It’s a fact: SEO professionals can spend thousands of hours a year managing a large site’s SEO. When you start digging into your Search Engine Optimization, the depth to which you can plumb your site’s content and the search engine possibilities are endless – limited typically only by your budget. On the other end of the spectrum are those who prefer a “set it and forget it” style of SEO. Either they’re lapsed marketer – they did some optimization long ago, like when the site was built – or they’ve installed SEO plugins and tracking codes but never done much of anything with any of it. This article is meant to address “set it and forget it” SEO and explain the drawbacks in not actively managing your search engine presence.
1. At its core, search engine optimization is about testing.
No two sites share the same search engine profile. With different audiences at different stages in the purchase cycle, it’s impossible to give perfect recommendations on how to improve a site’s search engine presence without testing the results of our best practices. For a site owner who has installed analytics but not ever really looked at them, there’s been no testing, and therefore, no improvement. Any variation in the month-to-month traffic, average time on page, or other metrics are at the whim of lady luck. The key to making big gains in search engine optimization is hypothesis testing: form a hypothesis, develop a test case, and analyze the results.
2. Search represents many moments of truth.
If we define a moment of truth as a time in the purchase funnel where decisions are made – adding brands to the funnel, removing brands, moving to consider purchasing, or making a purchase – then search engines have access to people at each of these various moments of truth. There’s a great advertisement from Google – Search On – about how search helps people make decisions in these moments of truth. Watch it and enjoy.
3. SEO changes. Regularly and unpredictably.
The ‘flavor of the month’ in SEO this month is radically different than it was 6 months ago. Industry trends are cyclical and they change, so what’s in vogue for search engine marketers changes from month to month. And this is a good thing: it prevents overfocusing on a single element of your site, like your social media presence, and instead looking at your sales funnel as an engine fueled primarily by holistic, multimedia content. Overlooking SEO from month to month means you’ll miss out on what’s working best at the moment, and more importantly, you won’t be available to adapt to changes in trends or penalties. The only sites that got dinged by Panda, Penguin, or Hummingbird were sites without full-time white hat SEO professionals!
When you partner with Ballantine to better optimize your website, we’ll help you track the success of your campaign so you can achieve your business goals. Contact our professionals today at 973-305-1500 to get started!
I'm the Director of Digital Services and Partner at Ballantine, a family-owned and operated direct mail & digital marketing company based in New Jersey. and started in 1966 by my great uncle!