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Creativity and Systematic SEO Approach

6 January, 2010

Traffic from organic searchThe difference between a web editor with SEO competence and one without is – among other things – the ability to work systematically to achieve SEO goals and what we can call SEO creativity.

Creative thinking

With creativity I certainly don’t mean doing anything in violation of Google’s guidelines. In the long run spammers and SEO cheaters are bad for both brand and business. But what I mean with creativity is the ability to think outside the box. Ok, so you sell all kinds of screws, but no nails. Who says it is wrong to write about nails? It could be good for both the users and the search engines. You could even get customers who think they need nails, but will be convinced that screws are better.

And let’s say your web site has unwritten quality restrictions concerning language. A plastic surgery site might not want to use words like boobs or nose job, but prefer more medical terms. But does this mean that they should exclude all potential customers who search for these words? Who says they can’t have a blog writing about business related matters in a language more aligned with their users.

In Hurtigruten’s case it would not be very profitable to write about boobs, no matter what size they are or what form they have. But a good example is Hurtigruten’s decision to use Spitsbergen as the main destination word used for cruises to the archipelago Svalbard. Spitsbergen is the largest island in this archipelago. But the consequence of this decision is poor search engine visibility on the word “Svalbard”. So what about writing about Svalbard also?

The list of similar examples is long.

This type of creative SEO thinking you will find only among web editors (or SEOs) that have experience building competitive web sites with a goal to be visible on important keywords – also for long-tail traffic. But everything can be learned, of course.

Working systematically

One key success factor for the in-house SEO manager (which basically means the web editor, webmaster or someone with a similar responsibility) is the ability to set goals and work systematically to achieve them.

Working systematically is about attitude and passion. Although the basis for judging results must be dry numbers and statistics, the good SEOs will have to be passionate and devoted to reaching the goals. In fact, and this is no secret, passion for your work will always lead to better results whether you are a photographer, nurse or a web editor.

Important elements in the web editor’s systematic SEO approach are internal link structure, managing duplicate content issues, getting inbound links, creating inbound links (who says you can’t create more web sites or corporate blog(s)? – it’s not a crime not to be naive), writing for visibility on alternative keywords (type Spitsbergen / Svalbard) etc.

Don’t forget focusing on conversion! Conversion is the main goal.

These are just some preliminary and fragmentary notes on in-house SEO done by the web editor / webmaster. In my view search engine optimization should be done by the web editor, and use of external experts should have transferring competence to the web team members and the copy writers as a defined goal of the SEO process.

I  would love to hear your thoughts on these matters!

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