SEO is one of the most important aspects of your online marketing strategy. Without good SEO, it is like winking in the dark. You are doing it, but nobody knows about it. One thing you can be sure of, the playing field is constantly changing and while there are a number of very useful tools at your disposal, you have to stay on top of your game to keep up.
But what about the top guys, the big brands, how do they do it? Let’s take a look at a few interesting facts you probably were not aware of.
- Is It Tough at The Top?
It takes a lot of hard work to establish a successful online presence, for most of us. We spend time, energy and money researching, fine tuning, getting content out and creating awareness. Eventually, if done correctly, this hard work pays off and your company brand will go up in the rankings.
Companies like McDonalds, Disney, Coke and KFC have no such problems. They have already done the hard work, decades of it, creating an iconic brand that everybody knows. Even relative new comers like Red Bull are right up there. Just think of the billions of dollars that have been spent over decades on marketing, branding, advertising and sponsorships. It is no surprise then that their brands perform well online. People are naturally talking about them and any marketing effort they do put in is trusted, well know and spreads easily.
This is not to say they do not have to make any effort online. A big part of their success is understanding the power of marketing and they are fully aware that online marketing is becoming increasingly more important. One aspect that is of particular concern to them is handling negative publicity and complaints correctly. Obviously if they have millions of fans, all those people will potentially see the negative feedback as well. There have been a number of online and social media blunders over the years.
- What Social Activity Gives the Best Results?
Most of us are aware that social media mentions and activity are more powerful then backlinks and other SEO tactics used in the past. Which social platforms produce the best results? Well, Google will look after itself first so a +1 on Google + has the best effect. Facebook, given its size and reach, comes a close second. Other big social media platforms also produce good results so Twitter, LinkedIn, SlideShare, Youtube and Pinterest all contribute towards ranking.
- So Are Backlinks Still Relevant?
The answer is yes, they are. It is just not as simple as it was in the past. One has to be more selective where and when you use backlinks. Quality is more important than quantity.
Headings, length of page titles, page load speed and word count have also become more important. There are a variety of tools available to help you to monitor and measure this in order to improve your ranking.
- Can I Not Get Far by Simply Creating Great Content?
Don’t for a second think that quality content is no longer important, it is vital. Combine it with relevant pictures and quality internal links and you will be on the right track. Take a holistic approach to SEO and ensure you include social media, blogs and forums to achieve decent results.
- What About a Keyword in My Domain Name?
It can help a bit but not as much as in the past. Google puts a lost less emphasis on this then they did previously. A highly relevant keyword in the domain name still helps if you want to find a link or website. Still use keywords strategically in titles and URLs, combined with quality links, internally and externally.
There are no shortcuts to success. Sure it helps to be a Starbucks or Levis but for the rest of us, it’s hard work. You will have to take the time and effort, or make use of experts, to utilise as many of the SEO tactics that are available. With consistent, wise and diligent effort, you can get your page a decent ranking.