What is Domain Authority and Why is it Important?

What is Domain Authority and Why is it Important?

In an ever-growing competitive marketplace that sees businesses needing to assert themselves as recognisable brands providing value at any opportunity, websites are important.

Domain Authority is one contributing factor to an organisation’s digital success, and here we’ll talk you through the ins and outs of what it is, and how it can be utilised to further boost your company’s online presence and visibility.

What is Domain Authority?

Domain Authority (often abbreviated to just DA) is a ranking score that judges how likely a website is to rank in search engine result pages, as well as how high within them. The concept of a Domain Authority as well as the calculations behind it were developed by Moz.

A Domain Authority score ranges from 1-100 – with the higher scores corresponding to a greater likelihood of ranking, and ranking well.

DA  is calculated using data from Moz’s Link Explorer web index, which considers dozens of factors through its automated analytic algorithms. This includes the analysis of many on and off-site components including accessibility, content quality, site responsiveness and authenticity through backlinks.

Correlating this data with the real-time rankings of relevant search results, a Domain Authority score is calculated and presented.

Who are Moz?

Moz is a US-based company who specialise in SEO software and were founded in the early 00s. Now best known for their development of the Domain Authority, this scoring system is used worldwide and is considered an industry standard from which to judge a baseline for the SEO development of business’ websites.

Once a Domain Authority has been provided, improvements to the website can be made without further interaction or involvement from Moz themselves – until the business returns to check back on how their score has (hopefully) improved.

Moz are not affiliated directly with Google or any other search engine but instead utilise their Domain Authority programming as a piece of shareable content from which to glean traffic and exposure of their own brand; a great demonstration of a well-known SEO tactic!

How is DA Relevant to SEO?

While Domain Authority doesn’t provide an exact ranking based on Google’s algorithms themselves, it does give a good indication of the likelihood to rank on both that and other search engines, and helps demonstrate a correlation between SEO activities and the performance of the site.

DA is not, therefore, a direct contributing factor to SEO but does give focus to areas for improvement which will impact on SERP (Search Engine Results Page) ranking.

Businesses focusing on improving their Domain Authority will need to put into action practical SEO efforts in order to achieve progress. This means that, generally speaking, an increasing Domain Authority score indicates an improving SEO performance.

How Do You Build Domain Authority?

To build and increase a DA score, there are several areas of focus a business can work on. This includes, but is by no means limited to:

    • The continued effort to obtain high-quality backlinks from relevant websites that are trusted and authoritative
    • Creating and publishing quality content to the site that users consider high enough value to share onwards with others
    • Auditing the website to remove or repair any broken links
    • Optimising the website structure to ensure a great user experience (UX) and appropriate accessibility and responsiveness.

All of these activities are already considered good SEO and in order to achieve a high and steady SERP ranking, should be worked on continuously; and not (as is so often just assumed by middle management) completed as a one-off task.

What is Considered a Good Domain Authority?

Domain Authority scores are ranked between 1-100, with 100 being the best. Broadly speaking, the scores sit as follows:

    • 1-20 – poor
    • 20-30 – below average
    • 30-40 – average
    • 40-50 – good
    • 60-70 – very good
    • 70+ – excellent.

While of course, a score of 70 or above is the most desired, it isn’t necessarily what businesses should aim for right away. Instead, the baseline should be that of the best competitor, and then developing higher. It is worth noting that getting a score over 20 takes work and effort to achieve.

A website’s Domain Authority and SEO ranking are both impacted by the age of a domain; meaning that if a site is new, its score will start off at zero before growing and may not necessarily be deemed as ‘poor’ or ‘above average’ on its content and structure merit alone, just age.

What Are The Benefits of Increased Domain Authority?

Increasing Domain Authority scoring indicates an improving SEO ranking, developing visibility and exposure to a relevant target audience online.

However, a Domain Authority score that is considered good in the relevant industry does open up other opportunities too – including the likelihood of approach by third parties looking to collaborate on content and the increased possibility of paid-for adverts or placements to be made on the site. A high Domain Authority garners both respect and a perception of professional reliability and authority.

Where Can I Find My Domain Authority Score, and Learn How to Increase It?

