Optimising SEO Off-Page Factors for Your Business
So What Are Off-Page Factors?
Off-page factors are basically what you do on the internet to help users and search engines find your website. They refer to anything that provides information people will want to link to in a positive way. This includes blogging, original content and social media. It’s all about creating links back to the content of your site and keeping people engaged and aware of you and your company.
At F&P, we advise a consistent and steady approach to what you do on the internet to increase your links and search engine optimisation.
Start by building up a good, solid reputation as an expert in your field. Show your target audience that you know what you’re talking about. Reassure them that your advice and tips can be trusted. Consistently offer them free advice and support. And don’t fill your content with company spiel and marketing ploys.
Good Practice in Terms of Link-Building
- Try to get third-party links from websites that have an equivalent or higher PR (Page Ranking) than your own
- Aim to get links to your inner pages, not just your home page. In fact, the optimum is that 60% of all links should be directed to your inner pages
- One-way links are deemed more valid by Google, because they are an independent vote, a testimony to how useful your content is to readers
- Make sure your links are optimised, with anchor text that targets your keywords
- Don’t forget to add a link to your URL when you register with blogs and forums
Bad Practice in Terms of Link-Building
These are referred to as ‘black hat’ techniques. They are frowned upon by search engines and you are likely to be penalised if you use them, so beware!
- Selling space on your website (link-farming). This will be flagged up by search engines and your website will be penalised as a result, especially if the links are to websites that are in no way relevant to your own
- Copying and pasting articles and blogs and passing them off as your own. No one likes a cheat, especially if other website owners have spent time, thought and money creating their own original articles
- Posting links to your URL in the text of a blog or forum comment
- Creating too many links in one go. This flags up to search engines that you may be trading/buying links
New Developments in 2014
Google continues to dominate the market in terms of SEO, especially since it merged with You Tube (the second largest search engine). It has become essential to have a Google + account and to optimise it for SEO. We will be discussing this further in my next article.
It is important to keep an eye on new trends and watch the emergence of new social media platforms. Take note of where your customers are likely to be hanging out and engage with them, using their favourite social media platforms.
While it is important to keep up to date with social media and the latest developments on search engines, don’t make the mistake of neglecting more traditional ways of communicating with your customers/target audience. Newsletters and free e-books cover a demographic who prefer to dabble occasionally in the digital world but don’t get involved in social media platforms too much. Make sure what you’re offering is valuable to them and addresses their most pressing issues.
So in summary, I have discussed what off-page factors are and how they can help your search engine optimisation. I have detailed good and bad practice and how to stay on the right side of Google. And remember, make sure you cover all bases in terms of off-page factors. While SEO is increasingly becoming based on your social media presence, don’t neglect your customers who do not engage with social media. Carry on offering e mail newsletters, face to face or over the phone advice slots, and free e-books.
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