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Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Economic Development Organizations


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A webinar that brings the basics of search engine optimization to local economic development organizations and explains how they can take relevant steps to improve their online visibility.

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Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Economic Development Organizations

  1. 1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Economic Development Organizations //<br />Derek Pillie and Kevin Mullett<br /><br />
  2. 2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Economic Development Organizations //<br />Derek Pillie and Kevin Mullett<br /> search for “derekpillie” or “dpillie”<br />Project Manager – LEDO Suite<br />
  3. 3. Why are You Here?<br /><ul><li>You know that the success of your economic development organization means attracting new businesses and supporting existing business
  4. 4. You know attracting new investors means going where they are
  5. 5. You know that you know these investors are online
  6. 6. Over 90% of site selection begins (or ends) on the web
  7. 7. Do you have the right info to be shortlisted (or not get cut)?
  8. 8. You probably don’t know how to use your existing resources to get in front of them and deliver your “pitch” </li></li></ul><li>What Will You Learn?<br /><ul><li>What SEO stands for and how it’s relevant to YOUR work
  9. 9. How the “alphabet soup” of terms like SEO, SERP, H1, META, ALT, etc. impact how potential investors find your website
  10. 10. How YOU can use free online tools to improve your online SEO visibility
  11. 11. What efforts you can focus on to maximize the impact of your SEO efforts
  12. 12. Why it is important to have community and professional partners link back to your current website.</li></li></ul><li>About Cirrus ABS<br /><ul><li>15 Years Experience in Online Marketing and Website Development
  13. 13. Hybrid company that offers the best of marketing and technology firms
  14. 14. 25+ employees
  15. 15. Full staff of technical & creative personnel
  16. 16. Client ranging from Fortune 500 to small local businesses</li></li></ul><li>About Cirrus ABS<br />Cirrus ABS Core Competencies<br /><ul><li>Corporate Marketing Solutions - Strategic Consulting, Website Development, Online Marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  17. 17. Platform Solution Development
  18. 18. Vertical Market Solutions
  19. 19. Economic Development, Education, Insurance…
  20. 20. Corporate Solutions for Distributor/Dealer Networks
  21. 21. Franchise Solutions</li></li></ul><li>Cirrus ABS Featured ED Clients<br />
  22. 22. Cirrus ABS Featured Corporate Clients<br />
  23. 23. SEO // Optimization, marketing, or visibility<br />search engine optimization is*:<br />developing a website utilizing best practices and in such a manner that there are no encumbrances to the search engines ability to crawl a site and properly understand the subject of the site, find the sites pages, links, and documents, so that it might be included in the search engines organic or natural index appropriately.<br />* but it depends on who you ask and<br />search engine marketing is an open debate.<br />
  24. 24. SEO // Technical, onsite & offsite factors<br />There are technical, onsite, & offsite factors that contribute to your sites’ search engine result page (SERP) performance. <br />
  25. 25. SEO // Winning requires knowledge<br />What are the rules?<br />How can I optimize within the rules?<br />Which races can I win while staying within my budget?<br />Am I dedicated to the winning strategy?<br />How much is winning worth?<br />
  26. 26. SEO // Architecture matters<br />I’ve never seen a perfect launch, i.e. one where I got todo everything I wanted<br />Projects are always limited by: time, money, effort, resources, knowledge, buy in (from staff and board members)<br />Test conversions, measure results<br />
  27. 27. SEO // Is it the intent winner?<br />Social<br />Direct mail<br />Television<br />Radio<br />Tradeshows<br />Newspaper<br />Yellow pages<br />Search marketing<br />SEO<br />
  28. 28. SEO // Visibility is online currency<br />No visibility = no clicks<br />Unattractive or spammy titles & descriptions (snippets) = no clicks<br />Clicks for incorrect terms = no conversion<br />Poorly planned landing pages with no CTA = no conversion<br />
  29. 29. SEO // Do you have a “lame duck” website?<br /><ul><li>Does your website have fresh content on the homepage?
  30. 30. Can you change META info?
  31. 31. Is your site trapped in Flash?
  32. 32. Do your site visitors have a reason to come back or refer you?
  33. 33. Can you even add or modify SEO content without a programmer?
  34. 34. Do you have enough pages to “tell the story”?
  35. 35. Do you “connect the dots” for site visitors with clear content paths, related content, internal and external links, calls to action?</li></li></ul><li>SEO // Keep moving forward<br />Big year for search engine changes<br />Google alone uses over 200 criteria/signals for ranking site pages, performs over 6000 tests, and subsequently implements over 400 changes to its algorithm per year.<br />A few Google changes in 2010:<br />Real-time search: if something is trending you will see it<br />Forced customized (personalized) search:if you’re logged in you see customized results with social circle included<br />Webmaster console: removed pagerank, added Labs which includes site performance, fetch as googlebot, and malware detail tools<br />Normal (xml) sitemaps, news sitemaps, video sitemaps<br />
