Search Engine Optimization - A Strategic Overview


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With an ever expanding amount of information on the Web we, as Internet users, are becoming less patient and more skeptical of the information we view. This trend can, in large part, be attributed to the large number of organizations broadly pushing their messages to Internet users through paid placements, email, etc. This heavy marketing 'push' has driven Internet users to search engines like Google, MSN, and Yahoo! to proactively search for their own solutions. This trend has created amazing opportunities for organizations and companies to leverage relevant content to reach target audiences through keyword searches.

People are essentially raising their hands and it's possible that you have the answer! Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a powerful strategic marketing tool for driving relevant, targeted audiences to your website. With this presentation we are going to demystify the concept of SEO and discuss how you can begin optimizing your website to capture relevant Internet traffic. Most importantly, we will discuss how to engage that new traffic and turn them into marketable opportunities for your business.

Search Engine Optimization creates tremendous opportunities for businesses to relevantly segmenting visitors, engaging them with value-added content, and, ultimately, drive conversion.

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Search Engine Optimization - A Strategic Overview

  1. 1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Driving Relevant Traffic To Your Website
  2. 2. What We’re Going To Cover <ul><li>Our Agenda </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>What is SEO </li></ul><ul><li>How SEO Works </li></ul><ul><li>SEO Strategy - Integrating/Measuring/Sustaining </li></ul><ul><li>Future of SEO </li></ul><ul><li>Take Aways </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why Are We Here? <ul><li>Leverage SEO To Drive Growth </li></ul><ul><li>Capture the attention of interested, relevant Internet traffic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Direct eCommerce </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lead Generation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Messaging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Create dialog with relevant content and visitor value </li></ul>
  4. 4. Why Are We Listening To This Guy? <ul><li>A Little About Me </li></ul><ul><li>Senior Director, Marketing at Lumension </li></ul><ul><li>Over 12 Years in Internet Strategy and Web Marketing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>SEO/SEM </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lead Generation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>eCommerce </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Broad Applied Background: Sales, Marketing, and Technical Experience </li></ul><ul><li>Co-author of an Internet Business Method Patent </li></ul>
  5. 5. What Is SEO
  6. 6. SEO in a Single Slide <ul><li>Discipline of bringing content visibility to search engine audiences in order to drive relevant Internet traffic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Founded in targeted search keywords and phrases </li></ul></ul><ul><li>SEO is a collaborative tactic, driven and supported by our marketing objectives </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adopting (and committing to) the above, SEO is a deep tactic requiring thoughtful planning, maintenance, and enhancement </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Most Important Components </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New Keyword Selection (critical, strategic activity) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keyword-supporting Content Creation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Search Engine Optimization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Internal </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>External </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Search Engine Rankings <ul><li>I search for ‘xyz’ on Google (et al.) how do certain websites shown up and in that order? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating an Internet index </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Search engines ‘crawl’ the Internet and websites </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identifying content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Crawling’ generates relationships between content (webpages, videos, documents, etc.) and identifying keywords </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Context’ associations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Geography </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Language </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. SEO vs. Advertising (SEM)
  9. 9. An Internet Popularity Contest <ul><li>Relevance to keywords is often determined by the number of ‘votes’ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Linking between websites is a ‘vote’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The text used in the actual link is critical </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The more quality ‘votes’ the stronger the association </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. The Search Engine Landscape
  11. 11. How SEO Works
  12. 12. SEO | A Strategic View
  13. 13. Search Keywords <ul><li>Strategic Foundation of SEO </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All activities should be derived from this strategic set of keywords </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Focused on non-branded keywords </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Branded keywords self-optimize (generally) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Awareness of your audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ex: Highly technical (using search operators + , - , “ “, etc.) </li></ul></ul>Chart From SEOmoz Less search volume here but highly engaged audience More general; multiple audiences and targeted visitor personas
  14. 14. SEO Components Organization Concepts/Thoughts/Knowledge Targeted Audiences Relevant Keywords Optimization Efforts Content
  15. 15. It Begins With Keywords <ul><li>Define your audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevance of message </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How you will return value </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Volume of search </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Internet interest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The more popular, the greater the opportunity </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Understand your competitive landscape </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Competitive SEO efforts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Competing for the same target audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Differentiating your message </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Organizational SEO | Matrix
