Starting an SEO strategy in 10 actions

#1 definition

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to techniques that make your site rank higher in organic search results. It is a digital marketing strategy that aims to make your website more visible on the web and ensure a high position on the search engines.

When a lead is typing a query, you want to be found and provide him or her the easiest experience in delivering the responses to their queries on your website. 

You may consider anticipating their needs.

Moreover, using SEO techniques is a way to target people that are already looking for you!

#2 How do the browsers work?

The purpose of the search engine Google is to connect the searcher with what they are looking for. 

To achieve this goal, Google works on 3 steps to understand, rank and serve your website. You’d better understand how it works.

The first step is called Crawling. The google softwares known as web crawlers are scanning the web to discover available webpages. They look at them, follow the links. It works as if you were browsing content on the web. They are going from link to link, bringing data about those pages back to Google’s servers.

Then, the second step is for the browser to understand what the page is about. The bots analyse all the content available: text, image and video file. Every information and keyword is organized and stored in the Google index. You can picture it as an ever-growing library. The process is called indexing. 

Lastly, after the process of indexing the pages, the third step is serving the webpages to the searchers. 

When a person types a query, the browser works on providing the most relevant content from its library/index. 

The search engine is looking to determine the highest quality answers plus, it is interested in  providing the best user experience. It’s all about efficiency, personnalisation and anticipation.

#3 Difference between SEO and SEA

SEO and SEA are complementary techniques and can’t be opposed. You can do both or choose only the one that meets your needs the most.

SEO is more a slow process and long term technique. You will be able to follow your progress in the long run. It takes time to position your website on different keywords. It is also very linked to your competitors’ activities who are working at the same time on finding the keywords to position on. 

SEA stands for search engine advertising. It is direct and can be implemented at any moment, for long or quick actions (depending on your budget). Once your ad has been approved, it will be shown with the relevant search terms. You can expect more clicks to your webpages almost immediately. But, when you stop the ad, you will no longer notice any activities. 

By the way, search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo etc don’t accept payment to crawl a site more frequently, or rank it higher. Just a quick reminder.

#4 The SEO should be a part of your global digital marketing strategy

SEO is a part of your overall marketing strategy. 

Please note that every choice you make or every action you plan has to be consistent with your global strategy.

Indeed, regarding the use of keywords, we invite you to look at your marketing strategy to pick the precise words. 

Also, think about who is visiting your website, what word they use to describe your products and services. Try to speak the language of your customers. Then you will be able to understand their needs and anticipate the queries.

In SEO, everything is about customer experience. Your visitors are looking for the right answer and they want to find it easily, fastly and effectively. 

After knowing how you will conduct your seo strategy in the vein of your global strategy, let’s jump through the action plan.

#5 Action plan: the technical audit 

The first step, the technical audit is very linked to the Crawl. Indeed, before serving your website, the search engine needs to have easy access to every part of it! 

Many audit softwares deliver very precise details of how your website is performing on the web. You can use GTMetrix or Screaming Frog for example. Google Pagespeed Insights will allow you to check if your website is mobile friendly. 

If some vitality performance has to be adapted, you can adjust them on your own or use the services of developers. 

The most common changes are about ensuring a fast page load time (40% of users leave a page that does not load after 3 seconds) or improving the internal mesh between pages.

#6 Action plan: the content 

The second step is about creating the most relevant content for  being well indexed by the search engines as well as creating meaningful conversations between you and your leads.

There are two aspects you should consider: making content (by writing articles, publishing news, videos etc) and placing  your keywords at the right space in your website to help the browsers better understand the topic of your pages. 

In a SEO strategy, the content is key! 

The work on the semantics is a very important part to consider. You should look at your marketing strategy so as to choose the most relevant keyword that will qualify the most precisely your products or services. It is all about wording. 

Be aware of the:

  • Semantics
  • Lexical fields
  • Vary the content and enrich the pages

Make sure to look at the relevance and the word precisely chosen. Quality stands for better reference, indexing and ranking.

Here is a free tool to get inspired for writing your content: Answer the Public.

Regarding where to place your keywords, there is 6 strategic spots:

  • URL
  • meta description
  • images
  • title tag
  • headline tag
  • body text

Make sure of the relevance of the chosen keywords. It has to be consistent with your global digital marketing strategy as well as your global marketing strategy. Placing the keywords in those specific spots maximize and support a better ranking on the search engines. 

#7 Action plan: the popularity

The third step is all about the popularity. It is linked with the third Google Indicator: serving and ranking. Your website needs to be known as qualified and trustworthy. 

For your website to have a great popularity you do need to use the Netlinking technique. 

Netlinking refers to all the links from external websites that point to your website. A netlinking strategy is based on generating external links from websites sharing a common theme and with a good reputation in order to improve your website’s reputation on Google. 

Google highlights websites with a high reputation in its search results and with this strategy you will be able to gain popularity, positions, as well as traffic.

#8 Action plan: directories and review websites

Search engines such as Google, Yahoo or Bing have business directories. You can register on one of them because this will increase your chance to be found and help your leads visit your website. You can for example register in Google my Business and then appear on the right in the search results of your leads.

Another step you can take is to register and work on your popularity through the review websites. 

Being present in different spaces on the web will increase your relevance in the search engines eyes. 

#9 Reporting and KPI’s

Reporting is key to success: you need to follow your performances thoroughly to assess the relevance of your strategy, and make adjustments if needed. Here are below some SEO keywords to look at if you want to follow your progress.

  • Average Session Duration

Reports the average amount of time users spend on your website

  • Bounce Rate

Represents the percentage of visitors who enter your site and leave directly, without clicking or visiting another page.

  • Number of Sessions

Session is defined as a visit to your site, whether it is a new or a repeated visit. 

  • Page load time

Indicates how long it takes for a page to load after a user clicks or makes a query. 

  • Page-per-session

Average number of pages viewed during a session on your website.

  • Top Exit Pages

An Exit Page is the last page accessed during a session. 

  • Top Visited Pages

The page that has been the most accessed during a session. 

#10 level up: what about SXO

SXO aims to simplify the UX, re-work the CTAs (colour, location…), optimize the page speed, the safety, the images etc.

You will be able to increase your CTR and your website performance.

The user experience is one of the most important criteria to consider if you want to improve your score on the search engines. Indeed, the latter is at the heart of the elements taken into account by the functioning of Google algorithms.

Let’s sum up what you’ve learned. 

For building a strong SEO strategy, make sure that your website is adapted to the browsers and match their mandatory indicators. 

Work on your content, provide high quality and relevant information. 

Keep in mind your popularity on the web is such an important way to prove your worth. 

Lastely, report on choosing precise and adapted KPI’s. 

It’s all about testing, experiencing and growing. 

Hope you will rank at the top! 

If you want to learn more, check out the following websites: