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Ranking in the Top Google Results, Part 2: Off-Site Optimization

By Bethany Bloise

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In Part 1 of this post, we talked about on-site optimization for appearing in the top of Google search results, touching on how it has changed in recent years. Similarly, businesses can no longer build links the same way or set up phony social media accounts for off-site optimization.

The following off-site tactics will boost and supplement your on-site optimization – for best results, make sure your business is optimizing on and off your main website!

1. Creating Off-Site Content

Social Media

  • Create and optimize your social media profiles with your business information and keywords. Review our guide for social strategy to determine which sites your business should be on.
  • Write keywords into your posts, but make sure you write for your audience. This includes modifying your posts on different platforms, using images instead of block text, and making your posts concise and engaging.
  • Connect to other users and share their content as well as your own. You’re building an online reputation with customers who will, hopefully, interact with your page, as well as others in your industry.
  • For ecommerce websites, consider utilizing Facebook contests to promote deals and host giveaway contests. You can also install a Facebook store app for certain sales platforms, such as Bigcommerce or Shopify.

Email Marketing

  • This off-site tactic can be used in conjunction with on-site content, such as white papers, which we talked about in Part 1 of this post. When people fill out a form to download your white paper, you can collect their email addresses in your email marketing service provider to use for campaigns. Just make sure that your form triggers an automatic email to them to confirm or deny subscription.
  • Create an engaging email campaign by focusing each message on what qualified customers in each stage of your sales cycle should want to read about. When you have a main topic for the message, it should be easy to focus on specific keywords. This does actually help your SEO!

Guest blogging

  • Guest blogging gets your name out on other sites and lets search engines know you are a trusted source of information – as long as the sites you blog for don’t have a reputation for being spammy. And, of course, make sure the sites you post on are relevant to your audience.
  • Choose a keyword to focus on in your guest blog. After you publish, post a similar blog on your own website, and make sure you hyperlink to the guest blog.

Link Building

  • There are several legitimate ways of building links on the Internet that lead users back to your website. One way is listing your business in online directories, allowing for more people to find you and give you reviews on those sites. We use getlisted.org to find and edit clients’ directory listings.
  • Sharing content on social media is another fantastic way to get links to your site. If you can get other users to want to share your content and send it around to their friends, that builds your authority on the Internet. However, note that you will be penalized nowadays for setting up fake user accounts and sharing your own business’s content.

 

2. Paid Search

PPC Strategy

  • Your business’s performance in pay per click advertising (we use Google AdWords) used to be determined by the amount you were willing to pay, correlated with the “quality score” of your landing pages. Since Google’s Hummingbird update, things have gotten a lot more competitive. It’s much harder to buy your way into search results now that the ranking algorithm focuses much more on quality.
  • To move up in Google’s paid search rankings, you now must use site link extensions to improve your ads. Those links need to be optimized and need to lead to some quality landing pages. And, of course, make sure it include keywords in your ad copy.
  • If you’re running an ecommerce website, you also have the option of setting up a Google Merchant account and adding all of your products to a feed so that they show up in Google shopping results. If you transfer the feed to Google AdWords as a Product Listing Ads campaign, you can pay for your products to show up in search results.

 

3. Google Bonus

Google Places For Business

  • Verifying your business on Google Places allows your business information to be found in search and map results. It’s a great way to connect with your clients and customers. Make sure your details are always updated!

Google Carousel

  • Google Carousel is a new way of displaying local search results and reviews at the top of search bars. This feature is still developing, but most restaurants and hotels will show up there now. Check out how it works and what it looks like in this helpful article.

How long does it take to see results? Just like on-site optimization, it could be a matter of months before you start to climb in the rankings – if you are consistently creating quality content. It’s a lot of work, but when you need help you can always contact Imagebox!

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