There are several websites online that allow businesses to look up the DA score of websites for free – and while this may indeed be helpful, it is often not foundation enough from which to plan a comprehensive strategy for work. Instead, it is recommended that businesses work with an effective SEO partner to ensure the development and growth of their score with relevant activities and focus.

Woya Digital’s team of SEO specialists enact bespoke growth tactics with every client to best optimise their online presence and to nurture their Domain Authority upwards. Want to learn more on your business’ DA and how to boost it to increase visibility and performance online? Get in touch, and let’s get to work!

The Importance of Directory Submission for SEO

The Importance of Directory Submission for SEO

It can seem as though the best practice in SEO changes daily – and it almost does, as it’s estimated that Google makes tweaks to the algorithms behind their search systems up to 200 times a year!

There are many elements important to achieving the optimum search engine ranking through SEO practices, and Directory Submission is just one of them. A practice that many misinterpret and lots of people believe is now outdated, Directory Submission remains hugely beneficial for SEO and local SEO too if managed correctly. Here, the Woya Digital SEO team explain just how it can help and how best to make a start.

The SEO Basics

SEO is an acronym standing for Search Engine Optimisation, and refers to the practice of optimising a website to be easily read and understood by the algorithm programming that search engines operate on. When search engines are able to scan and comprehend the theme, quality and navigation of a website easily, they are more likely to rank them accurately and highly when a user enters a relevant search term or keyword.

Ranking as highly as possible in relevant search engine results organically gives businesses competitive advantage above others in their industry, and allows for the maximum value to be derived from free search rankings before any paid-for advertisements are invested in.

SEO comprises activities both on and off the website. On-site, this includes the publication of relevant, timely and shareable content as well as the optimisation of user experience factors. Off site, this includes links to the site from other high-authority sources and positive mentions of the brand. One valuable off-site element to SEO is Directory Submission, which falls under the category of links from appropriate, authoritarian sources.

Directory Submission and How It Works

Online directories are digital catalogues of websites and other online sources. These directories are searched by internet users looking for brands or businesses in certain sectors or industries to meet their needs, and so those browsing these sites are usually already interested in whatever it is the business is trying to sell.

Directory Submission is the provision of brand information to directories in order to request a listing on the site. This usually involves the filling out of relevant forms online.

Directory listings aren’t (and shouldn’t be) automatically granted but instead should be judged on their merit and individual contribution. However, historically, this hasn’t always been the case – which has earned Directory Submission a bad reputation. In the days of fledgling SEO when businesses primarily relied on practices such as keyword stuffing and spam backlinks. Today, this is considered bad practice SEO-wise and will result in Google and other search engines penalising and down-ranking their listings; so it is imperative that brands only submit to accurate, appropriate and decent-authority directories.

The Benefits of Directory Submission

When done correctly, Directory Submission can be hugely beneficial for SEO and local SEO. Gaining a listing on a relevant and high-authority directory site provides several elements to help improve a brand’s SEO ranking, including (but by no means limited to):

One-Way Backlinks

Backlinks to a website that are one-way rather than reciprocal are rated highly by search engines as they demonstrate valued and trusted content. Directories don’t ask for a reciprocal link as standard practice and so usually, landing a listing is a valuable and trusted one-way link opportunity that can help further SEO ranking. In addition, the link is further boosted in its value in being listed alongside fellow businesses in the same industry or niche, proving it is relevant. The older, more established and relevant a directory, the more impetus will be on the link.

Faster Initial Listing

Web crawlers – the automated programs that ‘crawl’ the internet looking for new websites and content – pick up on directory listings quickly. If a site hasn’t yet been indexed by search engines, it will be within just a couple of days of having a successful Directory Submission and receiving a listing, expediting its presence on SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

NAP

NAP stands for name, address and phone number, basic elements that make up part of a directory listing. What is of importance in directory listings is that the NAP details are entered in exactly the same way across different directories, and exactly match how these details are displayed on the business website too, to gain maximum benefit.

Increased Keyword Relevance

When a Directory Submission is successful and a link appears alongside other related businesses and listings, this reinforces the theme of the site to search engine algorithms, further improving the machine learning comprehension of which keywords and phrases are best for the brand to organically rank within and alongside.

