It’s no secret that a strong SEO strategy can change the game for your business. Getting to the top (and staying at the top) of Google search results is vital if you want to draw in and be trusted by customers.
More often than not, users don’t even make it past the first three search results. If you’re on the second page? Forget it.
So, what can brands do to optimize their SEO tactics? We asked top LA-based SEO agency GR0 to outline their five most important pillars of a strong search strategy.
The 5 Most Important Components To Building a Successful SEO Strategy
We could give you a checkbox list of what you should be doing in SEO, but the traditional cookie-cutter approach isn’t enough these days. Instead, you must build a hyper-specific strategy that suits both your brand and your customers.
Here are GR0’s guiding principles to building an SEO strategy that actually works.
1. Build Technical Sophistication First
This may sound like a given, but you’d be surprised at how many companies are late to the game when it comes to designing their site and user experience for SEO success.
Simply put, you cannot rise in Google Search results if your site is not designed to.
Remember, there is no human being employed by search engines who is looking through your pages and deciding where you should fall — the fundamentals of technical SEO are all about satisfying a bot when it crawls and indexes your site.
Maintaining your site’s navigation is essential. Make sure you’re free of 404-page links, duplicative content, and long URLs. Long load times are also viewed unfavorably by search engines.
One way to look at it is to follow the user experience. Search engine bots are built to select the sites that are most likely to answer the question or need that the consumer has, with the highest-quality user experience possible (and yes, that includes mobile, so don’t neglect the mobile experience, which is what a hefty chunk of your visitors will be viewing from).
SEO is not just a marketing game — it’s also very much in the hands of your developers.
2. Experiment, Analyze, and Optimize
We can’t emphasize enough how much SEO has evolved over the last ten years. Yes, keyword strategy is still important, but it’s about so much more than that now. Google adapts its algorithm all the time, and brands must be built to change and try new things to be able to adapt to Google’s adaptations.
One example right now is reviews. Positive user reviews are consistently helping brands rise to the top of the rankings. Why? Most reviews include keywords that are likely to come up in a search query. For Google’s part, reviews are a highly valued touchpoint in the customer journey towards a sale. 82% of consumers won’t buy from a brand with less than three stars.
The point is that this is a relatively new development in SEO strategy and we’re expecting many more new components just like this to come down the pipeline.
Keep your head on a swivel and be prepared to try new things. Ultimately, this is a data-driven industry. Follow the data and optimize accordingly.
3. Understand Search Intent
This pillar comes down to the most fundamental principle behind strong SEO. At the end of the day, we’re really just trying to meet customers at their most curious — look for patterns in what customers are searching for.
Are they looking for a specific product, or are they researching and trying to get educated about a problem they’re trying to solve? Are they specifically seeking out your brand or the category as a whole?
Once you have the answers, the content on your site must adjust (and adjust often) to address these questions. Recency is a vitally important component when users are deciding what to click. They don’t want to sift through outdated information.
If you have an evergreen content page, regularly update it to signal to Google that it reflects the latest information.
GR0 also recommends the following “must-haves” to ensure your content is the most authoritative resource for users on Google:
By following these simple guidelines, your content has a drastically higher chance of ranking for your keyword of choice and potentially even earning the coveted Google snippet.
5. Focus on Your Strengths
As you’re starting to build your SEO strategy, don’t fall into the trap of casting a net too wide and treating all of your products and content the same way. Focus on your strengths and build out niches. It’s true that if one part of your site or product offering is doing well, all others will rise with it.
Google rewards businesses that come from a place of authority. Capitalize on what you know best and attack that vertical until you dominate it. From there, you can start to push through other offerings and verticals.
Strong SEO Strategies Will Win Out
So often, digital marketers get stuck in their specific way of doing things. It’s vitally important to regularly step back and ask yourself what your content strategies are achieving.
Remember to work hand in hand with developers to satisfy search engine bots, emphasize learning and optimization, understand and adjust based on evolving user search intent, and double down on what your business does best.
About the author
GR0 is a digital marketing agency focused exclusively on igniting organic growth for direct-to-consumer startups and helping brands rank #1 on Google. GR0 empowers clients to build powerful online brands that deliver incredible value and joy to consumers. GR0 was co-founded by SEO & marketing experts and long-time best friends Jonathan Zacharias, and Kevin Miller who both have a wealth of online marketing and advertising experience with top D2C and B2B brands.