Are your SEO efforts delivering the right results?
What makes your brand stand out from others?
It seems like a simple question to answer, yet probably more businesses than you realize have trouble providing a quick and informative response.
Part of that problem may stem from not using search engine optimization (SEO) to your brand’s benefit.
In the event SEO has not been a staple of your business plan in recent years, take some time to see how it can not only help your brand, but it can also set you apart from the competition.
SEO Can Be a Difference Maker
To begin with, SEO should be looked at as a major component to a formidable marketing plan no matter what the size of the company.
With that in mind, how are you using SEO – or for that matter not using it – to your brand’s advantage?
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SEO, when properly teamed with solid content marketing and noteworthy landing pages, helps your business gain the upper-hand on competitors. In the end, you can prosper from better brand visibility, increased website traffic, and more information when it comes to customer trends, notably spending habits.
Take a look at some of the advantages SEO can offer your company, advantages that you would be silly to neglect.
- Searching – All the time and effort you put into your brand is essentially for naught if you fail to rank highly in search results. With a sound SEO plan in place (this is where organic SEO agencies can be of great benefit to your brand), you increase the odds of moving up the ranks in search engines, notably Google. For example, if your business sells auto insurance, you want to rank at or near the top when consumers type in searches around auto insurance, cheap auto insurance, buy auto insurance etc. With the right SEO game plan, your brand can do just that, setting you aside as an authoritative source in your respective industry and driving more traffic your way.
- Traffic – Any brand’s goal at the end of the day is to of course to make as many sales as possible. That being the case, you obviously need a steady flow of traffic to your website in order to increase the odds of making sales. SEO’s ability (when done correctly) to place your brand higher up in the search process means more traffic to your website. Once consumers are on your website, however, you need a reason to keep them there, not have them click and visit for a few seconds and then never return. This is where strong content makes a difference.
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- Content –You’ve likely heard the saying that content is king, but do you follow through on having strong content on your website? Unfortunately, too many business owners fail to see the true importance of stellar content on their sites, instead just filling up pages so their site looks healthy. Your site’s content should not only be useful to the reader (more times than not a potential customer), but it also needs to be authoritative. When you stand out in a positive manner from the competition, more consumers are likely to trust you and what you are saying and selling for that matter. The content on your site can (and should) include some guest posts from authoritative figures. Doing so brings more credibility to your site, allowing consumers to see that your site is highly thought of in the business community. Finally, make sure your content is getting plenty of attention on social media. Also make a habit out of sharing and retweeting content from other industry sources. Not only is it good social etiquette, but it will help build more brand awareness for your business.
- Customers – When you put SEO in play, it also helps you better understand customer demographics. With all the data that is out there in today’s information-driven world, it can sometimes seem a little too overwhelming for some in the business sector. The more you can learn about customers – the ways they go about searching, their likes and dislikes, their spending levels, when they’re most likely to buy etc. is invaluable. Know your customers inside and out so they have little or no reason to go elsewhere.
When done correctly and with enthusiasm, SEO can deliver the results you and your brand is in need of.
About the Author: Dave Thomas covers business and marketing topics on the web.
Dark Wolf: accelerating security for USAF
As a small company whose biggest customers are the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, Dark Wolf Solutions (Dark Wolf) is a triple-threat, specializing in Cybersecurity, Software and DevOps, and Management Solutions. Dark Wolf secures and tests cloud platforms, develops and deploys applications, and offers consultancy services performing system engineering, system integration, and mission support.
The break for Dark Wolf came when the Department of Defense decided to explore software factories. Rick Tossavainen, Dark Wolf’s CEO, thinks it was an inspired path for the DoD to take. “It was a really great decision,” he says, “Let’s pull our people together as part of this digital transformation and recreate what Silicon Valley startup firms typically have. Let’s get into commercial facilities where we have open windows and big whiteboards and just promote ideation and collaboration. And it creates this collaborative environment where people start creating things much more rapidly than before.”
It has been, Tossavainen says, “amazing to watch” and has energized the Federal Contracting Sector with an influx of new talent and improved working environments that foster creativity and innovative ways of approaching traditional problems.
“We originally started working with the US Air Force about three years ago. The problem was at the time you could develop all the software you wanted but you couldn’t get it into production – you had to go through the traditional assessment and authorization process. I talked to Lauren Knausenberger and she told me about Kessel Run and what eventually came out of this was the DoD’s first continuous ATO [Authority To Operate].”
The secret to Dark Wolf’s success – and its partnerships with USAF and Space Force – lies in a client-first attitude. “We’re not looking to maximise revenue,” Tossavainen explains. “We tell all of our employees, if you’re ever faced with an issue and you don’t know how to resolve it, and one solution is better for the customer and the second is better for Dark Wolf, you always do number one. We’ve just got to take care of our customers, and I look for other partners that want to do that. And let’s work together so that we can bring them the best answer we can.”
Rapid releases and constant evolution of software are common themes among USAF’s partners. Like many firms operating in the commercial and public sector spaces, Dark Wolf leads with a DevSecOps approach.
“Failure is tolerated,” says Tossavainen. “If it’s not going the right way in three months, let’s adjust. Let’s rapidly change course. And you can tell really quickly if something’s going to be successful or not, because they’re doing deployments multiple times a day – to the customer.”