What is Off-Page SEO?
The value of Off-Page SEO and what it is needs to be defined before a busy business owner will prioritize the effort. Unfortunately for many, the term “SEO” is vaguely understood. Business owners know it has something to do with how online website content is displayed (or not) in search queries like Google. On-page SEO efforts help website content appear in organic search results, from the merit of keyword page content. Paid SEO or PPC (Pay-Per-Click) is promoted at the top of search queries artificially on the merit of an advertising budget.
To provide an idea of the substantial investment required to accelerate search ranking with Google ads, a PPC campaign for the phrase “on page SEO services,” would run $22.79 per click.
A realistic minimum budget for this term at $22.79 would be at least $113.95 per day for 5 clicks, or $3,418.50 for a 30 day campaign. Remember, time is SEO’s friend and most campaigns need a minimum for 2-3 months to gain momentum, ideally 5-6 to see traction and ROI.
Other phrases are less investment per day but that’s because the phrase is less searched or less desirable.
This example helps demonstrate the amount of trust and education a business would be advised to first prioritize prior to hiring an SEO firm. How do businesses’ justify this marketing expense? Consider what a new customer is worth, especially a repeat customer. How about 10 new customers?
SEO performed correctly is still the best way to rank and convert visitors into customers. –Veronica Cannady
Let’s discuss the easiest way even a non-techie can assess that. To understand, we need to first visit how SEO services became a mistrusted industry.
SEO got a bad rap when PPC campaigns artificially boost websites with the AD icon at the top of search results without first optimizing website content for real people who read or click away.
On-Page or Organic SEO ranks over time because real people click and stay on a website (clicking other pages / blogs supported by internal links is great engagements and opting-in to an offer like an email form is conversion.)
That means a lot of money gets spent per click just to have a visitor realize their informational needs aren’t met and drop off within 8 seconds1 . The irony of this strategy results in increasingly worse Organic SEO ranking without marketing dollars to compensate and visitor clicks that do not convert into customers.
How does this happen?
How On-Page “Organic” SEO supports Off-Page SEO (and PPC)
Websites rely on generic practices like putting all their services on one page in the main navigation (known as SEO dilution because search engines can’t decipher which service to rank the page for). Poor performing content combined with antiquated design and user-experience can only receive a temporary boost from PPC but not conversions into customers.
This is especially true as web design evolves to meet the needs of an audience acclimated to increasingly impressive user interfaces competing for attention and purchase trust.
SEO services are evolving too. The industry is improving. That said, SEO is multi-discipline which SEO PPC firms may not be well-versed in On-Page Organic SEO keyword research and copyediting first.
PPC SEO is a great way to accelerate your search competitiveness – after your website content is based on keyword phrases your customer uses to find your services.
Now that you understand why SEO matters and what to look for so your site ranks, the two easy, free steps (that your competition isn’t doing) will be a no-brainer to prioritize into your marketing activities.
Why is off-page SEO so overlooked? Pretty web design and click bait receives all the attention because it’s tangible (visual) and almost immediate (a landing page can be built in a day). Off-Page SEO may not be instant or sexy but it’s highly effective because Off-Page SEO is cultivated at the speed of our most powerful commodity – trust.
Off-Page SEO in 2 Simple Steps
Factors that influence our success include relationships, referrals, and rewards or accolades over time. It’s the same for our website.
1) How to accrue hyperlinks to your website – ask!
When an already reputable website such as the local news, educational establishment, or non-profit group hyperlinks to your website – your off-page SEO or “authority” increases.
Off-page SEO authority accrues over time based on:
- How old your website is
- how long you registered your domain name demonstrating long-term intent,
- how much drop off from visitors you website has (more than 50% and it’s time to revisit your content and user experience)
- how many sources drive traffic to your site and what is the authority of those websites?
You don’t need more nuances to understand that time and reputation influence a website’s credibility with search engines.
Competitive adventive is rapidly achieved when you remember to include the request for a do-follow hyperlink any time you or your business participates in a joint community event or being featured as a speaker.
In fact, it’s doesn’t always have to be related to your profession. Remember, SEO loves established .org or .edu sites that link to yours, so local charities or churches that hyperlink to your site count even if your service isn’t related to your profession.
When I exceeded 100 hours volunteering in a ferret shelter during my Seattle, WA days, I received press which hyperlinked to my website related to web design services. When I spoke at WordPress Meetup Seattle, the hyperlink was more relevant to my profession but actually less effective in providing traffic to my site at that time.
