New Year’s SEO Resolutions

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Every year, millions of people set New Year’s Resolutions for themselves, but what about for their websites or their online businesses? This year, why not resolve to increase the popularity and reach of your website; moving it up the rankings, and improving your profits and your reputation. If you’re not sure what to work on SEO-wise, here’s some inspiration:

SMART Targets

Whenever you set a goal, it’s a good idea to ensure that it’s SMART:

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Attainable
R – Relevant
T – Time bound

It’s likely that you wouldn’t set a new year’s resolution such as “Lose Weight”, for yourself – you’d say “I want to lose 20lbs by the summer”. When it comes to your website, you should set similarly precise, trackable goals. So, “Get more traffic” is a bad goal. “Get on the front page of Google and Bing, and increase my average number of page views by 20% per month” is a much better goal. Not only is it more motivational, it also ensures that if you hire an SEO agency or an online marketing company, you know what to ask them for, and you’ll be able to tell whether or not they’ve successfully followed your brief.

Get a Content Strategy

There’s more to SEO than just getting visitors. You need to develop a strong brand online. Even personal blogs still have a brand associated with them. Some people are known for writing funny posts, others tell moving stories, and some people are mines of interesting information. A good content marketing strategy will help you to establish your brand. If you’re not sure where to start with building a content strategy, ask your local online marketing company for pointers. They’ll help you identify your niche, and work out where to place content for best results.

Make Social Work for You

Social networking is a brilliant tool in the right hands, and a fast-track to the spam folder if it’s used badly. If you’ve never tried marketing your website via social networking, then why not make 2012 the year that you learn how?

A well-run social media campaign can be far more effective than a traditional advertising campaign. If you’re good at creating witty, inspirational, or informative content, then all it takes is for a few popular and respected social-media experts to pick up your content, and you’ve got a viral campaign going.

Resolutions to Avoid

One trap that many website owners fall into is placing quantity over quality. They hire an SEO agency and demand thousands of links, or millions of visitors, but don’t have a firm reason for wanting such numbers. Gaining too many links too quickly can penalise you in the search engines, especially if the links aren’t relevant to your site.

Even getting a huge amount of traffic can be a bad thing. Do you want to get stuck with a hefty bill for all the bandwidth those visitors consume? Do you want your site to go down so that your readers and customers can’t access it? Focus on reaching people that are genuinely interested in your website. The rest will fall into place.

New Year's SEO Resolutions

This post was written by James Harper of online marketing company Boom Online Marketing. James works in a busy SEO agency working on projects for a diverse portfolio of clients.