Audette explained during the session that SEO is not about keywords and rankings, its about understanding your target market and positioning your website to be there when they’re searching for you. And its understanding the real ROI of various SEO tactics and strategies.
SEO allows merchants to target a person and find them. It is about people, according to Audette, who spoke alongside Edward Boyle, interactive marketing manager for Urban Outfitters.
The two speakers offered these 10 Tips on Tried and True SEO Tactics:
Internal Education – Lean on your agency. Allow for SEO to become part of conversation. Educate your agency, over-communicate making sure everyone is on your team. You’ll want to use visuals to drive inspiration to the customer.
Expect Compromise – Recommendations for SEO that are not implemented are lost and forgotten. Take off the blinders and be flexible. There needs to be compromise on both sides. Don’t be a ‘one size fits all’ agency, according to Audette.
Dedicate Resources – Lack of implementation is the number one cause of SEO failure. From a brand perspective, don’t expect performance without getting stuff done and from an agency perspective, be a project manager.
Create Advocates – From senior leadership, from the development team; (outside SEO team is best) it helps ranking arguments.
Stand Up – With SEO there are no quick fixes. Know when to push back. Audette says everybody is looking to you as a leader of SEO.
Prove ROI – You have data, quantify it. Show some type of results, look at traffic and sales. Ultimately organic traffic and revenue is what you want to be tracking on an organic level, use technology.
Google+ Matters – Invest in a Google+ brand page and tweak to make it unique to your brand. There are ways to understand the value of Google+ long-term. Google+ integrates with Google search. Google+ will show you who you are and who you are connected to.
Cure (not provided) – There is a cure to the “not provided.” One-third of Google search queries are hidden. The cure is that “not provided” information is readily available by using Google Web Master tools. Audette recommends using Google Analytics. Merchants need to know the “not provided” information is still available. Also, when using Google Analytics, look at it once a month.
Change Your Philosophy – Think about SEO in a new way. Focus on people not on search engines. There are several misconceptions about SEO:
- Misconception 1 – Focus on the algorithms. Remedy – focus on the user first, last and always. Focus on the value.
- Misconception 2 – Focus on the keywords. Remedy – Understand your market segment and understand who you are trying to target and pulling it in via a search engine.
- Misconception 3 – Focus on rankings. Remedy – Know what metrics matter. Often rankings don’t matter.
Content Strategy – Create a great experience online with good content. Feed the content into your own information architecture.