Before starting an SEO program or SEO campaign it is absolutely critical to have an SEO Strategy. It is tempting and easy enough to “go get some SEO” for your website, but without a strategy and plan you could be wasting your money and getting very little results.
The technical or implementation side of SEO technical and tactical. If you call an SEO company and ask them to optimize X keywords or Y pages on your website they can do that for you. The question is, will that work deliver what you want and do you have them doing the right thing. Starting an SEO program without a strategy is like asking a carpenter to build you a house without any plans or blueprints. The carpenter may indeed build you a house, but it is unlikely it will be what you wanted.
The objective in developing an SEO strategy is to clearly define your goals, where you are now, your present competitive position, what and how you will measure success, and how you are going to get there. Below are our 7 Steps to Creating an SEO Strategy, we also recommend considering developing an overall Digital Marketing Strategy.
7 Steps to Creating an SEO Strategy and Implementing an SEO Campaign
- Select an SEO Company:
- We recommend selecting an SEO company to work with from the outset for two reasons. First the SEO company will be involved in the process below and gain familiarity with your company strategy, goals, and competitors. This will enable them to do a better job for you and deliver superior results. Second, much of the information below is not easily available without special SEO tools and subscriptions which a good SEO firm will have. Developing the information and data below is straightforward for a good SEO firm and difficult on your own.
- Initial Analysis and Review; SEO Analysis of existing website performance:
- SERP (Search Engine Ranking Position) Analysis
- Google Analytics (key Google Analytics data to review)
- Bounce Rate
- Time on Site
- Top Landing Pages
- Top Content
- Other metrics depending on what is learned from above
- Competitor Analysis
- Review competitors ranking in SERP Report
- What keywords are they ranking for and why?
- What keywords are driving their traffic?
- What is working on their website and what is not working?
- SEO of competitors website; how many links, pages indexed, blogs, content, etc.
- Website Design Review
- Does the current website reflect the look and feel you want? Is it current with your branding today?
- Is the present website competitive? Does it need a complete redesign, refresh, or just new content and SEO?
- SEO competitive position: how does the present site compare to competitors for ranking and SEO?
- Establish Goals and Metrics
- Define your goals for the website and digital marketing campaign. We normally do this as part of our Digital Marketing Strategy.
- Metrics: How will you measure the results and how do you define success for this campaign?
- Establish your budget: SEO budgets are much like advertising budgets. You will have to determine what your budget is based on your goals, competitive position, anticipated ROI and benefits, and your available budget. There is no set price for an SEO program, it depends on many factors including the market you are in and the level of competition, your present competitive position, and ultimately your company’s goals (where do you want to be?). There is a point of diminishing returns where additional SEO spending delivers only marginal results, few companies reach this level of spending though.
- Start Your SEO Campaign
- Define your SEO program: budget, goals, time frame, etc.
- Establish SEO reporting that will occur during the campaign.