From Google Analytics to SocialMention to Bitly to Facebook Page Insights and onward, there are a host of great tools out there that let you do everything from finetune your online ad copy and images to make the search engine bots happy and welcome on your page to understand who’s coming to your site and how they get there.
Of course, the next step in understanding how people are coming to your site is to start thinking about whether you can fine-tune the content you’re producing — whether that’s blog posts, videos, images, infographics, or whatever — to attract more of the people you want and increase the spreadability of your stuff.
However… don’t get so focused on the mechanics of what you’re doing that you forget the humanity.
Some people hire search engine optimization (SEO) consultants or SEO companies that do some questionable things. Some companies hide links back to their own companies in the websites they work on, they use link farms, they will fill a sub-page on a website with links back to the home page… all of these things are bad.
But sometimes the temptation to use what we can learn from the Google Keyword Tool, Compete, Google Insights, and the like can overpower the basic truth. What is that basic truth? Brace yourself. It’s going to ROCK YOUR WORLD:
If you do the basic stuff (metatags, add title text, use categories and tags on blog posts, put alt text on images) right, if you engage with the community you want to be part of, if you are generous in sharing links, praising, discussing, and advancing discussions, and you write or produce great content… that’s easily as important as feverishly reading every SEO book, blog, and white paper out there.
Keep it simple. Build a strong foundation, then do good work. Good things will happen.
(This is post number four in an ongoing series of posts aimed at providing practical advice for small businesspeople in the areas of public relations, communications and social media. If you ever need help with your small business… why not get in touch?)