Brand Awareness

In many cases, those browsing a directory will not already be aware of the brand and so this puts the company name in front of a new audience, furthering their exposure. There may also be opportunity in the awareness of the brand gained by those working with and for the directory – in terms of strategic business relationships or advertising moving forward. When more people know about a brand, the more likely they are to post about it and mention it online; advancing organic SEO ranking even further.

A Quick, Easy and Usually Free SEO Tactic

SEO activities take time, technical know-how and can be expensive. Directory Submission however, can be quick and is often free – although where a cost is incurred it is not usually excessive. Gaining a listing on an appropriate directory is one of the most economically reasonable ways to obtain backlinks, boost brand awareness and reinforce keyword targeting. It is, however, imperative that the quality of the directories is high. If this is not the case, the listing may have the opposite effect on SEO to the desired.

Why is Directory Submission Important?

Directory Submission is considered a good ‘all-rounder’ when it comes to SEO practices – it is off-site, it provides exposure and back-links, and provides brands details to a relevant and already-interested audience. It makes up a crucial part of the SEO puzzle and positively reinforces the work into other areas.

Directory Submission needs to be done well and appropriately as if pitched inaccurately, will negate SEO efforts rather than improve them.

How to Know Which Directories are Appropriate for Your Brand

Unfortunately, there remain a great deal of online directories that were set up in the heyday of what is now known as ‘Black Hat SEO techniques’, the now outdated practice of setting up as many backlinks as possible, no matter how relevant they were.

Google and other search engines have vastly improved their algorithms’ machine learning of what is an appropriate listing and what isn’t, and so if a Directory Submission is made to one of these sites, they are now more likely to penalise the brand through its SERP rankings than they are to improve them. This does mean that it is critical for businesses to only provide Directory Submissions for genuine, trustworthy, high-authority listings sites. But how best to judge if a directory is worth the risk for submission? There are some basic steps you can take.

Only Make Directory Submissions to Sites that DON’T Accept Every Submission

If a directory accepts and publishes every listing submitted to it, then it’s not undergoing any proper checks for accuracy or appropriateness.

While all directory sites may give an indication of an SLA for listing publication once a submission has been received, it should not guarantee to list everything as this will simply reflect a lack of relevant censorship. The more exclusive the directory, the better – even if it does mean the brand isn’t accepted in right away or the first time they submit a listing request.

Check the DA and Quality of Directories Before Submission

There are several DA-checking websites that can provide you with the quality data behind a web presence simply through the typing in of a URL, with a basic analysis scan run in the background. If a directory’s DA is low, its quality score isn’t positive or if it is marked as spam, it should be avoided and no Directory Submission made to it as it is likely to hinder rather than help SEO efforts.

Make Sure Your Business is Listed on the Important Directories

There are core directories that you should ensure your business is listed on which include but are not limited to directories such as: Yell, Yelp, Four Square, Bing Local, Google Business Profile.

 Work with SEO Directory Submission Experts

Here at Woya Digital we’ve been working with reputable and trusted directories for many years and have built up wonderful strategic working relationships with several.

Working with our team of SEO experts ensures you’re able to unlock the expertise of a specialist team who don’t just take the time to complete Directory Submission forms, but also ensure that submissions are being made to high-authority, relevant and worthwhile sites.

We manage Directory Submissions alongside other on- and off-site SEO activity to get our clients the best possible organic rankings in appropriate SERPS, no matter how tough their competition. Get in touch with our team today to discuss how we could manage your Directory Submissions and other SEO to boost your performance.

 

Why Quality Link Building is Essential for SEO

Why Quality Link Building is Essential for SEO

There are many elements required to build organic SEO ranking for any website, but there are few that have the impact that high quality link building does. Quality link building helps demonstrate to search engines’ algorithms the authenticity and trustworthiness of a website from the outside in – think of it as a positive reference.

That said, link building as an SEO strategy should be managed carefully in order to add value and not detract from it. How this works and how to judge what constitutes a high quality link – read on.

How Does Quality Link Building Fit into SEO?

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the process of building the quantity and quality of web traffic to a website through the optimisation of its features to best play into the analysis of search engines’ algorithms and crawlers. Search engine programming judges the quality, relevancy, accuracy and trustworthiness of a site in order to best establish how, when and where to rank it on SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

The pages judged to be most complete, appropriate and reliable for the search term typed in will be ranked the highest, with those likely to be irrelevant or inaccurate further down. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to SEO, and every business with a digital presence will be looking to increase theirs, but there are best practices that should be followed in order to increase a brand’s chance of a high ranking.

