At this point, every successful brand has a website, which is an integral part of the company’s operations.
Search Engine Optimization, which is the best way to get people to your website, is now a crucial component for increasing traffic to your website. Most companies already know the basics of SEO: make sure your content is keyword-rich, put meta-tags and keyword-specific metadata on your site, and utilize backlinking. With the help of SEO.com, Search Engine Land, and other Search Engine web experts, I’ve compiled a list of the top 5 SEO strategies for 2011 that will help you one-up the competition.
1. Social media marketing
Twitter and Facebook are probably already important parts of your personal life, but it’s important to make sure social media sites are being used by your brand, as well. The number one focus with social media is link-building. You can keep track of the times that people are clicking on your links by using a site such as bit.ly, and make sure to post right before the time when people are most likely to check out your links. While organic searching is still important, indirect links through Facebook and Twitter are becoming more important for SEO every day. So anytime new content is added to your site, let fans and followers know!
2. Mobile Marketing
2011 – the year of the smart phone. With the launch of Verizon’s iPhone, the iPhone5 in the works, Google’s Droid, and even a 3D smart phone coming soon from Samsung, it seems that everyone is creating a newer, better smart phone. Performics is estimating that 16% of Google searches this year will be mobile, so it is time to start thinking about creating a mobile website for your company. Even if you’re not considering making a smart phone application or a mobile website, at the very least you should be tracking mobile searches so you can be aware of what portion of your audience is performing them and what they are searching for while on-the-go. The easiest way to do this is to start by using the Google Mobile Keyword tool in Adwords, which works exactly like the original Adwords keyword tool. This tool will not only tell you what people are searching, but it will help you find what percentage of searches are being performed on mobile devices, as well as on notebooks and computers.
3. Guest blogging
Everyone blogs today. Whether it’s personal, professional, or educational, just about every person has had, or contributed to, at least one blog by this point in time. So, the next step is to have “guest blogging,” a great part of SEO-building. websites like Good Housekeeping have already begun to hold “Blogger Friday”, a weekly event in which an outside blogger is featured on their website. It’s a symbiotic relationship: the blogger gains links, while the site gets fresh perspectives each week. Also, it’s an easy way to get experts from different areas of your industry to provide useful tips and insight. It’s kind of like watching your favorite television show when an A-list actor guest stars on it.
4. Local marketing searches
According to SEO.com, 90% of shoppers use Google to search for products before they leave their house. So, it’s becoming increasingly more important to target your local markets as specifically as possible. Also, help users find out information about local stores and products quicker and easier. SEO.com recommends making sure you are on Google Maps, which, according to Web Analytics World, is now used more than Mapquest for directions. If you’re not on Google Maps, you’re obsolete to your local market.
5. Speed of Webpage
Users typically won’t visit a page that takes more than seven seconds to load. Lots of graphics and animations may look cool once they’re on the screen, but often aren’t worth the wait for users, who will probably click away before it’s fully loaded. To check the speed of your site, check out free websites like Gomez.com. Then, make the necessary changes to simplify the page for your viewers in order to boost your rankings.
These suggestions are just a few of the ways to optimize your website for search engine rankings. Don’t forget the importance of keeping up with the basic SEO stuff: increase backlinks by pushing external links on your site, check out what’s trending when looking for blog topics, and use keyword-rich content. By following these tips, and keeping with the basics, you’re site should be increasing traffic in no time!