Every meeting, every conversation, every email I write to an entrepreneur begins with some form of this question: why should they care?
If you want more traffic you must answer this question. (Hint: it’s not about you, your fancy product features or your employee of the month)
Every traffic strategy begins with identifying what your customers really want from you and the best way to give it to them.
If you want to see folks pouring into your site from all corners of our little magnolia state, you have to tell them what they want to hear so well that Google actually perks up and pays attention.
You have to understand the 1 thing that you and most of your competitors are getting wrong.
What does Google actually want from you?
Google wants their customer, the searcher, to get what they want.
It’s your job to give it to them.
How? Keep reading.
The tool that destroyed the internet: how keywords actually work and the right way to use them
Back a million years ago, keywords were the only thing that told search engines what you were all about.
It was easy to stuff your page full of those little suckers, pull a bunch of nasty seo-trickery and shoot to the top of the search engines.
Google. The reason Google is the king of the internet is because they figured out a better way.
They decided that instead of letting you tell the world what you were about (much like that annoying kid in middle school who tried to convince everyone he was really a pro-skateboarder or his dad was in the CIA), that the world should decide for themselves.
Thus: link building was born, and the internet became a giant popularity contest.
So do keywords still matter?
YES! Even though stuffing your pages doesn’t work anymore, keywords are still one of the most important parts of an SEO strategy.
They allow us to find out what our potential customers are thinking, what they’re actually searching for (no guessing!) and what we should be creating for them if we really want to get their attention.
How to start connecting with your audience and those that can reach them for you
So now that getting traffic is all about making people like you for who you really are (no trickery here, Jimmy Bob), it is absolutely vital (read: the only option) that you get quality, relevant, helpful content in front of the people who are looking for what you’re selling.
But here’s where nearly everyone screws up:
It’s not just about your people – it’s about the people who tell them what matters. It’s about their influencers and the people who they look to for information.
Reaching these people is the backbone of link-building (the popularity contest).
You have to be so flippin’ amazing at telling your people why they should care (go back to the top if you don’t know what that means), that their leaders and influencers start talking about how cool you are.
How to give Google what they want – and get more quality, local traffic in the process.
Google wants their customers to be happy; to get really great answers to their questions, right? In order to do that they have to give them the freshest, most relevant content possible.
If you’re not making fresh, relevant content, Google will ignore you – and so will your prospects.
It’s really that simple.
SEO is never a one-time project. Search Engine Optimization and Content Marketing must be an ongoing, every-single-month strategy that is at the absolute forefront of your internet marketing strategy. Without consistently producing new, always helpful, optimized content, you might as well delete your website and go back to running classified ads in the paper.
Websites just do not work without a consistent, every-single-month content marketing strategy.
What about that “special relationship” with Google I’ve heard some “SEO experts” brag about?
Do I have a special relationship with Google?
No, and neither does that skeezy guy who called you yesterday.
Google’s only relationship is with their customers. They do not, never ever ever give preferential treatment to “SEO experts” or anyone else.
Here’s what Google says about it:
“Beware of SEOs that claim to guarantee rankings, allege a “special relationship” with Google, or advertise a “priority submit” to Google. There is no priority submit for Google. ” – From Google’s Blog
The only way to get to the top of the search rankings and to generate lots of traffic to your site, is to know what they want and to give it to them.
What does Google want? Relevant, fresh, helpful content that answers their customer’s (the searcher’s) questions.
My only relationship with Google is that I study them more closely than a 12 year old studies Justin Bieber. #googlefever
Get local traffic the right way
If I’ve learned anything through years of researching and writing local, traffic-driving content it is this: people will look locally for answers to real life questions and needs.
There’s only so much that guy a thousand miles away can offer to someone searching for a local product. Sure, they might find an answer to their question but once they hit that buying stage, that guy is just out of luck.
Your steps to writing local, traffic-driving content:
- Know what their real problem is, right now.
- Know how they search for it.
- Give them (and Google) a well-researched, thoughtful answer.
- Convert them from a reader into a buyer.
- Rinse and repeat.
- Buy a boat with all the sales profits you just made.
Expert content writing isn’t easy, but it is the only way to get Google’s attention and begin to see real, targeted traffic coming into your website.
If you want to see real results from your website, give Google what they really want, and the sales will follow.