Business Marketing Class – Part 5
Search Engine Marketing Organic
Welcome to Business Marketing Class Part 5 – Search Engine Marketing Organic. This week we will be discussing steps you can take to improve your search engine performance. Topics covered will include on page SEO, off page SEO, local citations, backlinks, penalty avoidance, algorithm updates, web mastering, analytics and pros and cons.
Organic Search Engine Marketing Overview
Organic search engine marketing means that you are not paying advertising fees to get seen and clicked. In order to be successful with this it is very important that your performance is exceptional. This is because the closer you are to the top of page 1 the more likely you are to be seen and clicked.
The technique of implementing performance enhancements is often referred to as search engine optimization or SEO for short. As the phrase implies, various elements are optimized in order to move you as close as possible to the top of page 1. Successful organic search engine marketing is dependent on effective SEO.
On Page SEO
On page SEO refers to optimization that occurs on a viewable web page as well as behind the scenes in the actual coding. You can find a lot of information on the web but the real truth is that Google considers more than 200 elements when determining where you will appear in the search results. This means that we can’t really know for sure what each and every element is. In the scope of this class we will cover some of the more important items and if you would like to study a more in-depth article go and read “All About SEO.”
Keywords – Your landing page should be based on keyword research. This will allow you to focus on the best choice keywords. Past that, you need to be sure that you do include keywords when you build the page. Don’t fall for the temptation to be overly zealous which can lead to reduced performance since the search engine may view this as “keyword stuffing.” You can choose to include your keywords in things like the URL, page title, headings, content, image names, meta data, etc. You will likely have better success by keeping your pages focused on fewer keywords.
User Experience – You need to work diligently to give users the best possible experience when they visit your page. Avoid pop-ups and auto-play videos. Use friendly navigation and include links to relevant content on your site and at other websites. Include high quality graphics, info graphs, charts and videos while also making sure that your written content is high quality.
Responsive Design – Make sure that your pages display well regardless of the device being used. It may be that a user is on a smart phone, tablet, laptop, desktop or even big screen TV when visiting your site. It’s important that your site can automatically adapt to the screen size being used.
Search Engine Accessibility – It’s critical that your robots.txt file and robots meta do not block search engine crawlers from accessing the page. Additionally, you need to make sure that your server is not restricting IP addresses that belong to important search engine crawlers and the page should be included in your XML sitemap.
Off Page SEO
Off page SEO are steps that you take away from your landing page that can help it to perform better. Unfortunately, this is an often overlooked and yet very important tactic. Even the very best SEO built landing page can benefit from outside help.
Local Citations – There are many dozens of local citation engines that you can make use of and most of them are free. When done properly, this can provide backlinks as well as a source of incoming traffic. Here is a small sampling of options:
- Google My Business
- Bing Places For Business
- Dunn & Bradstreet
- Merchant Circle
Back Links – The most important thing to be aware of is to never purchase backlinks and always build them legitimately. The search engines have become very efficient at spotting suspicious backlinks and the results will not be beneficial to you. The absolute best way to get good backlinks is by writing exceptional content that others will find worthy of linking to. You can also search for content which contains broken backlinks and then reach out to the writer and ask them to consider replacing a broken link with a link to your page.
Become Authoritative – Work to become an authority on your topics. You can create an external blog at WordPress, Blogger or Tumblr and build up a reputation as an expert. You can also become involved in question & answer sites like ASK and Quora. Lastly, consider participating in online groups and communities to help make your expertise known.
Social Sharing – Here again your best approach is going to be creating very good content worthy of being shared by others. You can also share your content on your own social networks to gain additional exposure. Give yourself a helpful boost by including social sharing icons on your landing pages. This can make it easier for your content to be shared while also encouraging the same. Finally, don’t underestimate the power of social bookmarking sites like StumbleUpon, Delicious and Etsy as these can provide useful traffic.
