What exactly is SEO?
SEO is the heart of all forms of Internet marketing. Without a good SEO strategy, a website simply cannot be found. SEO is a much-used abbreviation that stands for 'Search Engine Optimisation'. In other words, search engine optimisation in Dutch. The importance of SEO marketing should simply not be overlooked. If you think about using SEO too late, it will have many adverse effects in the long run. Therefore, do not just start building a quality website, but also think about how you are going to apply SEO. This should be the guiding principle in your ultimate online marketing strategy and its success.
Even before you build a website, it is therefore important to think about a few things and do a thorough SEO research. Here, you list the following things for yourself:
- Who is your target group? For whom do you create content? What does this group look like? Who values the products you sell or the services you provide? Only by getting to know your target group well, you can also discover how you can best be found in search engines.
- Once you know your target group well, it is also important to find out exactly how they search. Which search results apply to your company? What is often searched for and can you apply these keywords yourself?
- It is also wise to learn from competitors. Use a keyword that is often searched for and see which websites are on top. What do you notice about the content delivered on these sites? Why do you think the target audience prefers this content over others? And why did Google give these sites a higher score in the Google Ranking?
SEO marketing has been around for a long time and continues to change. Precisely because of this, many mistakes are made. The biggest mistake you can make is not staying up-to-date with the latest SEO trends. In the beginning, for example, it was enough to simply fill your site with keywords. But the most important thing was lost from sight: the user experience. How nice is it to read content that is packed with keywords, while real information is missing? That is why Google has adjusted its algorithm over the years so that quality is paramount. Only qualitative and valuable content can rank high.
Therefore, when using SEO strategies, quality and user experience must be the main focus. Do not sprinkle online content with a few keywords, but do thorough research on the keywords that work for your company and use them to give content to your site. The keywords are only a small part of the entire marketing strategy. The customer experience remains the most important.
In addition, make sure that SEO research has already been carried out before the site is built. In this way, the site can be built entirely according to your wishes and SEO optimised. If you only do research after the site has gone online, this often means that a lot of efficiency has been lost. An online marketer will therefore have to make the necessary adjustments. That costs time and money. Something you could have invested in your company in a different way. Avoid duplication of work and immediately know how to set up your site. That will save you a lot of time and money in the long run.
Do not expect miracles
Now that you know the meaning of SEO marketing, you may think that obtaining a higher position in Google is within reach. But make no mistake. It takes a lot of time to be seen by Google. The real results of your marketing strategy are therefore certainly not immediately visible. Sometimes it takes months before you can really reap the benefits of this campaign. Therefore, do not expect miracles right away, but be patient.
In the meantime, an online marketer can measure the results and show that you are actually heading in the right direction. Be aware that SEO marketing - although it may take longer to see results - can also deliver lasting results. Provided it is properly maintained, of course. In the long term, you will reap the rewards of this. A little patience is therefore in order, right?
An effective SEO campaign requires a long haul. This does not happen overnight. Compare it to a diet. There are crash diets that enable you to lose kilos in no time at all, but your body often punishes you. You feel less fit, suffer from a general malaise and you soon start to binge. What's more, all that weight you have lost will quickly be regained if you adopt a 'normal' eating pattern. It is therefore better to adopt a different pattern and gradually work towards your goal. No kilos per week, but build up slowly. Only then will you benefit from a good result in the long run. This also applies to SEO.
Different SEO techniques
There are various ways in which the SEO of a website can be tackled. Usually, a combination of these techniques is used for optimal effectiveness. However, not all techniques work equally well for every company. Therefore, an SEO marketer will first make a plan of approach and determine the strategy. By measuring the results, the strategy can then be further adjusted. Below are the most common SEO techniques:
Link building is currently one of the most popular and yet most effective forms of SEO marketing. Link building involves collecting links to your website. The more links, the higher the quality of your website is considered by Google.
Over the years, Google has started to value quality content more and more. To improve the user experience, it is necessary to place only valuable content on the first pages. Google's algorithms are therefore designed to place authoritative websites higher and to filter out spam and valuable content.
Google's robots do this as follows: they look for websites that are often linked to via other websites. If there are references to a certain website, Google believes that this site contains valuable information and it will also rank higher in the Google ranking. This may sound simple, but there are a few things to keep in mind:
- When it comes to link building, we quickly say: the more links, the better. However, this is not always the case. It is also about the quality of the links. It makes no sense to buy a lot of backlinks that are placed haphazardly. They really have to add something to the content that is displayed on the other site. Placing a backlink to a key maker with an article about online marketing has little use. If you place it with a website for living, it will be a lot more effective. In short, the link must be relevant to the article and actually add something to the search intention of the visitor.
