Where is YOUR business currently ranking on Google?

Introduction

Your business’s marketing strategy is like growing a tree: without the right nutrients and solid foundations, your sapling won’t grow into the lush, green tree that it could become.

In a world where it seems everyone is online 24/7, the competition for first position ranking is greater than ever. So, what marketing strategies and tools will your business implement to appear on the first page of Google and other search engines?

This guide delves into three marketing strategies that will influence the way you identify and structure your business’s marketing strategy including Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), and Social Media Marketing (SMM).

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of improving online visbility by utilising unpaid marketing strategies within search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. In contrast, Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a form of paid advertising either through Google Ads (PPC) or advertising on social media platforms. Lastly, the above two marketing strategies can work in conjunction with Social Media Marketing (SMM), a form of online marketing that involves sharing written or visual content through various social platforms.

Your business’s marketing strategy needs the right nourishment to grow to its full potential. Read on to discover how to reach your audience through utilising these marketing strategies.

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Chapter 1: What is SEO?

Search Engine Optimisation, commonly referred to as SEO, is the process of being found organically through unpaid marketing strategies within search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo. SEO is a regular and ongoing process that uses strategic content creation and positioning to improve user experience and online visibility.

This form of marketing is ideal for the long-term. The more active your site is (uploading up-to-date content, link building and other factors) the more authoritative, credible, and trustworthy it becomes. In turn, Google, along with other search engine bots, will thoroughly crawl through and index your site’s information and rank it accordingly.

Discoverability

  • How can I make my site visible to the right target audience?
  • What marketing strategies should I be implementing?
  • What are my SMART Goals?
  • Why won’t my business appear when I search "local businesses near me"?

These questions, and many more, are valid and should be considered with creating your marketing strategy to enhance your business’s online visibility.

There is no one way or standard methodology to develop a strong SEO strategy. A strategic SEO approach differs from business to business, but there are some key elements that you can use, including:

  • Research
  • Keyword Analysis
  • Content Strategy
  • Link Building
  • Local and on-page vs off-page
  • Social Strategy
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Tree Analogy

You have most likely heard the term SEO used in marketing conversations, along with the promise, “We can get you to number one!”

But what they aren’t sharing with you is the groundwork and the time it will take to get your business to number one on Google, or any other search engine for that matter.

SEO is considered a long-term strategy and although the results aren’t instant, given a few weeks your online traffic will start to increase. This process strengthens your website’s position, building its overall authority and trust to ensure a website that is highly-regarded by its viewers and visited regularly by your target demographic.

When discussing SEO and what it takes to get to the first page of search results, we refer to the tree analogy. For example, anyone going for a stroll through a park you will see all the beautiful, large trees. But what they cannot see are the roots which provide the foundation and sustenance to the tree, and which made it into what it appears as to passers-by. The same applies to your business ranking; it is the groundwork that forms the foundation for its success.

Novata Solutions SEO Tree Analogy

Chapter 2: What is SEM?

Search Engine Marketing, or SEM, refers to the process of Paid Search Advertising, also known as Pay-Per-Click (PPC) or Google Ads.

An SEM campaign enables companies and advertisers to place and promote their ads in front of their targeted customers at the right time and place. This form of marketing is great for short sprints but will only benefit your business for the here and now.

We could dive into what an SEM advertisment looks like, but it is more valuable to understand some of the terminology behind paid advertising first.

Word

Definition

Audience

The group of individuals/users that you are targeting.

Bid

The dollar value that you are willing to be charged per click on your advertisement.

Click

When a potential customer performs an action, for example when clicking on a link within your ad.

Click Through Rate (CTR)

The percentage of people who have clicked on your ad through the search results page.

Conversion

A user completing a desired action, such as making a purchase or contacting your business.

Cost

Setting a budget for the amount you wanted to spend on a particular ad.

Cost per acquisition (CPA)

The total cost spent, divided by the number of conversions received.

Cost per click (CPC)

How much an advertiser pays per click.

Impressions

The number of times an ad appears in a search results page.

Keywords

A word or phrase that you use to define your advertisement.

Landing Page

The page your customers are directed to once clicking on your ad.

Optimisation

Enhancing your ad performance by adjusting the bid, keywords, and targeting.

Pay per click (PPC)

The billing method for this type of advertisement.

Targeting

Filters set to make your ad appear at various times and locations, based on your audience’s geography, time, age, gender and/or device.

 

Now you know the components of an SEM advertisement, this is what one looks like in action!

