If your website isn’t attracting the traffic it deserves, SEO (or a lack of) could easily be the underlying reason.
“But wait,” I hear you say, “I already have an SEO strategy! I handled all of that stuff months ago!” If only it were that easy…
Optimizing your online presence for search engines isn’t like making slow cooker soup. You can’t just simply set it and forget it! Instead, it requires ongoing intervention.
To extend a clumsy comparison, SEO is more like making soup on the stovetop. You need to be standing by the pot at all times, stirring until your arm gets sore.
This is because the algorithm is endlessly evolving and new competitors are constantly entering your industry. The scene isn’t static, and that means your approach should also be dynamic.
Why You Should Check and Revise Your SEO Strategy
The good news is that you don’t have to stir alone. When you work with SEO specialists like the Papaya Search team, we become the head chefs, freeing you up to focus on other priorities.
Remember, abandoning your soup leaves it stuck to the bottom of the pot. Abandoning your SEO leaves your site stuck at the bottom of the results page. (Maybe this comparison wasn’t so clumsy, after all!)
One thing’s for sure: when your recipe isn’t producing the results you’d expect, it’s time to experiment with new ingredients.
The Three Essentials of SEO
SEO encompasses more than you think. For your strategy to be successful, it has to be comprehensive. When you revise your approach to SEO, consider the following three essential elements:
On-page SEO / Content
Any sensible SEO strategy will begin here. Your website itself should, of course, be optimized through features such as high-quality content, title tags, headings, internal links, image descriptions, tags, and keywords. Content helps inform search engines what your website is about and can drive backlinks naturally to your website.
Off-page SEO / Links
Links from high-quality websites are an important ranking factor for search engines. This is what set Google apart from other search engines in its infancy. It uses backlinks as a signal of authority and trustworthiness.
For local businesses, keeping organizational information coherent across platforms and securing backlinks on quality external websites help with this. This is known as NAP consistency, standing for name, address, and phone number, and it’s especially important when you’re targeting a local audience.
Did you know that the algorithm recognizes fast-loading sites that are easy to navigate? That’s why it’s important your website functions well and is both as user-friendly and crawlable as possible. Optimizing for speed, multiple devices, and indexability is key.
How Often Should You Revise Your SEO Strategy?
We generally recommend that you revise your SEO strategy on a quarterly basis at the very least. This will allow you to make updates based on company objectives and changes in your industry.
You might not want to wait that long, though. If you’ve already noticed that your SEO strategy is underperforming, why wait until the next quarter to make improvements?
After all, the longer you leave it, the more potential traffic you’ll be missing out on…
5 Signs It’s Time to Revise Your SEO Strategy
You could wait for the next quarter to arrive to revise your SEO strategy, but if you recognize any of the following 5 signs in your organization’s approach, the time to make changes is right now!
Your Organic Search Traffic is Nonexistent
When you’re investing time and resources into creating content, you understandably expect a corresponding growth in organic search traffic. Otherwise, why bother?
You must be realistic, of course: it’s unlikely that you’ll receive an overnight spike. However, if your content isn’t having the desired effect over a longer period of time, it could be that further action is needed to spotlight your work.
One way to attract some love and attention to your pages is to implement a backlink strategy. This involves approaching other website owners to link to your content, and it has the effect of increasing your authority in the eyes of the algorithm.
What does that mean? A higher position in the rankings, of course!
You Have Organic Search Traffic, But It’s Stagnant
If you’ve been attracting consistent organic traffic, that’s a good start. You’re obviously creating content that speaks to a certain segment of your audience. However, your goal is to grow, not to be consistent. That means you shouldn’t settle there!
To build on what you’ve already achieved, take time to research your audience thoroughly. Look for untapped opportunities: what might your content strategy be missing? Use SEO analysis to better understand what your customers are searching for and expand on the content that has been most successful for you so far.
Have you learned from your losses as well as your gains? Take another look at anything you published that didn’t perform as well as expected. It may have the potential to be refreshed and relaunched.
Aim to make this content as authoritative as possible, perhaps by broadening the focus of a blog or updating it to reflect new developments in the subject.
Your Content Isn’t Great
It’s become almost cliche in our industry to say “content is king,” but the sentiment remains true. Content is incredibly important, and if your SEO strategy recognizes that, then that’s great news!
However, your content has to have a solid strategy behind it to be effective. Creating a seasonal, throwaway blog post merely for the sake of creating will be ignored by most. There’s no need to waste time and resources this way. Instead of throwing mud at the wall and seeing what sticks, work to develop a conscious content strategy. This should hone in on creating relevant, high-quality content using keyword research and structured markup.
You’ll undoubtedly find that this thoughtful, methodical approach has a bigger impact on both search engines and visitors.
