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Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

What is Search Engine Optimisation?

Search Engine Optimisation is all about driving traffic to your site by increasing the volume of potential customers who click on a link through to your website.  By increasing the position on the page when users search for certain key phrases and controlling the content of the link, we can help increase the number of people visiting your site.

Using search engine optimisation to increase traffic one thing.  But what type of people are visiting your website?  By understanding the marketing involved and choosing the right keywords to optimise on, we can help you can generate high value traffic to your website who are more likely to turn into active customers.

Organic or Unpaid SEO

In its most natural form - organic search engine optimisation or unpaid SEO is the process of increasing the prominence of a website when users search for specific keywords or phrases.  There are various ways this can be achieved:

  • Basic Search - how high up your website is on Google for a specific keyword is one of the most important traffic drivers.
  • Local Search - Google Places is a variation of the basic search which provides location based results.  If you're searching for a 'plumber in London', you might also see a list of plumbers whose address information is close to or in London. 
  • Image Search - If all of the images on your website are named properly and have alternative text (<alt tags>) then you will start attracting visitors who are initially interested in the images on your site.  They might find you because they want an image of an apple - if they find you, they might end up buying the apple or their weekly grocery shopping!
  • Video Search - Now you can search for videos related to a certain topic or search phrase.  If your business lends itself to launching videos on YouTube, you might benefit from increased traffic.

How do I measure Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)?

The effectiveness of Search Engine Optimisation or SEO can be measured by the traffic levels and the quality of the traffic visiting your website.  Using Google Analytics, you can effectively measure where your traffic is coming from (geographic location), the search terms people used to find you and even information on what happened during their visit.

Sometimes people who click through to your website, leave straight away.  This is called the 'bounce rate' and is measured as a percentage of the total visitors to your site.  Often we are more interested in those customers who use the website for its designated purpose.  So, if you are running an e-commerce website, you will be interested in looking at the customers who buy online.  With Google Analytics new e-commerce tool, you can track the value of each transaction and match that up to where the customers came from to accurately measure the return on investment from your SEO efforts.  So, if you're top of Google for Wholesale Cosmetics (like our clients 'Sandy's Cosmetics'), you can track how much customers spend after finding your site through a keyword search for 'Wholesale Cosmetics'.

This is important, because it can affect your allocation of resources on maintaining a prominent position on a key phrase.  In the above example, if Sandy's drop from position 1 to position 5 - we can measure the effect on revenue.  If this is significant, we can then calculate the value of increasing our Search Engine Optimisation work to get the site back up to to the top of the search engines.

How to choose an SEO Company

There are an increasing number of companies offering Search Engine Optimisation, so how should you assess them?  Well, very simply - you should find out what they are achieving long term for their clients in terms of:

  • Traffic Levels
  • Keyword Positioning
  • Revenue Growth

And talk to their clients.  Make sure you talk to clients who have been working with the agency you are considering for a number of years.  Some SEO companies use unethical practices to get their clients to the top of the search engines but it don’t last.

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