Chapter 3: SEO vs SEM

The battle is on!

  • Do you know the difference between SEO and SEM?
  • Which one are you more likely to use for long-term benefits?
  • What is the purpose of each marketing strategy?
 

Search Engine Optimisation

Vs

Search Engine Marketing

 

Long-term – lasting effect

Time Frame

Short Sprints – immediate effect

 

Organic

Type of Marketing

Paid

 

Free

Cost

CPC (Cost Per Click) / Associated spend

 

Improves brand loyalty and trust.

Main use

Quickly increases sales and focuses on leads.

 

     

 

     

 

Both SEO and SEM:

  • Drive traffic towrads your business.
  • Use targeted keywords.
  • Generate brand awareness.

Chapter 4: Social Media Marketing

Today there are over 100 social media platforms being used globally. Social Media Marketing (SMM) refers to how businesses market to their clients through vast numbers of these digital platforms. To reach the right target audience, you need to know which social platforms are prominently used by your audience and which also align with your brand identity.

Before you dive into just any platform, take a moment to reflect on your business goals. What is it that you aim to achieve from your SMM? For example: I want to increase the sale of my locally designed and handmade dresses.

Next, consider your target demographic and determine which social platforms they engage with. If the target market is women aged 18 – 34, what is the best platform to use? With research, we can establish that Instagram is a popular platform with our target demographic.

Then there are other factors to consider:

  • What type of dresses are you selling?
  • What is the price point?
  • Are these dresses being sold online or through a shop front?
  • How will you visually display your dresses? Will you have women model them?

Once these questions have been answered and you have agreed that Instagram is the right platform, it is time to create an account and develop a content strategy.

Tip: Never let a social media account stay static for too long. As suggested by its name, social media requires being socially active, and interaction with your customers determines its success.

What’s trending in the world of SMM?

  • User Generated Content – Content created by your users. For example: posting a group image from a school ball where all the girls are wearing your designer dress. User content can also refer to videos, text, and audio.
  • Social Listening – The process of monitoring your business's social channels and responding to conversations where your brand is mentioned.
  • Video content – Video content creation is becoming more prominent on social media. Where possible, try incorporating short videos with a direct Call to Action (CTA).
  • Personalised content – Your users are more likely to interact with you if your content is personal. Try to share experiences or create an environment that your users can relate to.

Benefits of SMM

  • Increased link ability.
  • Make tagging and bookmarking easy.
  • Reward inbound links.
  • Helps content travel.
Social Media Marketing Microphone

Chapter 5: SEO Vitals

Are your SEO vitals up to scratch? Do you know what needs to be optimised on your website or what errors are appearing?

When it comes to optimising your business’ website for SEO, there are several things that should be considered. Our top six areas of consideration for your website’s SEO vitals are listed below.

Top Six

  1. User Experience: How friendly is your website? Does your overall bounce rate fall in the perfect average of 55%? Your bounce rate refers to the percentage of visitors who enter your website and shortly leave without continuing to read on or click through to other pages.
  2. Call-to-Action (CTA): Is your call-to-action clear and easy to follow?
  3. Mobile-friendliness: Consider the navigation and readability of your content and if all on-page elements are working simultaneously.
  4. HTTPS-Security: Is your website secure?
  5. Content Strategy: Is your content easily digestible? Does it hold authority and credibility? What size and font have you used?
  6. Link Strategy: Are the links within your page working and relevant?
Search Engine Optimisation Vitals

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Chapter 6: Understanding Google’s Algorithms

Search engines like Google use algorithms to crawl through and index web pages. An algorithm refers to a set of processes that are curated by a calculation and/or other problem-solving operations to identify specific searches. They then influence the display of search results.

Google’s Algorithms 

Keep your eyes open for the new Google Page Experience update. Here's what you need to know about the new features launched earlier this year!
  • Updated for mobile-friendliness, safe browsing, and links.
  • Loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability.
  • Consider optimising your business website for mobile, therefore improving page speed, call-to-actions (CTA) and alternative text (Alt text).

Other Algorithms

There are several algorithms which all work in conjunction to provide the end-user with the ultimate search experience. We have listed eleven of these algorithms below, including their functions and what they are best used for:

Fred Google Algorithm

Fred

A quality related algorithm, related to your overall website quality.

Intrusive Interstitials Google Algorithm

Intrusive Interstitials Update

A penalty that specifically targets intrusive links.