  17. 17. SEO Activities <ul><li>Two main components </li></ul><ul><ul><li>On Page Optimization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Changes made to your website </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Off Page Optimization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Efforts to drive visibility and links to your website </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Influence on search engine rankings </li></ul><ul><ul><li>On Page Optimization – 25% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Off Page Optimization – 75% </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. On Page SEO <ul><li>Changes architecture/content of your website </li></ul><ul><ul><li>HTML and Design </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Page title </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Text mark up </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Meta information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Technical architecture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Technology decisions </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Domain name </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Page name (e.g. webpage.html) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Directory structure </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Keyword emphasis </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Significance of on page text </li></ul></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Off Page SEO <ul><li>It’s all about linking! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Inbound links from other websites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Text used for linking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Leverage your targeted keywords and phrases </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Avoiding the ‘click here’ mistake </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Linking resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Directories </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Business partners </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Affiliations (e.g. business groups) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Press releases </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Social Media </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Search engine registration </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Register your website for indexing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create an XML sitemap </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. SEO : An Integrated View
  21. 21. Integrate Your Marketing Message <ul><li>Be Consistent </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Marketing messaging and SEO must be aligned </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be Relevant </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Actively engage your audience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offline or online find ways to create dialog </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be Authentic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Create content and tone that match your brand </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be Creative </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Find ways to bring unique, differentiated value to your target audiences </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. What About Pay-Per-Click? <ul><li>Long-term, PPC is a highly targeted tactic supplementing organic search </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Specific audiences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Highly competitive organic keywords </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New, undeveloped, or introductory concepts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compelling, targeted offers </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Measuring <ul><li>SEO is an investment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rankings mature and develop over time </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Measurement of success </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Website analytics! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Analysis’ over ‘reports’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Third party tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t forget about your competitors </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Quality time </li></ul><ul><ul><li>SEO needs your attention and affection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stay universally current (industry, company, etc.) </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Sustaining and Growing SEO <ul><li>Back to the ‘content’ rant </li></ul><ul><ul><li>SEO can produce truly organic growth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus on your unique value </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Experience </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Talent </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Opinion </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Background </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Connect organization evolution to SEO </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strategic shifts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industry trends </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Competitive actions </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Protecting SEO <ul><li>Be aware of your SEO efforts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Search engine equity </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Seemingly innocent changes can harm your efforts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Website redesign </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design decisions (e.g. Flash) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Removing pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Linking </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. They’re Here, Now What? <ul><li>Conversion: the MOST important strategic component supporting SEO </li></ul><ul><li>You have new traffic, you now have to motivate them to take action </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not expect new visitors to find their way on your website </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The ‘back’ button – and your competition is one quick click away </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Be purposeful </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Drive new visitors to clear, specific, limited, and value-added actions </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Future of SEO
  28. 28. Evolution of the Internet <ul><li>Social Media </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating new content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Driving relevance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Viral, collaborative nature of information sharing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Technology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The Semantic Web </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Website technologies </li></ul></ul><ul><li>New Business Models </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fighting for relevance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SEM conflict </li></ul></ul>
  29. 29. How Do I Get Started? SEO Assignments
  30. 30. The Take Aways <ul><li>Find your SEO ‘voice’ (i.e. relevant keywords) </li></ul><ul><li>Install website analytics (Google Analytics) </li></ul><ul><li>Register with ‘local’ listings (Google, Yahoo!, MSN) </li></ul><ul><li>Get your customers talking (Yelp!) </li></ul><ul><li>Look at the competition (, </li></ul><ul><li>Get a grade ( </li></ul><ul><li>Start creating and publish great content </li></ul><ul><li>Find a unique value proposition </li></ul><ul><li>Energize your network (LinkedIn, Plaxo, Facebook, …) </li></ul><ul><li>Learn ( </li></ul>
  31. 31. Questions @chewitt