Although paid and organic search work best together, organic search almost always brings a greater volume of visitors to your site. According to BrightEdge data, organic search was the largest driver of traffic to websites and the largest driver of revenue in most sectors studied. Optimizing your website and content to attract search engine users organically is therefore essential to any marketing strategy. In today’s post, we’re sharing our three easy tips to make the most of organic search.
In recent years, Google has shifted its algorithm away from keyword matching, and increasingly emphasizes topic association in its search results. In other words, Google wants to determine the intent behind searchers’ keywords. When users enter search queries, Google matches the intent based on search data, click data and the wording used by searchers in order to return richer and more relevant results. Google segments all queries into four buckets: navigational (trying to reach a particular site), informational (acquiring information), commercial (looking for advice on buying decisions) and transactional (making a purchase or completing a task online). The right keywords for your business depend on their intent bucket.
As part of your SEO strategy, we recommend using searcher intent to determine the focus keyword for each page of your website. Searchers may visit your site for different purposes (for example, if your business sells surgical supplies, users may come to your site for information about your products or to make a purchase). Think of one to five terms or phrases for each page that might be used for more than one bucket of intent (navigational, informational, commercial, or transactional), and choose the best one to incorporate into each page’s URL, metadata, and page content.
Making URLs search-friendly is useful because search engines use URLs to understand the path a page points to. The Search Engine Journal identifies three key aspects of search-friendly URLs. First of all, they should be straightforward. For example, URLs that point to duplicate content should include canonical tags, which tell search engines which URLs contain original content and which should be crawled by search engines. Secondly, URLs should be meaningful, complete with keywords and devoid of meaningless numbers and punctuation marks. This makes URLs more logical for human interpretation as well. Finally, your URLs should emphasize the most important pages of your site. That is, if you have many insignificant or hidden pages on your site, spend time focusing on the pages that you most want crawled by search engines when optimizing URLs.
Anchor text refers to the clickable text in a link. In order to optimize SEO, make anchor text relevant to the page to which it’s linking, instead of using generic or irrelevant text (like “click here”) as your links. In recent years, Google has begun to emphasize and scrutinize the keywords within anchor text, and now becomes suspicious if a site frequently generates referral traffic from the same anchor text across a large number of inbound links, as this indicates that the links weren’t acquired naturally. We recommend creating a variety of meaningful anchor links across your site and in the content others publish about you, instead of referencing the same keywords each time.
Given the benefits of both organic search and paid search, combining the two often yields higher profit than when either is used alone. To learn more about integrated search engine strategies, check out our past blog on search engine marketing campaigns.