6 Elements Your SEO Implementation Plan Must Include
Once you have your SEO audit in hand, you are ready to move on to the next step, developing an SEO strategy and implementation plan.
This is a document that may be built in one go or in a series of phases, depending on how you handle keywords. Regardless of the timing, it will guide actions on your website for the next six months, and hopefully it will become a living document that will continue to guide your site for 12 months or longer.
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SEO Strategy Objectives
Identify what your key performance indicators (KPIs) for success will be. Are you hoping that your site will rank in the top 10 search results for an additional five keywords this quarter? Are you hoping to increase site traffic from search engines by a specific percentage, or do you have a hard number goal in mind? Perhaps you are trying to increase the quality of your site visitors by increasing your conversion rate from search. Each of these goals will be important to define when creating your implementation strategy, which should support the achievement of these goals.
Frequency almost always comes down to hours and resources. When defining this part of your strategy, think about whether or not you have dedicated people on your team who can set aside one hour a day, one day a week, or one day a month to optimize your website. Perhaps you don’t have the resources in-house but are willing to allocate part of your annual budget to hiring this support. Start by thinking about what it will take to reach your objectives and work from there. If you are unsure about what it might take to reach your goals, this would be a good time to reach out to an expert who can help you create a plan and source the solutions you’ll need for success.
Technical punch list
Your SEO audit likely left you with a punch list of technical things that need to be addressed on your website. Items might include 404 errors that you may be able to address now, or that may take a little strategic thought based on your content or user journey.
These items might also include deep links, 300 errors and some of the other issues we’ve mentioned in earlier SEO articles. The important part here is to identify the priority of each item on this list, make clear assignments and set deadlines. This will ensure these things get completed and that your team is clear on their directives.
Keywords will be an important part of supporting your objectives. You’ll need to make two key decisions in this section of your strategy. First, you’ll need to identify your list of keywords. Second, you’ll want to prioritize them. To do this, you’ll want to take into account the level of competition of each keyword or keyword phrase you’ve identified and how well each one might help you achieve the objectives included in the original plan.
Once you’ve identified your keywords, you’ll need to plan out how you’ll use these words in your site. Often, these keywords will require new content. This is why a blog can be your SEO team’s greatest tool. Blogs allow the SEO team to make regular and valuable updates to the site, which Google loves, and to do so with your keyword strategy in mind.
You may also want to make changes to the copy on existing pages of your website. Perhaps your research indicated that by changing how you talk about a product or service you could drive more search content to a key page in your website. It may be worth reworking important content areas such as slugs, headlines, body copy, image file names and meta data.
Once you’ve identified the key elements of your implementation plan, it will be important to define measurements of success and how often they’ll be assessed. Setting up a regular reporting period and communicating to your team what will be assessed in the reports will help to keep them focused and working toward the same results.
At Vela, we often recommend quarterly reporting for SEO, as movement on the SERP pages can take time. However, monthly reporting may make more sense if your objectives are more about driving traffic or increasing conversions and your team is committed to updating your website daily, posting more than two purposeful blog posts each week, and working hard on link building.
If you have questions or feel like your team could use support with an SEO strategy, give the experts at Vela a call. You also can use the chat tool on our website (we don’t use bots and would be happy to help).