HCOMS understands SEO and we believe that as marketing specialists who operate transparently and with integrity, it’s our duty to give you a better understanding of SEO too. Here then is an overview to help you.

Search Engine Optimisation creates the best conditions for Organic or Natural Web Traffic. As the terms suggest, it’s a process that in order to send your site higher up the web rankings is akin to gardening in that it promotes a ‘natural’ growth of popularity in your site and in web traffic.

Understanding this means that one also understands SEO takes time, like planting a seed but creating all the right conditions to enable it to thrive and grow. It’s not an overnight process: it takes at least six months and often more. However, in the long term this approach pays dividends if conducted correctly.

For this reason it pays to be wary of those who promise that they’ll put you at the very top of the search rankings in a short time. Likewise, anyone who tells you they can give you accurate calculations on how many hits your competition’s sites receive and therefore how many yours will get is a claim that one should also be wary of. In the absence of analytics accurate calculations are impossible – only guesses.

Equally, backlinks to other sites should be of a high quality with a good reputation and relevant to your sector and marketplace to promote the type of web traffic your site needs. If backlinks are being generated for you but with no clear methodology or source, then you could be paying for dubious backlinks that could have an adverse effect on your search rankings. They will be spotted by Google algorithms designed to weed out such backlinks.

One hears horror stories of companies whose rankings and business have suffered as a result of SEO companies who have utilised ‘black hat SEO’, and we would advise you to be vigilant. At HCOMS, we know that conducting SEO properly and above board is the only way.

We ensure that your site is acceptable to Google’s algorithms and an excellent experience for users; that all tags, parameters and meta data are correctly configured; that your site is correctly optimised to integrate with your social media channels; and that all backlinks are of high quality and that blog articles are shared with those whose opinions have weight within your sector. Most importantly, your content must be original and of a quality to be rated higher by Google. Remember, it all takes time.

If your site is an existing one, we can use analytics to provide a clearer picture (see our blog article on web traffic sources). If your site is new, there will obviously be no analytic statistics to begin with, but as with the SEO process in general, it is a case of “suck it and see”. In the longer term however, accurate analytics and robust SEO are a highly effective way of promoting high rankings and web traffic.

PPC (Pay-Per-Click) ads are an alternative or an accompaniment to SEO: but in a competitive sector you can be pulled into a bidding war and quickly squander your marketing budget. PPC is better used tactically if at all. You must also remember that in terms of ROI it is uneconomical if your site’s content is poor or rarely updated, because visitors directed by PPC ads will leave your site quickly, and it will suffer in the rankings as a consequence. If the quality of your PPC ads is poor, then they will suffer too in position.

SEO is a complex discipline: but when conducted correctly in conjunction with your site, social media and email marketing, it makes all the difference.

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