In this age of technology, the internet has become an essential component of the marketing mix. We see the dramatic changes even more so this year on our traditional high street – where shop after shop seems to close due to the pressure of online competitors. Digital marketing has never been more critical for business large and small to master. Due to the incredible exposure possible and the relatively low costs of marketing online ( not free as some would claim! ). After you have created any type of online content, it is down to marketing it aggressively to ensure high ranking on the search engine results page and as many people as possible see it. This is otherwise known as SEO and it is the process of optimising your content to ensure that they comply with the requirements of the search engine’s algorithms – Google, Bing or any other. Optimising your content might seem overwhelming initially, but it can be done to a decent level by small business owners and even higher level by experienced in house teams. SEO in Ireland has changes in the past few years with excellent agencies and individuals sharing knowledge and practising great techniques in ensuring their websites meet the requirements from the search giants. What follows are the basic concepts of Search Engine Optimisation.
A) What Is SEO?
What Is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization and it is the process by which you can ensure that your website is gaining its maximum amount of exposure. There are several categories that need to be addressed in order to ensure that your website and all of its content is optimized. And this is why it is important to have an SEO strategy to ensure that you have a consistent implementation of optimized content throughout your website. To begin with, let us talk about the three main types of Search Engine Optimization.
On-page SEO is the process of optimizing each page to ensure that it ranks high on its relevant search term. This refers to both the content and the HTML code of the said page.
a) Content Optimization
The most important factor in SEO is ensuring that your primary keyword is the main focus of the article. This means that it should be mentioned as often as possible. A well-optimized article has one clear topic that reflects the primary keyword to ensure that is picked up by the search engine algorithms and displayed in its relevant searches. This means that the primary keyword should be present as early as possible in your article in addition to being a major part of the article’s title. Since keywords are such an important part of generating successful content, it is important to dedicate time in keyword research to be aware of the current trending topics and commonly asked questions. This can be done by looking at Google’s search suggestions or check Google’s search consoles for keywords that your website might already be ranking for but you’re unaware of. Additionally, you can check out our free keyword research tools guide to learn about the various tools that can help you find trendy keywords. Next, you might want to check out the long-tail-keywords which are very specific keywords for niche audiences. These long keywords are incredibly powerful in attracting traffic as they are often uncontested which allows you to ensure a first-page ranking which is major to your organic growth. They key to your content’s success doesn’t just lie in choosing an appropriate topic. The content itself needs to be appealing to the reader through pretty formatting and calls to action. Furthermore, your content should also have outbound links to relevant pages as this helps the search engine figure out your relevant search terms. Here’s a quick rundown of all the necessary modifications regarding your content:
1- Identify your primary keyword and use it as often as possible
2-Include your keyword in titles, subheadings and image metadata
3-Simplify your URLs and ensure that they contain your keyword
4-Aim for lengthier (1000+ words) content
5-Use eye-catching visuals to maximize session time
6-Encourage audience interactions through calls to action and comments
7-Use external links to relevant pages to improve your relevant terms
8-Use internal links to direct the generated traffic to more of your content
The next step of optimizing your content is to ensure that the page code meets the search engine’s requirements. This means that your website should be compatible with all devices, preferably with different layouts to suit the various screen sizes. Additionally, you need to ensure that your HTML code is efficient to ensure that it loads quickly as this is a major factor in ranking higher than the competition. Regarding the formatting of the content, you should ensure that the content has consistent formatting through the use of tags. This means that your title should be the only thing carrying the <h1> tag and all your subheadings should hold the <h2> tag. Next, is your page’s meta tag. These tags allow you to help the search engine’s algorithms define the relevant search terms for your page. Additionally, these Meta tags will allow the reader to quickly identify the nature of your article for accessibility. Also, you should make sure that any image you use has the primary keyword in its alt-text for consistent results. Here’s a quick checklist to ensure that your HTML is up to par:
1-HTML code is efficient allowing for fast page loading speed
2-Title is wrapped in <h1> tags
3-Subheadings are wrapped in <h2> tags
4-Images should have the primary keyword in their alt text
This is basically anything you can do outside of your own website in order to increase its search engine ranking. The first thing that can be done is working on your online presence on the various social media sites. This will help you generate a lot of traffic for your business through the use of social media posts that link back to your main site. Furthermore, you can also collaborate with relevant businesses by linking to each other allowing both of your businesses to benefit from the shared traffic. This can be an effective method of generating traffic, however, it requires good networking and knowledge of the industry. Check out our networking sites guide to help you maintain a strong presence in your relevant industry. Finally, the last off-page SEO technique is social bookmarking which is the process of listing your website on the various available social bookmarking websites like Reddit as a sort of index where new viewers will be able to reach your website through those social bookmarks. This gives you the opportunity of going viral as users get to vote on your website’s link depending on its usefulness which bumps it higher on the list as well as on the Search engine results page.
