Semalt Recommends How To Combine Paid And Free SEO
Positioning is often misunderstood due to the lack of a clearly defined path to the goal. It requires experimentation and, thus, a rich set of less and more expensive practices. From the point of view of specialists, the entire process requires research in the following categories: PR, branding, usability, content marketing, programming, design, and conversion optimization. Find out how to combine free and paid positioning to attract new customers, leads, and recipients of your content.
What is free SEO? How to approach it?
Let's start with whether there is such a thing as free SEO. If we assume that every second of our life should be converted into Dollars, then nothing will be free with this definition. However, we do not have to pay directly for many activities, which creates opportunities to reduce costs. With technical optimization for search engines, we pay the price for the time spent. Therefore, we cannot count on anyone to do it for us for free. Unless we deal with it ourselves or consider the recommendations as part of the work. We can get an audit or basic diagnostics for free, but not their implementation.
How to approach optimization? SEO for private individuals, e.g. bloggers, can be like a playground. They have the time and opportunity to test hundreds of techniques. They are limited only by their free time, knowledge, and creativity. An example would be creating a network of blogs that will work for your personal sales page. In the case of companies, the safety and regularity of activities are more important. Google is ruthless even for huge sites that operate unethically. Let's not put our business at risk and avoid:
- low-quality duplicate content, synonymized texts;
- saturation with keywords - some people can still put 80 keywords in a text per 1000 words, but these are minorities and should not be imitated;
- cheap, or artificially generated links - it is necessary to make sure that the link profile is clean and natural.
Recall the threat of unfair competition, which tends to create spammy referral links. The giant of Mountain View, although its algorithms are based on machine learning, also employs moderators. They can impose a penalty on a person who engages in this kind of tricks, which makes him/her temporarily lose the positions gained. Temporarily, because in the event that this happens, it can also be given up. If you are not sure about something, it is better to consult specialists on optimization changes so that you do not see drastic effects later.
What, apart from the audit, can be included in the scope of free SEO?
We can achieve quite a lot by spending only our own time for free. A static website is more difficult to handle, so the best way to start is to install CMS software (e.g. WordPress, Drupal, or Joomla) or use a web 2.0 platform, e.g. Blogger. Google is called a source of free traffic and, unlike paid ads, this only allows you to reach new users "on your own". To do this, you need to take care of a few things that require only time from us:
- relevant keywords tailored to the purpose and target group;
- comprehensive, original content that will be closely related to keywords;
- attractive titles, subtitles, and meta-descriptions encouraging to visit;
- order on the website, intuitive and clear structure;
- the possibility of indexing the website by search engine robots;
- automatic sitemap updates;
- internal linking;
- fast page loading (also in the AMP version);
- interactions and promotion in social media;
- an analyst that will allow you to understand how you can become better than the competition.
What is paid positioning?
Industry specialists with longer experience say that it was created to separate what is done on the website (SEO) from what takes place outside of it (e.g. link building, PR activities). The standard English dictionary does not use these words but instead refers to on-site and off-site SEO. We can consider positioning to be all activities that bring us closer to the first page in search results, including SEO.
Paid positioning is all the activities that we cannot do using our own time alone. It occurs as early as buying a domain or choosing a paid server. The broader scope of activities includes the following:
- implementation of changes to the website in connection with the previously conducted audit;
- purchase and use of paid competitive analysis tools such as the Dedicated SEO Dashboard, which is an all-in-one tool. Once you have this tool at your disposal, you won't need any other tools to accomplish 95 % of your SEO tasks;
- link-building: purchase, among others, sponsored articles, guest posts, directory entries;
- purchase of more articles, graphic content for content marketing;
- migration to a faster server.
Free and paid positioning as a combined and complete strategy
By combining free and paid positioning, we open the door to compete with producers, big brands, and experts in the sector. We can say that paid positioning is only the next step. To save time, we can choose to outsource to an SEO specialist or a positioning agency. If we decide to take this step, we will be sure that the activities will be scalable, and we will have more control, as the project will be handled by more than one person. Therefore, we will not lack processing capacity at any stage of the company's development. With a better understanding, we will not have to struggle to adapt our website to changing search engine algorithms.
You don't need SEO because you only need paid advertising. Find out why you are wrong!
Many people who are starting out on the internet wonder about the value of investing in advertising. Google ads have lost some of their popularity, for example, for brand promotion on social media, but it is worth noting that continuing to increase reach in this way seems to be one of the most beneficial options. In addition to running paid campaigns, it is also useful to address SEO in terms of positioning. See why it is useful to conduct promotional activities in several ways.
Paid online advertising and organic reach
Optimized website content should go hand in hand with paid online advertising. Search engine indexing takes a relatively long time. However, nowadays, many companies simply do not have time - customers are needed now, and many of them do not have time to search for companies on several search engine pages. In the era of widespread sharing of links on almost every website, time-consuming searches are no longer fashionable and hardly anyone wants to do it.
We cannot think of underestimating SEO issues here - it is extremely important- because an optimized page seems to be much friendlier to the Google algorithm. As a result, online advertising can be much cheaper. Then the right layout of the content does the very part of the work, for which, yes, you also have to pay, but only once - the work is done by itself. The exception is the need to update certain content, but it is not to be done regularly.
Which SEO is more effective - paid or free?
We cannot speak of the greater or lesser effectiveness of each of the forms of indexing content in search engines. Paid and free positioning should complement each other, not appear completely separately. Both algorithms and paid campaigns help in better visibility of a given brand on the web.
However, what is extremely important is that the content on the website should not be created only in a bot-friendly form. Remember that the final consumer of content is a living person. The more professional and, above all, accessible it is, the greater the likelihood that the customer will use the services of a given company or buy a product whose description has caught his / her attention, arousing certain emotions in him/her.
Those who predict the imminent end of Google ads and those who place too much hope in paid positioning are wrong. Those who have funds in such a way that online advertising consumes as much or less than the cost of optimizing the content remain in the winning position. How can this be done? By examining the needs and interests of potential customers. It turns out that by targeting an ad correctly and creating content with certain phrases, you are only one step away from doubling your sales.
Content that sells
Copywriters spring up like mushrooms after the rain, but it is worth noting that the ones who write lightly and touch the emotions of the reader are really hard to find. Even the most SEO-level text won't sell as much as a good story.
Storytelling courses are timely, as it has become clear that many people have to retrain to stay at home. There's nothing wrong with that: writing is one of those activities that can be learned, but few people manage it with any real panache. Another aspect worth mentioning is the cleverly constructed tension in the story. When creating content other than how-to's, you need to focus on the reader's emotions. Consider them, then develop them skilfully. An online advert that simply positions good copy will pay for itself much faster than one that promotes average content.
Content marketing and SEO
Content marketing has an impact on SEO. The more content there is on the site, the better the keywords can be positioned. Blog posts are not only about using phrases, but also about creating the structure of the website (through internal links). The better and more valuable the content, the more visits to the site. The time the user spends on the site also increases, and therefore the page ranking evolves. Content is currently the basis for SEO activities, but it is also important for sales and the image of a specific brand.