New Orleans Digital Marketing Tips
All websites want to rank to well in Google as this means a huge increase in organic search traffic. They employ various different methods – from white hat to black hat search engine optimization (SEO), but everything they do is based on carrying out thorough research on keywords. Naturally, this important step must be undertaken before the campaign commences as later on it will be prohibitively expensive to change the company SEO focus.
The SEO keyword identification can be implemented either for a brand new website soon to be launched or for an existing website (although beware that Google has probably indexed the latter and attributed some ranking to it). For new sites, it is necessary to identify the main function of the website – be it attracting customers, promoting the company, or functioning as an e-store, and the corresponding landing pages for these functions. For example, you could have a landing page for the e-commerce store, one for your catalogue and product description side, and one for helpful instruction and industry-related information. A similar procedure could be used for an existing website, with the exception that Google usually picks up the more important pages. Therefore, using the “site:” operator will show how the search engine ranks your existing pages1.
Having identified what you need to rank for, you should focus on the ways to gain ranking, a.k.a. the keywords. These broadly fall into two categories – short-tail (car, truck tires) and long-tail (marital attorney advice New York), with a related trade-off. The more precise the query, the better the conversion rates, with correspondingly lower traffic. Quite a few short-tails have long been dominated by well-established domains – the percentage of unique sub-domains in SERPS has fallen to 54%2. It is therefore advisable for new websites to go for longer (3+) keywords.
Although brainstorming can produce quite a few ingenious ways, these should always be put to the test using Google’s Keyword tool3. It’s fantastic functionality enables users to analyze search traffic for different keywords and identify those with low or medium competition. Consider attracting a certain percentage from 5% to 40%4 (our own article on the subject) of the total search volume to see if fighting for the keyword is worth it. Naturally, you should consider the suggestions by the Keyword Tool as these can be invaluable. Remove any keywords where the cost of a SEO campaign outweighs the benefits from ranking higher with it.
The next step is to utilize the search engine and tools like SEOQuake5 and research competitors. You should pay particular attention to the top five websites listed for each query as that is where you should aim to be. Note where there are opportunities, for example, where the results seem irrelevant to the query or you believe that your information will be useful to users. Look for black hat SEO tricks as these can be reported to Google and easily removed from SERPs (thus reducing the competition). At this point you should have shortlisted quite a few keywords where you will want to compete.
The final step is to research your direct competitors – the websites with whom you will be going head to head for that precious visitor. Pay attention to their overall design, layout, and color scheme and try to notice recurring patterns – perhaps there is a generally accepted page layout with which most customers are familiar. Note down the website strengths (as a measure for your website building progress) and their weaknesses (as ideas for your competitive advantage). Consider even establishing relations with them if you believe that you will be able to offer them something of value (and they to you as well).