Many people believe that Google is strongly against search engine optimization, or SEO, tactics because of all of the updates to their algorithm, making it harder for us SEO specialist to do our jobs, but this is far from the truth. It may be harder for us to do our jobs, but Google is just trying to make a better search experience for the user by getting them to their final destination quicker.
In Google’s “Do You Need an SEO?” blog post they state, “If you're thinking about hiring an SEO, the earlier the better.” They obviously believe that SEO is valuable to a site’s rankings and to help you out, they have even written a starter guide to search engine optimization to help you along a bit. According to Search Engine Watch, they believe it should be more of a strategic approach rather than the tactical SEO behavior. Throughout this blog post, I would like to talk about the difference between tactical and strategic approaches to SEO to help you better understand the way Google thinks about SEO best practice.
The Tactical Approach to SEO
According to Google search results, SEO’s definition is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a webpage in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results.
The tactical approach to SEO misunderstands what SEO is really trying to do. This approach focuses solely on ranking and measures its success based off of the organic keyword performance. This approach is unimaginative and bad for the industry, and here is why:
- Too Narrow of Focus – Using tactics is too specific and is highly vulnerable to change. For example, guest posting was all the rage for a while, then Matt Cutts comes on and tells everybody that it is not a valuable tactic anymore (if used incorrectly), while the strategic approach has a high resistance to change.
- Doesn’t Care About People – The tactical approach tends to look at the customer as they relate to search volume. In many cases it focuses on a direct response and can sacrifice major audience segments in the different stages of the buyer’s journey. Unlike the strategic approach, the tactical approach does not craft a strategy for each specific target at each specific stage. There are definitely different ways to approach each target.
- Doesn’t Seek Innovation – This type of SEO only focuses on trying to rank for a keyword that has the most search volume. It fails to build a brand’s online presence, which is equally if not more important. People need to know your name and then you will hopefully rank for keywords that relate to your industry.
The Strategic Approach to SEO
The strategic approach to SEO gets your to more of your users and is more effective in consistently driving business. It is all about making smart decisions that will impact the rest of your company’s lifetime. Create strategies that will last and have an impact on the public, rather than tactics that may last for a short period of time. There is nothing wrong with utilizing tactics to an extent, but in order to have a successful company, you must not be narrow minded, always thinking about rankings.
It is to everyone’s benefit to adopt a strategic approach to all SEO efforts. Make sure to put the users first to achieve longer lasting results. Try to develop new strategies for engaging your audience, rather than trying tactics to get you ranking number one.