What Is SEO and Why Is It Important?
So what is this thing they call SEO and why does it matter? For your company’s website, it matters. It matters a lot. Careers are launched around it. Certifications gathered in it. Sites are developed to maximize it. Okay, it’s not saving lives, but it’s pretty important. And as a marketing specialist, I know just enough about SEO to make me dangerous… I mean helpful. For our purposes, I’ll explain how it impacts our company site and what we’ve done to maximize SEO on our WordPress site.
SEO stands for search engine optimization: the process by which a website is prepared or affected for visibility in organic search results as opposed to paid search results. Back in the day, key words were hidden within the site’s code and captured by search engines, thereby enabling your site to rank higher in search results. Today, those same keywords aren’t hidden, but almost exploited. And with today’s incredible web volume and the importance of visibility in marketing, SEO has become more significant than ever.
Choose your keywords carefully
Your keywords, or the words that a potential client would use to search for your business, and keyword research are crucial to creating a good SEO plan. Too few, and your site won’t show up in in the first page or two of a search. Too many, and you’re attracting unqualified leads. Your keywords should appear in your page titles, headlines and copy. But that’s not all. The rules and guidelines to obtain the correct balance is mind boggling. Employing a trained SEO expert in your initial site set up, as we did at Custom Systems through SemDrive will give your site a huge advantage. Our SEO expert implemented a plan and optimized our site, page-by page. Maintaining our SEO utilizing a WordPress plugin like “WordPress SEO” takes the guess work out of proper and improper key word use and placement. The plugin gives each page a red, yellow, or green light to indicate the success of that page’s content. It also makes recommendations on where to add key words to improve SEO.
Wait and see
SEO doesn’t happen overnight. Once the WordPress SEO plugin gives each page an SEO green light, you won’t see an immediate bump in traffic. It can take up to three weeks for your site changes to catch up to Google and Bing. Once this happens, hopefully you’ll see an increase in traffic or even an increase in blog spam. Both are good, and show you that your plan is working. Eliminating that spam through a WordPress plugin is another story, for another blog post.
It doesn’t end here
SEO is a moving target and should be monitored constantly. I review our SEO strategy and analytics monthly. I rely heavily on my WordPress dashboard and plugin to help me to update and tweak keywords, SEO titles, meta descriptions and page content. I also use Google Analytics to track and capture the success of our program.
While seeing those improved numbers in your analytics is pretty cool, real-life confirmation is even better. I recently spoke to someone, now a client, who told me that we must be exactly who his company needed because every time he searched for their necessary IT solution, there we were. That’s when you know your SEO is working.
I’d love to hear more about your SEO strategy. What’s worked for you and what have you found to be most challenging?
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