Say it with me one more time: "SEO is NOT for IT!"
Once upon a time, Google wasn't as sophisticated in its ability to weed out the riff-raff for its users. Sure, it was better than the rest, especially at launch, but corner-cutting methods like "link-farming," and "keyword stuffing" were working. (We've all been caught in a "search-page-loop," where all of the best top results just take us to another search results page.)
So, Google, in its infinite commitment to creating the best user experiences for us, is working nonstop to stay number 1 (with now more than 60% of the world's searches), and they're doing it by nullifying those who don't comply with their quality standards.
If you stick to an organic marketing methodology (like inbound), you don't lose traffic when Google cracks down on the noise, but rather, you start winning bigger than ever before.
Dropping the "optimization" and focusing on "marketing" means:
- Leaving the creative work to the creatives
- Continuously improving your rankings
- Driving natural results that get stronger when loop-holes are eliminated
I don't think it means what you think it means:
In 2014 I wrote about how to develop blog ideas that will ignite your SEO strategy. I think it's a great place to start, so you have a good list of topics as well as a deeper understanding of blog strategy best practices.
The more you know about blogging, the better, because you'll never again make the mistake of leaving out valuable elements such as your Search Engine Optimization Strategy. What most people know about SEO is that it's about driving more traffic to their website. Beyond that, they tend to diverge in their understanding.
In this article, we are discussing how to develop and use your blogging strategy to improve your search engine visibility, and we have it for you in 5 simple steps:
1. Develop your Keyword Strategy
Keywords are cornerstone tools for any good search engine strategy. The idea is that if your website uses certain word-strings often enough and organically, the search engines will favor you in their results when people type those words in a search query.
By blogging, you can center your articles around your top keywords, and experiment to see which are more effectively driving quality traffic to your website. If you're truly committed to achieving premium results, you'll be posting once a week at MINIMUM, which means TONS of ranking opportunities.
Your website is a different story. It's unlikely that it will be updated once a week, so when your SEO strategy doesn't include blogging, you make it difficult to increase your rankings. Since your blog can be indexed just like any other page on your site, the impact your keywords have when published are going to resonate with your entire domain.
2. Understand your Customers & Targets
What does this have to do with SEO? Simple. Google and friends care about how long people stay on your site, because, again, they want the user experience to be a good one, and what better way to measure that? If you publish content that doesn't grab their attention, you're going to lose favor with Bing and Yahoo and Google despite all of the other rules you followed.
Content is king, people.
By blogging, you can reach current and future customers, industry advocates, other authors, and other followers. Knowing their minds is important for your success, and blogging helps you learn from them just as much as they learn from you. It's a great transaction and often leads to new legitimate business opportunities.
3. Engage Your Social Following
People love blogs and they love sharing the good ones on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. While you will benefit immensely from sharing other people's content on your company's feed, because you involve yourself in already-existing conversations, nothing is better than having others share YOURS... This, in addition to curating, will lead you to new business.
But what does this have to do with SEO? Simple... Google is madly in love with Google+ - In addition, Google and friends don't want your website eating up the entire first page of any search, but by distributing finely-tuned blogs, full of your juicy ranked keywords, you create more opportunities to be found OUTSIDE of your website, where you might think where search engine optimization ends.
4. Link to your website
Search engines like to see internal links in your website, but they like external links even more. This is the place where "link-farming" started. There were SEO companies selling hundreds and thousands of links through artificial farm systems, which allowed businesses to rise in the rankings very quickly. For awhile it worked, but as of recently, with Penguin 2.0, this practice is being nullified, and if you're found attempting it, Google may even ban you..
Even though the farming doesn't work, you still want those external links. By posting quality content on your blogs, you create opportunities for other websites to share it and link to your company's page, thus solving this particular challenge.
5. Get Shared
Don't stop at blogging. You still need distribution. The best place for this is through social media, where others are already engaged in the conversation.
Keep in mind, though, that getting shared doesn't happen by broadcasting your post over and over on your own pages.
Instead, get your company involved in the conversation outside of its own profiles and website. Start group discussions on LinkedIn, join in others, embed buttons for tweeting & liking on your posts, and work for that "top influencer" status wherever possible.
This helps your SEO ranking because it keeps people on your website longer and makes it even easier for you to be found through social media.
Blog your way to Optimized bliss:
Blog well, and blog often. Google has never been so happy to see your thoughts as it is today, so your ranking is going to depend largely on what your blog is doing.
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