A good search engine optimization strategy is sustainable because SEO is always geared towards what the company does at its core. Optimization therefore should not be pursued blindly but seen as the potential moment to make a sustainable statement of your brand through a precise selection of the optimization methodology.
So how to implement a search engine optimization strategy that is also sustainable? We explain it to you in 3 steps.
1. Define KPIs and objectives
At the beginning you always have to ask yourself the question: “What is the goal?”, “Where do we want to go?”. The SEO goal can vary a lot depending on the project:
- Increase digital visibility for the target group
- Market development
- Lead generation
- Increase the conversion rate of sales or service requests.
When setting goals, it is important that they are SMART . SMART is an acronym that stands for: specific, measurable, accepted, realistic and timed . This method derives from project management and ensures that goals are not formulated as unrealistic thinking, but as concrete and measurable milestones whose progress can be observed.
Concrete KPIs ( Key Performance Indicators ) help the measurability of objectives. These must be defined according to the target vision of the project and can also be very individual. The classic KPIs in the SEO field are, for example:
- The visibility index
- Organic user numbers
- User behavior metrics
- Clearly defined keyword ranking positions
- Organic sales and turnover figures
- The organic conversion rate
Once goals have been set and KPIs defined, it is advisable to set up monitoring systems such as dashboards or regular reports to ensure transparency of progress for all parties involved.
2. Needs analysis
Because SEO is an inbound marketing channel. This means that the user already has a concrete intention, an intention that he tries to put into words when he types in the search engine. A need that must be addressed with the exact search result. Then, once the goals are set, the next step is to focus on the wants and needs of the potential target group.
But to tailor the SEO strategy to the needs of users, you first need to know who the potential users are. The target group must be defined. Methods such as target group analysis or personas creation are of great help at this stage. Many companies already have a good view of their target group. However, it is worth taking a deeper and more structured look at the needs and desires of potential customers.
Unlike concrete advertising for target groups via Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn, there is no direct way to reach your target group in search engine optimization. Consequently, the appropriate search terms must be sought, through which the target group is most clearly represented. Here, however, there are often dispersion losses, as less specific search terms with a lot of volume can often contain different search intentions. But first let’s go back to needs with an example.
Giorgio plays football in an amateur league outside his job and got injured during a league match. Physiotherapist’s Diagnosis: External Ligament Sprain. He is prescribed physiotherapy and a bandage with a healing time of a few weeks. Giorgio, however, cannot wait that long: the end of the season is approaching and the team has yet to win against AC Aston. Thus began Giorgio’s search for alternative methods of treatment to help the strained ligaments heal.
This example teaches us two things:
- tracing the chain of events helps us to make the needs of our users more tangible.
- the stage of the event (in our example, the sports accident) and the need that arose (faster healing) reveal entirely new dimensions where there is potential for search queries that can be used to attract the user.
3 Competitor analysis
Competitor analysis depends a lot on the project. In some cases you already know your competitors and their approach very well, in others you don’t even know who all your competitors are. Analyzing the competition can be very productive for the conception of your strategy. But in some cases it also happens that the competition is simply not strong enough to learn from them. But this too is a learning experience: identifying what you don’t want to do.
Competitor analysis typically takes place during the entire conceptual period of the SEO strategy. It is often worthwhile to take a first look at the competitors already in the context of the target group analysis. But even in later stages, such as keyword research or designing website structure measures and technical implementation, competitor analysis can provide useful insights. And for both: “Dos & Don’ts”.
There is a whole host of SEO tools that can be used for effective competitor analysis. We use SEOZoom with particular preference, but well known tools such as SEMrush, ahrefs, MOZ etc. they also meet the requirements and can also help find digitally strong competitors. This can mean, for example, analyzing market niches and focusing on them – or turning competitors’ weaknesses into their own strengths (customer service, sustainability, etc.).