Archive for the ‘search’ Category
[The Fundamentals of SEO] - Forget about META tags and complicated back-linking campaigns for a second. The fundamentals of SEO revolve around two ingredients that lack sex appeal: proper page structure and well-written content. The successful combination of these elements will benefit your search rank more than any outsourced SEO campaign ever will.
Let’s start at the beginning…
Search engine algorithms incorporate both on-page and off-page elements. On-page elements include both page structure and content. Wait a second… if both fundamental ingredients of SEO are included in the on-page elements, then what about the off-page side of the equation (i.e. back-links)?
Well, theoretically, back-links should be a byproduct of well-written content. In other words, there shouldn’t be a need to proactively poach external links. This is of course theoretical. It is probably a good idea to scout external links from relevant sites to increase your PageRank and drive traffic.
Proper page structure basically means mandatory:
- Page titles
- META descriptions
- Header tags
- Paragraph content
- ALT tags
- Strong and emphasis tags
- Keyword-injected URLs, if possible
Well-written content is a bit more vague, but encompasses some of the following: keyword consistency, proper grammar, and logical article development.
If these two areas can be targeted, SEO success is inevitable. It has to start with the web design (i.e. proper page structure), followed by the site copy (i.e. page content). So, instead of looking at SEO from a micro point-of-view, the macro perspective may provide a better overall picture of the situation.
[The Beauty of Organic Search Results] - Yes, I just called organic search results beautiful. The reason is simple. They drive free, qualified traffic. It doesn’t get any better than that. I’m a true believer in quality content and good page structure. From a corporate perspective, too little money is being put toward SEO. Its inorganic cousin, PPC, seems to be reaping in the bulk of the marketing budget. There must be a balance though.
I am extremely biased when it comes to search engine marketing. I think that most companies tend to overlook SEO in favour of PPC, as they assume that the latter provides more immediate, visual results and a better ROI. Little do they know, a well-executed SEO campaign can also provide immediate results in as little as a few days. Obviously, the upfront cost of optimization needs to be taken into consideration, but I still believe the long-term, residual benefits of SEO to be greater than those of a short-term PPC campaign.
In other words, an SEM budget should be weighted slightly toward PPC in the beginning, but transition to SEO over time. In the end, the ROI should be excellent, as organic search should be driving the majority of traffic.