At Semify, one of our core values is to get the customer in the room. No matter what service we’re providing you, we always want to make sure that we’re getting feedback and making changes that will help you grow. Our team actually looks forward to receiving what other companies might consider “complaints” because it means that we have room to improve and make our products better for you.
One of our most recent changes has been to our SEO plan. This plan includes the Onsite SEO Optimization Report, which is an analysis of the client’s website that determines how we can best optimize it with their chosen keywords to improve their rankings on search engines. The Onsite Report lays the foundation for a client’s SEO. As such an important product for our clients, we want to make sure that it is as effective and easy to understand as possible. We also want to make sure that the SEO plan includes all of the products that your clients need to succeed. Let’s dive into what this plan has been for years and how we’re changing it to better help our clients achieve their dreams.
The Original SEO Plan
For many years, we have used the Onsite SEO Report in our plans as an initial analysis and optimization of the website. It has been automatically included in each plan as our team viewed it as the first step to achieving great results. As such, the reports covered the basics of onsite optimization but did not have too many bells and whistles to it.
In these reports, the analyst would suggest optimizations for a page’s title tag, meta description, main heading, and web copy that integrate the target keywords for the page. The analyst would put the suggested content for each element in the report, sometimes designating what the original content was with a simple “from” and “to.” This method, however, resulted in a rather confusing report for our clients. It often took guidance from account managers and the analyst to help our clients understand the changes we’d be making with the Onsite Report. Analysts were also rather limited in the changes they could make to a website, as they just had to work with what was currently on the site. After receiving feedback about the downfalls of this process, we knew we could do better.
The Improved SEO Plan
In the new SEO plan, our team will still be providing optimizations that help websites rank better but they will closely follow our best practices and be more customized to your unique clients.
Here is a summary of the improvements we are implementing (detailed below) for Month 1 of our SEO campaigns:
- Following a comprehensive and consistent Style Guide for every project
- Budgeting more time for report QA
- Increasing budget available for additional content and optimizations
- Unused (or “rollover”) budget will go toward additional backlinking
- Devoting more time to important campaign set up activities
- Sourcing Research Facts
- Building content calendars
- Introducing a new report approval screen
- Current and suggested columns
- Ability to give feedback directly in the report itself
After years of experience in optimizing thousands of sites and analyzing outcomes from our experiments, we’ve developed a style guide for analysts to follow when they build Onsite Reports. We’ve used what we’ve found to be our best practices to build this style guide. These practices include grammatical guidelines to improve the quality and consistency of the reports, character count limits to appeal to search engine listings, keyword mapping strategies to ensure the best optimizations, and much more. We will also be performing a strong QA job on each Onsite Report to better ensure that the optimizations are perfect.
We’re changing how the Onsite SEO Report plans are structured as well. You’ll now have a budget for your onsite optimization, with which we’ll use to determine how best to optimize the pages on your site. The budget gives us the option to just make copy edits to get the keywords naturally onto the page, add 150 or 300 words of text when there isn’t quite enough copy on a page, or create a brand new page with 300 words of text when there isn’t a good fit for the keywords we’re targeting. The analyst will look at the keywords, website, and budget to determine which keywords will go on which pages and which of these options they can do. If we don’t use all of the budget, it will go towards building backlinks.
In the new SEO plan, we will also be adding research facts for the campaign that will go into its onsite blogs. These facts are critical to creating engaging content, and gives us targets for later link-building based on our “fact-based backlinking strategy” -- which has been wildly successful.
Next, our editorial team will be building a calendar for upcoming blog posts. We have found that asking for client sign-off on the topics and titles increases satisfaction with the writing. All together, this gives you a lot more value for the plan and sets up your client for success right from the beginning of the campaign.
With these changes being put into action, our team wanted to ensure that our resellers and end clients could better understand the Onsite Report as well. Rather than puzzling instructions telling you what used to be on the website and what will be now, the report will have clear columns that show the before and after of the website. You’ll be able to see the title tag, meta description, main heading, and page copy that are currently on the site in one column and our suggested changes in the other. Any changes to the page copy will be highlighted in green so that you can easily see what will change on the site.
The New Plan in Action
We have had two large partners piloting this improved plan structure for over a year -- more recently, with the software enhancements mentioned above. The response has been very positive, and we are seeing improved SEO results as well.
One way we can measure this is by measuring how a site’s overall keyword footprint improves after an in-depth Month 1 onsite optimization and content development project.
In the following example, you can see the marked improvement in total keywords the site is ranking for (as reported by SEMRush) after the more impactful initial Onsite Report.
As you might expect, this kind of improved visibility for the site in search engine results has a corresponding impact on organic traffic.
The partners that have moved to these projects also report more client satisfaction, and we are seeing a higher percentage of total targeted keywords in the top 20 search results and very few “missing” keywords -- or keywords that do not appear in the first 11 pages of Google’s search results for sites that have received this treatment.
We also see the dramatic effect this type of work has on individual rankings. The following graph is a good example.
We can see how the initial Month 1 content and optimization using the improved method helped this keyword move from ranking 25th before implementation to 8th after we added content and optimization to the site using the updated Onsite Report process.
Further, we can see the impact over time of backlinking to hold onto the improved positioning in the face of competition and, ultimately in this case, to get the site ranking near the top of Page 1.
Of course, some keywords are more competitive -- and thus take longer to move up -- and some keywords are less competitive and may drop on to Page 1 simply as a result of solid onsite work. We can help you scope out your campaigns to help make sure you have the level of effort needed for each client’s specific keyword targets.
We have a keyword selection methodology we use in collaboration with our partners, as each situation is different. We can help you craft a budgeting tool that work for you and your clients.
Please reach out to your Account Manager with any questions you have or for more information. We look forward to continuing to Grow Together with you!