When people develop an SEO strategy they usually focus all their energy toward on page tactics within their own website to increase search rank. Creating content for the site, optimizing the speed, internal linking and all the other ways we make our website more search friendly is considered on-page SEO. However, off-page SEO can be equally useful in increasing your site’s search engine rank.
Off-page SEO is any kind of technique beyond website design that promotes your site and helps make you more visible online. Here are 5 off-page SEO strategies that can be helpful to incorporate into your overall SEO plan.
- Link Building
Probably one of the most popular off-page SEO strategies is link building because it is one of the most effective tools to increase search rank. By building more external links to your website you can increase your page’s relevance and start to bypass your competition. If someone else links to your website it tells search engines that you offer useful information and your page qualifies as an authority.
Link building has to be accomplished legitimately because if you try to trick search engines with artificial links to your site you could be penalized and your rank will suffer. You should make an effort to build natural links by publishing interesting and useful content that other sites will be more likely to reference by linking to you. You can always boost your links by contacting other people or sites that might find your content relevant and ask them to link to you.
- Social Media Presence and Marketing
While your main concern is always the ranking of your company web page, you can help manage your online reputation and build traffic to your main page through social media sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It is more important than ever to have a strong presence on social media because it helps people learn more about your brand and interact with you directly.
Having a good social media presence means being as responsive as possible to people and engaging with them as much as you can. You can answer people’s questions and get them involved so that they become loyal customers and spread the word about your company. You should try to be proactive on social media and post interesting content on a regular basis so that you generate more engagement all the time.
- Forums and Discussion Boards
Getting involved in forums that are related to your site’s niche can help create more interest and discussion about your brand. Find the right forums online and get involved within the community by replying to threads, answering people’s questions and offering useful advice. This will all help build up your reputation as an expert within your company’s niche.
Make sure to also use “Do-Follow” forums so you can include a link to your site within your signature and help to boost your backlinks. You can get more quality links to your site while getting engaged on discussion boards so that people know more about your company. If you are regularly active on a few discussion boards you will start to see more traffic on your site.
- Blogging and Social Bookmarking
If you already have a blog on your site it is important to make sure it is always updated with new and varied types of content including video, photos and articles. You can start to promote your blog by submitting it to blog directories that are related to your niche as well as to blog search engines. You can post comments on other blogs and include your link in the comment section so that people will check out your blog as well.
You can submit your content to bookmarking sites like reddit, stumbleupon, scoop.it and delicious to help promote your blog. The content on these sites is updated very frequently which is great for ranking on search engines. If you use social bookmarking carefully and handle the tags properly you can greatly increase traffic to your site.
- Local Listings and Reviews
If you are a local business within a certain niche you might benefit from listing your company in local directories. Using local listings is a way to avoid facing huge competition and instead narrowing it down to your city or area. If you list your site locally search engines can easily view your website and crawl the content.
You can reach a more targeted audience by submitting to sites like Google Maps and Yelp which will show customers where you are located and include a brief introduction to your business. Your website will show up when people search for your niche in your local area. You can also encourage people to review you on yelp which will give you more validity in the eyes of search engines
Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.