---- — You’re familiar with searching for things online. Whether a question you have, or a product you want, or for doing cost comparisons. In fact, the word “Google” has become a verb for doing an online search. You’ve likely heard this before, “just google it!” Any time a search engine like Google, Yahoo, or Bing is used, these search engines quickly present a list of relevant results from all over the web for the term you entered. These search systems continually scour the Web for new content and add new content to the mix of what could potentially come up in the search results. At the same time, they each have a method, or algorithm, that they use to weigh content and determine the importance (or rank) of Web pages, blog posts and more.
Obviously as a business, you want your company and content to come up well in search results. It’s a known fact that people click the most often on search results that are on the first page of the results shown, and nearly 70 percent of clicks are on the first six results on that page. So, it makes sense that businesses want their name, products, and services to appear in the best place possible to help them be discovered and clicked through to be visited.
An entire business industry called Search Engine Optimization was born out of this desire by businesses to be found better online. The work by businesses in this SEO field traditionally was to modify and adjust the client website code and Web page copy to help them improve in search results. Over the years, SEO techniques included things that were “Greek” to many business marketers and owners but were routine in SEO work, such as adjusting meta tags, keyword density, H1 Tags, anchor text, inbound links and more.
This type of SEO work was focused on search engines, not the searchers. Search engines today, however, never want to allow their search methods to be manipulated. They want to return the most relevant and most helpful results for those searching. So, search engines, with Google being the leader in terms of volume of searches done, continue to adjust their searching ranking algorithm. This is a good thing. It helps those searching get good results, and it combats attempts to “game the system” and instead elevate those who are delivering great content and who have gained authority in their industry. The Web is not static, and so ongoing adjustments by search engines like Google are important and necessary.
The issue is, however, that many marketers not in touch with these changes continue to want to pursue the “old” SEO methods, then wonder why they are not getting desired results. The “new SEO” for today doesn’t eliminate some of these items but it redefines them as less important and includes multiple other more primary factors that come into play.
If you want your products and company to rank well for key terms today, important factors to focus on are: unique, high quality content on your site and blog; ongoing, regular new content; on-page social media sharing opportunities; links from high-value and authoritative websites; and Google authorship integration of your key content writers for your blog. While not exhaustive, this is a foundation that is important today with the way that search engine ranking methods have evolved. Yes, unique and accurate page titles, the structure of URL’s, anchor text, and optimized images all comes into play as well, just not as the only keys to focus on.
Granted, all this noted above can seem like a lot mumbo jumbo, and it does need flushed out in much more detail than I have space for here to be thoroughly defined. If I break it down to simple basics for our space here, the goal should be to produce educational and helpful content that best attracts your “ideal visitor.” This type of visitor is the one that is recognizing they have a need or a problem that needs a solution that your company can ultimately fulfill. So if you take away nothing else, grab hold of that focus point.
The second key takeaway is that having a blog as part of your website gives you the web infrastructure you need today to fulfill these new search ranking requirements. The work is still on you or your digital marketing partner to provide the content and message in the language your user will search for but the parts needed are there. A blog allows you to easily provide regular, helpful, educational content with key images of what you have done for others. A blog setup well also offers simple ability for your company to socially share your new posts on social media networks and to allow visitors to do so also. Finally, a well created blog also allows you to take care of some of the technical aspects such as well-formed URL’s and ability to implement unique and focused page titles.
So, remember, the search game has changed, and what worked a few years ago is not going to cut it today! Start now to determine how you can produce educational and helpful content that best attracts your “ideal visitor.”
Mike Gingerich leads the Digital Marketing and Social Application divisions of Web agency, Digital Hill Multimedia (http://www.DigitalHill.com). He is a co-founder of TabSite.com, a leader in Facebook fan page tools for businesses. TabSite offers brands the power to boost Facebook marketing with contests and promotions. For more information on TabSite, please visit www.tabsite.com.