As the clock winds down on 2015, it’s time to re-evaluate your search engine optimization (SEO) strategies. Especially today, having a digital presence is essential in order to establish a meaningful online presence and remain competitive in our new digital economy. If the modern consumer cannot easily find you online, you don’t exist.
Why SEO Matters in 2016
SEO is critical for your success, especially in an increasingly digital age that is constantly transforming. According to the BrightEdge Organic Channel Report, 51 percent of traffic to websites comes from organic search and over 40 percent of revenue is captured by organic traffic. Simply put, without a solid SEO strategy, your website becomes invisible to search engines and consumers who use these engines to discover and research your goods and services.
SEO Strategies for the New Year
- Keyword Research – The fundamentals of keyword research have not changed. In 2016, it will still be important to find words and phrases that customers are using to find your business. You can use keyword research tools, such as Google’s Keyword Planner, Ubersuggest and SEMrush, to find popular keywords and phrases that you and your competitors are ranking for or have potential to rank for. Keyword research can guide you to an optimized content strategy, including new blog post ideas, videos and other content for your website.
- Link Building – Manually submitting your site to directories, posting links to your site in articles for websites with no editorial review process and leaving spammy comments and forum links are things of the past. In 2016, your link building efforts should focus on earning links through publishing high-quality content. People and publications are far more likely to share content that is both high quality and relevant to their needs.
- Mobile Optimization – Your website needs to be mobile-friendly heading into 2016. Recently, Google announced “more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the U.S. and Japan.” In April 2015, Google rolled out its latest mobile-friendly update that boosts the ranking of responsive pages on mobile search results. Websites and pages that are?not optimized for mobile see a significant decrease in rankings in mobile search results. If a company’s website is not optimized for mobile, it may lose quality leads and traffic. To find out if a page is mobile-friendly, use the Mobile-Friendly Test, which can be accessed in Webmaster Tools.
- Improved User Experience – Martin Laetsch, director of online marketing at Act On Software Inc. says, “Google, right now, is making 500 algorithm changes a year. Every change is focused on making sure that when someone searches on Google, if they get the right result on the first few pages, they’ve got a great experience. It’s not, ‘How am I going to tweak the engine or trick Google, Bing or Yahoo?’ It’s how you make sure that your content is the best possible content on the Internet for the words that you care about.” By creating unique content that is engaging and easily navigable on your site, people will be more likely to want to read and share your content, which in turn helps improve your site ranking and overall SEO efforts.
With 2016 just around the corner, make it a New Year’s resolution to improve your SEO strategy because your business will reap the benefits.
Megan Healy is an Account Coordinator at Flackable, a national public relations agency supporting the communications needs of registered investment advisors (RIAs) and other forward-thinking financial services firms. To learn more about Flackable, please visit www.flackable.com. Follow Megan on Twitter @Meg_Healy.