I get asked all the time by webmasters and business owners about SEO, specifically: what they should be doing to improve their sites ranking positions/traffic/conversions etc…
Until quite recently I would spend a long time talking them through the various ins and outs of SEO, from the importance of getting the technical SEO stuff sorted to improving their link profiles.
What I realised, though, is that these webmasters/business owners were actually wasting time asking someone else a question.
What they should have been doing is asking themselves this simple question:
What makes my website/business the best option for searchers in my industry?
If you don’t have an answer for that question, then you’re better off not investing any time or money into SEO until you can answer it.
The good news is that, depending on whatever industry you’re in, there can be multiple answers to that question.
You could be the best because of the great customer service you offer.
Maybe you focus on low prices to make your site more attractive to searchers.
Perhaps it’s the great free resources on your site that makes you the best option.
The reason that question is important to SEO is because we know Google wants to rank the ‘best’ sites for users. That’s the direct motivation behind all of Google’s algorithm updates.
So it stands to reason that the absolute best way you can improve your presence in Google is to be perceived as ‘the best’ in some way.
My approach to SEO is to answer that question and then base the entire campaign around it.
The answer is going to be the reason other webmasters link to you.
It’s the reason customers will sign up to your newsletter.
It’s the reason people comment on your blog posts.
It’s the reason they share your updates across social media.
Basically, it’s the reason you will be able to gradually build those all-important ‘brand signals’ Google loves so much!
Do I have to be the ‘best’?
That’s the common response to this approach, and the answer is simple: no.
The ‘best’ is a subjective concept anyway. What you should be doing is aspiring to be the best.
Let’s look at an example.
Say I’m running an ecommerce store for musical instruments and what makes our business the best option for searchers is the free guides we give away about the instruments we sell.
We put a lot of work into creating these guides – like ‘how to tune a guitar’ or ‘beginners guide to playing the trombone’.
These guides are what makes us stand out, and by leveraging them we can create lots of brand signals: customers share them on Facebook and Twitter and even contribute to them via the comments section, they sign up to receive updated guides via email and, most importantly, they attract links from related sites.
So now we have a basis for our SEO campaign – create a long-term strategy focused on writing and distributing these guides for maximum effect: links, brand awareness, social activity etc…
So you can see how powerful that question can be.
The answer can form the basis of a ‘Google-proof’ SEO strategy that provides lasting benefits.
If you need help with any aspect of SEO, get in touch with Uplift today: