This is Part 1 of a blog series on Search Engine Marketing. This article focuses on SEO (Search Engine Optimization); Part 2 focuses on PSA (Paid Search Advertising). To read Part 2 click here.
SEM in a COVID-19 World
The transition to eCommerce is happening at breakneck speed. COVID-19 has caused consumers to switch almost exclusively to online shopping overnight. This lightspeed shift in consumer spending means having a strong, integrated search engine marketing strategy is more important than ever: but what does that actually mean in practice?
Consumers click on the top link on web searches about 33% of the time. The top five results receive about 75% of clicks. If your website doesn’t show up in the top five on web searches, you are losing business.
This is where SEM (Search Engine Marketing) comes in.
What is Search Engine Marketing?
Search Engine Marketing is a concentrated online marketing strategy that seeks to increase traffic to your website through search engines like Google.
It can be split into two parts: SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and PSA (Paid Search Advertising).
This article focuses on SEO. Part 2 of this series explains PSA.
Understanding Search Engine Optimization
SEO seeks to organically accrue visits to your website. By organic, we mean without paying for advertising.
If consumers can’t find your business online, they will spend their money elsewhere. Even though the pandemic is changing the way business is done, if you implement SEO you will increase your web traffic and help your business navigate the change.
In short, if you can execute these five SEO strategies you will be taking a strong step to ensure your business will thrive.
Five SEO strategies to know
Optimizing your website and server to better help you index your site to improve your search engine ranking. Think fixing broken links, site speed, changing HTTP links to HTTPS.
This requires optimizing specific web pages to help you get more traffic from search engines. Think keyword research.
Content: Within On-page SEO is ‘Content’ which focuses on creating specialized content on your website that directly relates to web searches relevant to your business. Content increases the likelihood consumers will visit your page, even if they aren’t seeking to purchase a product. It helps build brand awareness and rapport to support future purchasing and can sometimes cause consumers that stumble on your page to buy a product even if they weren’t looking to spend money. Think blog posts, videos, etc.
Actions that are taken “off”, or away, from your website to improve your ranking on search engines. This means boosting your website’s popularity, relevance, credibility, and authority. In practice, that means having other reputable online sources link to your website. In the eyes of search engines, it’s as if the sources are “vouching” for your credibility. Think social media exposure, backlinks, and promotions.
Targeting your audience in the same geographic area as you are. These are location-specific boosts to your online presence that help promote your business to your local community. Think location tagging, Google My Business, Yelp, etc.
Probably what you would expect: making sure all these other SEO strategies are compatible with mobile devices.
Keying in on Keyword Research
When discussing these strategies, or optimizations, it is essential to understand keywords and keyword research.
This is because keywords should be plugged into any online copy that exists related to your business (website copy, social media, blog posts, infographics, video and podcast names, captions, and descriptions – everything).
Keyword research requires you to look into the specific words and phrases that are used most when consumers search for companies in your industry. More explicitly, this means finding which of these words and phrases have high search rates, but low competition so that when they are searched, your page comes up quicker.
If you conduct sound keyword research you will boost your SEO meaning more people will see your website.
SEO in a Rapidly Changing World
The rapid shift in how consumers buy products and services due to the COVID-19 pandemic means that having a strong SEO strategy and presence is essential to the survival of companies and small businesses, especially those with a business-to-consumer business model.
How we work and connect has undergone a fundamental change. With cities on lockdown, employees sent to work from home, and public safety in question, more and more of us are turning to eCommerce to purchase goods and research services. Word of mouth marketing is a lot more difficult to achieve because people are not interacting.
Whether you are looking to save, stabilize, or grow your business, improving your online presence through SEO is essential. It helps to improve the customer experience, increase your website visibility, and drive web traffic, all while supporting your authority, edging out competition, and boosting your sales conversion rates.
Need an SEM Wizard?
If you’re looking for help with search engine marketing you’re in the right place. Whether you’d like to produce more engaging or improve your local SEO, DataDay can help you.
We specialize in helping businesses improve their online presence; you might call us SEM wizards. If you’d like to learn more about how DataDay can magically attract you more consumers and drive more business, you can schedule a free consultation below.