Now that you’re familiar with basic SEO terms, it is time to check out the various available SEO techniques.
Now that we have discussed the basic premises of Search engine optimization, let us look at SEO Ireland which is one of the leading agencies in the field of SEO and website optimization services.
Good planning is essential to the success of your optimization efforts. That is why proper research and goal setting is essential. By setting a clear SEO plan, you can easily convey your vision to all the involved parties allowing for more consistent results. Here are some of the most popular SEO techniques that you should be able to implement:
1-White Hat Techniques
This term refers to all SEO techniques that are definitely intended by the SEO algorithm. These methods almost have no controversy associated with them and tend to be the least intrusive methods of spreading your online brand. These techniques are generally the best place to start and are recommended for businesses that are new to SEO. These methods definitely fall under the guidelines of search engine algorithms. These are the preferred methods that you should consider applying to your website either personally or through an agency. Here are some of the tried and true methods of white hat SEO
a) Knowing the algorithm
Search engines such as Google are constantly updating their algorithms in order to provide the best results for their users. Not only do they provide updates that prevent abuse of the algorithms, they also provide changes to the algorithm to favor end-user usability depending on the current trends and available technology. By constantly remaining up to date with these updates, you can quickly optimize your site to these new specifications which give you the competitive edge and possibly allowing you to rank high on the search engine’s results page which will surely generate lots of traffic for your business. Here’s a site that will help you stay up to date with algorithm changes.Search Engine Land’s library contains links to every Google algorithm update, giving you useful information about the changes they had implemented over the years. Not only is this important for your business to start relevant but having a comprehensive history of changes will also allow you to observe trends that will allow you to predict future implementations allowing you to stay ahead of the curve.
b) WebPage optimization
This next step is almost as important as the content of your site. The efficiency of your HTML code ensures that your load times are optimized. The current trend of search algorithms favors lightweight websites that load quickly. Additionally, sites that are supported by the various available devices like mobile phones, tablets, PCs, and TVs are known to rank higher than sites that simply have one available format. These changes are extremely important as they give you an edge over your competition causing you to rank higher than them which ultimately gives you more traffic and organic growth.
c) Keyword research
This technique requires you to be constantly aware of the current trends in order to capitalize on the popularity of such terms. Good SEO entails capitalizing on keywords that are often searched but lack the created content. Additionally, constant keyword research will allow you to predict keywords that will become popular, giving you a head start over your competition. In addition to normal keywords, Long-tail keywords provide a unique opportunity for reaching niche audiences. Long-tail keywords are specific terms used by a niche group of potential customer. The benefit of these specific keywords is that they are often uncontested allowing you to rank very high on a search results page. Also, people search for these specific terms are much more likely to become customers as they know exactly what they are looking for so satisfying their needs ensures their business and future loyalty. Be sure to check out the keyword research section for more details regarding keyword research and their relevant tools.
d) User experience optimization
With search engine algorithms becoming more and more complicated, several search engines like Google have emphasized the importance of providing users with an accessible user experience. This means that intuitive sites that have an accessible user interface will rank higher than others that don’t. This means that having an intuitive user interface is as important as the content you provide.
2-Black hat techniques
These techniques are somewhat questionable, but they are often leveraged due to their extreme effectiveness in generating traffic for your business. Ideally, you want to stay away from these techniques, however, it is important to understand them in order to be able to identify them if your SEO agency decides to cut corners. Although these techniques might initially generate lots of traffic through exploiting the algorithm, they are short lived and incur penalties on your website that does more harm than good in the long run.
a) Keyword Stuffing
This technique involves adding out of context keywords in order for your content to rank on several terms. These keywords can either be visible to the end user in the form of lists or invisible to the end user in order to only be picked up by the search engine’s crawler. Although this might generate some extra traffic for your content, it provides no real benefit as the end user will soon identify that your content does not have what they need leading to an overall negative experience that is likely to permanently lose you that customer.
b) Article Spinning
This is when the same articles are recycled over and over with slight changes in an attempt to increase the amount of content available on the site from the perspective of a search engine crawler. This is yet another ineffective method of generating traffic as it does not generate interest in your brand. Instead, the end user is likely to form a negative opinion when they see recycles content over and over again. Additionally, developers are constantly updating their algorithms to detect recycled content which will negatively affect the ranking of those that choose to recycle posts.
