Good Bye Black Box – Insights into SEO

"Good Bye Black Box" Blog Series

I thought it's about time to demystify the SEO process. Every client I work with has access to  what I am doing, why I am doing it, and what is expected to happen. Doesn't mean they always understand or even ask. But that doesn't mean I can't accurately describe what it is that I am doing and what the results should be.

If you have any questions, please submit them to me: joshuam@cthinkgroup.com.

Insight into SEO workflow

Dimisnhing returns
Image from: https://www.ideatovalue.com/inno/nickskillicorn/2017/11/diminishing-law-innovation-returns-problem-better/

One of the largest challenges of SEO is the nature of the work. In our opinion SEO work is front loaded, subject to diminishing returns, and set on an on ever shifting landscape. 

This is not super unique to creative fields and this is definitely not a “one and done” process. So how do you balance the your SEO plan or process? Here are some ideas outlined below:

For us the we follow a simple process for completing SEO work:

  • Code - Clean code
  • Content - Keyword rich content
  • Community - Strong backlinks
  • Competition - Know where you are placed
  • Clicks - Positive ROI

SEO Workload Distribution

When you apply where all the work lies the following rings true:

Process Front Loaded Work Follow-up Work
Code Fix Errors, Create a process to reduce errors on new pages Check for errors as new pages are added
Content Establish a keyword list and implement into your website Check ranking for keyword list, watch for competitor ranks, implement keywords on new content. Refine list and content over time.
Community Create a list of sites that you want to backlink Pursue links as sites become more relevant or as new sites come online
Competitors Identify competitors for specific keywords, Watch for competitors gaining market share, identify keys to success
Clicks Create campaigns based on keyword list and marketing goals Refine PPC campaign to improve results, aims for more bang for the $, rather than costs savings.

Most of the work is finding out what is happening to a website, outline what success looks like for your website, then plan and implement changes that bring about the desired results.

SEO Dimishing Returns

Again looking at the facets of SEO we have found:

Process Bulk of the time to address Time to refine Required time is nominal
Code First few weeks Over a few weeks A few months
Content First few weeks Duration of the project: Track rank, test measure keyword list, refine list and content Keyword Saturation is maxed, no movement for keyword rank for existing list
Community First few weeks Duration of project - continue to build relationships with new websites. Backlink saturation is maxed. 
Competition First few weeks Duration of the project: Track rank, test measure keyword list, build backlinks A few months
Clicks First few weeks Duration of the project: Track efforts measure against benchmarks A few months

Most of SEO work is from loaded in the first few weeks. Once you have  the ability to track efforts and changes, you should be in a constant state of process improvement, testing and measuring, watching competitors, and making adjustments as you can.

If you are onboarding new products/services or going after new markets, this process can seem to start anew. 

Shifting Landscape

The internet is adding content and new website everyday. Some of your competitors are ramping up their efforts to improve their SEO efforts. This changes the variables that you have to track to see how your website is performing. This shift is generally measured and timed in such away that monthly monitoring should suffice. 

Does this mean you have to keep fixing/changing your website? 

Not really. Once you do a bulk of the work, you get to a place where maintenance is the main focus. You did the hard work to get up the mountain, you can enjoy the view for a bit, till something else comes along to move you from your place. 

What about highly competitive positions?

This is the one caveat to trying to hold your ground for SEO rank. If you are competing with keywords that are highly competitive, you are going to have to keep an eye on your website weekly, making changes daily. These changes include adding new content and backlinks.

How we can help with your SEO work:

We have spent over 10 years refining the process to perform SEO process on many websites. SEO is a one aspect of marketing and is part of the responsibilities of business ownership in these days. If your website is under performing and not justifying itself, you are losing out on customers and revenue everyday. SEO is not a mystical process that different SEO wizards have special silver bullets. We are all competing to improve the same metrics, and as such, the big differentiator is our ability to work with our clients to manage expectations and deliver on our promises in a clear and effective way.

Ready to find out more?

If you are ready to take on the SEO journey, we are here to help.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *