SEO and lead generation are two of the primary drives of most new leads when it comes to B2B operations. There's a tacit understanding that SEO is a necessary part of the process but, for many businesses, the top practices still seem elusive.
How do you optimize your B2B site in a way that yields real results? What are the secrets to occupying those coveted top SERPs? Join us, today, as we bring you our official breakdown of SEO best practices for use in your B2B operation.
SEO Best Practices: A Closer Look
Search engine optimization is a many-headed beast. By this stage, we all know the basics: SEO is a set of tasks designed to improve your site's search engine rankings so people see you when they search. Just like traditional marketing, the more visibility you have, the better.
Simple, right? Well, the complexity comes when you realize that there are a million things you can do to achieve this result. Depending on who you are, where you operate, and your clientele, you may need different services.
In the quest to get higher Google rankings, the SEO strategies, techniques, and secret tips are varied. The best way to think about them is that they are as unique as each business using them.
But there are some basics. A few essentials to factor in to make sure your website adheres to the current best SEO practices. Because, unique or not, if you're not getting the basic foundation down, your SEO is going to fall flat, every time.
So let's take a closer look at some of the leading SEO best practices for your business in 2020. Not to get too ahead of ourselves, but some may come as a surprise to you.
Top Practices For SEO in 2020
Before we get started, let's get one thing out of the way. We all know that you need a healthy balance of keywords on each page to avoid getting penalized for overstuffing. We know that our webpages need meta descriptions and that those meta descriptions need to be a specific length.
We're not here to regurgitate the same facts you've heard a dozen times already. The following are lesser-known SEO best practices that increase page ranking for a better online visibility. They may not be top secret, but you'd be surprised how often people neglect them.
Visiting a website is the same as visiting someone in a neighborhood you don't know. You might trust them, but you have no idea who's looking in through the windows while you're there.
This is why security certificates are no longer an option, but an absolute must-have for SEO. SSL Certificates are available from your web host and various online suppliers. They're easy to get and give your visitors a feeling of safety regarding their data. They are also an official ranking factor and cannot be overlooked.
Page Load Speed
In the days before Web 2.0, if you came to a website that took a while to load, that was just how the cookie crumbles. Now, it's a deciding factor not only in whether your visitors will engage with your website but in whether Google will rank you at all.
There are many factors that influence page speed. Using Google's Pagespeed Insights tool, you can gauge how well or poorly your site is doing. Then you can work on the following factors to improve it:
- CDN: Content Delivery Networks spread your site data over servers, retrieving it quicker because it's not all coming from one place.
- Image Compression: Decreasing the file size of your images with compression makes loading them quicker. It also decreases their quality, so make sure to strike a balance.
- Offscreen Loading: Whenever possible, use "lazy-loading" to defer offscreen elements from loading until the user calls for them. That way, resources are only used for what's onscreen, making for a faster site.
Matching Search Intent
This is a less technical tip, but still very important. Users are savvier than they've ever been. They are looking out for cheap SEO gimmicks that are just trying to trick them into a click. And they have gotten very good at spotting them.
Make sure your SEO content is actually valuable. If you target a page for the key phrase "how to lose 10 lbs quick", don't make the whole blog one big product page and no actual advice. That's not what the user wanted, and Google knows that, so it will prioritize another site for providing actual value.
Don't be afraid of consumer research. Spend some time creating a list of relevant search terms, Googling them, and optimizing your content to occupy the same space. Go back and rework older pages, even.
The goal of SEO outreach is simple: to use a hands-on approach to build links back to a website, for better overall SEO results. Backlinks from other high-authority websites in your niche indicate to Google that your website can be vouched for. As a result, it will tend to favor your site slightly higher than it otherwise might.
With outreach and enough research into the big SEO players in your industry, the backlink results to your site are mind-blowing. Many companies are either too intimidated to conduct their own outreach or simply overlook it. With that in mind, your B2B operation stands to gain massively from this one simple technique.
Easily one of the most overlooked steps in most SEO plans, optimizing images is absolutely crucial to page optimization. Remember: images are a massive part of the Google search process, with millions being crawled and indexed every hour of every day. Your site's images could be a part of that process, making you a part of it, too.
You need to add alt tags, first and foremost. Alt tags help Google to parse what your images actually are, so it can rank them and, by association, the page they feature on.
Something a little more granular you should do is to optimize the image filename before uploading it. Change it to your keyword or some short phrase featuring your keyword and then upload it to your site. This ensures that, even if the image doesn't load, your keyword will feature when Google crawls your site.
SEO Optimization Tips
B2B lead generation is the lifeblood of businesses across America. While SEO has factored into that for many years, there are still many operations left without a clear picture of how to use it properly. Hopefully, today's list of top practices has brought you a little closer to truly effective search engine optimization.
Looking to improve your B2B operation with expert growth and marketing services? Check out some of our other blog content, today, and let's change the way you drive business, together.