SEO in New Orleans
There are only a few true SEO companies in New Orleans. Most of what you see if you Google “SEO New Orleans” is Digital Marketing and traditional advertising agencies – that also may have SEO on the menu.
Whats the Difference?
Many Digital Marketing Companies focus on global marketing packages – of which SEO in New Orleans is only a piece of the overall project. That is not always a terrible thing.
But if you have very competitive keywords, you will find that many of these types of advertising agencies will subcontract the Search Engine Optimization aspect of the project to a true New Orleans SEO company.
Commodities in Digital Marketing
Many of today’s modern marketing techniques have become somewhat commodities. We don’t mean that in a disparaging way – but creating of a Facebook ad or Google Pay Per Click ad can be done by just about anyone who has a couple years experience and has some talent in graphic design. That graphic designer would use their talents across many advertising verticals.
At the end of the day, Google Adwords, Facebook Advertising, Yelp Advertising and the such need a good designer and some experience in each advertising platform. Anyone that is pretty good at their job would create ads that ultimately perform somewhat similar.
What it boils down to is that although still outside of the realm of a business owner, those types of Digital Marketing have become somewhat commoditized. SEO on the other hand is a very specific skill set.
SEO is Different
The reason that many marketing companies white label or subcontract the SEO aspect of their full digital marketing campaign is because Search Engine Optimization is a very specialized business.
SEO Agencies are generally not that great at building a website or making things very pretty — what they are good at is having a depth of knowledge in the ever-changing avenue of SEO.
Many business owners are under the impression that when they have a custom website built, that “SEO can be included”. It is just simply expected by most laymen that if they spend thousands of dollars on a custom built, beautiful website – that it will naturally “rank on Google”. Truth is – website development and SEO are VERY different skill-sets.
There is NO SEO button that can be pressed when building a website. Although some of the better web designers may go as far as to put meta titles, meta descriptions on the pages – that is about the extent of what they will do from an SEO aspect.
Much More To Be Done
In reality, from the website build perspective, there is quite a bit that can be done to assist with ranking the site. Here are some of the things that could be done when a website is being designed, that will substantially assist the SEO professional.
It really shouldn’t be expected to be done by the web designer, but having the web designer work with an SEO expert will give the best results and save a ton of time in getting the website to rank for the SERPS that matter.
Silo The Site – Siloing the website is using keyword research to create an SEO friendly site structure. This is a perfect example of why you should t expect a website designer to implement SEO — they wouldn’t even have a proper keyword research tool!
Once the keyword research is done, the URL structure of the website should be built using the strongest keywords closer to the root domain. Each set of keywords create a silo – in which blog posts can be created and fall in line with the URL structure.
Headers – Some of the most basic of on-page SEO is looking over each page on the site and having a well thought out, strategic layout of H1, H2 and H3 headers. Although not as important as it once was – headers still assist with ranking a page.
Internal Links – This is a big one. One of the major aspects of ranking a website is how Google will crawl the site. Siloing provides a straight forward layout in which Google can understand the differences between each keyword, but the real power comes from utilizing internal linking between the Silod pages and blog posts.
If you look at the graphic above, you should have links run (once again leveraging your keyword research) from the main domain, to the top of the silo page, to secondary silo’d pages to the blog posts. Each link should be using specific anchor text (once again leveraging your keyword research) .
In a perfect world, each silo would ONLY have internal links to other pages within the respective silo. That can sometimes become a challenge with sidebars, top navigation and footer links — but real SEO guru’s have some tricks to make this happen 🙂
The Right Tool For The Job
At the end of the day its important that if you are rolling out a new website, a digital marketing campaign or an SEO project – you should make sure that you are hiring the right person for each phase. Don’t take it for granted that your website designer has any real concept of Search Engine Marketing.
SEO is Ongoing
Search Engine Optimization is not a one-time thing. Its not a button pressed or some work that gets completed on a specific day. It is an ongoing process of adjusting to the Google Algorithm updates, Content Marketing, Link Building, Social Media Syndication, On-Page SEO and more,.
SEO In New Orleans
SEO in the city of New Orleans is a little behind. New Orleans has historically been behind on adopting technology for business, and that case stands true in the realm of New Orleans SEO.
A perfect example that New Orleans is behind the times when referring to technology to grow your business is the fact that the local paper, The Times Picayune was one of the few papers owned by a super huge media company, that was still making money. That means that advertisers were still seeing advantages from advertising in the newspaper. Which also leads you to believe that there are still a massive amount of print readers in the Greater New Orleans area.
SEO Is Easy In New Orleans
SEO is the art of having your website come up when someone searches a key search term that is relevant for your page. All over the world, SEO gurus have the ability to charge quite a bit of money for their services because the internet has become such a powerful marketing tool.
When it comes to New Orleans Search Engine Optimization, there have even been some SEO Gurus that have proven how easy it is to rank a site by running to the top of the rankings for searches such as SEO New Orleans. With the lack of the SEO Companies in the Greater New Orleans area, at least SEO Companies that are good enough to rank on page one of Google for the #1 search term, you would think that people in New Orleans dont even use the internet.
I come to a different conclusion. I believe that business owners use outside SEO Companies that are outside of the Greater New Orleans area to get ranked for the SERPS that they need to rank their business.
I do also believe that business owners in the New Orleans area tend to rely on more traditional advertising as opposed to modern Digital Marketing. This may be in part that many of the larger businesses in the south are owned by older individuals.
In many instances, older individuals may not see the value in Digital Marketing as much as the younger generation only because they themselves dont use the internet to find businesses.