Keyword Research: How it’s done.
One of the most powerful assets at your exposure when considering digital marketing is keyword research. By using these various tools you will be able to identify the current trending topics, untargeted topics and the current focus of your direct competition. This allows your business to remain relevant and provide customers with their exact needs which builds on their brand loyalty. This ultimately establishes you as a brand and provides you with great opportunities for growth. Now, let us discuss the various methods available to help you conduct effective keyword research.
A) Observing your audience
This is perhaps the simplest method of doing keyword research. By knowing your target audience, you can observe their online interactions on various forums or social media in order to identify the relevant topics of interest. These topics are sure to attract the attention of your target audience which is great. Additionally, it allows you to establish your business as a strong brand that satisfies the needs and inquiries of your customers. Finally, observing the audience will provide you with general directions on which you can build on regarding new topics that you should address.
After you have observed your target audience, you should have a general idea of the current topics that you’d like to talk about. This is where keyword generator tools can help you uncover popular keywords relevant to you. Now, let’s look at some of the available free keyword generators.
1-Google AdWords Keyword Planner:
This easy tool made by Google has the additional benefit of pulling statistics directly from Google’s search database. After entering all your relevant phrases, this tool will provide you with a list of relevant keywords along with all their relevant statistics. Some of these statistics include:
- Amount of competition over this phrase
- Average monthly searches
- AdWords statistics
This free online keyword research tool uses Google’s Autocomplete function to generate keyword relevant to your chosen topics. By using keywords coming from the autocomplete function, you can be sure that these keywords are searched often which means that your content has a higher chance of being seen. Additionally, you can choose a specific Google domain if you are catering to a more geographically constricted audience.
Another great alternative for generating keywords. This tool has the added benefit of allowing you to export the generated data for use with your project management software. Additionally, WordStream has its own scoring algorithm that rates the “effectiveness” of the generated keywords regarding the number of searches it is getting against the number of people competing on this keyword.
Now that you have optimized your website and all previous content, it is time to capitalize on new keywords that you have uncovered using keyword research or through your SEO agency. Having a constant supply of relevant keywords requires lots of management to ensure that you do not fall behind the current trend. Naturally, some keywords will take priority over others due to their immediate benefits that they will provide. This is why having a solid content strategy is essential to your success.
This content management software will allow you to edit content and then publish it to your several digital mediums at once. This simplifies the process of content management and saves you valuable time. Additionally, their admin tools have proved useful in managing your several writers, allowing them specific access to different posts in order to prevent overlap or confusion.
Not only does WordPress provide hosting for your online content, it also has a great content management system. It allows for collaboration between your writers as well as admin controls allowing you to assign roles to your various members. WordPress has perfected text article creation through its seamless editor and ability to schedule the posting of your content. Additionally, its popularity has resulted in various plugins being made specifically for it that are sure to optimize your content creation and its management.
This open source software was created by a passionate community of developers aiming to simplify the process of content management. It is estimated that 2.3% of all websites worldwide use a Drupal-based system. The standard release “Drupal Core” contains various features that include user account registration, menu management, RSS feed, page layout customization and system administration. This will allow you to build an audience by making your readers sign up. Additionally, the admin features will allow you to assign roles to your staff in order to simplify the process of creating and moderation of content. Drupal is a great tool that not only helps you create content but also helps you create a community. This strongly enhances your online presence which ultimately builds on your online brand.
SEO Ireland, a Blooming Local Specialty
As the popularity of digital marketing increases so does the importance of SEO. This has lead to the blooming of several SEO agencies that offer their website optimization services for all sizes of business. They provide great resources to your business as they have several years of experience and their constant market research that allows them to know the current trends in your relevant field. Today, we will be discussing several of those agencies that operate out of Ireland.
1- SEO Ireland
SEO Ireland is an agency that was started by a particularly passionate Welshman that was not fond of the regular SEO agency gimmicks. After taking the decision of switching his Law career for a more modern digital marketing orientated one. With 15 years experience in digital marketing optimization under his belt, he has got strong confidence in his agency’s ability to optimize your website for massive exposure. SEO Ireland’s mission statement ensures that they will identify and implement fixes that are negatively affecting your SEO ranking. SEO Ireland is considered to be one of the best SEO agencies.
Can SEO Ireland Help You?
