What SEO Services Does My Business Need?
To find the best SEO services for your needs, it helps to understand the state of your current website and how it stacks up to the competition in your industry.
Here are five steps to evaluating your site and understanding your biggest needs:
1. Check your site?s domain authority
Use Moz?s Link Explorer to examine domain authority (DA). DA predicts ?how well a website will rank on search engine results pages (SERP).?
It?s a sitewide metric on a scale of 1-100. Find your DA, then look at the DA of your competitors.
Use competitors that are in the realm of your business? size. For example, if you?re a new restaurant in town, don?t compare your domain authority to Chipotle?s. They will have more links, content, etc., and it?s just not a fair comparison.
If your DA is?
- Lower than that of your competitors, you may need links to bolster your content?s ability to rank.
- Similar to that of your competitors, your content is likely on an even playing field with that of your competitors.
- Higher than the DA of your competitors, you?re in great shape. Your content likely has an advantage compared to your competitors.
If you need links, look for a company with experience growing its client?s ranking prowess.
Questions to ask these companies:
- Did they use content?
- Did they actively build links?
- How did they compete on a playing field that was initially stacked against them?
2. Look through your blog (if you have one)
Are you blogging? If not, you probably should!
Each time you publish a blog, you?re giving your site another opportunity to rank. When ranking content, Google examines each page individually.
Publish more, and you?ve got more opportunity. Pick the right keywords to target and create quality content.
Target keywords that are?
- Frequently searched
- Not too competitive (Google your keyword and see who ranks for it)
- Relevant to your products/services
If you check off those three items, that?s a great keyword target.
Most SEO services include some sort of content and content strategy. Your service provider should know about?
- Keyword strategy?Find and prioritize the right keyword targets.
- Search intent and content structure?To rank, your content needs to be relevant and user friendly. Your hire must understand what people are looking for (their search intent) and how to create a structure that satisfies their intent.
- Good writers?Google evaluates content quality. If writing is poor, people won?t engage, and your rankings may not reach their full potential.
3. Examine your title tags
Navigate to your site?s homepage, and hover over your browser?s tab. Your page?s title tag should pop up.
In nearly all cases, your homepage title tag should include a combination of keywords before your brand, which comes at the end of the tag.
If your company name is GobbledeGook and you sell WobbleFogs and TrinkleTogs, then your title tag should look something like this:
WobbleFogs and TrinkleTogs | GobbledeGook
If you?re a local company, add your city!
[Location] WobbleFogs and TrinkleTogs | GobbledeGook
Look at other important pages on your site (e.g. products/services), and insert keywords at the front of the tag.
Stay under 70 characters, and your tag won?t get cut off in search engine results.
If you?re not sure about title tags and want an expert handling such changes, make sure they know how to optimize these tags.
4. View your keyword rankings
What keywords are you ranking for? What do you want to rank for?
View keyword rankings to find new keywords to target or other keywords you can optimize for.
If you?re not ranking for a keyword, look for your site?s weakest link for that keyword.
- Is your target keyword in the title tag?
- Do you have a DA that?s reasonable, given the keyword?s SERP competition?
- Does your content adequately target the keyword? Do you go above and beyond? How does it compare to content on the other sites that are ranking for the same keyword?
Talk with potential service providers about what keywords they would target (or their process for finding/evaluating keywords), and make sure they have a sound process.
5. Grade your website?s design
Design isn?t usually considered an SEO factor. But if you have a crappy homepage, poor images, or bad writing, consider improving your site?s user experience before diving into SEO.
On a scale of 1-10, how good is your site? How do it?s style, navigation, copy, and graphics compare to your competitors?
If it?s as good or better, great! If it?s worse, consider improving the user experience so that it?s clear, navigable, and as good as your competition.
Finding the Right Company
Once you have a basic understanding of the SEO puzzle, you?ll know where your website may be falling behind and where there?s opportunity for improvement.
Learning the basics is an excellent start. You don?t need to know all the details?if you?re looking for SEO services, your provider can help with that.
Knowing the basics, however, can put you in a better position to find the right company with expertise in your specific needs.