Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

with gusto

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and plainly put, it is the practice of making a website appear closer to first ranked in an unpaid listing when a person is searching for goods or service on the internet. This is desirable because consumers won’t spend much, if any, time looking through search results but tend to pick websites off the first page. Over the years search engines have kept refining their processes as to which sites get better placement, because they are in the business of providing the best search results. 15 years ago, SEO meant quality keywords; now it involves complex ranking algorithms and a whole lot of behind-the-scenes work.

So What’s the ROI?

While an SEO campaign can offer a host of other benefits if run effectively, it is designed to ultimately offer one sole deliverable: to increase your page rank position in the search engine results pages for search queries related to your business, subsequently driving more natural traffic to your website. Unlike Pay Per Click (PPC), where visible results can be instant, Organic SEO takes far longer and instead develops an air of credibility, which is more likely to add long-term value to your business.

How do we set up your SEO?

First, we use webmaster tools for both Google and Bing, the two biggest search engines. They provide the tools for us to run on your website, and will instruct us of any deficiencies they find. They will also tell us of any site indexing, search keyword ranking, Google’s known backlinks to the site, and improvements that can be done to make the site compliant to their strict process. This tool will also instruct us on how certain keyword techniques are performing and if changes to these techniques are merited or working. Then we:

  • Run Robot.txt verification
    Ensure spiders/bots understand what it should crawl, when, and how often.
  • Verify Google Places for Business
    A lot of traffic is generated from Google Places for business listings. This check ensures not only that it’s set up but is listed correctly under the proper category, and all attached information is accurate.
  • Verify and analyze Google Analytics, Webmaster tools, Google Adwords
    This process will help understand how traffic flows through the website and where it comes from. This will help us determine changes that are needed to the elements that search engines look for.
  • Research content optimization
    Research and discovery on relevant industry and competition is important to understand how the site performs compared to its peers–and how to improve. Through a process of determining keyword relevancy and potency, we can determine the proper avenues to optimize content for the best pagerank result.
  • Rank-check baseline
    This is a check and report of where the site is ranked in all major search engines for specific keywords. The keyword rank-check is based off keywords relevant to your industry and competition. More keywords sets are added to the SEO campaign as time goes on.
  • Backlink check
    It’s is very important to not only check your quantity of backlinks but the quality as well. Combing through these ensures quality backlinks. All non-organic backlinks are being eradicated by Google over time. This not only can cause a drop in search engine rank but also could penalize your site indefinitely.
  • Speed test
    It is important that your site loads quickly, that there aren’t any scripts or unneeded content hindering its loading performance. During the speed test we will be able to collect data on a number of factors that help determine the site’s overall health.
  • Meta description check
    Meta description has to be short, accurate, and most importantly, pair with and sell the content that is on the page.
  • On-page/Content optimization
    Hand-in-hand with meta info, page content needs to be tailored toward the audience you’d like to attract. This is a delicate balance because, conversely, loading up the page with keywords can also negatively affect index. This includes things like keyword density and h-tag content.
  • Markup validation
    Another important facet of the SEO process is testing and confirming that your pages are as valid as possible to being XHTML strict compliant. On some sites this is can be minor, for others this can be a full-time job.

SEO recurring work

  • Quality backlink creation
    Creation and hosting of quality backlinks on owned and operated sites. These backlinks are detailed, legitimate pages talking about your business without being heavy in keywords (keyword density/stuffing). Each one takes time but the results are undeniable.
  • Hand-creating backlinks on relevant industry websites with good page-rank
  • Continuation of content optimization
  • Continually manipulating content and site structure for keyword placement and content efficiency
  • Rank-checking and reporting
    Reporting month-to-month metrics on search engine keyword ranking progress. (Rank progress means more visibility to prospective customers).
  • Web traffic reporting
    Reporting month-to-month traffic for the site.
  • Backlink check
    Backlink count, check for spam or bad backlinks, report.
  • Check sitemap
    Check to ensure the sitemap loaded on Google and Bing webmaster tools is up-to-date
  • Check index amount
    Check that all pages are indexed. Sometimes Google or Bing won’t index all pages if they have a poor content rating or have errors or duplicate information/meta tags.