SEO PR – Part II
Always think about the user
Using targeted steps to improve the ranking in the search results of search engines, is one of the most effective marketing and communication activities. Handed to the so-called Search Engine Optimization (abbreviated SEO) from before to optimize your own website and to place yourself on specially created websites with appropriate keywords and your own URL, this engages today too: Google has changed and rewards the game rules well especially the creation and distribution of user-oriented content. Thus, the PR comes into play.
The main goal of Google and other search engines like Bing and Yahoo is to present to its users results that meet their expectations. Google’s current dominance is based on a revolutionary idea: Not only the content of a website decides on its evaluation, but also the number of “back links”, i.e. the number of links that lead you from external pages. The idea behind it: Who installs a link to another page on his own page, must indeed consider it relevant and important.
New rules at Google
But this really ingenious approach has been over the past years become a problem for Google. Because with the knowledge of this rule was born a whole back link industry, the back links on a large scale commercially man-made by link networks, web directories and pseudo press portals. As a result, an increasing number of enterprises returned to this possibility, and the hit lists were increasingly distorted.
To counteract the abuse, Google followed for some time new approaches: These include, among other things, that the bounce rate and time spent by visitors to a website shall be included in the evaluation. For it is obvious that internet users only stay on a website where they quickly realize that it provides the information sought. Furthermore, the longer they remain there, the more user-friendly designed is a website and more interesting or entertaining is its content.
Another key approach by Google is to identify suspicious patterns and developments in the area of content and back links and penalize it. As the number of back links to a corporate website is growing very abruptly, and these links are originated mainly from unknown or classified as suspicious third party sites (for example, pseudo press portals), the corporate side is devalued in the ranking. The same happens when Google discovers that a word of the same post is more or less simultaneously published on many dubious online sites, same if a so-called “duplicate content” is present.
On the content and contacts it comes to
What does the new Google’s strategy for businesses and Search Engine Optimization? In the first step, not much: Websites must continue to be designed in a way that search engines can recognize them as easily as possible and classify them thematically.
The related “homework” includes the identification of key terms (keywords) that are frequently sought in connection with your own business, and the inclusion of keywords in certain places on your own website. The online appearance must also obtain a structure involved in transmitting users as quickly as possible to the requested information, and must not contain any barriers that interfere with fast reading and assigning your own website – for example large image files, Flash animations or frames. Special software can help here uncovering aspects that are problematic from the perspective of search engines.
The new criteria of the Google ranking are taken into account in the second step: There must be continuously created new and interesting or entertaining content for the user and presented on your own website. The effect: The steady updates signal to the search engines that an active operator stands behind the website. And the valued content shall ensure that visitors stay long on the website, what search engine provides as an indication of a high quality and relevance of the page.
It is important for most online presence that the new information is related to other linked topics there. The contributions may not increase abruptly. Both of these would be for Google a reference to a page for artificial back link generation. Google makes an exception only when a web page naturally provides a wide range of new information, such as news sites.
Finally the third step is to place your own company together with matching keywords on third-party websites that Google ranks as serious – and the best in conjunction with back links.
Among the reputable sites are, for example, online media, expert portals, communities’ guides and popular blogs. Due to the impossibility of simply making publications on such sites, buying such a placement is tedious: For a content must always be created that interests those responsible and reputable websites and users that are best suited to their requirements. Secondly, the content needs to be actively offered to the person in charge, which often requires the establishment and maintenance of personal contacts. Only so there will be valued publications and thus a better and better positioning in the search results of search engines.
Search Engine Optimization needs Public Relations
All in all, against the backdrop of the new game rules at Google there is a clever combination of classical SEO tools with the instruments of PR: For while the SEO measures especially for the fulfilment of care “homework” from the definition of the best possible keywords to the technical optimization of the website, the creation of user-oriented and higher in quality content and its placement on reputable websites is a classic task of Public Relations. If both “worlds” carefully tuned to one another by means of an overall strategy, the PR side can usually use created content several times and achieve maximum effects in the search engine rankings.
Businesses, which lack staff capacity or appropriate skills for the development and implementation of a comprehensive SEO strategy, can turn to professional agencies. But an agency is an agency: When choosing you should make sure that neither the technical and content nor the communicative aspects are dealt with briefly.
On the market there are already models in which SEO and PR specialists cooperate to help companies achieve the greatest success and synergy. An example for this is seosupport GmbH, a SEO and online marketing agency in Berlin, and Industrie-Contact AG (IC AG), a PR and communications agency in Hamburg. Both service providers have been successfully working together since 2013.
About IC AG
Industrie-Contact (IC AG) from Hamburg serves well-known clients (B2C and B2B) in Germany and abroad. The core competence lies in planning and implementation of customized communications solutions for global players as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The customer support is provided by industry and topic specialized staff and management. In addition, the Agency of the Public Relations Global Network (PRGN) is networked with nearly 50 partners in all continents.
About seosupport GmbH
The seosupport GmbH from Berlin is owner-operated since its establishment in 2006 and has specialized in Search Engine Optimization and online marketing. With experts in all core areas of these domains of responsibility, the renowned company is excellently equipped for all aspects of online-based e-Commerce.