Drive Xero Accountants Brisbane spoke with Josh Barter at White Crow Digital to get the rundown on the world of SEO.
Josh, business owners could be mistaken for thinking an SEO is someone who sits at the boardroom table next to the CEO, CFO and COO. Let’s start with the basics, what does it stand for and what is it?
Search Engine Optimisation or “SEO” is the process of optimising your website so that it appears at the top of the search results for selected keywords.
Why would a business owner be interested in SEO?
The rise of the digital age has changed the way consumers and business interact. Technological advances have made traditional marketing obsolete – ads in newspapers or the Yellow Pages are no longer an effective way to reach your target market. The internet has changed the way that we search for information, products, and services.
So businesses still want to be found it’s just a shift in how they are being found?
Yes, we know that most businesses want their website to show on the first page for selected keywords or phrases that their customers are searching for. If businesses are able to rank highly on Google they have a greater ability to:
- Generate more customer enquiries and sales
- Gain a competitive advantage
- Become a leader in your industry
- Show trust, relevance and credibility to potential customers
- Implement a cost effective adverting strategy when comparing to Google AdWords
You hear a lot about being on ‘the first page’, does this suggest 2nd pagers and beyond don’t stand a chance?
When people Google, they rarely click past the first page of results. This is because they believe that the results on the first page are more important, or most relevant to their search. Google has built their business on the notion that they deliver results that are relevant to the searcher and it’s now engrained in our minds that the first few results are the best ones for what we are looking for. Consequently, businesses want their website optimised to show up on the front page of Google.
I read an article about how Google actually worked. Am I right in saying it is kind of complicated?
The algorithm that determines what results appear first for a certain search term is one that is constantly changing, updating and evolving. Google is a constantly moving machine that continually surprises (and upsets) those attempting to learn and tame it.
You said businesses want their websites “optimised”. How do businesses ensure that their website is optimised or Google-friendly?
- Speed – having a fast website now plays a role in Google’s algorithm and determining whether your website will show up. Google is all about the user experience and delivering the best possible results for its users. If your website isn’t fast the user experience will suffer and your rankings will as well.
- Mobile friendly – Over 50% of searchers now use their phones and this is only increasing. If you aren’t mobile friendly your rankings will be impacted.
- Security – Google has indicated that websites that are secured with a SSL certificate will enjoy a slight boost in rankings in comparison to those that aren’t.
- Ensure you have accurate and relevant content on your website and make sure it is up to date.
- Optimise your page titles and meta descriptions to ensure they are relevant for the keywords you want to target.
- Create a blog and generate interesting, useful and relevant content for potential visitors and readers on your website.
Apart from SEO, what else should businesses do to improve their online presence and where does Google AdWords fit in?
SEO is an important strategy for digital marketing, but doesn’t stand alone. To capitalise on the online market businesses should ensure:
- Their social media platforms are engaging, relevant and constantly promoting their website.
- Inbound marketing and content creation should be complimentary of the SEO campaign.
- Website should be well designed for optimised conversions.
- A Google AdWords campaign compliments the SEO campaign. AdWords is a Google advertising service where you are charged on the number of clicks.
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