- It is not only about the quality of the content, but also about the website on which the backlinks are placed. It is good to place backlinks at websites that already have an authority position. When valuable websites place links to your webpage, this will guarantee better organic growth. For example, is your website mentioned in a frequently read article on Google? This will have more effect than when it is placed on a relatively new and therefore less known site.
- For an effective link building campaign, it is important to find the right balance between quality and quantity. If this does not happen, you run the risk that the backlinks are considered as spam and that your previously obtained higher ranking by Google is nullified. Therefore, it is all about timing, relevance and proper use of link building. Only then will you soon reap the benefits of this marketing strategy.
For the application of link building, it is wise to use an SEO marketer. They usually have a lot of contacts, which makes it easier for them to collect the right links and to place them (or have them placed) on authoritative websites. This way you know for sure that it is done in the right way.
Copywriters have a huge influence on the SEO of websites. Without good content, a website cannot exist and will not be found. Investing time in writing valuable content is therefore of vital importance. Not only is it necessary for a company to continue to exist, but also to give visitors a better experience. Giving them the information they need and at the same time guaranteeing your position in Google.
When writing content, we first look at the target group. What would they like to read? What information is of real use to them? By making a keyword analysis, copywriters are able to give content to a website and hit the right keywords. This is not only about using keywords with a high ranking as much as possible, but also about writing catchy and easy-to-read texts.
When improving SEO, we look at the so-called SEO triangle. This consists of three pillars: content, technology and authority. Technical SEO is the foundation of every marketing strategy.
Compare it to an existing shop. If it does everything in its power to attract customers, it can be expected to attract more visitors. But the work is not done there. What will these potential customers find in the shop next? What about the customer-friendliness? The way the store communicates? The diversity of the offer? Are there empty shelves? And how quickly are these customers helped? All this plays a decisive role in how a customer reacts. If the shop itself is disappointing, it may attract visitors, but they will also quickly close the door again. This also applies to an e-commerce shop.
There is nothing more annoying than a website where loading times are too long and where the indexing is a big mess. If a website does not offer a good user experience, this will cost you customers. People will click back and choose another website within the search results. A shame, because this simply costs you customers and therefore turnover. Technical SEO is therefore extremely important. It lays the foundation for a good SEO campaign. The right technical SEO makes it easier for you to score a good ranking in Google.
Be aware that Google does not only look at the way in which a website provides relevant information. It also looks at how long visitors spend on average on a website. When they notice that a website is clicked on, but then quickly left again, this will indicate that the website was not as qualitative and interesting as expected. This lowers your position within Google.
SEO at home and abroad
This SEO strategy is not suitable for every company. It was created for companies that work on a larger scale. A shoe shop in a village has less interest in this. However, when you run a large webshop for domestic and international purposes, it does. With SEO on an international scale, you ensure that you score on search results that also apply abroad. This may mean, for example, that English content must also be shared in order to increase your reach.
SEO marketers work with all kinds of content creators. Some are specialised in foreign content. They can help ensure that your website not only scores well locally, but also gets a good spot in the search results abroad. This way, you generate a lot more visitors and you can build your business abroad.
Besides all kinds of different marketing strategies, it is also important to know what the results are. Whether they are disappointing and what you can do to improve them. Are you curious what an SEO company can do or how you can get the most out of your website? Then it is good to have an SEO check carried out by an online marketing agency. This makes it much clearer what you can still achieve, how you should approach it and to what extent it will have an effect.
The biggest advantage of SEO is that it provides measurable results. This is in contrast to offline marketing, for example, where it is always a guess as to whether it has actually delivered anything. In this way, you discover exactly which strategies have had an effect and which have not. This makes it possible to adjust the strategy early on and you never unnecessarily waste a large part of your marketing budget.
Understanding the Google algorithms
All of these SEO techniques can only have a positive effect if they are judged positively by Google's algorithm. You want to prevent Google from seeing a pattern and thus lowering your website's ranking. Therefore, it is good not only to understand the algorithms, but also to know how to deal with them.
Unfortunately, we can say that not every algorithm can be understood. Even SEO marketers - specialists with years of experience - sometimes have difficulty understanding everything. The fact is that Google has more than 600 algorithms. Many of them are known, but there are also plenty of algorithms that are not known to the public. Necessary to ensure the user experience of Google.
Fortunately, you do not have to do this alone. By trying out different strategies and counting on the help of specialists, you can generate better findability step by step.