Search Engine Marketing & Optimization Movin’ On Up! How to get better rankings and drive traffic to your Web site.
First Things First To effectively drive traffic you must ask: • Who is your target audience? • What do you want them to do on your Web site? • How will you get a return on your investment? • What is your available budget? Source: American Marketing Association
Search Engine Facts • 84% of online Americans used search engines (107 million) – a Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2004. • 75% of Internet users visit search engines each month – Online Publishers Association and Nielsen/NetRatings, 2004. • Search engines on top (41%) compared to other processes when consumers were asked how they find product Web sites – DoubleClick study, 2003.
Web is First Source “Admissions officials know their Web sites are the first point of contact for prospective students. It has changed from the Internet being a supplement to the Internet to being the first source.” – Judy Hingle, director, professional development, National Association for College Admission Counseling
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) • Form of Internet marketing that seeks to promote Web sites by increasing their visibility in the search engine results. • SEM is the practice of buying paid search listings, different from SEO which seeks to obtain better free search listings. • SEM methods include: search engine optimization, paid placement and paid inclusion. Source: Wikipedia
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) • Improves ranking of a Web site in “natural,” “organic” or "algorithmic” search results • Increases site traffic • Assists in “converting” unique visitors to customers • Considers how people search and how search engines index
SEO Tactics • Get your keywords onto your pages: • Meta data behind the scenes • Title tags • Description tags • Keyword tags • Visible Content • Build relevant links and link popularity
SEO Tips - Choosing the Best Keywords Pace Yourself
Tips on Choosing Keywords • Think through business goals & objectives. • Think through brand names. • Watch the broad search terms. • Be careful with narrow search terms. • Check Google competing pages. • Watch the quotation marks.
Tips on Choosing Keywords (continued) • The singular vs. plural debate. • Don’t get excited about misspellings. • Give low numbers a shot. • Learn how to form search terms. • Know how people search. • Two-word phrases (32.58%) • Three-word phrases (25.61%) 2004 report by OneStat, an expert in Web analytics
Tips on Choosing Keywords (continued) • Be careful when mining keywords from competitors’ Web sites. • Don’t use competitors’ corporate names or brands. • Ask people – all kinds. • Dust off your thesaurus (or go online). • Analyze log files.
Search Engine Optimization – What You Can Do • Register your site. • Ex. http://search.yahoo.com/info/submit.html • Keep keywords and meta tags current. • Spread keywords throughout content; revise text as necessary. • Charge someone with monitoring and updating keyword referrals, and search engine referrals and placement.
SEO No No’s Avoid Bad Techniques
Search Engine Optimization Don’ts • Don't use frames in the page design • Avoid long URLs and “=” and “?” • Don’t duplicate copy
Description Overload • Avoid long meta descriptions. • Laundry list of keywords may not match content.
Massive keyword repetition in a small space may annoy Web site visitors. Looks blatant. Overdone Visible Text
Too Many Links • Yes, links in content are useful. • Too many may be viewed as spam.
Text in Unusual Places • Avoid all forms of hidden text. • Make font colors and sizes match design. • Excessive keywords offer no value.
An SEO Case Study www.kent.edu
Other SEO Case Studies • http://www.littletikes.com • http://www.clevelandclinic.com • http://customcritical.fedex.com • http://completetocompete.info
An SEM Case Study www.kent.edu
Pay-Per-Click (PPC) • Also known as paid search. • Pay only when users actually click on an ad. • Supplements search engine optimization; offers critical and timely traffic.
PPC Summary • Kent State ads were seen 344,934 times. • Searchers clicked a Kent State ad and visited the landing page 11,633 times. • Total cost for the clicks was $3,657.72. • From the landing page, visitors clicked to the 'Get More Info' page 1,370 times. • Google Analytics showed there were 1,149 signups for campus tours during the campaign timeframe.
Traffic and SEO Resources • American Marketing Association • http://www.marketingpower.com • Fathom SEO • http://www.fathomseo.com • http://fathomseo.blogspot.com • WordTracker • www.wordtracker.com • Know your link popularity • www.checkyourlinkpopularity.com • Free Search Engine Marketing Tools • www.marketleap.com • UCM Resources • www.kent.edu/ucm
Questions? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org