I recently completed a Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) training course to clue me in on all the "magic" and "voodoo" behind SEO.
Dispelling the Magic Of SEO
At work, I had SEO consultants galore telling me exactly what to change on my websites by throwing all of their opinions at me, etc, however, as most savvy of business people know, you should never just take things at face value: you should at least familiarise yourself with the topic you are, in essence, not familiar with, so that you are not blindly lead through unknown territories. This is of particular importance in areas such as SEO, which constantly changes, as it can have such a large impact on your business. Worse still, there are a lot of shady practices in the market (known in the industry as 'black hat' operators).
Naturally, after attending the course, I found exactly what I thought was probably the case: it isn't rocket science or a magic formula at all: it is common sense.
Of course, when I say "common sense", I mean that it makes logical sense after you have heard a professional white-hat trainer explain the main crux of SEO, as I did. I admit, it isn't something you can just guess at or stumble upon, but once an expert explains the main key points, it becomes quite intuitive.
SEO Is Simple But Labour Intensive
I will note that good SEO appears to be a mammoth, labour intensive task for most businesses, hence why larger businesses often (or should) employ/outsource a single person to specifically look after improving website content and SEO, as the commercial advantages are far worth it (as you will see from the SEO Cycle below).
The SEO Continual Cycle: Good Business Sense
One of the most important key pieces of information I took from my SEO training was, in fact, that effective and correct SEO activities don't just improve your search rating on engines like Google, it also improves your website for your customers- which makes perfect business sense and kills two birds with one stone. Actually, I think 'two birds with one stone' is incorrect: I think it is better to say 'go hand in hand'.
To put it simply, it is a cycle: your business has a website, you fill it with content, customers occasionally venture to your website, then you improve and update the content for SEO, your SEO ranking improves, more customers find your website, they stay longer and enjoy the higher quality content, you further continue to improve your content, customer satisfaction goes up, SEO ranking improves, and it goes on and on.
It truly goes to show how much Google intends to improve its search results to benefit its customers: all of us. After all, they are a profit-making company. But this cycle also emphasises how large a task it is to continually keep the cycle spinning. However, if a business wants to be profitable and capitalise upon their digital assets, customer satisfaction should always be at the forefront.
SEO Quick Tips
I decided to put together a quick list of SEO tips that I have been tweeting lately that some people may have missed. They are, by far, not the 'be all and end all', but they certainly were the signposts and most relevant key points that I took from the training course that I can offer in order to get readers started.
Good luck everyone!
Copywriter- Melotti Media
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Has mobile technology made things better or worse for us?
I was leaving work last night, and said to my colleague, "I'll see you Monday as I'm on training course tomorrow. I'll have my work mobile, just in case you need me, and monitoring my emails throughout the day."
To which she laughed. I was confused, and asked why she found that amusing.
She replied, "Well, isn't that just expected?"
Here in lies my question, or more, observation!
Have we reached the stage in modern business culture where, regardless of time and location, we are expected to be contactable? Now, I am a proud Gen Y member and, as a result, love my smart phone and social media, but it was that sudden realisation from my colleague's reaction that made me actually question it for the very first time.
I had always thought that being contactable pretty much 24-7 was a privilege that I myself had the option of choosing, and thus reaped the benefits from on my terms. However, I am starting to realise that, in today's age, the reality is that people just expect it from everyone, and if you aren't or you don’t respond immediately, they become frustrated and question why.
In a societal mind-set of 'now'.
The angry set of missed calls to your phone is no longer exclusively for the jilted lover- it's for your colleague, your manager, your friend, your mum... pretty much everyone who wants you then and there! We are in a society of immediacy at the moment, and this plays into the issue too. Everyone expects things immediately, and being contactable the moment that need arises is just a given today.
The recent statistics show that a person checks their phone around 200 times a day, which sounds like an awful lot, but when you actually consider your own habits, it suddenly becomes pretty reasonable. We all know too well that compulsion to touch the screen when it lights up, just to see if the notification is important or not.
In fact, even while at the gym for an hour where I don't take my mobile with me, I often come back to my locker to find my phone alight with voice mails asking: "Where are you?! Call me back asap..."
Convenience or burden?
Originally, the mobile phone and even the ability to work from home with Cloud technology was designed to be a convenience for the user, but that has done a complete 180 degree turn, and now become a convenience for everyone else to contact you instead. It's like walking around all day with a locator beacon on!
An interesting realisation for sure, and like anything, there are ups and downsides. Does anyone wish to weigh in?
Melotti Media - Copywriting and Marketing Services