Hello, my name is Trevin Shirey, I am director of business development here at WebFX. Congratulations for making it to the fourth video in our series, I’m excited to talk to you today about off-page SEO, which is a really important factor.
I know we’ve touched on content marketing, some on-page factors, and just kind of given an overview of SEO as a whole. I’m really excited to dig into what’s typically a little bit of a tougher area for beginners to understand with SEO, and that is all of the important off-page factors that are out there.
So with on-page SEO, those are things that you can typically see, whether it’s on a page on a website or it’s in the code. So things like images, copy, title tags, meta descriptions – kind of the classic SEO factors that you could read about on our site, or watch one of our other videos and learn more about.
So all of those are really important for SEO, but they’re important in determining what a page is relevant for. So if a page is all about golf drivers, for example, the copy on the page, the images, the title tag – should all reflect that and kind of be consistent. And the reason for that is it helps search engines like Google understand exactly what that page is about.
So obviously that’s important, but it’s not really telling the full picture, the whole story of how relevant and ultimately authoritative the page is.
So there’s a million different pages out there on the web about golf drivers, for example. How does Google know which site really knows what they’re talking about? So if you take Titleist, one of the big manufactures of golf drivers, for example, how does Google look at the relevance for one of those pages about golf drivers and determine if it’s better or worse than, you know, maybe a smaller manufacturer – someone who’s just starting out in the golf driver industry.
So to kind of go back full circle, this is where off-page SEO comes into play. Google looks at factors outside of what’s on your site, what’s in the source code, things that are going on around the web, and uses that to determine how authoritative the page is.
So that’s kind of the other side of the coin of SEO where the on-page factors will help determine what your page is relevant about, but if you really want to rank highly and have strong SEO presence overall, then off-page factors which determine authority, are really important for your site as well.
The way that works is, you know Google is getting what you’re relevant about from what’s on your site, but then what they really want to see is how often your site and different pages on your site are talked about, linked to, and mentioned around the web.
So if we continue to run with my golf example here, a company like Titleist is going to be mentioned across the web millions and millions of times – there’s people talking about new products that they have, people writing reviews on products that they’ve created, people on forums or on social media talking a lot about that.
So Google as they crawl the entire web and spider through millions and millions of pages, they’re picking up these links and they’re picking up these textual references, and kind of factoring them in what’s called off-page SEO factors.
This is really what Google’s page rank is all about, and one of the factors that allows Google to be extremely successful in delivering high quality search results from whenever they first launched.
So if someone is talking about your brand, your website, your products, and especially linking back to pages on your site, it’s going to make you a lot more authoritative in a search engine’s eyes, compared to someone who’s not getting a lot of that buzz, a lot of those links and mentions around the web.
So that’s kind of an overview of why off-page SEO is important and the role that it plays. If you think about your product or services, you can probably think of hundreds of people who talk about those around the web. So depending on who you ask, people tend to estimate that off-page SEO is between maybe 40 and 70 perfect of Google’s algorithm.
Either way, no matter where on that scale you read, somebody’s opinion falling into is still an extremely important factor, even if it’s only 40 percent.
So getting your on-page SEO right is extremely important, but what can really elevate you, especially in those competitive areas is having a strong presence around the web and having lots of people talk about your brand, and ultimately link back to the pages on your website.
So we’ve gone over why it’s important, so now the million-dollar question is how you go about earning those links and gaining more authority for your website.
The answer to that is actually several answers. There’s not one easy kind of quick fix to do that. Ultimately in Google’s eyes, their view is that businesses who are successful, websites who are successful, are going to naturally earn links and build up authority from off-page signals.
That’s definitely true – if you think about a successful local business, for example, there’s a good chance that they’ll have mentions maybe from a Chamber of Commerce, maybe from a local newspaper, people will be talking about them within their industry.
So naturally if you’re successful, you’re going to have some links pointing back to your site and some mentions form around the web.
But if you’re kind of trying to rank well in more competitive verticals, just relying on those natural, organic mentions that happen, isn’t going to be enough to get you into maybe page one for a particular keyword, and ultimately where you really want to be which is probably the first three results for a strong keyword.
So there are a few ways that you can be strategic and smart about trying to increase your off-page SEO power, and ultimately that authority of your entire domain.
One way is to create content and encourage other people to talk about it, to share it, to link back to it around the web. Typically this will be in the form of a blog on a site, it could also be a knowledge base, it could be a series of videos, it could be whitepapers that you have. Just any way to share information that people will find interesting and relevant.
You know, if your business is golf drivers, you’ve got tons of people on your team who are able to create world-class content about that. So not only is it going to help improve some of these off-page SEO factors that we’re talking about, but it’s also great for your brand too, because you’re able to really show that you know your stuff and people want to work with you, they want to buy your products and kind of learn more about you.
So there’s a lot of proof in the content-pudding, so to speak, and it’s a great way for people to improve their off-page SEO factors while also reaping a lot of other benefits.
Aside from content creation, you could do other things like outreaching to influential people in your industry. These could be bloggers, they could be other types of thought-leaders who are out there, businesses associations or trade associations are also great for this. You can maybe supply some content to them, it could be the form of writing a blog post for their site, or being a guest author.
Those typically allow you to get your brand and your story in front of other people and also help better your off-page SEO and earn more of those trusted backlinks.
One thing to keep in mind whenever you’re working on your off-page SEO and trying to earn more links to your site, you want to earn ultimately a balance of sites that are both trustworthy and relevant to whatever particular industry you’re working in.
So a site like the Huffington Post, which is extremely well-regarded by search engines, it’s a very popular, powerful website – that would be a great example of a site to get mentioned on, but don’t solely focus on those either. You also want to try to find sites that are extremely relevant to what you do.
Maybe, you know, 50 percent of the world’s population hasn’t heard of the site, but it’s extremely well-targeted and the market that you ultimately want to reach is on that site a lot. So that could be trade publications, industry journals, those types of things hat aren’t maybe as sexy as top 100 blog on the Internet, are also really important to try to see if you can get links from and get mentions to your brand from those types of sites as well.
So yeah, there’s not a silver bullet for something like off-page SEO. At the end of the day you just really need to invest in content, and then also make the time investment needed to go out there and let other people know about your company. Whether it’s through stuff that you’ve created, or just new products that you have, and make sure that people are out there talking about your brand, linking back to your website, and pointing people to relevant information on your website. Collectively over time, if you can even block out a few set of hours each week to work on that, you’ll really reap some major benefits.
On the other hand, if you don’t feel comfortable doing this, if you don’t have the designated expertise, or you just don’t have the time to devote to really improving your off-page SEO – maybe you’ve worked a little on your on-page stuff and you have your pages optimized, but this is just a hurdle that you can’t get over – a lot of people will turn to agencies like WebFX to help with off-page SEO efforts.
Just because it does require a particular set of skills that can be hard for marketing managers or business owners to develop.
Maybe you’ve even built a few links to your site, but you can’t kind of get the quantity or the quality that you’re really looking for to move the needle. So agencies like us are always happy to help – we can put together a strategy and talk through some creative ideas to get more people talking about your brand and your company online – with the ultimate goal being to really improve that authority factor.
You probably already got the relevance factor if you’ve gone through some of the other videos that we have – this is kind of how you can really achieve good authority on your domain and improve your search presence overall.
So thanks a lot for watching the off-page SEO video, and tune into the other videos that we’ve created in the series, and continue learning more about SEO.