If you’re in the digital marketing industry, you’ve no doubt heard the term “SEO.” Whether SEO is ingrained into your wheelhouse, or you only understand the basic concept, it’s a common (and critical) buzzword in our modern-day marketing language. SEO, or search engine optimization, is a concept that analyzes your digital content, and, for lack of a better term, optimizes it for large channels, like Google.
Your biggest goal as a business in any industry is to land as close to the top of a Google search as possible. Consumers don’t want to spend a whole lot of time scrolling through the internet in search of a solution to their problem. In fact, most internet users will abandon a website if it takes over three minutes to load, and 25% of users are going to pick on the first google search result. So it’s imperative that a sound SEO strategy is implemented into your digital marketing plan.
But SEO can be convoluted and hard to navigate at times. With Google’s constantly changing algorithm that makes no attempt to be transparent, marketing professionals are often left taking a “best guess” approach to their strategies.
Luckily, there are a few key things that everyone can know to help them get started on carving out a successful SEO plan. Below are answers to some of the most common questions when it comes to search engine optimization.
What’s the Difference Between SEO and Keywords?
Keywords are one part of the entire whole of SEO. SEO analyzes several aspects of your content piece and looks for opportunities for improvement. For this example, we’ll use blog posts.
When writing a blog piece, search engine optimization tools like SemRush will help you analyze all the moving parts of your final draft. A few things that they’ll look out for include:
External Links: With every blog post, you’ll want to include at least a few external links, either from other reputable sources, or brands, companies, products, etc. that are mentioned in your piece. SEO tools will survey those links and either approve of them or suggest that you go with a stronger option.
Readability: SEO tools will analyze your writing and determine the youngest age that someone would be able to understand it. As a rule of thumb, you’ll want your content to be readable at a fifth-grade reading level. So, if you are using too much industry jargon or large words, you could be flagged and asked to simplify the writing.
Keywords: This brings us to keywords. Keywords are words that are sprinkled throughout your piece that will give you the greatest chance of ranking higher in the search engines. They are typical words that are googled by users in your industry. For example, if you run a boat shop, common keywords for your content may include “sailboat,” “Kayak,” “open waters,” or “paddles.”
How can I See What People Search for on my Website?
Several websites and SEO tools offer engagement statistics. This helps you keep up with what people are frequently clicking on and looking at, and what could use an upgrade.
The easiest way to achieve this is through utilizing the site search functionality within Google analytics. In order to do this, you’ll need Google Analytics installed.
Helpful tools like Google Search Console are also very beneficial for any business that is hoping to get more traffic to their website
Do Landing Pages Hurt your SEO?
No! In fact, landing pages can actually make it easier to analyze and track visitor actions and modify your website as needed. The idea of a landing page is to optimize the user experience when visiting a site, and it’s imperative that it captures the attention of your consumers the first time.
What’s the Best Article Length for SEO?
This completely depends on the content, platform, and industry that you are working in. Again, tools like SemRush will make suggestions on the length of the article based on the title and keywords that you submitted. In general, when referring to blog posts, a sweet spot is anywhere between 800-2,000 words. A recent study proved that an exhaustive blog post on any given topic increases the user experience and leaves your audience more satisfied and well-informed. Plus, with longer posts, you have less of a chance of keyword stuffing; which is a huge no-no in the SEO universe.