Businesses without an effective SEO strategy are saying ‘no thank you’ to thousands of potential customers – whilst their savvier competitors swoop in and take advantage.
Too many companies are treating SEO – search engine optimisation – as an optional add-on, when it should be at the heart of their approach to winning business online.
This is the opinion of the ROAR Digital Marketing Managing Director, Michael Knowles, a former Google trainer and innovator in the world of online search marketing.
Michael – who today shares his five-point SEO action plan for businesses – said: “So many companies put huge amounts of time and investment into their websites. But if they lack online visibility, that effort and resource is wasted.
“There is a misconception that SEO simply means adding keywords into your online content to boost you up the search engine rankings. Although this is a small part of it, SEO is much wider than that and encapsulates a large part of both your online visibility and your user’s experience once on your website too.
“For example, businesses will direct consumers to their website from various marketing channels but, when it takes ages to load or contains a lot of ‘spammy’ content, they bounce off that page and go elsewhere.
“A slow-loading website or one which is hard for a user to navigate will be penalised by search engines such as Google because the user experience is deemed poor and that can severely affect the business’ ranking on search engine results pages.
“To successfully attract more website traffic and in turn convert more leads into customers, businesses need to invest more time and effort into improving their SEO and their wider digital presence so they are making it as easy as possible for the user to find exactly what they’re after.”
Michael today shares the five main actions a business can take to improve their SEO and win more business online.
- Keyword utilisation – you should include important, relevant keywords within website copy and semantically related topics within your content to help people and search engines clearly understand what services or products you provide;
- Onsite performance – you should ensure that your website and content are optimised for your audience and search engines like Google through the optimisation of content, search intent, meta titles, URLs, visual aids (alt text) and internal linking;
- Speed – if your website takes too long to load, you can guarantee that the now frustrated customer will be heading somewhere else. You can improve website loading speed by optimising images, being conscious of slow-loading assets on your page, fixing technical errors, and optimising your website for mobile;
- Internal linking – adding clickable links connecting pages on your domain which mention the same topic will help keep the user on your website for longer, improve user experience, share ‘SEO juice’ between pages and help search engines better understand your content;
- Offsite optimisation – you should ensure your NAP (name, address, phone number) information is optimised correctly across third-party websites and directories such as Google Business, Bing Places For Business, or Clutch etc.
Michael said: “If a business can get these five components of SEO right, then they instantly show their audience that they are an authoritative voice within their marketplace, and it increases their chances of attracting the right customers to their site, which in turn will have a positive impact on lead generation and online sales.
“Putting all these elements in place will significantly boost your ranking within search engines too and that is crucial in gaining new customers. When you consider a reported 68% of internet users start their online session on a search engine, it is vitally important for brands to be as visible as possible.”
Michael added that the key to a successful SEO strategy is thorough research into your audience’s needs and goals, an understanding of search engine algorithms, and implementing a robust optimisation strategy to improve online visibility.
“It is possible to make an impact by following my five tips, and using the likes of Google or an AI assistant to understand the nuances of each area if you are struggling.
“Or you can focus on what you do best – and call in an expert to lead the way.”
ROAR Digital Marketing works with clients in the UK and Europe to help them get found online and turn clicks into customers through SEO, PPC, and Analytics.