Organic SEO is considered unpaid (not a paid advert), although of course the time it takes to activate changes and improvements will have a cost attached to it somewhere along the line. Although businesses can pay for adverts across search engines in order to increase web traffic, organic SEO should form a strong foundation which paid is then based on. There is evidence to suggest that consumers prefer clicking the top organic link in a SERP rather than the top paid-for one – and legally, the paid ads must be declared, so they are designed to look different to be obvious to the user.

On-Site and Off-Site SEO

SEO is made up of two primary parts: on-site SEO and off-site SEO.

On-site SEO is all of the efforts made on-page including the publication of high quality content, integrating accessibility features, and improving user experience.

Off-site SEO is efforts made elsewhere including the publication of guest posts on other sites, mentions and reviews of the brand elsewhere online and high quality back links to the site. Link building – that is, gaining strategic links from high quality, high authority websites back to the brand’s online presence – is off-site SEO and so requires the liaison of the business with other parties.

What are Backlinks and How Do They Work?

Backlinks are links from one website to a page on another website. For the site they’re linking to, they may be known as inbound links, incoming links or one-way links (if they’re not reciprocated).

To put it simply, you can consider each backlink to a site a ‘vote’ for it in the eyes of search engine algorithms –  a reinforcement of the site as a trusted and authoritative source in its own right.

Websites with a high number of backlinks tend to have a higher organic search engine ranking than those without, as the programming considers it to be a third-party endorsement.

If a website is high-quality, shareable, educational or otherwise useful, or is of particular interest to a target audience, chances are it will attract several backlinks entirely naturally as others strive to share on its content. However, in a growing and competitive market this is not always enough to gain ranking above others in the same field, and so many businesses operate a full strategy within their SEO activity to generate more backlinks.

For many years, backlinks worked as a reciprocal agreement between two websites who would each feature each others’ links in order to benefit SEO wise. However, while some reciprocal links can still be considered beneficial in the eyes of search engine algorithms, a balance must be drawn between shared and one-way links.

Now that the machine learning behind search engines is smarter, it can recognise too many reciprocal links as a pure SEO tactic and instead trusts one-way links more as this indicates a true endorsement. While reciprocal links do still hold some benefit to SEO, backlink strategies must now include much more than a basic ‘you-stroke-my-back-I-stroke-yours’ effort.

A comprehensive SEO link building strategy will include reciprocal backlink agreements alongside guest post and article marketing, web directory links, forum and blogpost comments, testimonial and review facilitation and strategic business relationship building. Each link lends credibility to the site in its own way and with its own weight while also increasing brand exposure and awareness.

What Makes a Quality Backlink?

There is nothing stopping any business from approaching any other and asking (or even paying) them to feature a backlink to their website; and this was long the standard approach taken. However, now there is increased focus on the quality of backlinks above the quantity, which renders this tactic defunct and instead encourages brands to enable link building from high quality sources.

A quality backlink is considered to be one from a source that search engines already trust and hold in high esteem. Generally speaking (although there is, as with everything SEO-wise, no one-size-fits-all), a quality backlink will be from a website that:

    • Holds a high DA (Domain Authority)
    • Is a well-known name in its own field
    • Is a genuine and authoritative brand
    • Produces lots of shareable and relevant content
    • Uses no ‘Black Hat’ SEO tactics
    • Has a well-established web presence and is not a newly published site
    • Is related to the brand in its industry/theme/niche.

Mentioned above is the presence of directory listings as part of a comprehensive link building SEO strategy and in many cases, such sites will not fit the above criteria. However, there are trusted and well-established directories that do – and an SEO specialist will be able to identify and secure listings in directories that fit the bill and therefore result in enhanced SEO presence.

‘Dofollow’ and ‘Nofollow’ Links

In the coding of backlinks, the website publishing them can choose to make it a ‘dofollow’ or ‘nofollow’ link.

A ‘dofollow’ code instructs search engines to crawl the link to the other site and use it as reinforcement toward SEO efforts, while a ‘nofollow’ code instructs a block. Search engine algorithms are more sophisticated now and they grant SEO juice either way, especially if from a reputable source such as digital PR or news wires for example.

