Written by: Elizabeth Ritger
We know by now you’ve heard the term “SEO” more times than you can count this year. It’s become one of those digital-age staple vocab terms that all successful marketers make good use of. Normally, blogs are explaining what it is and ways you can work on improving your own. While this is important, what you’re doing won’t mean much if you’re not getting results!
So how do you know if your SEO efforts are making a difference? It can be hard to tell sometimes because there may be many small, subtle changes that may take some time to materialize. You’re probably also using other marketing techniques and its tough to know which ones are responsible for any increases in web traffic or searches. However, there are certain things to look out for that will give you a pretty good idea of how your SEO is performing.
Today, we’re answering a question we get a lot from financial advisors – “how can I gauge my SEO success?” So we’ve put together some guiding questions to ask yourself about your SEO after a year.
1. Have you seen a jump in traffic or keyword position?
There are a few key metrics you can keep an eye on that may help you out when tracking your SEO efforts. The first one is to analyze your website’s keyword position. This is a huge part of SEO and will help your website get in front of the eyes of a targeted audience. If your SEO efforts are working, especially your content strategy, you should see some of your top keywords continuously perform better and better in search engines such as Google. You can learn all about how to check your position ranking here.
Next, you’ll want to look at your website’s traffic using Google Analytics. If you’re doing well on the keyword front, more people should be clicking on your website, which equals more web traffic. Of course, how many people actually look at your site once they click on it, is also important. However, in general your traffic metrics should be increasing steadily if your SEO tactics are successful.
Finally, you’ll need to check out your website conversions. After all, the ultimate SEO goal is to first get people to your website and then actually get them to convert as customers for your firm, right? The content and design of your landing pages can contribute to your conversion rate, but most of the time your conversion rates also have to do with sales and other departments. It’s definitely a whole team effort, but don’t forget that SEO is a huge piece to the conversion puzzle.
While these three are some specific metrics, you should also make sure you’re checking all of your analytics tools regularly. This includes checking both Google Search Console & Google Analytics. This can help uncover which kinds of content your site visitors are reading and which keywords are working well for you.
2. Have you earned any backlinks?
Simply put, backlinks are links that your website gets from another website. They can be from anywhere, but more popular sites give you more of an SEO boost. If people are sharing your blogs or website across social media, this will give you even more valuable rankings. With this in mind, make sure to check if you’ve earned any backlinks since focusing on SEO because it could be a great indicator of how well you’re doing. However, not just any link will give you the boost you’re looking for. Focus on getting the most relevant links you can to really drive results.
Hopefully you’ll find you’ve been successful in getting some but if you’re struggling, don’t worry! While you can’t necessarily control if other sites choose to link to yours, there are some steps you can take to improve your chances. Try reaching out to other influencers in the industry to use them as guest bloggers, interact with them on social media or ask them to collaborate on a blog post. The more popular their website is, the more the backlink will help boost your rankings in search engines. Anything you can do to get your name out there and start interacting with well-known people will be a huge help.
3. Are you creating content with your target audience in mind?
To answer this, you need to be very sure of your target audience. Different markets require entirely unique copy and design in order to entice them. Are you catering your blogs and copy to the people who are actually visiting your site and could be potential clients? If your keywords don’t match well with what you’re actually posting or there is some dissonance between your clients and copy, your SEO might not be doing as well as it could be.
When creating copy and coming out with fresh content and blogs, you should always be thinking of your customer first. What would interest them? What will keep them reading and continuing to visit your site? Answering these questions are key to finding the right keywords to focus on, which social media platforms you should focus on and who your competition is. If you can say your content and readers are well-matched and you have been getting positive feedback, its a great sign that your SEO is going in a good direction.
4. Are you being patient?
We know you hate to hear this but you wont rank #1 in Google over night. It won’t even happen in one week or one month. Six months to a year is typically a good mark to check-in on your SEO efforts. You’ll want to continuously update and check up on your results in order to make sure you’re hitting your most successful marketing strategies. At Twenty Over Ten, we like to say “SEO is a moving target.” There will always be new ways to improve and update your SEO strategy. Stay on top of your analytics and keywords, check your rankings on SERPs and continuously work with partners to gain backlinks.
Another crucial focus to keep in mind is how often you’re creating original content. Being active and pushing out fresh, original content is the best way to keep readers visiting your site and keep search engines aware of your site! Blogging is a great way to regularly push out content. And while it may seem time consuming, blogging is an investment that is well worth the payoff and with Content Assist we’ve made blogging easy.
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