What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the art of discovering and capitalizing on opportunities that directly lead to an increase in unpaid organic traffic to your website. A well-managed SEO campaign is capable of producing tremendous long-term value.
SEO Management Services
We are Astute Communications — a digital marketing agency in Nashville that provides SEO management services to a diverse client roster. Our team of marketing professionals develops custom solutions that help businesses rank for the keywords needed to gain a competitive edge. Get in touch to learn how a professional SEO agency can help your business succeed.
Nashville Digital Marketing Firm
An organic growth strategy is vital to the success of any business. Hiring a professional SEO agency will help your business climb the ranks of Google’s search engine results page. We don’t use blanket approaches. Every client is unique and merits a custom solution.
Through meticulous competitor and keyword research, we create a scalable SEO strategy that is guaranteed to grow organic visibility over time. Check out our case studies to see what a professional SEO firm is capable of. Astute Communications is a professional SEO firm in Nashville with a proven track record of ranking websites with the keywords needed to be competitive in Google searches.
Do you want more organic traffic?
SEO Crash Course
Nashville’s best SEO agency is about to tell you how to increase online visibility through ethical, customized solutions. We have been practicing search engine optimization since we opened for business in 2013. We have managed to stay relevant by continuing to evolve and refine our approach as a digital marketing agency.
Search engines constantly update their algorithms to better anticipate searcher intent. This has resulted in the development of an SEO playbook that consistently delivers results to our clients. We’re about to share insights into the SEO strategies and tactics that we use to exceed client expectations. Let’s get into it.
What is SEO?
Search engine optimization is the application of strategies and tactics that influence the quality and quantity of organic website traffic by ranking for targeted keywords in search engines. SEO specifically deals with non-paid search results and doesn’t include direct traffic, referrals, or paid media.
Clients often want to know how long SEO takes. This is understandable. People want to know what to expect when spending their hard-earned money. However, the answer is not always clear cut and dry. The fact is, SEO takes time. Each industry and market is different and carries a unique timeline and expectation.
Think of an SEO campaign in a similar way that you would think about a long term investment. Rather than daily, weekly, or even monthly fluctuations, the goal of SEO is to experience organic growth over a period of time.
How Does SEO Work?
Effective SEO is a function of finding the perfect balance of pleasing the intended audience while appeasing search engine algorithms. Google, Bing, and Yahoo are the most used search engines, with Google owning about 90% of searches.
Each search engine has its own algorithms for ranking websites and specific web pages. That being said, there is a lot of data that reinforces well-known SEO strategies and tactics for getting a website to rank.
While it is necessary to have an awareness of a variety of search engines, it goes without saying that ranking in Google is the top priority. A successful SEO campaign requires that you understand Google’s algorithm.
To that end, the first step in truly understanding SEO and how to take advantage of the opportunity you have is to determine how search engines go about ranking websites. This valuable knowledge falls under the category of SEO ranking factors. Check out our post on SEO Terminology
SEO Ranking Factors
SEO ranking factors hold the keys to the organic kingdom. According to most SEO experts, there are anywhere from hundreds to thousands of ranking factors that Google considers when determining how to rank a website on the SERP. The following are the most important ranking factors we take into consideration when talking to a new client about how to get their business ranking for competitive keywords and phrases.
–Keyword research and keyword density
-Use header tags (H1, H2, H3)
-Strong title and meta description
-Keyword-rich image titles with alt text
-Responsive design and user experience (UX)
-Session Duration (Dwell Time)
-Check for links to redirects
-Target links using anchor text
-DoFollow backlinks to deep pages
-High-authority of linking domains
-Be mindful of link equity
-Create a thoughtful internal linking structure
-Perform regular site audits
-Fix broken redirects
-Fix 404 errors
-Create a Google Search Console property
-Optimize page speed
-Optimize robots.txt file
-Optimize crawl budget
-Active SSL Certificate
-Using local business Schema Markup
-Create and optimize Google My Business profile
-Create local citations
-Ensure consistent NAP information
-Optimize for SERP features
-Manage reviews and ratings
Our SEO Process
When businesses engage us for SEO management services, they can rest assured knowing that they will benefit from a process that is standardized and proven to get results. While every business is different, the core concepts remain the same. We create a customized plan of action for every client to ensure the best SEO results for their market and niche.