While no business is likely to be granted a ‘nofollow’ code as a result of a reciprocal link building agreement, they are (sometimes) automatically input into some links; such as blog comments, press releases and paid advertisements. In these cases, the value of these links toward SEO is relevant, but a ‘dofollow’ link should always be favoured.

What Makes a Good Link Building Strategy?

A good link building strategy rests in the diversity of its approach. In order to truly benefit from backlinks of all types, businesses should incorporate a wide variety of link building activities into their overarching SEO strategy. This includes, but is by no means limited to:

    • The creation of linkable assets (infographics, videos, etc)
    • Guest posting and article marketing
    • Digital PR
    • Features in e-mails
    • Appear as a guest at relevant events
    • Web directory listings
    • Reciprocal backlink agreements.

All of these form brand awareness and exposure opportunities as well as link building, and so are beneficial to businesses in multiple ways.

Where Can I Start with Building a Backlink Strategy into my SEO Activities?

A backlink SEO strategy should form an important part of a business’ SEO approach, of which every element should tie in and complement. It is not enough to simply look at generating backlinks to a site without efforts being made into other areas of SEO focus and so a comprehensive strategy encompassing all SEO approaches should be created, agreed, and worked from.

Woya Digital are SEO experts and so alongside creating bespoke business link building strategies, we work on all areas of SEO – boosting SERP results organically, increasing brand exposure across target audiences, growing competitive advantage, and improving opportunities for sales and growth across both potential and existing customers.

The Importance of Guest Posting for SEO

The Importance of Guest Posting for SEO

SEO is an ongoing focus for businesses looking to improve their visibility and popularity online, with it now forming a critical portion of a business’ digital marketing strategy. SEO is now considered a professional discipline and with algorithms growing smarter by the day, must form an integral part for any business looking to be competitive and succeed.

Guest posting for SEO is just one element of a successful SEO strategy. Our SEO experts at Woya work with guest posting on a daily basis, and here we help explain the basics and demonstrate why it’s just so important.

An Overview of SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation, and is the practice of optimising web content online in order to improve the understanding of it that search engine algorithms hold. In turn, this allows the content to be displayed where relevant search terms are made, putting the brand in front of the target audience as appropriate and as often as possible.

SERPs, Search Engine Results Pages, rank their listings as they deem relevance and so it is critical for organic reach and visibility that the programs behind the search engines are able to understand what a website is about, who it’s for and what can be gained from visiting it.

SEO is made up of many elements, both on-site and off-site.

On-site factors include:

    • Accurate technical coding
    • Good accessibility and responsive design
    • Excellent usability and easy navigation
    • The creation and publication of relevant, useful content

Off-site factors include:

    • Mentions of the brand, its product/s and/or service/s on other online entities
    • Links to the website from other relevant (and preferably high-authority) sources
    • Advertising placements linking to the site
    • The overall public perception of the brand elsewhere online.

Combined, all of these elements provide search engine algorithms with a picture of the business and allow it to better target where it appears in search results by users. Generally speaking, when SEO is referred to, its practices are specifically applicable to Google due to its high market share – but most SEO efforts will also improve rankings on other search engine sites, too.

Organic search results are those that appear free of charge as a result of good SEO but these may rank below paid-for advertising placements. Paid advertising will yield better results when working in conjunction with successful and comprehensive SEO, and so cannot be relied upon alone.

What is Guest Posting?

Guest posting, or guest blogging, is the act of writing and publishing blogs on a website or other online presence that isn’t directly owned or operated by the brand in question. Generally, these posts are published on websites or blogs that are in a similar industry or niche to the business and there is a link back to the initial website. Guest posting for SEO is an inbound marketing tool used by digital marketing specialists.

Guest posting can sometimes work on a mutual basis, so when a business or individual begins to create content for other sites, they offer guest spots for others to contribute on their own blog.

The standard practice toward guest posting for SEO is that the business interested in expanding its content reach will approach relevant third-parties to enquire. These websites should be within the business’ niche, hold aligned values to the brand and be relevant to the target audience’s interests. In some cases, guest posts may be featured on a more generic basis in order to gain a strategic mention and backlink from a high-authority digital presence, but the content must remain relevant and true to the brand.

