Every company that has an online presence needs SEO. That’s not an understatement.
Don’t believe us? Consider these statistics:
- Over 40% of revenue is captured by organic search traffic.
- More than 73 billion phone calls are generated from mobile searches on a yearly basis.
- Organic listings receive 90% of clicks.
- The sites listed on Google’s first page of results generate an average traffic share of 91.5%.
- When it comes to local SEO, 88% of customers who perform a local search on their smartphone or mobile device call or visit a nearby store within one day.
We could go on. The point is, SEO is a fundamental component of a competitive marketing strategy. Either you beef up your content’s SEO muscles on a regular basis, or you quickly fall behind. This is true whether you run a local Philadelphia business that needs a branding overhaul, or are aiming for a nationwide first page ranking on Google.
Of course, you’ll need SEO experts to help you get where you want to be. This article will discuss 3 basic tenets of SEO, and which attributes you should look for in a digital marketing agency.
How SEO Works
SEO has a lot of moving parts, and it would take hours and hours to take an in-depth look at each component. However, we’ll briefly talk about 3 major factors that drive the SEO process: namely, relevance, authority, and performance.
Search engine optimization is aptly named. After all, one of its primary objectives is to make a website’s content more “appealing” to Google (and other search engines as well). Relevance is one of the most important ways to accomplish this goal.
How does a website become relevant (or more relevant) to user searches? Google’s complex algorithm looks for key words or phrases that match up with a user’s perceived intent. Basically, the more specific the keywords, the easier it is for Google to cull relevant results from a multitude of options. For example, if you type in “Lexus RX 350,” you’ll receive a very specific, very relevant list of websites; if you type in “fast car,” odds are you’ll see Tracy Chapman come up as the top result.
Of course, the trick is to be as relevant as possible without losing the more generic, yet potentially profitable, search traffic. It’s a fine line to walk; however, with digital marketing experts leading the way, it can be done.
Relevance tells Google that your website’s content aligns with the searcher’s intent. Authority tells Google that your content delivers real value to visitors. How can you increase your site’s authority with regards to SEO?
Actually, the answer is very simple: publish exceptional content. That’s it! Of course, that’s easier said than done; nevertheless, well-written, informative, and entertaining articles not only enhance your reputation among your readers, but they also increase the likelihood that other sites will link back to your page as an authority.
Think of it this way: each backlink to a piece of content on your site is like a vote: a vote of confidence for the quality and value of your site. As you continue to collect these votes, Google will take notice. In turn, your website will rise in Google’s SERP rankings.
Finally, we come to the technical side of things. Website performance is a huge deal for SEO purposes. If your site is not HTTPS secure, has slow load times, or does not contain up to date Schema markup data, then Google may penalize you with a lower ranking. This is why professionally designed websites are such a commodity in today’s marketplace: they can give you a small but significant edge over the competition.
If your SEO team lets these 3 principles guide them in their decision making, then sooner or later you will inevitably see good results from their efforts.
What You Should Look For in a Digital Marketing Agency
If you’re not an expert in SEO, then you’ll need some assistance to round your digital marketing strategy into peak shape. What should you look for in a marketing agency? Here are 5 factors to consider:
- Expertise. Obviously, you want the agency you partner with to have the necessary skills and experience to take your digital presence to the next level. This not only includes traditional SEO expertise, but also proficiency with PPC, local SEO, copywriting, web design, and other essential marketing tools.
- Thought leadership. Is the agency at the forefront of new marketing technologies and methodologies? Does the company share its insights in the form of blog posts, white papers, and other mediums? You want your marketing partners to be forward thinking and adaptable in the face of unexpected change.
- Aligned behaviors. The last thing you want to do is enter into a business relationship with an agency that wants to do things their way, and only their way. Is the agency simply looking for another paycheck, or do they really want to collaborate with you to grow your business? Metrics-oriented agencies give you what you pay for; growth-oriented agencies give you their best.
- Company culture. Does the agency’s culture resonate with you? Do their values align with your company’s values? Culture fit may be intangible, but it is vital for a sustainable business partnership.
- Insight. You want your digital marketing agency to truly understand your company’s current position, your short and long-term business goals, and the type of customers you want to attract. Instead of focusing on a quick tactical fix, an insightful marketing agency will take the time to discern your company’s big picture needs and aspirations, and then develop a strategy to meet those objectives.
At Punch Garage, we provide highly customized and effective marketing solutions to our clients. Whether you are targeting local Philadelphia residents or have national, even global ambitions, we can work alongside you to reach your goals and grow your business.
If you’d like to learn more about our SEO expertise or other services we offer, connect with us today.