The most creative solutions occur due to the biggest obstacles with IT companies. Without limitations, there would be no real need to get creative except as a way to pass the time. Anyone and everyone can solve a problem when nothing blocks a solution and most will come up with the same solution, the most efficient one for the problem at hand.
However, search engines are full of obstacles and those obstacles can change almost daily without your knowledge. Against that, creative SEO isn’t an option, it’s a requirement. Here is your chance to be a knight in shining armor, jousting for first place in the Google rankings every day, not with overwhelming strength but with cunningly creative offensive and defensive moves that will make you the leader in the IT industry.
One: A Website Audit
OK, that doesn’t sound creative but when you take into account how few companies perform a regular audit of their website, deciding to do one can reap you big benefits fast. In fact, the longer your website has been up and the longer since your last site audit, the bigger the bang just because there has been more time for errors to creep into the system, like those crazy 404 errors that frustrate everyone.
Two: Schema Mark up and Rel=Author
Which will you notice first: the grackle or the bird of paradise? Something that makes your entry stand out from the rest of the listings on a search engine results page will get you noticed (and clicked on) faster than the other, blander looking results. With both schema markup providing stars for ratings, additional metadata about the result, and even a human face, who could resist?
Three: Use PPC Sources for Organic Keywords
Take all that great data you get from your PPC campaigns and use it to select the best keywords to use in your website content. You’re already paying out the nose for the term, why not get more use out of it for SEO?
Four: Remove Duplicate Content
Google frowns on reams of the same content on multiple pages of your site. Sorry, no cheating by copying and pasting the same paragraph to eight different pages, no matter how well it fits.
Five: Use Responsive Web Design
If you think you don’t need to optimize for mobile because your data shows little of your traffic originating from it you have put the cart before the horse. You may find out after implementing responsive web design that you get an explosion of mobile traffic. Users avoided your site until it became more mobile friendly.
Six: Constantly Add Content
Search engines are like vegans: they require everything to be fresh. If you have an onsite blog part of your work is done because you are adding new content several times a week. But you want to make sure to post all your news releases, company mentions, and other stuff as it happens as well to boost the crawl rate.
Seven: Incorporate Keywords into URLs and Title Tags
If you aren’t putting your most relevant keyword into the page URL and title tags you are missing out on a lot of easy pagerank power. These are two key areas search engines use to determine page relevance thinking, correctly, that if a keyword is in the URL and in a title tag then the page is most definitely about that. (Unless you are being naughty and using black hat tactics.)
Eight: Provide Social Sharing Buttons On-Site
While the most recent Google algorithm changes have had an impact on link building practices, it doesn’t mean you should stop link-building activities. You just want to be sure you are linking to and from sites that are highly relevant to your customers. With social sharing buttons you can practically guarantee the relevancy. Why else would anyone share your site if it he didn’t think someone looking for your exact offering would want to know?
Nine: Content Curation (AKA Newsjacking)
The word newsjacking has a rather negative ring to it but the practice itself is actually becoming widely spread. And there isn’t anything illegal about it. By linking to relevant (stressing relevant here) articles and sites and providing your own commentary on why your readers should pay attention to it you take advantage of the popularity and exposure of a more highly trafficked site while getting some SEO juice for yourself.
Ten: Write for Readers, Not Google (Or Any Other Search Engine)
Saving the most important for last, you should put this first in your writer’s guidelines. Yeah, it’s important to rank well on the search engines because it’s a good bet that much of your traffic originates there.
But once somebody gets to your page you want them to stay. They won’t stay if you don’t have quality content that contains valuable, relevant information (have I said relevant enough yet?), that is easily read online.
Content that simply repeats the same keyword ten times will not do. Poor spelling and grammar won’t fly. Bad writing will get you nowhere. If you want your bounce rate to match your visitor metric, that’s up to you. But if you want visitors to stay, consume, and become customers, write like an intelligent business person imparting great information to the uninformed.
There have been noises going around that SEO is dead. That is patently not true. Bad SEO is dying a quicker death and any attempts to game the system will be met with resistance by the search engines. So instead of trying to outwit Google, start writing for your customers. You will find your search engine rankings improving along with the quality of your content.