The Benefits of Guest Posting for SEO

Guest posting holds many benefits for both parties, including numerous for SEO. These include, but are by no means limited to:

The attraction of traffic back to the brand website

Increasing traffic back to the website from a link (or onward search following from consumers’ attention toward a brand mention) increases the SEO ranking of the site as well as improving the chances of a desired conversion being followed.

Increased Domain Authority (DA) from external links to and brand mentions

Domain Authority (DA) is a scoring system for search engine rankings developed by software company Moz. This score predicts how well a website is likely to rank in SERPs (primarily Google) by ranking it on its prestige and content authorship, quality of information presented, information centrality and impartiality and competitive situation. While not a prescriptive force, a high DA is representative of good SEO and it will increase in line with build-up of positive mentions and links from third-party sources.

Boosted brand credibility and awareness

Businesses appearing on domains other than their own helps increase their exposure amongst new audiences in order for more people to hear about them and gain an awareness of their position, product/s and/or service/s, but such features also increase their credibility. Public perception is that high-authority websites will only accept guest posts or features from authentic and trustworthy sources and so this image will be projected onto those featuring.

Extra exposure of the business amongst its target audience

Provided the site featuring guest posting is appropriate to the business’ niche, it offers up a fresh opportunity for the brand to enjoy extra exposure amongst a relevant audience – ideally, those fitting the target brand persona as those most likely to make a purchase. This targeting can be hugely beneficial and allows for tailored marketing communications upon the click-through.

Relationship building within the industry

Guest posting helps businesses get in front of target audiences and consumers but also others in their industry, and building and maintaining strategic relationships can be mutually beneficial and open up vast opportunities for the future.

Positioning of the business as an industry expert and authority

Consumers are more likely to do business with and make purchases from brands they believe know what they’re talking about and are experts in their field. Guest posting allows businesses to position themselves as industry experts and thought leaders in their field, gaining competitive advantage above others and centring their vision and presence in line with the business’ desired perception.

What is a good Guest Posting Strategy?

Guest posting for SEO should by no means be a ‘one-and-done’ activity but instead should be something done regularly across a variety of websites. Once resource and budget has been allocated to guest posting, appropriate places for features should be identified. In doing this, businesses should consider:

    • Is the site’s content and positioning relevant to the brand?
    • What is the site’s Domain Authority – and is it high enough to amplify the business’ SEO ranking?
    • What’s the expected traffic level for guest posts?
    • Does the site have an active and engaged following likely to interact with and/or share guest posts?
    • Does the site share its guest posts and featured content through social media channels?
    • Do the business’ target audience or brand personas visit the site and consume content on it?

Provided all elements align with the business, a full guest posting strategy can be created and should include tangible and realistic goals the business will strive to reach, the creation and publication of current and appropriate shareable and educational content, and a great pitch.

There are some websites that will, for a fee, publish just about any guest post no matter its relevance but it is always recommended to avoid these sites as their haphazard approach toward publication and backlinks will not rank them as an expert domain in any field, and may even harm the business’ overall ranking.

Incorporating a Guest Posting Strategy into your SEO Plan

A comprehensive guest posting strategy is an important part of the SEO puzzle, but it can be difficult to know when and where to start.

Woya Digital include the creation of guest posting strategies as part of our SEO services and with years of expertise in the field, hold great relationships with a variety of high-authority domains who offer the hosting of guest posts from relevant brands. If you’re unsure of whether a site’s guest post rate is fair or their reach is sufficient to boost SEO, ask our team – we’ll be happy to advise and offer some recommendations on how to proceed.

 

The Benefit of an SEO Competitor Analysis

The Benefit of an SEO Competitor Analysis

Here at Woya Digital, we’re passionate about helping businesses do better digitally and our SEO services form just one part of our commitment.

Our SEO packages include the completion of a full website audit and also an SEO competitor analysis too. A competitor analysis is an important step in any business SEO strategy, below we explain why.

An SEO Overview

SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimisation; the practice of optimising web content in order for it to rank as high as possible amongst relevant search terms and keywords when a search engine user looks up something relevant to a business.

