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Why Isn't My SEO Working?

SEO Not Working?

I was on a call with a client the other day. He talked about SEO (search engine optimization / a.k.a. getting higher search engine rankings) like he had it covered because he was paying some company somewhere $50 a month. He then proceeded to ask me why he wasn't ranking that well.

Let's analyze this. How much work would you do at your company for just $50 a month? Not much, right? When you factor overhead expenses and taxes and everything, you might make, what? $15-$20 on that work? You're probably not going to break your back for that. With that said, I don't know why this client was expecting miracles with just that $50 a month for SEO. It's really no wonder why he wasn't ranking well. Expectations were completely out of line. I didn't scold him for it (and didn't say it quite like that) but I made some comments to try to get him to come to this conclusion himself.

Here's some information to help you learn more about SEO along with some things to avoid.

Another SEO Mistake

Snake oil!

Yes, there's offers for many "magic pills" out there - these are ways that will just completely skyrocket you to the top of Google without Google knowing what hit them because you used this one piece of software. Believe that? If that were true, wouldn't everyone be doing that? If everyone were doing that, wouldn't it then be difficult to rank high because everyone is doing the same thing?

That's exactly why there are no "get rich quick" scheme out there. Once everyone starts doing the same thing, it's no longer quick and easy. If you happen to get in on something that actually is new and works, then that's where you may benefit - before the masses get it - but only then.

Bottom line... by the time these snake oil offers get out there, they're already overused and outdated. Google has caught on or they will very soon. Don't go from magic pill to magic pill. You are just wasting time, spending money and not getting anywhere. Your best bet is a long term, planned approach that will be something Google wants for years and years to come.

So What is That Approach?

Here's a simple SEO plan that works.

Before I spill the beans, people wonder why we tell our clients how to do it. Well, that answer is simple... it takes work and lots of it. It's a lot of grunt work and my guess is that most business owners' time is worth a lot more than doing this grunt work. We love to tell them how to do it because it shows them the value we provide and all that we go through to get websites to rank higher. It's important people understand what has to happen, how much work it will take and why it will take time for their website to rank well. The great thing is that once it does, you get long-term results and it takes less effort to stay on top (in most cases - meaning, don't ask us to rank #1 for "digital cameras" unless you have a quarter million to spend).

On with the steps:

  1. Install Google Analytics (GA) and Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) - This is step one. We need good statistics. There are some other tools and plugins we may install as well since Google now doesn't tell you everything - like they used to.
  2. Do Keyword Research - We may have to wait for some stats to build up. If you already have GA and GWT installed for a while, then we can get going on this right away. We see how people are getting to your website, what keywords they're using that you're not getting clicks for (yet) and also what other related terms would be good to focus on.
  3. Match Keywords to Pages - We then match keywords to pages and do targetting.
  4. Do On-Site SEO - Your website may need to either be tweaked or totally redesigned.
  5. Do Off-Site SEO - This is what takes a while. We slowly build links to your website from strong websites. These links are like votes for your website. There's a number of ways to do this and, if not done correctly, could actually hurt your rankings. Only trained experts should do this or give you guidance.
  6. Wait
  7. Add More Content - Add a lot more content to your website. This may be anywhere from 30-60 pages or more. If you're going to be found for a keyword, your website has to be about that keyword. It has to be original content.
  8. Wait Some More
  9. Go Back to Step 2 - Lather, rinse, repeat. From here, we're going back, doing research, tweaking, adding more content, waiting and checking again until you get your desired results.

There you go - SEO in less than 10 steps!

Obviously, each step has many sub-steps and it's a lot of work. You have to know which SEO tools to use, which keywords are good, where to get links, etc. etc. It's a lot of research and it takes experience to make the right moves. Since it takes time, you want to take correct steps. Sometimes we may take the wrong steps because a part of this is experimentation but in general, you'll start seeing improvement.

What is the Cost?

It's totally going to depend on your industry and how much competition there is. Some websites are easier to rank than others. Expect higher costs to get started and then for costs to plateau as we go into "repeat" mode.

For more information about Wisconsin SEO or SEO for your website, please contact Webstix today.

-Tony

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