Mobilegeddon Google Algorithm

Mobilegeddon

Your page is determined as either mobile friendly or not. Is your website’s mobile visibility user friendly?

Rank Brain Google Algorithm

RankBrain

Helps to better understand the likely user intent of search queries.

Panda Google Algorithm

Panda

Assigns pages with a quality classification.

Penguin Google Algorithm

Penguin

A “webspam algorithm”, which targets link spam and manipulative link building generated within websites.

Hummingbird Google Algorithm

Hummingbird

Focuses on three forms of search: Conversational, Human, and Voice search.

Pigeon Google Algorithm

Pigeon

Focuses on local search.

Pay Day Google Algorithm

Payday

A link-based algorithm, focusing on cost-per-click (CPC) and potential high volumes of spam.

Exact Match Domain Google Algorithm

Exact Match Domain (EMD)

Targets “spammy” sites and/or sites with little to no relevant content (thin content).

Page Layout Google Algorithm

Page Layout Algorithm

Targets websites that have too many static advertisements above the fold.

Chapter 7: Identifying Keywords

These are just five questions you should consider when identifying keywords for your business:

  1. What makes your business unique?
  2. How would you describe your business?
  3. Who are your competitors?
  4. What is your website’s online age?
  5. Who is your target audience?

What are keywords?

A keyword refers to a word or phrase which helps identify your business.

Short Tail, Long Tail & Location Specific

  • Short Tail – Typically consists of one to three words.
  • Long Tail – Usually consists of three or more words.
  • Location Specific – This implies there is a specific location that you are wanting to target.

Six Steps to identifying your keywords

  1. Research
  2. Brainstorm
  3. Review
  4. Create
  5. Implement
  6. Analyse & Repeat

Chapter 8: Content Curation

Content is King!

What piece of online content recently stood out to you?

For me, it would be the below social media post from Happiness Co.

Happiness Co are:

“An organisation aimed at positively impacting people’s lives and encouraging them to spread happiness; helping make the world a better place.” (Direct from https://happinessco.org/our-mission)

The post captured my attention and resonated with me on a personal level. But let’s delve deeper and see how Happiness Co accomplished this.

Like any form of marketing strategy there is a process. When creating content, I like to start with research – research as much as you can about the topic and get inspired! In conjunction with research, I endeavour to understand my audience:

  • Who they are?
  • What are they seeking?
  • What language should I be using; what is my desired tone and point of view (POV)?
  • How can I positively influence and impact what they are about to read?

Next, start writing. Remember it doesn’t have to be perfect, just get your thoughts onto paper. When doing this consider these five points:

  1. Be Creative
  2. Be Memorable
  3. Be Impactful
  4. Be Unique
  5. Be Interactive

But most importantly keep it simple, by following the acronym TEEL (Topic, Example, Explanation, Link). This way you can ensure the content you are producing will be more  memorable and more impactful. Resonating with your audience will increase personal connection and engagement.

Chapter 9: Link Building

Link building refers to the process of generating links within your website, whilst also having other websites and influencers link back to your website. There are two types of link building: Internal and External, which are explained in further detail below:

Internal Links

An internal link is a link that stays within your website and social media pages. For example, a word in your blog links back to a service page on your website, or you provide a link to your blog via a social media post.

External Links

External linking refers to another company directing a link back to your web page, or your company creating and directing a link to another company’s web page.

Fact: Releasing content without links reduces your referral traffic and can delay the increase in your position ranking on search engine result pages.

Activities & Methods to consider

Improve value of your existing content. Improving, repurposing, and republishing your current content increases the chances of others linking back to what you have discussed.

Trial guest posting to build up your link bank. It is important to understand your company and target audience, so that you can carefully select influencers that resonate with your audience.

Other activities include

  • Social Media
    • Use personalised messaging and @mentions to acknowledge others.
    • Ask individuals to share your content through @mentions and hashtags.
  • Network
    • Be sure to build connections with sites or writers for future collaborations.

Chapter 10: Google Analytics

  • What is "Google Analytics"?
  • What terms should I know?
  • What should I be monitoring regarding Google Analytics?

Google Analytics lets you monitor your business’s website traffic and engagement.

More Definitions You Need to Know

Word

Definition

Bounce Rate

Percentage of single-page sessions in which there were no interactions. Bounce rate equates to zero seconds.

CPC

Cost-per-click refers to people clicking through to your website from a paid advertisement.

