What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a key role in your digital marketing, and if you don’t take the time to optimize it, you may very well be missing lead generation opportunities for your bioprocess business. Many people’s first impression of your company can be through your website. Whether this is potential clients, investors, or employees, you want to make sure you make a good impression – both literally and in the digital marketing context. To help boost your website’s visibility and reach a wider audience, you’ll need to work on your page’s SEO.
SEO is the practice of developing, maintaining, and optimizing your website content to achieve a higher ranking on the search engine results page (SERP). SEO plays a key role in your digital marketing, ensuring your website gets the highest visibility possible when people search for products or services related to your business. Search engines like Google, for example, utilize algorithms to rank your website on the SERP. Search engines use bots to “crawl” across websites to collect data, index them, and then “rank” them in order the algorithm feels best suits the search query.
Why do I need to worry about SEO?
If your website is developed and maintained properly, SEO should generate organic, quality website traffic. This is one of the main goals of having a website in the first place. SEO will drive people to your site because they are genuinely interested in your products and/or services. SEO will also improve the quantity of traffic. In the simplest terms, the better your SEO, the better your page’s ranking in searches.
Most searchers are impatient, so they are significantly more likely to click a link near the top of the first page of results. Think about it, when was the last time you clicked “Next Page” on your search? In most cases, if users don’t find what they need on the first page of results, they reword their query and try again.
If you want to organically promote your website, focusing on SEO is the best route. SEO is comprised of two main components: on-page SEO and off-page SEO.
On-page SEO is the content that the readers see when they come across your website. You want to have your website filled with engaging content that answers all potential search queries. If your company’s main offering is a liquid chromatography system, then your website should be on the first page of search results when someone searches “liquid chromatography system”.
But, what if someone searches “high-performance liquid chromatography to analyze fusion proteins”? Or “HPLC and mass spectrometry”? How about “what are the advantages of liquid chromatography?”
Types of Queries
To help anticipate the types of questions, it’s good to know the types of searches. There are three main types of queries:
- Informational Search Query: where the user is looking for a specific answer (i.e. “What type of silica gel do I need for my chromatography process?”)
- Navigational Search Query: where the user already has their end destination in mind when they open their browser. (i.e. “Hapatune blog”).
- Transactional Search Query: where the user already knows what they want, and they simply need a provider (i.e. “chromatography silica gel c18”). The user looks up a specific product or service to find a company from whom to purchase.
What you can do to help
Part of having a successful website is knowing your target audience and being able to anticipate their needs. By preparing your website to answer their questions, you bring your rankings higher because the bots are flagging the relevant keywords and their surrounding context.
To get started, pick just one of your products or services and write it down. Identify your target audience for this specific item. Adopt a buyer persona and think of five alternative ways people search your products. Are there any common abbreviations? What is the full, technical name? What about a more colloquial name?
Adopt a buyer persona and think of five alternative ways your product can be searched.
Then, take those names you’ve generated and start with at least three commonly asked questions that surround your product or service. You can use Google for this step! Type in one of the names of your product and see what kinds of questions the autofill prompts you with.
Now you’ve written down some important keywords and phrases. The next step is to incorporate them into your site! This increases your chances of your page being ranked higher on the SERP due to the higher percentage of matching keywords. However, there’s more to on-page SEO than keywords.
A big part of SEO is having the right keywords integrated throughout your website, but it also involves having a quality, intuitive user experience (UX) that functions on both desktop and mobile. People are less likely to stay on your site if they can’t easily navigate between pages. And with mobile devices becoming more and more prominent, having accessibility across devices is incredibly important in your rankings.
In addition to having an engaging website, it needs to be interactive as well. Blog posts, downloadable content, and videos all help boost your SEO. These engagements cause visitors to spend more time on your website, boosting your analytics, and encouraging the SEO algorithms to boost your page. Both interactivity and time are important factors in your website’s ranking.
Off-page SEO is what it sounds like—it’s what happens behind the scenes. You’ve already done the work to show that your content is relevant and valuable. Off-page SEO is about proving that you are a trusted and popular source.
As mentioned earlier, search engines use bots to “crawl” web pages. They scan and search through your content, so a big focus in off-page SEO is going to be making your page pass their quality checks.
The search engine algorithms will see if your website is trusted and of good quality, which means creating your website using a reliable site builder and developer. This is important, because even if you create award-winning content, nobody is going to follow a broken or suspicious link, including the bots.
These bots will also look through your website features, such as readability, load speed, domain name, uniqueness, content relevance, and more. They’ll look at the traffic on your website, see if there are any links on social media that go back to your page, and check other sources for mentions of your company, products, services, or any related content.
What you can do to help
To boost your off-page SEO, start with your site map. Make sure there is a clear flow between the different pages, and that every page is easily accessible. Where relevant, include links that can take readers from one page to the next. The easier it is for the bots to access your different pages, the better your SEO ranking.
You can also promote your website pages on other sites. A great way to do this is by sharing links on social media pages. For example, if you have a landing page for a new seminar, be sure to put the link out on as many platforms as possible, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and so on. The idea is to have multiple links from trusted sources that lead back to your page. If the algorithm sees this, then it raises the chances that it is a reputable and popular site, thus boosting your ranking.
SEO is important in helping to improve your brand awareness, but it is a complex and evolving subject that can be difficult to navigate without the help of an SEO expert or an experienced web developer. If you’re looking for a different way to promote your business, check out our blog about other digital marketing channels here.
Want more digital marketing tips? Looking to improve your website? Contact one of us here at Hapatune and we’ll get you started.
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