Tactical SEO: The theory and practice of search marketing by Lee Wilson.

Overview

Central ideas and arguments

By definition SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process people use to make sure their websites are appealing to search engines. Tactical SEO, by Lee Wilson, takes us back to the basics of search engine optimization. We know the concept of SEO is always changing and let’s be honest, there is no shortage of information available on how to maximise it, but this book is a good basis for the uninitiated.

In this book we learn that techniques can vary depending on your industry, but the main principle is to make sure the basic tactics are followed. We learn that the crux of SEO strategy is to centre on keywords. By possessing key words on a regular basis we learn that this is the best tactic to get your website noticed by the likes of Google.

Search engine optimization (SEO) can be seen as the running battle between website designers and search engine companies. Websites are constantly seeking powers to gain (and retain) their first-page rankings, while search engines want to refine what they promote, in order to improve results for searchers.

This book explains how we go outside of the common technical changes that may be necessary to boost your SEO footprint and look at the SEO industry as a collective, touching upon its practices, strategies and methodologies. The bite-sized information and easy-to-understand methods shows us strategies across different industries.

It provides in-depth explanations of industry jargon and illustrates SEO best practices simply and concisely, allowing us to gain a good grasp on each concept.

If you are someone who is looking for personal growth, learning from others’ experiences, and enjoy viewing the industry from another valuable perspective, then this book is for you. Wilson has done a great job in pulling a rapidly changing and quite complex subject together and making it simple.

Case studies

We know Google is the main search engine and Wilson dedicates a whole chapter to why the other search engines matter (Ask, Bing and Yahoo for example). He touches upon solution-driven search potential with Yahoo Answers being a great example outside of the traditional SERP marketing model.

One of the most challenging industries to succeed online is the travel sector. This is because of the volume and variety of competition, combined with some of the most recognisable brands in the marketplace. Wilson talks about tactics such as Streamlining. This strategy ensures user information is crafted into practical packages, unique to the users’ needs, and requires minimal effort to digest the information. Travel consumers are likely to require top-line help and advice and will buy in packages, therefore your site needs to reflect their needs to support this. For example package holidays (that include accommodation, insurance and consumables) combine third-party services into a single consumer package.

There are many frequently forgotten measurements for SEO such as mobile site success, uptime (the amount of time your website is available for) and natural linkability.

Takeaway points

• Google dominates global search. The percentage of market share of Google is more than three times that of its nearest competition in the United States

• Every approach to SEO will have some form of process. There is nothing wrong with including an element of process in SEO strategy

• The vast majority of search opportunities go unrealised.

• SEO activity is not a one-time activity but a series of ongoing processes

• Digital success begins with your website and its ability to support user and search needs

• Each search vertical has a unique audience and offers an additional opportunity for your website, company, brand and service to expand its reach online

• Search ripples are an extension of this previously available Google + concept of visualising the impact of one action on one end result. The bigger the perceived action impact on the end result the greater the ripple

• It is possible to create strategies and tactics that are specific to an online niche or industry sector

• Re-purposing tactics and getting creative with strategy implementation can provide ongoing wins over many years, regardless of your business

• When a company, an entrepreneur or any business decides they need SEO services, one of the first and initially challenging questions they need to decide on is to employ an SEO expert in-house, external agency, specialist or consultant

Originally published in print by Admap, November 2017.


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