What is SEO?
Search engine optimisation or SEO for short is the process of moving your website up the rankings of the major search engines such as Google and Bing. The higher up you are in the search results, the more chances you have of someone clicking on the link and visiting your website.
Think about this for a second. How many times have you put a query into Google and actually gone through to the second page or even scrolled down to the bottom of the first page? The answer to that is probably, not very often.
Studies show that the average user will not look past the first five listings on page one and 67% of all clicks go to the top five results.
Another study showed that the first page of a search engine receives almost 95% of all web traffic so if you are not on page one then your chances of getting any traffic from search are very slim.
Looking at those statistics, you can see what makes SEO so appealing. Once you are top of the search results for your main keywords, you will get most of the traffic for them search terms to your website for free.
Think about what that could do for your business, we all know that the more traffic and leads you get the more chance you have in closing a sale.
Local SEO vs National SEO
Before starting any project we need to find out who your customer is. If you are a local plumber that only covers Exeter for example, it would not be cost effective or even relevant for you to rank nationally for the keyword “Plumber”.
If however, you have an online store that sells watches, then you would probably not want to limit yourself to just local search but nationally you could make a great deal of money.
Generally speaking local SEO will cost you a lot less money than national, this is not always the case but in our experience there are more people targeting the national keywords, especially the more popular ones whereas with local search you are up against a lot less competition.
Most of our clients end up having a mixture of local and national SEO done on their website. We usually recommend that we start off with the local keywords as in general they tend to come in much faster than the country-wide ones.
For local terms you will usually be looking at around 3 – 6 months to start getting good rankings and 9 – 12 months for the larger national keywords.
Each case is different so we suggest booking a telephone meeting so we can discuss your needs and work out a plan to move forward with your SEO. Devon residents can arrange a face to face meeting however, if you are outside the area, we can only do a telephone call at the moment.
SEO Services We Offer
If you already have a website we need to look at how well the site is optimised already as well as where you are currently positioned in the search engines and if any changes need to be made like making your site mobile friendly.
We look at your competitors and see where they are ranking, how many backlinks they have and how well their onsite SEO is done. From this we can usually tell how difficult and how long it should take to get your website higher in search.
After seeing where you and your competition are ranking on Google we can start making a solid plan to move you up in the results as well as identifying other keywords that are relevant to your business that you may have overlooked.
On Page Optimisation
This is the number one ranking factor and getting this right will make a huge difference. We not only optimise for your keywords, we also optimise the page loading speed and add rich snippets and schema markup to your pages.
With over 50% of all searches now being done on mobile devices, part of Google’s algorythm now includes mobile friendliness. We can optimise and redesign your website so it loads fast and fits nicely on any device.
Site Wide SSL
Another ranking factor that Google has rolled out is SSL. This is the little green padlock that you see in the search bar at the top of the page. It means that the data from the website to the end user is encrypted. We can install this for you.
Many companies get this very wrong and think it is ok to put a backlink on any website. This does not work and will end up getting you a penalty. Links should come from similar sites on the same topic and be relevant to your business.
Off Page Optimisation
This includes writing content for other websites to get your brand out there as well as finding opportunities for link building. Social media also plays a role in driving traffic to your website and we can setup or optimise your social profiles.
Targeting The Right Keywords
Getting the right keywords for your company is always the first step. Choosing these is a bit more difficult than you may think and is dependant on many things, one of them being budget. Local keywords are a good place to start if you only cater to a certain area or are on a limited budget. A keyword such as “SEO in Devon” will cost a lot less money to rank than a national keyword such as “SEO”. Another thing to bare in mind is timescale. For local keywords, we usually find that it only takes around 3 to 6 months to get high up in the rankings whereas high volume national keywords can take up to a year to show any significant rankings.
Analyse & Increase Traffic and Conversions
Before starting on a project, we analyse search volumes in your industry and will give you a rough idea of the amount of traffic you should expect when your keywords are ranking.
Ranking is not the only factor that will get you clicks, many people overlook one of the key factors that will get your website a click above others and that is a good call to action.
Even if a website is ranking higher than yours in the search results, you could gain that extra click by making the text they see more appealing.
Avoiding The SEO Cowboys
We get a fair few calls from people who have been stung by SEO companies in the past.
Due to the nature of SEO it can take time for your website to rank and there lies the problem.
Unscrupulous companies can keep charging you every month saying they are doing work when, in reality they are either doing nothing or doing things that could harm your website instead of improving it.
Unfortunatly this is a story we hear quite often and it gives the industry a bad name but there are things you can do when looking for a company to work with.
Finding The Right Company
- Ask for references from the companies previous clients. Make sure you also ask for a phone number so you can speak to them directly and ask how the company did in getting them ranked, did they have any problems?
- Make a plan with the company. Any decent SEO company will tell you how they plan to move your website up in the rankings. If they will not tell you this information because it is “confidential” or giving away “trade secrets” then leave well alone. There shouldn’t be any secrets between the company and client and transparency is a must.
- Guarantees are lies. No one can guarantee a number one ranking on Google, not even us! If someone is telling you for certain that they can get you to number one then they are not telling you the truth.