Although there are a variety of search engines used worldwide, most guidance and information relating to SEO is primarily focused on Google, as they hold an over 92% market share. Generally speaking, actions taken to improve visibility on Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) will usually also improve visibility on other search engines too. The higher a business ranks for appropriate keywords and terms, the more exposure it gains to its target audience; which in turn will lead to competitive advantage, increased awareness and climbing sales.

Actions businesses can take to improve their SEO include technical intervention such as coding changes, the creation of relevant and educational content and the proper structure and navigation of web pages within a site.

Where a website appears in search engine listings without a paid-for placement, this is known as organic SERP ranking. Lots can be achieved organically but it is not uncommon for businesses to combine their SEO efforts with paid advertising such as PPC (Pay-Per-Click, where every clickthrough incurs a small cost), CPM (Cost Per Mille, where every 1000 impressions of a listing incurs a cost) or CPC (Cost Per Conversion, where a fee is paid upon completion of a desired action). Before any paid advertising activity is purchased, it is always advised that a full SEO website audit is carried out in order to first maximise the impact of whatever can be achieved organically; to avoid unnecessary spend.

When Should an SEO Competitor Analysis be Carried Out?

Before any SEO plan or strategy is drawn up, the initial state of affairs for the business website in question should be understood.

An SEO website audit allows for businesses to best assert:

    • Priorities for areas of urgent improvement or update in order to boost SEO
    • The best possible path for an easy user journey and experience based on existing user behaviours
    • Whether the current performance of the site is sufficient for a positive user experience
    • If accessibility standards on the site meet the current requirements held by search engines
    • How best to approach an SEO plan that will be productive and efficient in advancing organic search reach and exposure.

At this stage of the SEO planning process, an SEO competitor analysis can also be impactful. The results of this analysis should feed into the overall SEO strategy formulation as the existing website audit does and so should be completed before any plans are drawn up.

What is an SEO Competitor Analysis?

A competitor analysis is a smaller piece of work than the SEO website audit that will be carried out for the customer audit but should not be underestimated in its power. This is an audit in which information on a competitor’s web presence is studied.

This will provide details on which SEO tactics the competitor is deploying and benefitting from, which keywords and terms are relevant to them, and general information on their website’s performance. All of this can be used to help tailor the business’ own SEO plans – picking up where the competitors are falling short in order to gain competitive advantage, and rank above them organically on SERPs.

Why is Competitor Analysis Important in SEO?

Undertaking an SEO competitor analysis is important as it provides not just information on how the business is performing digitally, but also the standards which it should meet in order to rank with others in their relevant field or industry.

Businesses can work as much as they like on their own SEO strategy and operations but doing so without an idea of the bigger picture will lessen the efficiency of their work and could even render it entirely unnecessary. In some circumstances, SEO competitor analysis may even uncover competitors that business’ didn’t understand were a threat to them. Competitors online often vary from those offline and the market within which they operate differs too.

The Benefits of Competitor Analysis

It is often the case that those working in digital marketing or specific SEO practices must justify their planned resource workload with a business case to others in the business; especially where perhaps not all senior management understand the ins and outs of the work.

It is understandable that not everyone comprehends the need for SEO competitor analysis – and indeed it is not proposed that it happens as a standalone project without a complete SEO website audit as it is externally focused, but there are many benefits to carrying one out. Such advantages include:

Clarity on Keywords and Terms – Keyword Gap Analysis

Where many businesses operate in a single sector or space, it is likely that they will all target similar (if not the same) keywords in order to appeal to their target audience. Understanding how others in the field target such phrases and where they achieve success will help other brands build a picture of how and where they should target them, as well as to achieve the maximum possible results from keyword targeting through organic means before any paid-for advertising is invested in.

Content Focus

Businesses seeking to create and publish relevant, useful, educational and shareable content to their websites and other digital presences understand the need for such content to be well curated in order for it to be optimised. An SEO competitor analysis allows for an understanding of what other brands in the space are doing and to identify areas for improvement, gaps for customers where content could be produced to meet needs, and to find what has rendered success that could be replicated.

Gain Competitive Link Data

Backlink profiles for competitors’ websites can be hugely helpful. Accessing data on what authoritative links direct to competitors’ websites as well as what they link to themselves allows for opportunities for strategic link building and relationship building to be identified.