Your Website Is Not Optimized for Mobile
Failing to optimize for all kinds of devices is seriously missing a trick. Think about how often you’re online using your cellphone or your tablet. You can’t exclusively cater to traditional computers in today’s digital landscape.
Google knows this, which is why it favors by default websites which have been optimized for mobile. In fact, plans are underway to transition to 100% mobile-first indexing, meaning it will eventually only use the mobile version of content when indexing and ranking websites.
Given that recent reports estimate around 60% of all searches are undertaken on mobile devices, it would be misguided to overlook this aspect of optimization.
Make mobile optimization a pillar of your SEO strategy to ensure it has maximum impact.
You’ve Given Up on Algorithm Updates
We get it; staying on top of frequent algorithm changes is hard work. Unfortunately, it’s also very necessary work if you want to continue ranking highly on the results page. Consider SEO an ever-evolving and very dynamic element of your marketing strategy.
You may not have realized it, but Google makes an average of 500-600 algorithm updates every year. That’s more than one a day!
Not every update will affect your position, of course, but some of them definitely will. Regular refreshes are a requirement for any company taking SEO seriously.
If keeping up with all of this sounds like a full time job, that’s because it is. SEO specialists have the time and the expertise to stay abreast of new developments. Do you? Or will you let your SEO strategy go stale instead?
Safely Revising Your SEO Strategy
Besides the fact that revising an SEO strategy is labor-intensive and time-consuming, you should also understand that attempting it alone can be a risky endeavor.
That’s because there’s all kinds of questionable advice to be found online, and following it could leave you in a worse position than before.
This danger is undoubtedly one reason that drives the popularity of SEO specialists. Rather than worry about accidentally breaking the rules, businesses can ask experienced professionals to take charge of their SEO strategy for them. Then, they know they’ve done all they can to give their company the best possible chances for online success.
Here, we will explain some of the most common pitfalls that people encounter while revising their SEO strategy.
The Need to Catch Bad Backlinks
You should know by now that backlinks (links to your website from another) have a positive impact on your SEO. That’s only the case if they’re considered good backlinks, though. Negative backlinks can have the exact opposite effect, and many business owners fail to realize this.
As a result, they fail to address them.
A negative backlink might be one that is completely irrelevant; one that’s placed on a site with explicit content, spam, or other unethical practices, or a link from a “link farm,” a site specifically designed to manipulate the algorithm.
Tools are available to help you determine whether your website is suffering from bad backlinks or not. But what can you do if your website is receiving this kind of negative attention? After all, you can’t edit someone else’s website without their permission!
Thankfully, there is a way to handle this. First of all, you should find the site owner and ask them to remove your link. Don’t worry, we (and Google) know that the chances of them responding are pretty low, especially if the site is a hotspot for spam.
Google needs you to show you have taken this step, though, as the next one is to contact the search engine itself and ask them to disavow the link. Once they accept your claim, their algorithm will stop taking these toxic connections into account.
The final result? An SEO boost for your website!
How Risky Is It to Change Your Article Dates for SEO?
If you’ve been undertaking some independent online research, you may have come across guidance that suggests you can “update” your content for the algorithm simply by changing the date on it.
The idea is that if you do this, search engines will recognize it as new, relevant content and award your site accordingly.
We can assure you that it’s not that easy. Google has officially stated that this method is not effective and that altering the publishing dates on pages won’t make any difference unless significant changes were made to the content at the same time.
This is another example of how tricky it is to cobble together an SEO strategy from the conflicting, often inaccurate advice online. SEO specialists have taken the time to understand and apply the rules correctly, so they’re far better equipped to develop this on your behalf.
How Do You Safely Keep Your Content Fresh?
There are established methods to freshen up your content that will positively impact your SEO. Why not set up reminders to perform regular content audits, for example? During these audits, you can check your blog posts to see if any information is now incorrect.
You should also keep an eye on the news in your industry and update your content as events unfold. As changes occur, some of your posts will undoubtedly become obsolete. It’s better to remove those posts entirely.
Inaccurate content is more harmful than no content at all when it comes to SEO.
Does your content contain links to other websites? Check that these sites are still in operation. Old, broken links should be removed or replaced with functional ones. Look for opportunities to link to your previous blog posts from your new ones and vice versa.
While you’re doing this, take the time to check whether your content could be combined: two blog posts on the same topic will be in competition with each other, so transforming them into one, more comprehensive post is a smart move, SEO-wise.
A content audit should include revision of your keyword strategy: it could be that trending topics have changed and there are new terms for you to target.
Lastly, update your “about” information all over the web. Content doesn’t just refer to blog posts, after all! Your SEO will thank you if you keep your details consistent and correct across different platforms.
