Content: Where to StartCreate Content That:• Addresses your industry’s pain points.• Informs your niche’s “buyer” keywords.• Focuses on real people.Stalk your competitors for ideas, too.Next:• Link bait campaigns.• Broader Content Marketing.
Identify SEO GoalsWhere are we going?• Who is your target customer?• What “buyer” keyword are they using?• What “research” keywords are they using?• What are the steps in our sales funnel?• What are the steps we can measure on our website (lead form, Add to Cart button, etc.)?• What reporting methods are we using?
On-site SEO (technical)Do search engines see my site?• Is your site accessible to search engines?• Is your site easy for search engines to navigate?• Is your site performance an issue?• Duplicate content: Do search engines don’t see your site “doubled”? (surprisingly common)• Etc.
Content Strategy FoundationsContent is the foundation.• Do you have helpful, resourceful and informative content on your website for your target keywords?• Is your content user focused?• Is your content strategy fresh - frequently updated?• Do you have an active social media presence?
User ExperienceDoes my site convert?• Is your site structure and layout designed with real people in mind first, search engines second?• Does your site have a modern, uncluttered design?• Does your site have a trustworthy look and layout?• Does your site generate leads and sales?• Have I identified and addressed the drop points in my conversion funnel?
Content Marketing StrategyDoes my content strategy pull my marketing, sales andSEO together for maximum return?• Have you identified your industries pain points?• Have you developed deep content to address those pain points?• Is your content strategy coordinated with your sales and marketing funnel to increase leads and close sales?• Does your content strategy have the potential to go viral?• Is your content received favorably and spread throughout relevant social networks?
Link BuildingIs my site earning links?• Have you established realistic link building goals?• Have you identified your target partners?• Do you monitor your target link partner’s websites for linking opportunities?• Have you setup Google Alerts to identify new linking opportunities?• Do you have an outreach strategy integrated with your editorial calendar to maximize new link opportunities?• Is your outreach team equipped with the research, tracking and reporting tools they need?
Questions to ask your SEO company.• What is your approach to link building? Listen for words that you want to hear such as “natural link development,” “content strategy / content marketing,” and above all “relational link building.”• How does SEO fit in the bigger picture of online marketing? SEO is inseparable from practically every aspect of online marketing and is even impacted by offline marketing. Be concerned if they say that SEO can work effectively as a siloed approach, or if they don’t need any coordination with you to be effective.• Can you promise me #1 rankings for my priority keywords? This is a trick question. You want to hear “no” because no SEO company can guarantee those results.