Things Need To Change
New Orleans has a huge tourism economy. With all of those visitors coming in to visit Big Easy, many of the younger crowd fall in love and decide to move here.
With the huge influx of younger professionals, especially those in the technology fields, that have flocked to New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina, the more savvy business owner will need to look at a full range of Digital Marketing options to give their new business the edge it needs for success.
Younger business owners are not spending one red cent with companies like the Yellow Pages, but do take advantage of companies that can rank their business on popular search engines like Google or Bing or even the citation style business directories such as Yelp.
Open Season For SEO
I see this as a tremendous opportunity for quality SEO companies to make a lot of money in the upcoming future for New Orleans. Digital Marketing such as SEO, SEM (Search Engine Marketing) Local SEO and Social Media Advertising are the ways of the future and will be how the new successful businesses are grown. With SEO outperforming PPC in the long run, the rise of Search Engine Optimization is inevitable.
The new and upcoming businesses that embrace the new styles of marketing will appeal to the younger crowd and become “hip” and ultimately successful. This leaves a lot of room for an Digital Marketing Ninja to grow their business as well. I see quite a bit of changes coming down the pipe soon.
Exactly What Is a SEO Site Audit?
An SEO Audit is the process of reviewing your website to insure that it will perform well in search results. Any good SEO audit will review the website against the “best practices” as defined by the major search engines and give you a list of what is good on your site and give recommendations on changes that you can make to improve your viability on the web. In addition, it is a good review on exactly how people and the search engines see your site. What are your keywords? What does your title and description say? How does your result look when found by the Google and Bing?
What Should I Expect From a SEO Website Audit?
There are different types of Search Engine Optimization Audits. The automated types (like below) and the type in which you meet with an SEO guru and discuss your goals and strategy and they manually review your site. Manual SEO audits will generally cost as you have someone that you meet with and time is used. I recommend at least starting with an automated SEO audit and if you see issues, have questions or need to improve results then call a professional. A good automated SEO Audit should give you a lot of powerful information such as:
Give an Overall SEO Rating
Give Recommendations on What to Do
Your Title, Description and Meta Tags – Are They Worded Properly?
Number of Pages Google Has Indexed
Images Analysis – Does Your Images Have Proper Tags?
Does Your Site Have Proper Headers? What Are They?
Analyze Your Content For Keywords
- The Quality of Backlinks to Your Website
Check to Make Sure You Have a proper Sitemap and Robot.txt
Analyze Your Websites Code For Errors
Check for Mobile Compatibility
More Techie Stuff…
How Often Should I Run an SEO Audit?
With Google and the other search engines making changes to their algorithm on a regular basis, its important to check your website every 6 months or so. What worked last year for SEO may get you “blacklisted” this year. Especially if you are using “Black Hat” or “Grey Hat” SEO techniques.
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Should You Contact a SEO Guru if the Audit is Not Good?
If you have plans on having your site rank well in search engine results and you don’t have the technical acumen or the time to correct anything that the audit finds, I would strongly recommend contacting a professional.
Google Makes Massive Changes – Does It Affect You?
On Tuesday April 21st Google unleashed what could be a massive disruption for a large portion of the world wide web. The good news is everyone knew that it was coming and most website owners have made the needed adjustments. Although the roll-out started Tuesday, it can take up to ten days for everything to go into full effect. Is your site ready?
The change now seriously demotes your website if you are not mobile friendly. With the massive amount of internet traffic taking place on mobile devices, Google has now proclaimed if your site doesn’t display properly on mobile devices, you will get a serious ding in your search results.
Google made the announcement last fall that this was coming, so everyone could make the needed adjustments. For many, that meant a total redesign of their website. Some have chosen to create a “M dot” site which displays an abbreviated version of their website on a sub-domain if you are on mobile. Some people estimate that over half of all internet traffic is now on mobile devices and Google feels that if your site doesn’t react well to over half of the world, you don’t deserve to rank well. I cant really blame them on that.
Its Not Really a Bad Thing
We have seeing rankings slowly decrease on sites that are not mobile friendly for years, but for more organic reasons. For instance, Google looks at how relevant your site is to a particular search query by analyzing bounce rate, time on site, pages per session and so forth. Those “quality metrics” for sites not mobile friendly have decreased. They have decreased naturally because when people visit those sites on mobile devices, they leave sooner. When Google sees the decrease in those “quality metrics” they don’t give you as much credibility for that search query.
“It’s important to keep in mind that the changes are limited to mobile search”, said Jaffe Digital Strategist Melanie Trudeau. “However, the effect on small and mid-sized sites still could be profound”. According to Trudeau, websites that aren’t mobile ready can expect zero traffic from smartphones and tablets.
What Can You Do?
The first thing you need to do is check your site for what Google calls “mobile friendly”. They have set up a page that will test your site and let you know if it passes muster. If you already know that your site is not mobile friendly, or you fail the test, you need to correct that quick fast and in a hurry! I personally recommend a two step approach. Step one is to quickly generate an “M dot” version of your site on a sub-domain. This can be done relatively easily and with relatively low cost. This will keep you from disappearing all together but I really don’t recommend that for long term. Step two is to redesign the site to be responsive. That means that your site will adjust to different screen sizes. It will reformat itself to layout correctly. A good responsive site will have multiple layouts — for desktop, tablet viewing and for smaller phones. This takes time to design but is what you will ultimately want. If you pay someone to currently maintain your site, truthfully the FIRST thing you should do is FIRE that person for letting this happen!
If you have found yourself without a mobile friendly website, we can help. We can quickly get you with a mobile site to hopefully avoid the ding and do the redesign as a fully responsive site.