The State of SEO | Brown Bag Business Chat

If your website is the central point of your strategic marketing plan, then getting traffic to your site is key. Our guest, Pam Aungst of Pam Ann Marketing helps businesses get more traffic to their websites and get more leads out of those sites. Primarily Pam Ann Marketing offers search engine optimization services and also help with paid search and social media advertising.

Not enough time? Catch the TL;DW version below the video.

What is SEO?

SEO is the art and science of getting a website to appear higher in the search results.

What steps do you take to get a site showing up better in the search engines?

1. Technical

All search engines crawl sites and index the content. It is important to have clean, scannable code so that they can scan your site. You might be producing outstanding, well-optimized content, but if the crawlers can’t access that content — your site won’t rank.

2. On Page

This is where keywords, how the content is organized and how often new content is added comes into play.

Keyword research is used to find words that people search for frequently, but aren’t so competitive that your site will never rank for them.

It is important to have services/products setup as one per page or per section of your website. Resist the urge to list everything you do or sell on one page.

Freshness is important. This doesn’t mean rewriting old content, it means adding new content over time. (That’s why blogging is so popular).

3. Off Page

This is everything that happens off your site. This helps determine your authority. Social media cues and links to your site help establish your authority or helpfulness over other sites.

What kind of resources are there for DIY SEOers?

There’s no formal training available through Google, but there are Webmaster Guidelines.

Woorank.com is a great resource for checking your website. You can get one free scan and it will provide you a list of issues you need to correct.

Workshops and tradeshows are also great for learning more about SEO.

Blogs like Search Engine Land and Search Engine Journal (not to mention Pam’s own blog) are great resources.

Or you can even get training directly from Pam Ann Marketing.

Why do SEO consultants get a bad rap?

It’s the nature of the industry, unfortunately. There’s a lot of snake oil salesmen out there and lots of people have been burned.

Some SEO consultants take advantage of uneducated consumers.

How can you spot a bad SEO consultant?

Here’s some specific examples of what you can be on the lookout for.

Also, is the company transparent? Ask to look at their monthly reports, is the company providing real info about the work they are doing? Is effort going into it and are they getting actual results?Is traffic increasing? Are conversions increasing?

What one thing can people do TODAY to help their SEO?

Write content, like blog posts, that will actually help people. Think about answering questions through your posts.

Then get into social media (especially Google+) and get that content shared. Getting +s on Google+ will help!

What is the current state of SEO?

Speed. Smart Phone. Schema. Simple Stuff.

Speed

Sites must load quickly. Check this at Page Speed Insights to see where you stand.

Smart Phone

Mobile design is important. Your site needs to be responsive (adaptive) to the device size.

Schema

This is extra code that helps Google understand your content and what it’s about.

Simple Stuff

SEO is complicated, but dotting all the Is and crossing all the Ts really does help. Cover all the little, basic things.