Organic performance is a term that is used a lot to bring teams together under a single umbrella. It often provides opportunities for heads of SEO departments to develop something bigger and with greater purpose. But what does it actually mean?
SEO has always required an element of test and learn. It has never been as straightforward as ‘build it and they will come’ – it requires an understanding of algorithms and search engine behaviour to test optimizations – to find the right formula. And just when you think you have cracked it, the landscape shifts, the algorithm updates and you are back to testing again.
“But you shouldn’t be chasing an algorithm!” you say. Yes, we agree, which is where the additional layer of understanding user intent and needs, to deliver the best possible result, comes into the mix. Throw in multiple new SERP features, AI, user experience metrics, and natural search language processing, and you have yourself a good old fashioned pickle. This is where an organic performance team is born.
Organic performance is not just about helping brands become more visible within organic rankings, it is centred around being valuable – consistently through each stage of a consumer’s journey to conversion and then beyond – to ensure brand authority and advocacy.
It requires a blend of SEO, content and digital PR/outreach specialists to collectively work toward a common goal – a data and insight-led opportunity – and then a living and breathing strategy that evolves with change.
– The landscape- who is performing, where and why?
– The demand – a starting point to understand the size of the opportunity.
– The strategy – an initial hypothesis if you like – which will be revisited, and fluid based on the aforementioned, ‘pickle’.
– The website /app – developing a platform to support, direct, and push the user through to their desired outcome,
– The content – building needs-based content to support every stage, to build topical authority, to increase visibility for every entry point (eg. YouTube, video results, image search, people also ask, local etc.)
– The amplification – ensuring your content is visible before active search, building authority in places where the relevant audience is spending time.
The user has become the driver and the route to consuming content is complex. Therefore, the strategy needs to address the complexity and ensure visibility across multiple touchpoints.
When brands talk about investing in SEO, and the potential long-term commitment in order to see results, we need to help them see the bigger picture. There are quick wins of course: fixing technical issues, navigation, structure and optimising existing content etc. However, you shouldn’t stop there, an investment in organic performance is an investment in a long term marketing strategy that will deliver against multiple objectives. It can help build new audiences, create brand advocacy, develop authority, support users in need, deliver efficiencies, and improve the performance of paid channels.
Plus everything can be measured!
Blimey. I know what channel I would be investing in.
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