My initial introduction to SEO started like many probably do with a simple search of “how to rank higher in Google.” I was redesigning a website for my father’s business and was concerned with the sites performance in search results. His business relies on lead generation; the web traffic (or lack thereof) directly correlates to monthly revenue. Since his business is very niche we knew the best way to reach customers would be when they were conducting their online search.
Although I had some exposure to SEO prior to my internship at Path, I have learned a great number of things about SEO techniques and strategy including:
Understanding and Setting Goals
In order to have a successful digital campaign you have to understand how much it costs to acquire a conversion whether it is an ecommerce site and that means a transaction or a business like my father’s where it would be a lead. Digital marketing efforts need to be continually monitored to ensure that the campaign is profitable. Initially, this requires patience as you cannot expect to see results overnight. It sometimes takes a few months for a website to start showing the results of an SEO campaign.
Quantity vs. Quality Traffic
The quantity vs. quality rule applies to website traffic and is especially important with paid traffic as you don’t want to be paying for clicks that don’t convert. By analyzing a website’s traffic data you can tell where the most engaged and likely to convert visitors are coming from. This can help in determining the focus for your SEO or SEM strategy.
Creating Engaging Content
SEO is becoming increasingly geared towards user experience. Websites tend to rank higher if the on-page content helps in educating the consumer while being engaging and relevant. Keyword research and planning can help in optimizing on-page content. Interestingly enough keyword research can also help in determining if additional pages should be added to a website through analyzing customer queries. This is why ideally SEO is the first building block of a website occurring prior to any site construction.
SEO is not a quick fix. Google and other search engines are constantly re-evaluating websites in terms of their relevance and changing their rank. Therefore, once a site starts to rank for a number of desired keywords it does not mean the SEO campaign is finished. It takes continual maintenance- new blog posts, blogger outreach, continual website tweaks, link building and edits for your website to continue to rank.
Constantly Evolving Industry
My biggest revelation while at Path is that digital marketing is a constantly evolving industry. The internet is like a living, breathing organism, it is constantly changing with technological advances and ways in which we engage and interact with online content. Google in an attempt to accommodate for these changes and to continue to deliver a top-notch user experience updates their algorithm. Since SEO is reactive to Google’s algorithm it automatically changes the way things are done within the industry. To me this is one of the most appealing and exciting parts of digital marketing as it offers endless opportunities to learn. I am thankful to Path for the opportunity to learn more about digital marketing and am excited to see where this industry will take us!
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