Getting your business in front of the right customers is the key to business success. Search engine optimization, or SEO, is one of the most reliable ways to achieve this. With people performing over six billion searches each day, and visitors from search said to be closer to the purchase cycle than visitors from other sources, one would wonder what — if anything — could really go wrong with organic search marketing.
However, not every SEO campaign is created equal. While some marketers see high performing numbers from their organic search campaigns, which includes lead acquisitions and closing actual sales, others only report frustrating and fruitless results that make SEO feel like a waste of effort.
If you’ve invested in driving traffic to your business through organic search optimization but have not been getting tangible results, you could actually be undermining your SEO efforts. If this is the case, you want to watch out for possible areas in your marketing efforts that could end up turning your search marketing strategy ineffective.
The following four are some you should watch out for.
1. You don’t measure tangible metrics.
We measure SEO efforts and results for a reason.
Insights and data collected from measuring the right metrics will give you knowledge of where to make necessary changes in your strategy, and learn how your efforts are performing against your expectations. But this will only happen if you’re measuring the right metrics.
Most marketers still fall into the very tricky trap of measuring intangible metrics like page rank, website visits and other metrics such as Domain Authority. Don’t get me wrong, while all these are great metrics to track, and are indications that your campaign is progressing towards its goal, they don’t necessarily translate into sales or cash.
Instead, you should be focusing on tangible factors like conversion rate optimization (CRO), traffic performance and visitors area of concentration. These factors will provide insight into what actionable steps you can take to generate and close more leads.
For example, reporting that your SEO efforts resulted in 1000 unique visitors will not make as much impact as identifying what actions the people that come from a particular keyword referral take before bouncing off.
2. Your content disappoints your visitors.
Experts have claimed that creating great content is not enough for successful SEO. While this holds true, the fact remains that content is the backbone of SEO and the reason is simply because your visitors are seeking value.
You should deviate from just creating content to fill the void to actually creating content that enriches the lives of your users. While what classifies exceptionally great content might be harder to prove than it sounds, content leaders actually experience better business growth.
The next time you’re wondering why your SEO is not performing well, maybe you should take a close look at your content strategy.
3. You’re practicing stale SEO tactics.
You should think beyond placing priority on keyword score and focus on content that actually rewards your visitors for their time. Gone are the days when backlink counts and keyword scores are the bread and butter of organic search success.
With Google introducing artificial intelligence into its website ranking algorithm, its spiders are now smarter, so there’s no need to cut corners by gaming the system. Only real content will get ranked and poor quality websites — regardless of the number of backlinks — will struggle to make it to the first page.
4. Your audience doesn’t come first.
Putting the audience first in your SEO strategy alone can help you overcome the most common SEO traps. According to Jeff Bickley, CEO of Brown Box Branding, you should dedicate as much as 30 percent of your SEO efforts into understanding your audience.
While this might seem like a lot, there might be no way around it. Jeff says, “conducting surveys and research into the demographics of your audience should not be limited to social media marketing. For successful SEO campaigns, marketers must include learning about the needs of their audience as a strategy. This should be the foundation on which the rest of the campaign is built.”
By learning to focus your content on your audience, experiencing more exposure in related search results then becomes possible.