SEO Ireland takes great pride in their work and that is why they are extremely picky about the clients they choose to work with. They aim for massive success instead of just filling in a role and that is why they ensure that the client has a complementary mindset to ensure maximum success. Before you may hire them, you need to consider what your current goals are. Since consistency is a major factor in SEO, it is important for you to clearly know your goals in order to effectively convey them over to your contact in SEO Ireland.
What Makes SEO Ireland Better Than the Competition?
Due to Google’s constant algorithm updates, some of the dubious tactics used by some SEO agencies will incur a penalty on your site. Here are some of the dodgy tactics that other SEO agencies use that are easily spotted by google:
- Content spam: Google’s Panda update (introduced in 2011) was a new algorithm that was supposed to be a search filter but was later integrated into the main ranking algorithm in 2015. It is a measure of the quality of a site’s content. This ensures that a website is not just spamming content to maximize their clicks and instead is creating quality, engaging content. This was mainly introduced to prevent the success of content farms where a business hires a large number of freelance writers with the intent of producing massive amounts of text for the purpose of generating ad revenue.
- Cloaking: These shady tactics involved presenting the search engine crawler with a different version of a page than the end user sees. This is done by presenting different pages to the user depending on their IP address.
- Hidden text: the use of hidden text that the end user cannot see to increase your keyword density or to add additional terms to your page. This is heavily frowned upon by search engines and will generally lead to you ranking a lot lower.
Seo Ireland uses exclusively white hat techniques that ensure the long-term thriving of your online site. This ensures that you dont have to constantly go back to your old content in order to adjust it to new algorithm changes since they’re not exploiting any of the current algorithms.
By now you should have a general understanding of what SEO Ireland aims to do and if you’d like to do business with them; it’s time for you to contact them to schedule an audit for your website. Here are the 3 main steps you can choose to follow:
1-Essential SEO Audit & personal consultation: This service is for fairly basic websites that simply want advice on how to improve their Search engine ranking.
2- For more detailed SEO help, you’ll have to fill in their SEO Ireland questionnaire regarding your business and your current projects. This involves:
- The nature of your business or service that you provide
- Target audience(s)
- Previous SEO activities
- Your competition
- Long and short-term goals
- Amount of resources you are willing to dedicate to SEO
3-After you have made your decision to use their services, it is time to check out their pricing. SEO Ireland provides you with two simplified plans regarding the analysis of your site to choose from. Here is the basic outline of each plan:
- Essential SEO audit: This plan is for smaller websites that are under low competition. Usually, for niche markets. SEO Ireland promises to uncover all technical problems that are negatively affecting your SEO ranking. Additionally, SEO Ireland will provide you with a keyword analysis to help you identify the relevant keywords that you should be using. Finally, a 50-minute personal call is also included to walk you through a list of recommendations and how they will positively affect your digital presence and Google search ranking. This will cost you but the insight it will provide you with is invaluable.
- Diamond SEO audit: This solution is perfect for large companies that are under lots of competition. This all in one package will provide you with a detailed analysis of your current site regarding all the relevant SEO factors. Additionally, a detailed keyword research will be done to show your most successful keywords and providing you with new relevant keywords that will ensure the popularity of their posts. Finally, a detailed step by step guide to achieving high google ranking will be provided. In this case, the pricing is not fixed and will generally depend on the nature of your business and the type of project you have in mind.
Carrying out the Plan
After you have received your detailed SEO Audit, you can choose to either hire SEO Ireland to carry them out or you can do it independently. It is generally recommended to hire them since they are extremely thorough with their work and they will provide valuable insight due to their 15 years of experience. You will be charged monthly depending on the number of hours you’d like them to manage your SEO. This is where project management software guide comes in handy as it will allow you to easily track their progress and will allow them to log in their working hours simplifying the process.
SEO Ireland’s Blog
In addition to providing great SEO services, SEO Ireland also has an extremely popular blog where all aspects of digital marketing are discussed. This blog is a great resource for any upcoming digital marketer. Additionally, this blog will also provide you with great insight on how the agency will be able to help your business flourish. The SEO Ireland blog is an extremely interesting read and we recommend it for anyone interested in the art of digital marketing.
