As the push for content generation and social signals builds steam in the SEO world, I wanted to take a step back to examine some fundamental SEO techniques and best practices that are here to stay, regardless of how the Search landscape continues to evolve.
These practices can help earn you quick SEO wins as well as manage your overall online reputation. Notably, none of these items involve content creation; rather, these are initiatives you should implement at the very beginning of your SEO campaign, and continue throughout.
Competitive Back-link Analysis. Every SEO campaign should start with a self-assessment, as well as an analysis of the competitive landscape. This will help identify your current strengths and weaknesses, as well as uncover low-hanging-fruit for your early SEO efforts. To this end, Open Site Explorer is a great tool you can use to analyze your domain “authority” – a score assigned to your website based on a combination of the soundness of your site’s structure and online reputation. Open Site Explorer will show you how many external links point to your site, where those links are coming from, and how reputable those sources are. You can also compare your back-link profile against up to 5 competitors to try to uncover overlooked opportunities.
Brand Mention Alerts. Another essential SEO practice is to monitor the web for brand mentions. An easy and effective way to do this is via a Google Alerts subscription. To create one, navigate to alerts.google.com where you will be presented with a 5-field form. Simply enter your search terms, the mediums you want to search in, and how frequently you want results delivered – and that’s it!
Using Google Alerts to listen for brand mentions is helpful in two ways. First, it will alert you to anyone who is already talking about you or your company online. Getting a back-link from a webmaster where you’re already on the radar will be much easier than doing so as an unknown. Conversely, brand mention alerts will also uncover any negative press that might be turning up around the web. This will give you a chance to open a dialogue around those reviews and minimize their impact.
Link Building tactics that will get you domain authority, not penalties. Nowadays, it is especially critical to adhere to standards of quality when seeking out back-links; as Penguin tightens its grip, low-quality or irrelevant links can do much more harm than good. Going through major publicity channels such as HARO, PRWeb, or industry-specific authorities are great ways to gain organic thought leadership points any time you have a web-ready announcement.
Give these strategies a shot and start beefing-up your online profile!