Journal - SEO - Linnihan Foy

The State of SEO

JANUARY 17, 2019

Re-Introduction in the Age of User Experience

by Kayla Trevino, Sr. Digital Strategist

Change is a part of life. In an industry where it’s your job to stay ahead-of-the-curve, there’s no time to kick your feet up and coast.

SEO has become almost an ambiguous acronym used in every digital conversation.

Designing a website? Did you consider SEO? Writing new copy? How will that impact our SEO? Developing a Paid Search strategy? How will this coincide with SEO?

It is an ongoing battle with a never ending revised definition. With many technical aspects as and usability factors, SEO impacts so many areas.

SEO sounds like this big, scary, unattainable thing, but it doesn’t have to be. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a lot of work, the time and money to be invested will always yield a positive return.

The All-Powerful Acronym

To start, let’s open up that acronym. SEO = Search Engine Optimization. That’s pretty straight forward if you think about it. We’re optimizing a website, a blog, a social channel, a press release for search engines (namely Google, but Bing is creeping up as a contender). We’re making it easy for those people doing a search to find you, those people asking a question to find you as their answer.

The Process

It used to be as simple as stuffing keywords at the bottom of the homepage. Remember that nonsense at the bottom? That was being written to grab Google bot attention. Those Google bots still exist, but their attention is much more difficult attain.

You don’t just pick the words you want, you have to build an experience. Copy, headlines, meta descriptions are all still important and a great place to start. Make sure (at the very least) these are all cleaned up. Technical SEO is all about details being available anywhere the Google bot looks. If you upload an image, that file name matters! Instead of image.jpg, make it mybusinessisawesomebecause.jpg.

SEO With Development and Design

Developers will tell you they do all the heavy lifting. They will make sure the functionality is flawless. Designers hold high the opinion that visitors won’t stick around long enough to buy what you’re selling if the experience isn’t good. At the end of the day, they are both right. It has to work (technical SEO) and it has to be easy to navigate (usability SEO).

Google’s technology has evolved to place priority on relevant content by balancing both technical and usability aspects. Each is important and each needs to be managed and monitored to stay useful for visitors and ahead of the competition. Blogging, posting new content on social channels, updating web copy to include high converting search terms are basic steps we take to make sure you’re getting found. Using tools and best practices to guide design, click-depth and optimized CTAs are how we make those visits count.

Starting Your SEO Journey

However, it’s important to remember that your own SEO journey is in your hands. Before you begin, it’s important to tie your process back to the user.

What’s more important to you?

  • Being found by the user
  • Converting users into leads
  • Both
  • The answer will help build the foundation of a strong SEO strategy – one that you can continuously measure and refine.