Most organisations now realise that SEO is a hugely important element of any marketing strategy.
SEO dictates the level of visibility of your brand and is an inextricable part of any content marketing strategy.
So how do you ensure that your websites tick all the right boxes?
How do you make sure that your websites are performing as efficiently and effectively as possible?
To begin with search engine optimisation is now all about value and quality. Content is King… right?
Not so fast!
Your content may be exceptional and your website might be state of the art in design and user experience but if you make any mistakes you will attract varying degrees of loss of trust or you will be marked down as a preferred solution to a given query.
The rise of technical compliance
This has been an incremental process and Google has been very clear that fast, efficient, error-free websites that don’t suffer from thin content or spammy backlinks will perform well in Google’s search results.
A series of major algorithm updates have targeted specific ranges of tactics – Panda, Penguin, Pigeon, Pirate, EMD, HTTPS/SSL, Payday Loan, Page Layout, Hummingbird, DMCA Penalty and several unnamed and unannounced updates.
Overall the requirements are fairly clear. But working through the increasing range of needed compliance factors has become increasingly complex.
Google Webmaster Tools
Webmaster Tools has become an essential addition to website performance analysis and this is where a large portion of research can be done. Google has been continually adding features to this tool and gives recommendations on what can be improved on your site.
This is also where Google advises if you have received a manual penalty for non-compliant behaviour or if you have security issues such as malware.
It is not surprising then that I recommend every website must have Webmaster Tools added and the data should be continually monitored.
Other recommended tools
There are a number of very useful tools that take care of different elements of your website. We use the Moz Suite, Ahrefs, Majestic, Screaming Frog and others to look at and analyse backlink profiles.
A clean, high quality link profile is extremely important. Any sign of manipulative behaviour and penalties can be severe resulting in removal from search results or a dramatic reduction in visibility.