Organic, once thought to refer only to natural foods, is now king of the hill when it comes to online searches. Since search engines are always renewing their algorithms, SEO or search engine optimization has become a key player. Add to that the fact that SEO has changed over the years. What was effective a few years ago is likely now obsolete and not as effective as it used to be.
What’s Key Today?
Voice searches are growing in popularity. Website content with more succinct keyword phrases will be even more important for companies wishing to stay on top of these searches. Similarly, besides updating page content, companies must be sure to reflect the same changes in header tags and titles. This will help keep up strong ranking indicators.
On-page optimization along with SEO structured data are even more useful today to deliver a search engine results page or SERPS that today must compete with paid ads. Even being number one in a search sometimes doesn’t work when ads preempt them. Companies that can get in the snippets section above the ads will generate more hits.
Keep in mind that being first in a search is one thing. Delivering what the customer is seeking, whether it’s a product or service, is another. When a prospect is taken to a link and clicks on it, they expect to be taken to the content they’re looking for. Otherwise, they’ll go on to another site.
More to Consider
Web speed today is even more important than before, especially to search engines like Google. The longer it takes to load a page is not only discouraging to a potential customer, the more likely that many will eave and visit a new and faster site.
Despite what some are saying, meta descriptions are still important and necessary. This is the content under a site’s title. If someone searching doesn’t see something under the title relating to their search, they are likely to click and move on to another site that displays the content they’re seeking.
Get rid of duplicate content. If needed, invest in a tool that identifies duplicate content. Google and many other search engines overlook duplicate content, which won’t help rankings at all.
Before the age of SEO, beautiful images could stand alone and were wonderful. Search engines crawl images to deliver results but can’t tell the difference between a diet cola and a regular one. Alt test or alternative test is what identifies both and enables search engines that crawl images to distinguish between the two. An added benefit is that alt tests also enable screen readers to read the description for visually-impaired users.
Digital Marketers must continue to observe and examine changes in the marketplace by search engines like Google. This will enable them to adapt as quickly as the marketplace.
They’ll also need to be mindful that what worked a year or two ago may not be effective tomorrow. Change is occurring so rapidly and adjusting sooner than later is critical to a marketer’s success.
Most important of all, marketers must remove any existing silos. To be successful and competitive, teams, particularly those in large companies or those based in different locations, need to have a cross-channel approach. This includes those working on paid and social media, influencer marketing, the website, content marketing and other programs.