Frequently Asked Questions About Revising SEO Strategy
How does SEO improve existing content?
What’s great about revising your content and optimizing it for search engines is that you’ll also improve its quality more generally.
A regular content audit as part of your SEO strategy will ensure that your content remains right and relevant. That won’t just boost your position on the results page; it will also be more impressive to any visitor who does click through!
If someone visits your website, it’s a huge turn off to encounter outdated or inaccurate information. In fact, it could call your whole credibility into question! That’s why you have to take action before your content goes stale.
In the process of improving your content for SEO, you’ll remove dead links, you’ll include the latest industry developments, and you’ll update your statistics. This will prolong the lifespan of your content so it doesn’t become obsolete.When it comes to content, the algorithm is looking for signs of quality before it will recommend your website to its users. Refining your content and improving your SEO really go hand in hand.
Think of it as a mutual relationship: as you improve your content for SEO, you might actually attract more attention to it. This could generate backlinks, which in turn will boost your SEO further!
How long does it take for SEO to improve?
There is no one-size-fits-all response to this question, because it depends on a variety of factors.
For a start, it depends on the condition of your current website. Is it drastically out of date or is it lacking content? In other works, will it require a lot of work to bring it up to scratch or not? This will determine how much time an SEO specialist has to invest at the start of your journey.
Before an SEO strategy can be implemented, research has to be undertaken. Technical changes occur after this. While work is underway on aspects such as your link profile, you won’t yet see results.
One aspect that takes longer to develop is your content strategy. Once you start publishing relevant, high quality content, you should start to see improvements in your ranking. SEO success is a slow burner, though, so don’t expect an overwhelming jump in sales overnight.
Another factor that will influence how long your SEO takes to improve once you begin working on it is how competitive your industry is. In general, you should expect to see results within 4-6 months; however, this is only when you’ll start to see results.
If you keep investing in your SEO strategy, the only way is up from there. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is giving up on SEO too soon because you don’t see instant improvements.
How do I know if SEO is working?
There are many different ways to measure how your SEO strategy is stacking up:
This reflects how often your website appears in search results without generating a click. We know that searchers tend to stick to the first page of results. If you’re generating impressions, you’re at least starting to show up on the results page, even if you’re not yet high enough in the rankings to convert that into clicks.
Separating your organic traffic from your overall traffic will tell you exactly how well your SEO is performing. It will show you how many of your website visitors came from a search engine results page as opposed to through other activities such as PPC advertising.
Pages Ranked For
Ideally, you will start to see an increase in the number of pages that you’re ranking for as you execute your SEO strategy. If you start to see a reduction, this indicates that you’re experiencing penalties or indexing issues that your SEO specialist needs to address urgently.
As your SEO strategy unfolds, you can expect to experience an increase in backlinks to your site. This will improve your SEO status even further! Your SEO specialist should follow best practices to obtain links from reputable websites, and this in turn will drive more traffic to your website.
Domain and Page Authority
These are scores created by SEO software company Moz, and they measure the strength of your overall domain as well as each individual webpage. You’ll receive a rating from 1-100, and the higher the score, the better. As you revise, improve, and execute an effective SEO strategy, you’ll undoubtedly see a corresponding increase in your rating.
This is what every website owner is really looking for when they set goals for their SEO. At the end of the day, the objective isn’t just to attract attention to the website, it’s to convert that attention into sales. You’ll know that your strategy is really working when you’re getting more leads and noticing an increase in revenue.
When you observe positive improvements across these indicators, you can feel confident that your SEO strategy is effective. However, that doesn’t mean you should rest on your laurels. Instead, you should see it as evidence that there’s value in regularly revising your SEO strategy.
How can I improve my SEO strategy?
Of course, you have other priorities to focus on besides SEO. Rather than neglect any aspect of your business, there’s always the option to hire professionals like the Papaya Search team to revise your SEO strategy for you.
With our expert insight on your side, you can be confident that your SEO techniques are comprehensive and up-to-date, achieving concrete results. We’ll even implement the strategy on your behalf, which will save you significant time and stress.
Remember, optimization for search engines is a continual process as opposed to a one-off action. Companies that don’t treat SEO as the ongoing priority that it is will soon see themselves lag in the rankings, losing valuable clicks to their competitors.
It’s time to take control of your SEO and to take it seriously. Trust us, delegating this work to SEO specialists will be a game changer for your organization.
So let’s have a conversation about how we can boost your position in the rankings—and keep you there long term, rather than merely making you the soup of the day!
Ready to Revise Your SEO Strategy?
The team at Papaya Search is ready too!
Schedule your free consultation with Papaya Search straight away and we can get cooking together. You’ll soon be served a plentiful portion of the finest organic search traffic.