2- Pro SEO
This agency is one of SEO Ireland’s top contenders. This agency operating out of Dublin specializes in Online marketing and optimizing your content specifically for google.ie giving you access to the majority of your customer base located in Ireland. This agency has become extremely confident in their ability to improve traffic for your business as you can clearly see on their Tv ad. Here is a preview of what they offer:
Toxic Link Audit
This useful tool will identify “Toxic” links that may have caused your site to drop in a search engine’s ranking. This tool is constantly updated in order to ensure that is up to date with the current changes in algorithms ensuring that your website remains penalty free and ranks as high as possible. Here are some of the criteria that the link audit checks:
- Irrelevant content links
- Advertisement heavy links
- Links to competing content
Not only do they offer to identify these bad links but they offer their services for replacing these links with more credible sources that are relevant to your content. In addition to preventing any incurred penalties, the use of credible links has been shown to improve your site’s ranking.
Free SEO Analysis
Pro SEO has great confidence in their SEO abilities, that is why they offer free SEO analysis of your site to help you understand why you need their services. This gives you a great opportunity to gain some insight on the major SEO problems that your site might be having. Afterwards, you can choose to hire them to help you optimize your site.
Being based in Dublin, Pro SEO claims to know everything SEO Ireland related. By hiring local experts, the agency prides itself in its knowledge of the current local trends and their ability to help you stay ahead of the curve through early identification of upcoming trends.
This is another agency that is based in Dublin. Their mission statement revolved around helping businesses increase their visibility and reach their target audience. With over 20 years of experience under their belt, this agency is sure to provide you with valuable insights regarding your SEO efforts. Among their many qualifications is the Google Partners badge which means that they are officially certified by Google to manage AdWords and SEO for businesses. This means that they are regularly aware of any new implementation to search algorithms which provides you with the added benefit of staying ahead of the competition.
This SEO agency has a very comprehensive method of optimizing your content. First, they begin by benchmarking your website in order to help you understand where you currently stand and compare yourself to your competition. Next, they will provide you with a full SEO audit which will highlight the major issues that are negatively affecting your SEO the most. Once you have explained your goals and objectives, this agency will help you structure a strategy that compliments your current goals and they will follow through the set plan over the course of a year.
In addition to providing their services, Successful SEO also provides courses for learning the science behind SEO. Not only will you learn about optimizing sites, but you’ll also learn about how to capitalize on the generated traffic in order to increase your sales. You’ll learn about various SEO concepts such as Google penalties, algorithm updates and long-term strategies directly from the experts.
This free resource proves useful in staying up to date with all the SEO related news. This blog contains all kinds of articles discussing new digital marketing methods, SEO techniques and any upcoming trends that you should be aware of. Keeping track of these professional SEO blogs is essential for remaining relevant in the fast paced digital age.
Benefits of Having Good SEO
No matter the size of your business, having good SEO can be detrimental to the success of your business. Here are some of the valuable results you can expect out of your optimization efforts.
- A) Small businesses
Despite your local business having little competition, SEO provides you with a great opportunity to grow. By maximizing your exposure, you can be sure that you are reaching all of your potential markets. Afterwards, when you take the big decision of expanding, you’ll have a great basis for reaching wider audiences through your online presence. A well-established brand that ranks high on its relevant search terms has greatly increased sales in addition to the added value of being popular which allows for higher profits. SEO might initially seem too resource consuming but there is a definitely worthwhile return on investment that you can expect.
- B) Large business
Due to the extremely competitive nature of the markets where large businesses exist, SEO becomes essential to your success. To begin with, good SEO will give you the competitive edge over the other businesses by allowing you to rank higher on search engine results page. Furthermore, good SEO means that your content is engaging and will ensure that your online medium is greatly more useable which results in customers having a much more enjoyable experience on your sites. This does not only establish you as a brand but it also provides you with valuable customer satisfaction which is a great source of Word of mouth advertising. Finally, a well-optimized website is an extremely cost-effective method of advertising that reaches a global audience.
SEO is an essential part of any strong brand’s digital marketing plan and resources should be allocated to it accordingly. We have discussed the basic principles of SEO that should help you understand why it’s worth the investment. The major appeal of SEO comes from the large audience it exposes your business to for a relatively low cost. When it comes to SEO, SEO Ireland is your best option. Not only do they have 15 years of experience under their belt, but they’re also extremely passionate about their work. These professional SEO Ireland Companies will not only provide you with a comprehensive analysis of your website, but they also offer their services to ensure that your website is optimized to it’s fullest potential. Additionally, they offer keyword research to identify all the relevant topics for your business ensuring that you gain massive amounts of exposure and high search engine results ranking. Now that you have realized the potential benefits of SEO, it’s a good idea to work on your online brand. For more insight on that, check out our comprehensive brand build guide.