of the recommendations might not be “sexy”, but a plan, and execution of that plan, can lead to real numbers that get featured in case studies or presented for others to learn from.
Not ranking well for desired keyword strategies? Consider these important questions related to the challenge.
- Are content assets in place that are designed to support those keywords?
- Are keywords in place on these assets, or even able to be put in place?
- Does your organization have a content marketing strategy designed to incorporate keywords?
- Does your site architecture take search engine visibility into consideration? Can it be adjusted if it does not?
The last bullet might be beyond some company’s ability to fix* but everything else is, in many cases, simple in theory but difficult in execution.
*I have encountered this obstacle working with one organization and not a business case in the world would get the IT team to rework or change site architecture.
Are you going to build rich content assets? Will your organization truly adopt on ongoing blogging strategy? Our company does its best to publish a blog post a week and we have certainly missed that goal from time to time.
These ideas might not be revolutionary or very exciting at all. But guess what? They work. I have seen it happen.
We just finished a year end review with a client and that tallied over 140 blog posts written, optimized, and published. Those posts ended up acquiring nearly 5,000 total inbound links.
They rank #2 for their primary keyword now as well; which is searched exactly over 8,000 times per month (90,000+ broadly) according to AdWords search estimates.
Have an SEO keyword strategy but lacking inbound links? Directories, forum contributions, press releases, might help, but the real impact can be found in the link acquisition done in coordination with a comprehensive marketing communications program.
- Do multiple departments in the organization understand how their initiatives can incorporate or influence link acquisition?
- Are reporting tools and social networking assets being evaluated for link building prospects?
- How are you leveraging social media platforms to maximize content visibility?
Communication and collaboration between everyone from product marketing to an IT help desk can help build links that benefit an SEO strategy.
The Truth About SEO Pixie Dust
There is nothing worse than uncovering solutions for an organization, in need of SEO, that simply require a lot of elbow grease and heads down work, for which the organization refuses to acknowledge or put forth effort. The recommendations of the SEO team are just not that exciting in isolation.
This happens. Sometimes marketers refuse to believe the problems with their SEO performance might be related to weaknesses in the overall marketing strategy.
More so now than ever before, search engine marketing is an initiative that can sit across all marketing strategies and interconnects roles and departments. SEO does not work in a vacuum. There is not such thing as SEO pixie dust.
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