Strategic SEO

We all want our names, companies and products to come up when you search for them on Google, right? This is what SEO.; Search Engine Optimization – the art and science of making sure you are found when people search on Google and other search engines.

I get clients asking me for this everyday. The problem is, of course, no one knows how this works. A while back an angry client was up in arms for making their brand seem “cheap”. They could not understand why their brand did not come up when you searched for certain words on Google. (In fact, they went on to call Google Kenya so as to make a complaint). But I digress…

How do you make you site pop up first in the search engine results pages? You can click here to read a detailed answer. Basically, what you need to do is to prove to Google that your website is relevant to the topic being searched and important relative to other websites.

If you company is ABC Ltd and your main competitor is XYZ Ltd, it is fair to assume that you’d both get pretty good websites. After a (hopefully short) while you would both realise that it is important to be found on Google and you would start investigating this. The first thing you’ll likely come across is that you have to optimize your websites. This is sometimes called “on page” SEO. Everyone does it perfectly (or they should!).

Going back to our example, the CEOs of XYZ and ABC would both ensure that their on page SEO is done perfectly if they are reasonably good as CEOs. What next? How does one get an advantage over the other as far as SEO goes? If you ask me, gains from on page SEO are marginal because everyone does it well. The important part of SEO is what you do after you have optimized your website.

Invariably, the other part of SEO can be boiled down to one thing: making sure that as many other websites as possible point a link to your own website. This works this way: when publishes a link to your company’s website, it is taken to mean that is voting for your site’s importance. The more such links you can get, the better!

The problem is that getting these links is expensive and/or time-consuming.

So how do you do this in a scalable way?

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  1. Don’t mention Google ! Google is no more a search engine !! SEO in Google is dead unless you G+ 🙂

    Getting incoming links is still good; but most important is rich keyword content – content is king – in HTML (so in title and alt attributes).

    • I thought about it, but I feel that Google is still too important to be left out of the conversation. I believe its reach here in Kenya is 80%++ Perhaps it just means that SEO will now include G+ optimization 🙁

      • Sadly, Kevin, it does !!

        It seems that nowadays social media is the best tools to promote your website (FB + Twitter + G+) as latest social media updates appear in top of search engines… Also, contest and competition are very popular and freemium model are well received by the mass.

        But at the end, all this should be done focusing on targeted keywords (e.g. if you tweet without inserting targeted keywords = waste of kb)

        Anyway, Google is still important but their last moves really suck (no FB or Tw in results, only G+; real name policy, etc.)!! Expect Google to go down badly and, Bing will go up. I liked Google because it was fast and giving pertinent results, I don’t need a slow engines that returns stuff friends shared and/or my Google reader has !

      • All the visitors on my sites are from Google. Not a single one from Bing or Yahoo. [And I am on top of Bing and Yahoo for relevant key words].
        It seems Kenyans mainly use Google.
        The good news is it is still very easy to rank highly for Kenyan specific keywords!

  2. Someone explain this to me.
    My site, “” is essentially a one page site with jQuery slider effects. I have not touched it since I built it. No on page SEO, no backlink SEO, no Social Media SEO.
    My other site, “” is the site that I have employed numerous backlink and social media experts on Fiverr to do SEO for me. I even put it on WordPress with the best SEO plugin and a regularly updated blog.
    Yet, for relevant key words, the first site always comes first on Google! Can anybody give me an explanation? I asked a few SEO experts and they did not have an answer. [Domain age is the same. PR is the same.]

    • My two guesses:

      1. I feel that many of the Fiverr backlinks will do more harm than good, especially for a new site. This is because they are often low-quality and are usually delivered in bulk over a short time. Google, etc, frown on link buying.
      2. Perhaps since the content on the jquery site is all on one page the SEO juice of that one page is more than the SEO juice to the other site which is spread over a number of pages

      Make sense?

  3. I was very careful with the Fiverr selection. I don’t think it is that. Before the Fiverr purchases, I had personally added pr 6 dofollow backlinks, and I am sure you know these are gold!
    I suspect it is the second reason. Everything concentrated on one page. Which means, with the Panda update, backlinks are not very important!?

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