Off-Page SEO For Better Search Ranking
Off-Page SEO refers to how many people refer to your website, one of the factors that search engines use when determining the ranking of your website on a topic. In the past, it simply was how many links pointed back to your website. That evolved to having contextual links, where the keyword was the link text, not just your name or read more. Now, Google has very sophisticated algorithms to determine the quality and authenticity of the out-going links. No longer can you buy links on a link farm and get better SEO. In fact, most back link programs will actually hurt your ranking, as Google has identified these sites as paid advertising, not authentic recommendations.
Do You Really Need Links to Rank Content?
If there were a good, bad, and ugly of SEO, link building would definitely be the ugly.Whether it’s spamming templated emails at busy editors or trying – and failing – to reach out with an organic approach, there’s no right way to approach link building. And, it can often seem, there’s no easy way to do it either.
Fortunately, as Google’s algorithms evolve, active link building isn’t quite as important to rank as it used to be. A great post from Noel Ceta in the SEO Signals Lab group on Facebook outlines how he got a piece of content to rank on the front page for the query ‘seo case study’ without any active link building. Here’s how he worked his magic:
- Noel created (and recommends creating) useful content, not boring, templated stuff. You’re not going to get organic links – and a high ranking on the SERPs – if you’re writing generic content. Be specific, and write titles that engage. Find the best article on your topic and write something 10X better.
- Promote the hell out of your content. If you’ve got a piece of golden content, all that’s left to do is get it in front of people. Noel uses Reddit, Twitter, Indie Hackers, Facebook groups, and paid ads to promote his content.
- Links will come in organically, but make sure you’re promoting the right way. Don’t be what Noel calls a ‘scummy spammer’. You know the type: People who slide into Facebook groups, drop a link to their content, and that’s it. It doesn’t work well and nobody likes it!
Link building, traditionally, is one of the most discouraging aspects of SEO. You feel like if you can’t get links, you won’t rank, and you know it’s damn hard to get links.
With this strategy from Noel, the process gets a lot easier. Instead of focusing on link building, focus on creating a piece of content that you love and promoting it the best you can! Clearly, the best way to get links now is to write content that people will want to read, comment and share with others in their network, otherwise known as a Content Marketing program.
What Is Content Marketing?
Content Marketing is the art of communication and informing your prospects about your products and benefits so they want to buy, without you having to sell.
If you want to insult your friends, just ask, “Who sold you that jacket?”
Want to complement them? You can ask the same question, with a slight change of emphasis: “Where did you buy that jacket?
The implication is clear. If you ended up with something ugly or inappropriate, you couldn’t have been in charge of your faculties; you were under the influence of a salesperson.
As a general rule, customers love to feel they’re buying, but they hate the pressures and connotations associated with being sold. Therefore, as a seller, if you can position yourself as being a resource, a helper, a guide, a consultant, an information sharer, then people will feel they’re voluntarily choosing your wares, and their degree of ownership of the process will be heightened, along with their overall satisfaction.
Content Marketing can be a seminar, infomercial or case studies for sales people to hand out. What we have realized is that if your marketing plan does not include Content Marketing, then you are missing a large part of marketing in today’s world. Since the content is specific and relevant to your business and it is what prospects are looking for, Content Marketing is also great for Search Engine Optimization. As the content is shared on social media and referenced by others, it becomes a great tool for generating links back to your website, filling the off-site SEO void. Content Marketing can discover and position a company, thereby allow a small business to grow exponentially. There are many questions that we are asked when we first meet with clients to prepare a marketing plan.
- How does Content Marketing work?
- How is a Content Marketing Plan created?
- How do you get people to know about your content once it’s written?
- How do I not waste my time on creating the wrong content?
- Do I have to “blog”?
During our initial free assessment, we answer these questions while evaluating your needs and resources. If you want to become the expert in your industry, a local resource for information, a consultant, or just need help building raving fans, then we can help develop a plan to make it happen. Our Content Marketing Plan program includes:
- Establishing a content platform to “house” the content you will produce; either at a website, a blog or on a social media platform
- Determine a Content Calendar to schedule activity and outline topics to write about
- Outline a process to repeatedly, but not redundantly, promote each activity
- Train in how to best write your content for Search Engine Optimization
- Learn how to create a headline that drives interest
- Develop call to actions for each piece of content so your return on investment is optimized
- Identify the best methods of promotion of your content, so your prospects become followers and fans
For those people who have neither the time or talent to generate content, we offer content generation programs as well, ranging from blog posts to infographics, to social media posts to online videos.