As this is one of our areas of expertise, we feel fairly confident when we say search engine optimisation (SEO) is absolutely necessary for every business in today’s environment.
Search is, after all, the main source of traffic by quite a large margin for a number of businesses. But what happens when Google changes its search algorithm – something that happens often – and you just can’t afford SEO in the new online landscape?
The importance of great content
Measurable SEO president Chuck Price has a few tricks up his sleeve that he has helpfully shared in an article for Search Engine Watch. All of his ideas and recommendations involve providing useful content to your audience via alternative channels – crucially without spamming them.
Price starts his list by addressing blog comments; in every market there is a handful of popular blogs that feature posts by various industry authorities. Commenting under them exposes you to the perfect target audience. Price advises commenting with your own name and doing so only when you have something to add to the conversation – not just for the sake of sneaking in a link to your website. In fact, if you’re going to put in a link, make sure it is one that leads to an article on the subject at hand, not your homepage.
Even better, however, would be to guest-post on a popular blog. This way your content and point of view on the subject will be presented to the popular blog’s audience in a more direct way. In doing so, you establish yourself as an authority in your field. In the meantime, if visitors liked your post, they will check out your product.
Use forums to generate traffic
More niche audiences, however, gather at places like forums and Google+. Here they tend to have conversations concerning the industry in question – something companies should take part in. The traffic to be gained from forums can be fairly instant once you start to take part, but once again the trick is to add to the conversation by providing an answer to a question or an issue the audience has. The important thing about forums is that they are communities. To be accepted in a forum setting a business must appear authoritative and build trust, which can take time.
Be genuine – don’t fake it!
Google+ works similarly and you first have to locate the niche communities, participate in their conversations and then start sneaking in the occasional link to a post of your own. The thing that unites all of the above guidelines is being able to satisfy people’s need for relevant information. Question and answer sites like Quora and Yahoo Answers provide yet another opportunity for a company to address issues people may have with products within the industry. Price advises not to fake it – submitting questions and then answering them yourself – because it is pointless; posing genuine questions and providing answers and solutions is much more helpful for both you and your clients.
Using these tactics effectively can help drive more relevant traffic to your website, and can form part of your inbound marketing strategy, which attracts, converts, closes and delights your customers.