Data Collection & Research
We begin our engagements with research. We use professional tools to get the job done. From the Google Suite (Analytics, Tag Manager, Search Console) to more in-depth tools such as Ahrefs, SEMRush, and Screaming Frog, we have a sophisticated technology stack at our disposal. It enables us to take a deep dive, not only into your website and keyword rankings but into your competitor’s websites as well.
Preliminary research prepares us to find and exploit the opportunities that will get your website climbing the SERPs. Our goal is to impact your bottom line and maximize your ROI. Initial SEO research answers the following questions:
-What keywords should you rank for?
-What keywords are your potential clients searching for?
-Which keywords are the most competitive?
-Which are easy pickings?
-Which keywords will provide the highest ROI for the organization?
Assess Relevance & Authority
Authoritative backlinks have been the bread and butter of organic rankings since Google launched its revolutionary PageRank algorithm. It essentially viewed backlinks as a vote of confidence that a resource was relevant and useful to net surfers.
While Google has moved on to more sophisticated algorithms and ranking signals, the fact remains, backlinks are still a vital ranking factor. Even though they’re more difficult to come by today than they were in the early days of the Internet, ethical link building needs to be a priority. When taking on a new SEO client, we research your website’s backlink profile along with the backlink profiles of your competitors to uncover opportunities. In addition to improving organic rankings, a backlink audit helps us answer the following questions:
-Is your website trustworthy?
-What is your website’s domain authority?
-Do other trustworthy websites link to your website?
-What anchor text is being used in your backlink profile?
-Is your site showing up for relevant user queries?
-Does the content/info/experience on your website match user intent?
Discover Site Audit Errors, Warnings & Issues
Technical SEO is an area where we add tremendous value to our clients. Our team of in-house web developers and digital marketing specialists are dedicated to performing routine site audits that uncover any errors, warnings, or issues that can bog your site down.
Manage Technical SEO
What is technical SEO? It is the process of optimizing your site to help search engines crawl and index it more efficiently. It encompasses a large laundry list of tasks that can be intimidating for non-technical marketers.
A thorough SEO agency maintains an organization’s websites and subdomains. This requires in-depth technical understanding. It is an important aspect of SEO management that often goes unnoticed. Technical SEO is vital for the success of your website. If search engines are having trouble finding, crawling, or indexing your website then no amount of great content will make your it rank well. Some technical SEO tasks include:
-Managing server-side Issues
-Creating & optimizing robots.txt file
-Specifying a preferred domain
-Organizing site structure and architecture
-Setting canonical and rel=canonical tags
-Fixing broken redirects
-Eliminating redirect chains
-XML sitemap optimization
-Optimizing titles and meta descriptions
Simply put, on-page SEO consists of the things that you can see when visiting a website. After several years of practicing SEO, and for a wide array of clients in several industries, we’ve noticed a common theme that always leads to high rankings for any client. When it comes to On-Page SEO, these are indispensable:
-Great Written Content (long-form content if possible)
-Infographics and Videos
-H1 and Title Tags
-SEO Friendly URL
Link Building is still an important part of any robust SEO strategy. Getting high-quality backlinks to your website is highly beneficial. The link building game has changed in the past few years, so it’s important that SEO agencies be deliberate with their link building strategy. Some tried and true link building strategies include:
-Local citation building
Building Domain Authority with DoFollow Links
When it comes to getting backlinks, these are the two main criteria to look at in determining the value of a link:
Domain Authority: Ideally, you will want the domain authority to be as high as possible. Based on a 100 point scale, good domain authority is typically anything above 30, a great domain authority would be 45-65, and amazing would be 66-100.
DoFollow Links: When securing a backlink, it’s important to ensure that the link is a “DoFollow” link. A DoFollow link is a way to tell the search engines to recognize this link. It’s vital when getting the link juice passed from a high domain website to your website that the DoFollow is implemented. This tells the search engine crawlers to recognize this link. It’s a huge ranking signal!
Analyze, Adjust, and Repeat
We closely monitor Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and keyword rankings on a regular basis. By constantly monitoring the progress of your website, we can better analyze data, make important adjustments, and reassess which tactics and strategies are working. This allows us to keep your website moving up in organic rankings.
Nashville SEO Management
Search engine optimization is a deep well that requires knowledge and experience. One of the benefits of choosing Astute to manage your SEO campaign is that we have a dedicated in-house team that can handle all aspects of your SEO. From content development to web development, our team is capable of creating a customized SEO solution for your business. Get in touch and we’ll explore the possibilities together.