Even though the internet is filled with stories of overnight success, search engine optimization is a slow and steady process. Building up a website's profile and reputation in search engines is a process that can take months to start gaining steam and producing results. But that doesn't mean that there's nothing you can do to promote your website in the short-term. While SEO will always be a good bet for generating long-term value, it doesn't necessarily have to be the only aspect of a good digital marketing campaign. In fact, there are plenty of other initiatives you can undertake that will work hand-in-hand with an SEO campaign. Having worked with many third-party agencies on joint projects, I've got a few recommendations on strategies that can produce valuable synergies alongside an SEO campaign.
1. Getting a better website
I've said it before and I will say it again, your website is your digital salesperson and you want the best one that you can afford to have on your payroll. If you need more conversions, one of the best things you can do is invest in a new site. Search engine marketing only gets users to your page, your site has to convert them from visitors into leads/sales. If your website looks dated, disorganized and sloppy, first time visitors may associate those qualities with your actual business. However, if you have a smooth and clean site that functions flawlessly and engages users - people are going to think you have your act together both online and off.
2. Creating Linkable Assets
Active link building refers to reaching out to other sites and persuading them to link to yours, passive link building focuses on creating awesome content that will naturally earn links over time. A piece of content that earns natural links is known as a linkable asset. It is never too early to start producing amazing content that the web will want to link to and share. This doesn't mean you need to start blogging about the day to day happenings in your office, or shooting random YouTube videos that feature office shennanigans - it means you need to answer the questions people have about your industry by creating informative and engaging content. Some examples of linkable content are awards, infographics and data visualizations, webinars, high quality videos and fun or useful tools and widgets to name a few.
3. Engaging in Social Media
A few years ago, I wrote off social media... oh how wrong I was. The main thing I have come to learn about content is that, if it's shareable, it's linkable. If your business can afford to hire a rock star social media consultant, it's highly recommended. Social media is all about building relationships and it centers around sharing and promoting content. If the people that see your tweets happen to run websites they may choose to cover your content on their site. Although it isn't the main purpose of social media, it has the fringe benefit of creating relationships that often lead to natural links further on down the road.
4. Working With A Public Relations Expert
The links that PR teams get and the links that SEOs get are fundamentally different, but if you want to see quicker returns it can help to invest in both. Link builders can schmooze with blog owners all day, but I know few solid link builders that have fantastic editorial connections at top industry publications. Another added benefit of PR teams is that they really round out your backlink profile to make it appear more natural. Most of the links I see that are acquired by PR teams use branded anchor text (i.e. Digital Third Coast as opposed to Chicago SEO) which is crucial for a natural looking backlink profile.
Most of these suggestions require a significant investment, either of time or money - but each one of them is worth it.You can work with an agency to just do SEO and have that be your only marketing channel, but it goes so much more smoothly when your SEO team can work in a synergistic fashion with other marketing initiatives. Additionally, each of these initiatives wont only help your SEO, they will help your overall business.