Achieving success online is rarely ever simple or easy. No matter what industry you’re in or what product or service you provide, there’s likely to be hundreds or thousands of competitors all vying for the attention of a similar audience on the internet.
Getting found online by your target customers is, however, a fairly simple and straightforward proposition (at least initially): just get your website to rank as high as possible in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Not so fast.
Optimizing your website or other digital assets so that they’re easier to find online is a highly specialized, ever-changing discipline known as Search Engine Optimization, and it’s been around since the dawn of search engines themselves.
Unless you happen to know about things like bounce rates, alt tags, meta descriptions, and keyword density, doing your own search engine optimization will likely be time-consuming, frustrating, and maybe even counterproductive.
This is why so many businesses outsource their SEO to qualified digital marketing professionals (like us!) to save time and money, and to get found online sooner.
To better understand why outsourced SEO is such a hot topic these days, let’s take a look under the SEO hood and see exactly what an SEO specialist does. Then, we’ll tackle the question of whether or not outsourcing your SEO is a good move for your business.
What to Expect from an SEO Expert
If you were to hire an SEO professional to optimize your website for better search engine traffic (also known as organic traffic), one of the first things they’re going to do is establish a benchmark for how your site is performing today.
This can be done a number of ways, but one of the most common and insightful is through the use of powerful SEO tracking platforms like Google Search Console, Google Analytics, or Bing’s Webmaster Tools.
Once your current SEO performance is dialed in, it’ll be time to look at some of the fastest and most effective changes you can make to your website. Some of these changes are likely to include optimizing your site pages so that they’re as relevant as possible to the keywords that your potential customers are most likely to use when searching for the product or serving you provide.
Finding the best keywords to target is a task known as keyword research, and it’s involved enough to warrant an entire article on how it’s best conducted. But, for the sake of brevity, all you really need to know is that performing keyword research helps to inform the tweaks that are made across your entire website. Without adequate keyword research, any SEO efforts will be doomed to failure.
On-Page vs. Off-Page SEO
After obtaining some performance benchmarks and conducting some fundamental keyword research, an SEO expert is going to begin working on on-page and off-page search engine optimization.
On-page SEO relates to the structure, organization, and format of the content that exists within your website’s domain. This content could be your service pages, blog posts, About page, or Resources section.
Off-page SEO has to do with anything that references your website from an external location. Examples include bookmarks on other websites, links to your site on other blogs, or news articles that link back to your website.
There are a host of best practices related to both on-page and off-page SEO, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach for every website. This is where an SEO expert’s experience and knowledge can really shine, as he or she can use their understanding of how Google, Bing, and Yahoo! will prioritize your site in search results to make the most impactful changes.
In addition to on-page and off-page SEO, there is another subset of SEO changes to make—changes that have more to do with site performance than anything else. These changes belong in the category of technical SEO, and they include such aspects as:
- Website load speed
- Crawl error analysis
- Mobile compatibility (how well your site works on mobile phones, tablets, etc.)
- Correcting broken links
- Site security
- User Experience/User Interface (UX/UI)
So, Should You Hire an SEO Firm?
As you can see, search engine optimization is a complex and time-intensive process that requires extensive knowledge to get the best results.
Should you take the time to learn SEO on your own, or should you outsource the job to a qualified firm like Sympler?
The answer depends on a variety of factors including your budget, existing site performance, the industry you operate in, and other variables. The good news is that you can find out how much it would cost to get help from SEO professionals at no cost.
To learn more, or to schedule a free SEO consultation, get in touch with us today.