When you sign on with an SEO agency your expectation is to have your website rank well in search engines so you can have more people visit your site and then buy, download, watch videos and otherwise engage in conversion actions. Sounds logical, right? The SEO agency’s task is to pull out all the stops to make your site rank for the keywords that are most important to you. Have you ever thought about asking how your agency is going about this? In 2016 it matters a lot how they are conducting your organic campaign, as Google has set up stringent guidelines to help ensure the best user experience on their search engine. This not only goes for desktop searches but increasingly mobile and local search are taking up the lion’s share of searches, and Google wants to ensure that consumers have great experiences on their phones and mobile devices. So is SEO really all about pleasing Google? You might think so…but the surest way to please Google is to please your user base. Let’s take a look at some effective ways of accomplishing that.

Write for People

Keyword stuffing is out; writing for human beings is in. Actually, writing for human beings was always in, but if marketers could get away with keyword stuffing (and some still try it) they would. Google within the last several years has reaffirmed that writing (in fact all content creation) with people in mind should be the goal. Why? Because we have to remember that people are the ones we are ultimately trying to reach with our message. Search engines are just the vehicle to get to the people. So while keyword positioning is important, it should not come at the expense of natural-sounding copy. SEO companies that forget or don’t care that human beings are on the other end of their content trying to make sense of it are missing a golden opportunity.

Construct a Website for People to Use

Whether you have a brand new website or one that you’re happy with that is several years old, usability has to be a major factor in every facet of your site’s design. Good SEO companies will help you prioritize issues with your site that affect usability. Work with them to break down usability barriers. You can also recruit users in your demographic using services like Usertesting.com and have them actually use the site. Direct them to perform specific tasks and review their feedback. A key caveat is to not take it personally if users find it hard to get around on your site. I’ve seen that happen many times over the years. What matters is to use the data you receive and work with your agency and your developer to ensure that your site is logically constructed with clear paths to conversion.

Blogs Are Not Places to Keyword Stuff

How many times a week do I see client blogs brimming with keywords placed willy nilly with no rhyme or reason? It’s my job to unball these keyword tangles so my clients’ content offers real value to consumers. The new content I write is created to please human beings: it answers questions and provides rich details. Does your SEO agency create content like that, or is it churning out page after page of keyword-laden copy that makes no sense? Don’t let an agency tell you that ‘this is how it’s done.’ That is just not true. Insist on content that reads naturally and offers more than an overt sales pitch.

Bonus Tip: Does every single internal link (or the majority of them) come from exact match anchor text? If you sell Tinker Toys (just an example; applies to selling anything) do most of your internal links look like this (these are example links and don’t actually work):

Buy Tinker Toys and see our Tinker Toys catalog. Then call us about ordering Tinker Toys.

This type of internal linking is blatant spam. Get with your SEO firm and have them vary the internal links within your site. Have them write them like this:

Take a look at our Tinker Toys catalog. We offer a variety of sets and extra accessories to make building fun.

The idea with internal links is to offer natural connections from one page to the next so users can find the information they need. They are also useful for Google to understand the structure of your website.

These are but a few ways to get your SEO company optimizing for people – and if they do that, they will be optimizing for search engines, too.

Organically understands how to optimize for human beings and we know how to drive that traffic to your site. Work with an award-winning Knoxville SEO agency and discover the difference we can offer you.