For start-ups that don’t have a professional website yet – don’t underestimate the value of LinkedIn in search results. LinkedIn is a powerful search engine even ranking in google searches. Added benefit to taking the time to write quality content for LinkedIn means that much of it assists your content writing when your business is at the stage to invest in a website that ranks.
Why Step 2 is the Best Off-Page SEO Practice No One is Using
Google dominates 80% of search queries2. Yet few business owners know how to submit their Off-Page SEO mentions to google.
And it’s easy.
In fact, Off Page SEO is so credible it’s worth the time to work retro-actively: submit any website that has ever referenced your name or business (still visible as a link on their site) to Google Webmaster tools.
This process entails a separate blog but the impact is that whether the source hyperlinked to your site or not, you’ve alerted google with the importance of signing into your business account and submitting another query or search investigation into your relevance online.
Sounds sophisticated but it’s just copy and pasting weblinks or URL’s of any credible website that has linked to yours. This is not the same as directories, which is a separate blog tutorial. You know the difference because an individual .org or .com is not a directory listing like Yext.
Simply add it in your speaker agreement documents, especially if you speak for free. In fact, the omission of industry standard requests can signal an amateur or desperation which influences perception.
Include your URL with statement that on your promo page to speak to please hyperlink the URL in your bio to your website. Remember to thank the organizer.
How To Hyperlink:
WordPress websites (which now dominate as the majority of websites created online) make this easy.
Hover your cursor over the text you want to direct your readership to and you’ll see this section highlighted
Click the Insert/Edit Link icon and enter your complete website URL or weblink. You can also do this Word Doc to make it easy to emulate and create a visual expectation.
These small details aren’t hard, just overlooked because many don’t realize how value this provides or how to track when it’s completed and how the results affect your business.
As your business accrues hyperlinks, remember to submit the source link to your Google Webmaster tools. This is where your business pulls ahead of others because no one does this simple step. And it’s free.
Opportunities for backlinks includes press release, reciprocal relationships with your local Chamber of Commerce or organizations, speaking engagements, and of course social media channels.
For examples of this, visit SEO Designed Featured Portfolio to see solopreneur websites that are profitable from keyword featured pages designed to perform in searches and provide value.
2) Enter do-follow PR links into Google Webmaster Tools
This process takes less than an hour but few do it because they don’t know how or understand how significant this step is to Off-Page SEO.
- Set up an account or sign in. Please don’t use your personal gmail account but set up an admin gmail dedicated for your business that you can allocate to an assistant or webmaster.vYou want all of your google assets attached to one log in: business youtube channel, google local places, google analytics, and google business, google webmaster. Remember that your google assets are managed by a real person log in for authenticity.
- Visit https://aboutme.google.com/ This should be linked to your google business assets. On this page scroll down and click on “Sites”. A pop up will present an opportunity at the bottom to submit all websites which have hyperlinked to yours. So if that’s 30 sites –great, it’s only tedious to enter the URL’s in once and it’s done. Refer to print screen visual.
If you aren’t technical most Virtual Assistants know how to navigate Google Webmaster Tools and this investment in nominal – especially compared to paid SEO campaigns that skipped this step because it’s not related to this niche of SEO.
Off- Page SEO is the unglamorous side of marketing. It’s also the most essential especially after a website is new or redesigned. Fresh content needs support to accelerate ranking in non-paid, on-page SEO results. That is achieved though marketing that includes Off-Page SEO.
Since online content degrades over time in SEO ranking, and announcements referencing your website are less likely to be available as time passes, the sooner you implement these two steps – the sooner time works on your site instead of against it for Off-Page SEO rankings.
Off-Page SEO need not be overly technical or daunting.
It’s really a practice of remembering that every contribution mentioned online is happy to link to your site if you remember to include it in your agreement (I have personally seen so many bios or mentioned without a hyperlink included, simply because it didn’t occur to the admin if not specifically requested).
Then add those PR backlinks to your business Google Webmaster tools.
Allow 2-4 weeks then use a free trial period with a tool like Semrush to check out your new SEO mojo!
This blog is meant to exemplify how relevant Off-Page SEO is to your business and how attainable.
Just two actions will differentiate your online credibility from your competition. –Veronica Cannady