Proper search engine optimization doesn’t exist alone, it must be pursued as a bigger picture in marketing your website online. Adequate doesn’t cut it in the competitive world of online business and therefore a comprehensive plan needs to be in place that concentrates on building your websites presence online. This process combines several elements that come together to properly showcase your website to search engines to rank within the top ten organic search results.
Optimizing websites, otherwise known as SEO, has not been around that long. It is interesting to note that marketing websites really didn’t become a popular idea in web exploration until around 1998. Until then the concept of marketing evolved more from the point of view of a store front with products or services that business owners needed customers to know about. The concept of the 4 P’s of marketing: product, price, place, and promotion were mainstream. They concept of marketing evolved as the internet became a main stream way for business owners to conduct business.
Old school marketers, like myself, had been trained in a manner that did not involve e-commerce. As the internet has become a more common element in day to day life the techniques that we use have also had to evolved. Whereas a listing in the yellow pages of every county you serviced would have been a great tool to use back in the 80’s today most homes do not even have a phone book and many children under 18 have never been introduced to the yellow pages.
When it comes to knowing what a search engine is looking for in ranking your site it is impossible to come up with a solid formula to follow. In SEO you must learn to be fluid and adjust what you are doing consistently as the times change and search engines become more aware. For optimization to be effective you must truly be a savvy marketer that is willing to do what it takes to continually improve your website.
There truly is more involved in good SEO than driving traffic to your site. Not only does the traffic need to be able to find you but your site must offer them what they are looking for. Your website must be engaging and offer the user something of value. It is also crucial that the traffic that is making its way to your site is your target. If you are selling cat food but the only people finding your site, even if they are finding it by the thousands, are people that love dogs and allergic to cats then it is ineffective. With the competition that is found online it is imperative that the users that make it to your site are interested at that moment in what you are offering and are engaged in the information presented on your site.
The 4 p’s of marketing still exist in the digital marketing era. Let’s examine this in a little more detail.
It is important that this element is defined before you are addressing your online marketing needs. Who are the customers that you are looking for; what are you offering them and how does it benefit them? What are these consumers end goals; how does your product or service help them to obtain it. Define the struggles that your market faces and what your product or service does to ease them. Understanding who you are selling to and what you are selling is obviously a key element that needs to be defined before beginning any marketing campaign, especially online.
A lot of research goes into determining a price point. The price that you will be able to charge is totally dependent upon the value that people perceive that they are gaining from your product or service. All businesses are in business to make money unless of course you are non-profit. The amount that is charge must cover costs and a profit. The trick to this is that people must perceive your product or service to be worthy of this amount. If people are only willing to spend $5 on your widget but it costs you $4.75 in overall expenses, it is up to you to decide if the profit of $.25 is enough in the end. If you are selling widgets at $6 and people aren’t buying them it is obvious to see there is an issue.
If you are running an online business, it is a must that the market for your product is online. Will your consumers know to look for you online? Does your business also service consumers at a physical location? Does your website only offer information about your products or services or is it an e-commerce or a combination of both? It is imperative that you define what is taking place on your site and determine if the targeted consumer is going to be able to find you where you are at.
This is how your marketing message gets out to the public. With traditional marketing this is done through print, radio and other types of advertising but in digital marketing it combines several avenues and making sure you reach all of them. The internet is a combination of advertisements, paid and organic search results, information blogs, videos, and so much more. Your job in SEO is to come up with a combination of sources to use to spread the word about your company. If your target mainly uses videos to gain information, then only advertising on informative blogs is not going to be a solution for you as is the opposite. You need to offer useful promotions, to users in sources that they will benefit from.
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