  36. 36. SEO // Recent developments<br />Recent SEO developments<br /><ul><li>Google “May Day”
  37. 37. Google Caffeine data center change
  38. 38. Bing + Yahoo = “Bing-hoo”
  39. 39. Bing + Facebook = Social SERPs</li></li></ul><li>SEO // What’s what?<br />There are many ways Google presents results!<br />
  40. 40. SEO // All things being equal…<br />There are over 200 criteria so you must do competitive<br />analysis to maximize the return on your efforts.<br />
  41. 41. SEO // All things being equal…<br />There are over 200 criteria so you must do competitive<br />analysis to maximize the return on your efforts.<br />
  42. 42. SEO // Action 1<br />Create a list of competitors sites<br />Run competitive analysis with majestic SEO:<br />Develop a plan to win or call in reinforcements<br />
  43. 43. SEO // Action 2<br />Setup Google profiles for you & your organization<br />
  44. 44. SEO // Select the right keywords<br />We've taken clients to number one on Google based<br />on keywords they insisted had to be there, only to find out<br />that a slight derivation would have yielded exponential traffic.<br />
  45. 45. SEO // Action 3<br />Poll your existing employers; ask who are your potential investors<br />Write down what you really do & who you are competing against<br />Take the keywords & keyword phrases you think are important and verify volume with <br />
  46. 46. SEO // I have nothing to write!<br />A common complaint is not<br />knowing what to write & what<br />keywords to target<br />Fresh content is crucial<br />Newest articles winall else being equal<br />Increases site depth<br />Increases crawl rate<br />
  47. 47. SEO // Technical considerations<br />When writing page titles<br />Keep the title to 70 characters when possible<br />Use localization and keywords/keyphrases early in the title<br />Think about attractiveness + bolded words (will it get clicked?)<br />When writing meta descriptions(these usually become snippet)<br />Keep the description to 156 characters when possible<br />Think about attractiveness + bolded words<br />Consider the impact on your CTR and visibility<br />Words included in your titles and descriptions should also appear on the page<br />
  48. 48. SEO // Technical considerations<br />Header tags: H1-H6<br />ALT tags: often missed<br />(don't say picture or image of, Google already knows its an image)<br />
  49. 49. SEO // Action 4<br />For each page of your site run & review't try so hard to get a certain saturation that you lose good long tail connecting words or relevance! Don’t stress about duplicate content.)<br />Change title tags & descriptions first because they are valuable & clarify thinking<br />Start with keywords & keyword phrases you already rank for<br />Make sure there is a call to action on every page<br />
  50. 50. SEO // Internal linking; don’t click here<br />Formulating your internal linking structure<br />Search engines want to know what’s on the other end <br />Keyword use where it is highly valuable<br />Example: Click here for our Search Engine Optimization Services.<br />
  51. 51. SEO // All backlinks aren’t equal<br />Why do we want backlinks?<br />Visibility / brand recognition<br />Traffic generation / linkbait(to pages or our site)<br />To encourage page or site indexing<br />Increase page rank / authority to impact SERPs<br />Because someone told you to get them<br />
  52. 52. SEO // Action 5<br />Ask community partners for backlinks<br />Ask current investors (mutually beneficial btw)<br />Create new, subject matter expert, articles on your site and tell the world<br />Link to the page with content, not always home<br />Look for places to post your site or site RSS feed<br />
  53. 53. SEO // Did it work? Do it again!<br />Check Google Analytics or server logs for:bounce rates, time on site, pages visited, conversion pages, confirmation pages (setup advanced filters & funnels)<br />Monitor contacts, calls, lead sources<br />Google A/B testing<br />
  54. 54. SEO // Action 6<br />Get: Rank Checker<br />A Firefox browser add-on<br />Measure baseline<br />Measure changes<br />Measure competition<br />Check in “private browsing”<br />
  55. 55. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Economic Development Organizations //<br />Derek Pillie and Kevin Mullett<br /> google“kevinmullett”<br />Director of Product Development<br />
  56. 56. SEO // Upcoming webinars<br />Join us for future webinars every other Thursday<br />Watch for updates<br />Thursday, December 9th, Using Analytics to Demonstrate ROI to ED Stakeholders<br />Thursday, December 23rd, Social Media for Economic Developers<br />
  57. 57. We'll Help You Master Internet Marketing<br /> These days it’s more important than ever for you to reach new investors, satisfy existing businesses, find new efficiencies, and improve your local business climate. The Web is the way to do it. We can help!<br /> Call Derek Pillie at 1.877.817.4442 to find out how we can improve your online visibility.<br />