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SEO: Forget Keywords. Think Topics

top of mind marketing. Keywords have evolved. Think topics

Search engine optimization (SEO) keeps evolving. It’s still about showing up in search, making your website more visible to those who are looking for the solutions that you provide. But the techniques to improve your rankings have changed, and it has to do with those notorious algorithms that are constantly on the move. Search engines have grown more sophisticated; they’re now using updated algorithms and practices to determine the contextual meaning behind keyword-based searches.

Search engines exist to solve your problems . . .

And they’re getting much better at predicting what you want. The old days of randomly filling up a page with keywords is over—search engines recognize this for what it is—shameless keyword stuffing. Good content is nonnegotiable. In order to rank you, search engines look for title tags, keywords, image tags, internal link structure and inbound links. Also figuring in are navigation structure and site design–these are things we can easily execute ourselves.

Build your SEO strategy around topics, not keywords

Keywords should feel natural, not forced, but your focus should be on the intent of your audience. Build your SEO strategy around topics, not keywords. If you do that, you’ll be naturally optimizing for keywords. For example, if you’re writing about planning a wedding, you don’t need to list every single wedding detail—champagne, catering, food, cake, flowers, photographer, music and all the other details. Google, in all of its wisdom, knows this. It understands the topic of wedding planning.

It’s not just about your website; building backlinks

Search engines work on your overall web presence, and backlinks are an important component. Any link from someone else’s website to yours (or any other site) is a backlink. Backlinks help Google find new pages on your site faster, and they’re associated with increased credibility and trust.

How to build backlinks? Look for opportunities to be a guest blogger and include a link back to your website. Links should be from websites and content that are relevant to your focus. A really easy way to build links is to post your blogs to your Google Business Page. You can post a blog excerpt with a Learn More button and link back to your website. Easy.

Your social channels are an important part of your SEO value

Social can have a big impact on your organic search. Think about what goes on with our social activity—sharing posts, tweeting and retweeting. It could be through a Facebook friend, Twitter follower, a connection through another social network or something totally unrelated. Sometimes social search will even prioritize content that has been shared by an influencer.

Our challenge is creating search experience optimization. We want users to not only find our websites but to stay there, drill down through our content and come back later and become a customer.

Does an SEO analysis and upgrade of your website need to be part of your marketing strategy? Contact Top of Mind Marketing. We’re writers and digital marketing specialists.