Demographics

Reports on the age, gender, and location of your users.

New Users

People that visit your website for the first time.

Organic

Visitors who visit your website via Google without clicking on a paid ad.

Referral

Users click through to your website via a third-party site.

Source

Defines where the user came from e.g. organic sources, referrals.

Chapter 11: What’s Trending in 2021

SEO Trends people

1. Google’s Core Algorithm Updates.

SEO Research and Identification

2. Research and identify keywords specific to your business.

SEO Generating Content

3. Generate written content focusing on E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritative, Trustworthy).

SEO optimising for voice search

4. Optimise for voice search.

SEO considering AI

5. Consider artificial intelligence.

SEO creating more video content

6. Create more video content.

Chapter 12: Bonus Chapter: Novata Solutions Client Case Study

Contatore Engineering Client Case Study

Fact: The #1 result in Google’s organic search results has an average click-through-rate (CTR) of 31.7%. 

Search Engine Optimisation is the process of ranking organically through unpaid marketing strategies within search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo.

At Novata Solutions we collaborate closely with our clients to understand their business values, ensuring that a tailored solution is implemented. These tailored solutions aim to identify and utilise the right keywords at the right time and across all places to secure the best ranking possible on Google and other search engine results pages.

Who are Contatore Engineering?

Contatore Engineering is an Australian-owned and operated engineering company located in Welshpool. Established in 1990, Contatore Engineering have been providing trusted and reputable quality products and services to the earthmoving and mining industries across Western Australia. Over the last 30+ years Contatore Engineering have grown to employ 50 full-time staff members and now specialise in producing quality and bespoke products for their clients.

After not receiving the support they required, Contatore Engineering approached Novata Solutions to develop, manage and increase their Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), amd develop their social media presence (SMM).

The Problem

Contatore Engineering needed a new strategy and support regarding their SEO, SEM and Social Media presence. Therefore, in December 2019 after the launch of their brand new, modern, and interactive website, Novata Solutions sat down with Contatore Engineering to develop a new marketing strategy that would increase their overall online visibility and brand awareness.

  • Was ranking high or first in Google your main interest? What other criteria were you wanting to have/achieve regarding your SEO? “With regards to range on Google, a high ranking is a priority as we are in a highly competitive market. The other important factor in relation to our business was also getting our business name out in the market. To make Contatore Engineering a known entity in the market.” - Contatore Engineering

The Solution

It is integral to have a strategy in place, when optimising a business’s SEO. Therefore, Novata Solutions devised a strategic yet creative plan to enhance Contatore Engineering’s brand awareness, calls and overall click-through-rate (CTA). The plan included careful research and consideration of keywords, content campaigns, and highlighting various product lines and services including for sale, hire and monthly specials.

  • Can you share any metrics that show the success you have received while investing in our SEO services? “In terms of metrics we have seen an increase in phone calls from Google ads and website enquiries.” - Contatore Engineering

Prior to investing in Novata Solutions SEO, SEM and Social Media strategy, Contatore Engineering’s visibility and particularly their social status was non-existent. Therefore, building connections and recognitions from the ground up.

  • Since investing in an SEO Strategy, have your sales increased and/or recognition of your business increased? “Recognition of the business has substantially increased via followers on our Facebook and Linked-in profiles which has been fantastic.” - Contatore Engineering

The Benefits

In the first eight weeks of implementing an SEO, SEM and Social Media Strategy, Contatore Engineering saw an increase of 70% in users and new users to their website and a 1.4% increase in returning visitors to their website.

Over the last twelve months since investing in an SEO, SEM and Social Media strategy with Novata Solutions, Contatore Engineering saw an 86% increase in online traffic and engagement through their website.

Novata Solutions Difference 

At Novata Solutions we offer a strategically proven and tailored approach to continue increasing your business’s online visibility. This increase has successfully been achieved through SEO, SEM and SMM tactics. 

In one sentence how would you describe the implemented SEO Strategy and its impact on your company?

“After 12 months of working with Novata with our SEO strategy we have seen an improvement in terms of our ranking on Google. At the beginning of the implementation of our strategy, our presence on LinkedIn was terrible, basically non-existent! We now have close to 300 followers which is great, however we have a goal of reaching 1000 within the next 12 months. While it has been a lot of work, we are now beginning to see the benefits and rewards and that is attributed to the guidance and feedback from the team at Novata who have always been supportive and cooperative.” - Contatore Engineering

Contatore Engineering logo

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