How to Hockey Stick Your Search Rankings

by | Nov 3, 2015 | Marketing

Does Search Engine Optimization work? Absolutely. Here’s one recent case study where in a single day, we pushed a client’s keyword Google rank from a 55th position to a #10 position and a Bing un-ranked position to the same level. And we’ve just begun as this is the result of “on-page” optimization only. In the coming months, we’re executing a Rank & Defend campaign that will creep performance right to the top. For our client, this means a big step toward ROI as even just one sale nets enough profit to pay for all of our work. Interested? Here’s the 101 on how hockey stick your SEO:

1. Start with an SEO Plan & Keywords Strategy

When folks look for information through search engines, they poke in text. Such text inquiries are known as Keyword Searches, so the goal is to optimize your site with Keywords that your target audience is looking for. Selecting the right keywords is part art and part science. The art side is all about seeing a company from the audience’s point-of-view: thus while most employees see their business from a nuts and bolts perspective, keyword development is more about framing the layperson’s characterization of the business. This may include incorrect searches like misspellings. Once the audience view is defined, using analytic validation tools to identify Keywords that have high visitation to low competition ratios is the game. Ultimately, Keyword selection is the driver of all downstream digital marketing (Search Ranking, Social Media, Pay-Per-Click advertising, etc.), so this phase cannot be overlooked if you want to spend your marketing dollars wisely in the future.

2. Optimize “On-Page” Website Content

Once you have an SEO Strategy in hand, your highest payback is in engineering your website content to include Landing Pages that feature Keywords from your strategy. The purpose is to let search engines know what your page content is about. Search engines have “Spiders” that continuously crawl sites to index information. To be ready for the Spiders, you should structure content that observes search optimization conventions from website architecture to the way your homepage is setup to the way content is assembled on each landing page. such SEO conventions don’t necessarily have to be at odds with content structured for human readers, so engaging in smart web content writing should be a top priority of your website. On the SEO side, suffice it to say, that your landing pages are corner stone elements to the performance of your website. The ranking report shown above is an example of where a smart SEO Strategy and Landing Page Optimization can take you.

3. Kick-Off “Off-Page” Backlink Infrastructure

When a number of webpages are relevant to a search inquiry, search engines rank webpages based on authoritative position. Authority is largely derived from outside websites referring (linking) to your content. More links, more better. Also, links from high authority websites count for more. And freshness of links counts as well. To establish a good base of perennial backline to your site, doing a Kick-Off Campaign gets you on the map with business listing services, bookmark services and other linkages that are long-term link assets. Kick-Off Campaigns are generally designed for a business’ intended marketing reach. For example, a company that only sells within a single city would do a Local Kick-Off SEO Campaign that garners business listings within that city which a national organization would see listings through a National Kick-Off SEO Campaign that included business listings across the country.

4. Rank & Defend “Off-Page” Backlinks

Search ranking in competitive spaces becomes an arms race to generate the most, highest quality and freshest backlinks to your web content. The good news is that for first movers who rank early, historical ranking works in your favor. But that’s only one factor, so continuing efforts to maintain your leading positions is essential to keeping up the value of your keyword assets. Like Kick-Off Campaigns, Rank & Defend Off-Page SEO Programs are taylor-fit to geographical reach (Local or National).

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