Web Design and UX Analysis

Gaining insight into how competitors design and manage their branding and online presence as well as what they deliver in terms of digital user experience can help identify opportunities for improvement.

If a competitors’ website is slow to load or non-responsive to devices, it could be that the business is able to gain further advantage in offering a better UX but if the state of play is the other way around, they can look to incorporate improvements. In industries or sectors where the target audience may have specific accessibility needs, it may be that ideas can be taken from others in order to help offer up a better service.

Geographic Locality Targeting

For businesses that operate in a certain geographic location, local SEO targeting should be not underestimated. While general SEO competitor analysis is useful, a spotlight should also be shone on the optimisation of local listings through Google Business Profile.

Google Business Profile allows for geographic targeting through some basic information provision. If competitors haven’t filed their local listings, any business who have will almost definitely have an advantage SEO wise. It is also worth understanding how good competitors are at encouraging review content on Google Business Profile and how/if they respond to such testimonials – as these can be hugely impactful on organic ranking.

Real Customer Reviews

Authentic customer testimonials make for a fantastic marketing tool and there are several independent third-party websites that host such reviews and offer behind-the-scenes analysis tools for them.

Customer reviews provide a great insight into competitors’ customer service approach and business direction but also can be helpful in demonstrating how they are being talked about and linked to online – all of which contribute to SEO rankings indirectly. If a business isn’t giving consumers a space digitally for reviews, they should consider doing so; and if not on the brand’s own website, somewhere high-authority with helpful audit tools and dashboards.

Starting out with SEO Competitor Analysis and Other SEO Services

Woya Digital includes an SEO competitor analysis as part of our standard SEO service; maximising the value of our services to our clients, and ensuring you rank where you should, when you should, for who you should.

Want to learn more on how we can support your business growth? Get in touch!

Proud Digital Media Partners of Will Powell in the British Touring Car Championship

Proud Digital Media Partners of Will Powell in the British Touring Car Championship

We are delighted to announce that we are proud digital media partners of Will Powell in the 2022 British Touring Car Championship. Throughout the season we will be providing Will with digital marketing support plus our exclusive digital PR.

Will Powell Confirmed as Final BTCC Driver for Team HARD. Racing

Britcar Endurance champion Will Powell has been confirmed as the final driver in Team HARD. Racings’ Cupra line-up for the 2022 KwikFit British Touring Car Championship (BTCC)

The reigning Britcar Endurance champion, Will Powell has today (3rd May) been confirmed as the final driver in the Team HARD. Racing Cupra for the 2022 KwikFit British Touring Car Championship.

Powell has raced in multiple UK motor racing championships spanning from single seaters to GT cars. He drove the Brabham BT62 Competition in the marque’s return to racing at Brands Hatch in 2019 before winning the British Endurance Series championship in a McLaren GT3 in 2021 and has also competed in TCR.

Piloting the second Autobrite Direct with JourneyHero entry alongside the current Jack Sears Trophy leader, Bobby Thompson, Powell’s car will be the number 20.
Will Powell, Driver of the Autobrite Direct with Journey Hero Cupra, said: “This is the realisation of a boyhood dream, going back to when we would skip school to camp out at Brands Hatch and watch the touring cars. I’d like to thank Tony Gilham and his family for the opportunity to make the dream a reality, along with our friends at Autobrite Direct, JourneyHero and all my partners at Motus One.

I think BTCC is the pinnacle of British motorsport and – despite unusual circumstances and little preparation – I’m over the moon to join the grid from race four at Brands Hatch. I don’t underestimate the scale of the challenge but I’m looking forward to racing with the best.”
Tony Gilham, Managing Director of Team HARD. Racing added, “We have been working with Will and Motus One for a little while now including a successful test day in our Cupra last season so it’s great that we are able to get him onboard to fill our last seat for this season. Will is a great guy and has vast experience in motorsport both on and off the track which will really help accelerate his development in BTCC.

“Commercially this deal just makes sense for both parties. We both know each other well, the team know Will and vice-versa and coming into the season late, we wanted to find a driver that already has a relationship with both our staff and partners to build for the long-term.
“Some of the biggest names in motorsport are already working with Will including David Brabham, who mentors him in racing, so adding their knowledge and experience to our programme is a massive positive for everyone involved.”