The Important Trend in SEO and Inbound Marketing for 2015
Needs to be transparency and honesty.
I continue to see claims that your business can get to the top of Google in a week. Their proof is that a specific search phase does appear at the top of Google in only a week. What they don’t say is it’s a search term nobody searches for. They’re not lying per se, they’re just not being honest.
I continue to hear sales people from SEO firms tell me what they do is proprietary and special and if revealed would negatively impact their business. Those people are lying. We all work under the same rules.
What Does It Mean to be Honest with SEO and Inbound Marketing?
Explain how Inbound Marketing and SEO work in terms anyone can understand
It’s not hard. As I said earlier, we’re all playing by the same rules. If you understand them you can explain them. If you can’t explain them, I’m inclined to think you don’t understand them.
Be an Educator More Than a Service Provider
The degree to which this is needed varies from customer to customer. Some want you just to handle it. Others want to know everything. Independent of how much detail they want, openly share. Be mindful of the trade off of time vs money. You can’t spend 10 hours educating a customer who pays very little, but the main point is to be free with the details of how Inbound Marketing works.
Set Proper Expectations for Results
Results do take time. Be upfront about this. If you lose the client because they want someone who lies to them about getting it done quickly, working with the client will not go well. You’ll make some money for some time, but after that they’ll bad mouth you to other business owners as you failed to meet their expectations.
Dispelling Some SEO and Inbound Marketing Myths
Let me take an opportunity right now to dispel some of the most common false myths about SEO and Inbound Marketing.
It’s All About SEO
SEO is foundational. It MUST be there and it must be done right. Houses need foundations, but houses are NOT all about foundations. Inbound Marketing needs SEO but it’s NOT all about SEO.
It’s all about publishing useful information to your website and sharing the good stuff.
Long Posts Work Better
Long posts rank higher, but….. sites with more posts rank higher than sites with fewer posts. The bulk of what you publish to your website should be short sweet and to the point. One post should answer one question or share one main idea. Your short posts then link to your longer posts to give them more authority and increase their ranking.
When I worked with Bill Belew I assisted as he taught a class at International Technological University in downtown San Jose. The class allowed us to run an experiment. Some students published multiple “snippet” (short) posts every day, while other students published one “pillar” (longer) post per day.
SEO is Best Left to the Pros
Again, SEO is foundational. It’s really all about publishing and sharing. Will someone outside your business know your business better than you do? Will someone outside your business have your network of contacts to share articles with?
I agree with the idea that non mission critical activities should be outsourced. Inbound Marketing IS mission critical. I’ve seen it transform businesses.
You should strongly consider having someone in house learn it and do it.
It’s All About Keywords
Not so much anymore. Google started rolling out their Hummingbird algorithm update about 18 months ago. Hummingbird is the beginning of the end of keywords. While keywords are not yet completely irrelevant, they’re less relevant with every Hummingbird update.
Today it’s all about the quality of what you publish and well it addresses the needs of real people. It’s also about who references (links to) the stuff on your website.
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