Analysis is easy. A lot of SEO companies will try to sell you an SEO Audit – which is kind of ridiculous. There is not a ton of value in an SEO Audit. If you see lazy SEO companies making it seem like the value they provide is:
- Website structure analysis
- Website content analysis
- Off-page SEO analysis (backlinks)
- Even optimization of code and structure
- Optimization of on-page content
- and optimization of off-page factors
These things are well enough, BUT they are offering a very incomplete set of services. It’s important that your SEO company isn’t just an ‘analysis’ or even just an ‘optimization’ service – it’s important in this day and age that an SEO company also does:
- Keyword strategy
- Keyword research
- Competitive analysis
- ACTUAL writing for your company on a regular basis to increase the ‘surface area’ of the top of your sales funnel.
- Earning backlinks on a regular basis back to your website from other websites around the web.
In the simplest possible terms possible…
What does an SEO company do?
An SEO company means an organization that does ‘Search Engine Optimization.’ At the basic level, this may include, tweaks and changes to your website to help it show up for more things on Google and to move up the search results pages for terms that make your company money. Truly effective SEO companies help strategy content, earn backlinks from other sites back to your site, and make on-page, page-speed, and technical changes on an ongoing basis that help get companies more sales.
- Keyword Strategy
- Technical SEO
- On-page SEO
- Content Writing
- Monitoring Analytics
What is Keyword Strategy?
Keyword strategy is when you look for things people are searching on Google, and then cater your website’s pages to those people, or better target your existing pages to show up for those searches.
- Keyword finding tools include Google’s keyword planner, Ahrefs and SEMRush.
- Ideally, you can look at competitor’s sites and find good keywords that you might want to rank for.
- Going after different keywords includes writing new blog posts and landing pages, and tweaking existing content to better serve the people searching for things you rank for, but want to rank for more.
What is Technical SEO?
Technical SEO means, making sure the structure of your site is conducive for easy crawlability when Google (and other’s) automated systems visit your website. A couple of key areas of improvement for most people include:
- De-indexing thin and duplicate content (hiding pages with very small amounts of content on them – as this can negatively affect your site’s ranking.)
- Improving the website’s page speed.
- Ensuring that the structure of the website is clean and well organized (intuitive navigation and sub-categories that are useful for both visitors and search engines to understand the topic clusters of the site.)
- Ensuring you have a Robots.txt and Sitemap.xml to map out the general important pages and ask Google to ignore others.
What is On-page SEO?
On-pages SEO means making improvements to particular pages in an effort to get those pages higher on search results for a certain sub-set of keyword phrases. On-page SEO is sometimes considered to be a subset of Technical SEO and vice versa, but a few big wins you can get from on-page SEO center around these activities.
- Making sure you are making the meta-titles and descriptions for the page are keyword-rich and putting the money-making keyword towards the beginning of the meta title.
- Ensuring the keyword phrases and topics are mentioned throughout the page, and synonyms and related topics are discussed with fulfilling the searcher’s intent being the number one guiding principle.
- The H1, subheadings, bolded sentences, and the first and last paragraph are good places to start if you’re not used to using keyword phrases – it may feel a bit awkward but soon you’ll be better at blending them with natural language.
- Using alt text, and the keyword in file names-like-this.jpg
- Ensuring people stay on the page longer by adding compelling images towards the top, provocative questions or challenging the reader, offering bullet points and making sure a page is easy to scan, and adding video where appropriate.
- The #1 important principle here – is that if you can help people stay on the page longer, it will help your ranking.
What is Content Writing, and why is it important to SEO?
Your content on your site is the #2 thing you can do for your website’s SEO, and SEO companies often will help you continue to build out your website’s content through blog posts or landing pages. If you are not able to let go of the reigns with content, you ideally then would allocate effort internally to writing ‘subject matter expert’ oriented content on a regular basis – a couple keys to success:
- Ideally, there is a new blog or landing page once a week – at least for small businesses.
- Content needs to have a strong keyword target as much as possible, but you may answer questions you get a lot in your sales process as well.
- Of course, there are other reasons for content marketing, including social sharing, employee engagement, sales questions and helping existing clients – but if the piece of content doesn’t have another ‘distribution strategy’ then there needs to be a keyword target.
- Content helps your site rank on Google because it’s seen as ‘fresh’ but each piece also offers another possible entry point to the site, and to serve ideal customer prospects.
- Ensure each piece of content is over 700 words for the best results.
What are backlinks and why are they crucial for getting higher on Google?
Backlinks are like ‘votes for your website’, and if your site has none pointing to you, then you might find your efforts to rank on Google extremely difficult. SEO companies can help with this, by:
- Writing for other websites on your behalf
- Submitting your site to directories
- Distributing press releases for SEO purposes
- A vast number of other ways to get backlinks.
- Quality matters much more than quality when it comes to backlinks (you can find which links are quality by looking at their DR on Ahrefs, or using a tool called Mozbar to asses a similar, though less accurate, metric called DA or ‘Domain Authority.)
- Do not waste time on scammy, low-quality links that are cheap but do absolutely nothing, the important part is that the links come from websites that Google’s algorithm actually respects.
What does ‘Monitoring Analytics’ mean and why is it important for SEO?
Monitoring analytics is really important for any business trying to take their online/digital marketing efforts to the next level. It answers these important questions:
- Do you have more website traffic than this time last year?
- Where is your website traffic coming from?
- Are you making changes to your website based on the insights your seeing on Google Analytics?
- Are you looking at Google Search Console and finding what’s working currently / what’s on the cusp of working soon if you step up your game?
Analytics is just one part of the overall SEO pie, but if you’re not looking at Google Analytics regularly – you need a partner that understands them and can help you put the insights to good use.
As always though – don’t get fooled by an SEO company that just gives you report after report, audit after audit – without telling you the nuts and bolts things they are doing in these 3 all-important areas EVERY MONTH! (Hint: they require real work, not just seo audits and technical analysis.)
- Fresh content
- Backlinks from other sites back to yours
- Technical and on-page improvements.
Wrapping up – when do you know if you need an SEO company?
You need an SEO company if you have done a good amount of SEO for yourself, see the money opportunity – and could make more money running your company, or spending time on working with your team instead of trying to learn a whole new specialty.
Our SEO Experts are here for you – if you believe getting higher on Google could make you a lot of money.
The first step – is a free SEO Analysis and it’s as easy as dropping your website into our tool, to see if you have SEO opportunities. You can, of course, study up on SEO (we even have a free SEO basics guide), and then feel free to reach out to us if you need SEO specialists!