Optimizing Content for SEO and Higher Search Exposure: BlogHer 2016 “Experts Among Us” Part 2

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In today's digital marketing landscape, content has an incredible influence on branding success. It has become essential to drive more traffic to your website, as more traffic equals a better public perception of your brand, and a higher chance to generate sales and subscribers. So it would only make sense to do what the experts are doing when it comes to SEO and content marketing. By neglecting this factor, you fail to give visitors a chance to find you on their own. You may already be using social media to direct visitors to your site, but are you doing everything to optimize SEO? Here is what we learned from the experts at this year’s BlogHer conference.

Take Advantage of Evergreen Content

A great tip from BlogHer ’16 is tying evergreen content into timely, relevant happenings for a temporary boost in traffic. Readers will always be interested in current news, so if there is something worth commenting on in your industry, weave it into your evergreen content that already ranks high in search engines. In many cases, your evergreen content serves as the face of your brand -- the first thing visitors stumble upon. So make sure it’s up-to- date and features the right tone and voice. Some timely examples to take advantage of include May the 4th (Star Wars Day), seasonal holidays, and other fun observances like National Dog day. If you’ve got content or tips and tricks that can easily tie into these types of days, then you’re well on your way to gaining higher visibility online.

Leverage Keyword Tools

While it’s true that small brands don’t need massive traffic to get their message out and create a positive brand identity, it can help immensely if searchers can find you easily. Stephan Spencer, author and SEO expert, and Lindsay Valdez, SEO Manager at SheKnows Media, recommended tools to guide you through the optimization process. There are several tools out there designed to help you be successful online. Please keep in mind that some are free, while others require subscriptions. A great free tool, Google Adwords Keyword Planner, assists you in selecting keywords with reasonably low competition and a decent search rate. Another tool, Moz, provides more information and better suggestions than Adwords, however, it is not free.

Optimize for Google Answer Box

Relatively new to the scene is Google Answer Box. You might not know Google Answer Box by name, but chances are you’ve used it once or twice. Have you ever typed in a question into Google like, “What is a blog?” Doing this will typically generate an answer at the top of the page just above the search results. That’s Answer Box! Optimize for What’s the benefit of this? The opportunity lies in that if your site’s content makes it into the answer box and links back to your site, you have pronounced visibility without having to pay for a higher page ranking. It’s a win-win.

Right the Wrongs of SEO

While marketing experts advise the importance of selecting a few quality keywords, that doesn't mean you have to go overboard. Using the same keywords excessively can actually cause Google to penalize you and assume your posts are spam. Instead, speakers at BlogHer stressed the importance of prominence (keywords at top of page, not bottom) over density (number of times a keyword appears in a post).

Finally, did you know Google penalizes you for bad links? They do, and it can have a heavy toll on your search rankings. Have no fear, link detox tools exist to allow you to find and eliminate bad backlinks to your blog. If your site has bad links, Google will know, and it could potentially hurt your search rankings and visibility. These tools are generally easy to setup and can help you recover your ranking score and recover from a Google penalty.

If you didn't know about these common SEO errors, there's no reason to panic - you're not permanently disgraced in the eyes of Google's algorithm. Get going with the right tactics, and you’ll be on your way to a better ranking.

We hope you found this information helpful. Be sure to check back next week for part 3 in our series. As always, don’t forget to follow eBay Partner Network on social media for more tips and updates, or to leave us a comment or question. Find us on TwitterInstagram and on Facebook.