News Releases & Content Aggregators – If you would like to reach out to a large audience quickly in the hopes of getting quality backlinks you can always do paid press releases. PR Newswire and PR Web are great options that can expose you on a large scale very quickly. It is also possible to get exposure without paying fees if you make use of content aggregators such as Scoop It and Rebel Mouse.
Being penalized can devastate and negate all of your hard work so you need to be prudent to avoid this pitfall. As mentioned before, don’t overuse your keywords and don’t participate in shady backlink building practices. Keep your site mobile friendly as Google will detract your performance fairly quickly. Don’t use tricky redirects or cloaking to try and fool search engines by serving up different web pages to visitors than what the search engine sees. Make sure that your code is free of malware and don’t link to pages that are not safe for users to visit.
Every so often the search engines do updates that are designed to improve their search results. A few commonly known ones would be Hummingbird, Penguin, Panda and Pigeon. It is good practice to keep yourself up to date in terms of pending algorithm changes. This can empower you to be prepared in advance as opposed to dropping in rank and then working on a fix after the damage has already been done.
Web Mastering & Analytics
By using free webmaster tools you can track and analyze how your keyword performance is doing. There are numerous other helpful tools such as opting for email alerts when the search engine finds a problem with your site. By using Google Webmaster tools you can test and submit XML sitemaps, monitor and test for mobile usability issues, keep an eye on crawl errors, disavow problematic links and more. Essentially, the proper use of webmaster tools will be necessary to monitor and maintain the health and performance of your site.
By making use of Google Analytics you can get a feel for how users are engaging your site. This can help you to discover low performing pages so that you can work on improving them. Also, this is a great way to see where your traffic is coming from whether it be search engines, website links, social media, etc. By exporting monthly reports and data you can easily track important statistics and compare them over an extended period of time.
Organic Search Engine Marketing Pros & Cons
- Organic clicks do not require advertising fees
- Can be very effective
- Can lower the cost if and when you opt to do paid search marketing
- Can increase your website traffic
- Most SEO implementation does not require special training
- Easy to track results
- Can be expensive if you hire it done
- Can be time consuming if you do it yourself
- Rankings may change dramatically with algorithm updates
- Some highly competitive keywords may be very difficult
- Optimization may take weeks or months before you see results
- Specific local searches may be difficult if you are not in that location
WEEK 1: INTRODUCTIONS AND OVERVIEW
Member introductions, overview of each class, marketing overview, marketing statistics, marketing trends. Go To Introductions And Overview Class
WEEK 2: KEYWORDS
Keywords defined, keywords history, types of keywords, importance of keywords, keyword research, keyword examples, keyword tools, keyword implementation. Go To Keywords Class
WEEK 3: EMAIL MARKETING
Email marketing overview, mail list generation/acquisition, legalities, best practices, pros & cons, software choices, results monitoring. Go To Email Marketing Class
WEEK 4: SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING (ORGANIC & PAID)
Social media overview, social media platforms, social media demographics, organic social media marketing, paid social media marketing, best practices, results monitoring, pros & cons. Go To Social Media Marketing Class
WEEK 5: SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING (ORGANIC)
Organic search engine marketing overview, on page seo elements, off page seo elements, local citations, backlinks, penalty avoidance, algorithm updates, webmastering, analytics, pros & cons.
WEEK 6: SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING (PAID)
Paid search engine marketing overview, search engine choices, types, account setup, account monitoring, results monitoring, non-profit grants, pros & cons. Go To Paid Search Engine Marketing Class
WEEK 7: VIDEO MARKETING
Video marketing overview, best practices, video production, video marketing channels, pros & cons. Go To Video Marketing Class
WEEK 8: TRADITIONAL MARKETING
Traditional marketing overview, print advertising, radio advertising, television advertising, direct mail marketing, billboard advertising, hosting seminars and workshops, attending trade shows, networking group participation, door to door selling, pros & cons. Go To Traditional Marketing Class