Get Your Six Month SEO Checkup to Make Sure Your Website Isn’t Losing Its Bite
Just like you get your teeth cleaned every six months to make sure your bite stays healthy or you get your tires rotated twice a year to keep a firm grip on the road, taking the time to check your site’s SEO performance at the six-month mark is a good idea. As we’re now two quarters into the year, this is the time when you want to evaluate your SEO performance over the past six months and make calculated, informed moves to perform better throughout the end of the year.
A company’s success isn’t always measured out by how they start, but where they wind up; so if your neck is on the line for SEO performance, now is the time to take action. SEO spending and motivation is high after the holidays and excitement of a new quarter, but are often marred by slumping summertime numbers. Luckily, we live in a world of actionable metrics, real-time analysis, and quick-fix implementations—all you need is a little SEO know-how.
The Six Month SEO Checkup Checklist
Here’s a four point SEO checklist for the midway point of the calendar year:
- Content Check. One, Two, Three. While most people are fairly competent at getting the web copy and landing pages properly optimized, by this time, it’s likely that content production and management has fallen off if your site is under-performing. Content creation is an ongoing effort, not one where you can ever say, “We have enough content, what’s next?” Having fresh content is a key to ranking, but only if it is relevant to your website and useful to your audience. These are your three blog and content creation checkpoints:
- Is it fresh and current, not a duplicate or spin of other content on your site or worse, from other people’s sites?
- Is the content relevant to the brand message you are sending as well as the goods and/or services you are providing?
- Is the information provided helpful to your leads and clients? Is this exactly what they want to know from a website like yours or is some other site telling them the same thing? Aim for at least one blog per week.
- Social Engagement. The only thing worse than not being on social media is being there and not being active. When you put social widgets on your site, you are directing leads and customers to a place where they can stay in contact with you much easier. If they get there and it’s a barren wasteland, this tells them your brand is either defunct or not trustworthy. Share your blogs, update your statuses, create viral videos—get out there and get engaged. Search engines rate sites on their social platform connections and listen for social signals to help rank sites. When your links are being shared from social networks, your website gains valuable linkbuilding points. If you aren’t using a social media or one of your accounts is completely underperforming, reevaluate if you need to be there for your target demographic and, if not, shut it down.
- Network and Build. Relationships are one of the most under-looked aspects of SEO. While linkbuilding is still a powerful SEO tool, earning your links through organic methods is even more powerful. This means getting and staying in contact with the movers and shakers in your industry. From your suppliers to your buyers, your customers to your employees—building actual relationships that create “evangelists” for your site and brand will get you better backlinks. When people are invested in what they are sharing, they promote it more efficiently and believably.
- Keep Up to Date on the Best SEO Practices. As you’ve probably already seen, Google sets the trends for search engine algorithms and the others try to keep up or tweak their formulas to be just a little different. With Google, sometimes algorithms change twice a day, but these are minor tweaks. The bigger updates such as Panda, Hummingbird, etc., come once or twice a year—sometimes less. These are the things that you need to watch out for. Now is a good time to catch up on where SEO has moved from the beginning of this year up until now. For instance, Google Analytics has released a new tracking function that has come out of BETA testing. Google Authorship recently did away with photos on the SERPs. Google’s scraping efforts might have finally dealt the death blow to the “How To” sites out there, a relationship that has been tumultuous for years. Don’t just catch up with the news, check for the predicted trends.
The bottom line is that you are at a critical point in your website’s SEO. Just as baseball teams who make a run after the All-Star break and win the World Series aren’t remembered for their poor start, you can hit a home run in the second half of the year by starting and implementing these practices today.