Search Engine Optimisation
SEO or Search Engine Optimisation breaks down into three major sections:
- Native Results
- Pay Per Click Results
- Social Results
The best results are gained through a combination of all three, together with a good print based campaign.
Optimising your files for native results is an on-going activity, you would not buy a car and say 'I am not going to put any petrol...' and still expect to get to work, the key is building competitive research reports and acting upon this information over time.
Native results, built properly are cheaper than PPC results, the web pages have to be built with SEO in mind though. The 'Scoring' of your website is a lot like the results from 'Come Dancing', where different elements of your site score higher or lower values and by creeping your results up in a certain area you can increase your overall average, helping you to become a winner.
There is a whole dictionary of terms that need to be understood and manipulated by Search Engine Optimisation specialists, like KPI - Key Performance Indicators, KOI - Keyword Opportunity Index, .KEI - Keyword Effectiveness Index, and many more, but the important thing is not the wording but understanding what to do with all these figures and how to turn this into a ROI - Return on Investment for your customers.
Probably the most important thing for any new website, is to have patience with what I call 'The Simmer Effect'.
When you set up a fresh website you are competing with websites that have been set up for five years or more and have had £Thousands thrown at them, this may sound like bad news but many of these sites have a blotch in their relationship with the google robots. Freshly built websites are in a virgin state, and can do things right from the outset - when the developer and customer work together with the right mind set.
PPC or Pay Per Click
The value of PPC for driving traffic to a website is the most controversial subject in the web design industry, advisors have to weigh up how much traffic to the website is worth and this very much depends on the value of each sale, and the profit margin on each item.
This is also an area that has been open to fraud, any customer interested in running a PPC campaign needs to have the right analytics tools set up prior to starting the campaign. There should be a period of statistics over time run without the campaign, and when the campaign starts these should be compared with great care.
We only run Pay Per Click campaigns when the customers business model can support this, and the results can be measured clearly through ROI.
Certain business models respond really well to Social Networking, and Forums, taking part in other peoples social sites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Bebo, etc... can help you get fresh traffic on a daily basis.
If your website is suitable, building your own community can reap greater rewards through selling banner sponsorship, and eMarketing once your hit rate is high enough.