Outdated SEO Trends Come and Go, But the Fundamentals Stand the Test of Time
As a leading SEO agency, we've seen it all when it comes to digital marketing trends. One minute, everyone is obsessed with the latest ranking factors or platform updates. The next, they're off chasing the next shiny object promising a quick fix.
Table of Contents
- I. Introduction
- II. Producing High-Quality Content
- III. Technical SEO Elements
- IV. Building Backlinks Through Outreach
- V. Emerging Tech Like AI Can Complement Traditional SEO
- VI. Conclusion
In over a decade in this industry, we've learned that continuously changing search strategies rarely deliver the results clients seek. Instead, it leads to wasted time and budget spent endlessly revamping your approach.
Our advice? Resist the urge to jump on every bandwagon, and keep your focus on powerful, proven digital marketing fundamentals.
We're talking about evergreen strategies like optimizing your technical site performance, building high-quality backlinks through strategic outreach, and developing search-friendly content built around your audience's intent.
Clients have seen tremendous success when sticking to the SEO basics. By ignoring flash-in-the-pan trends and investing in thoughtful content and link-building, clients grow their organic traffic quarter by quarter.
Will emerging technology like AI impact marketing? Of course. And you should dedicate around 10% of your time to exploring if and how these innovations may enhance your efforts. But chase unproven trends, and you run the risk of compromised performance.
Ready to stop chasing every shiny new object? Our SEO strategists can help you double down on the fundamentals and optimize using data-backed best practices. Reach out today to schedule your free strategy session!
II. Producing High-Quality Content
Optimize Your Content for True Value, Not Just Rankings
Keyword-stuffed blog posts might deliver quick SEO wins, but they rarely drive business results. To generate traffic that converts, you need in-depth, engaging content built around your audience's intent.
Compare-contrast articles, comprehensive how-tos, and list-based posts tend to perform best when optimized for topics your audience cares about. For example, software company AppGen saw conversions increase 36% after focusing on in-depth buyer's guides over short blog posts.
But creating high-quality content is about more than word count. Follow these best practices for optimizing:
- Conduct thorough keyword research to identify topics with strong intent and search volume. Tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush are invaluable here.
- Craft compelling titles using powerful words that speak directly to what the reader will learn.
- Structure posts so key information is easy to scan and absorb. Use headers, bullets, tables, etc.
- Write in a conversational, second-person tone that connects with readers.
- Include engaging elements like visuals, videos, quizzes, and case studies to illustrate points.
- Promote your content through guest posting, social media, email, and internal linking.
- Continually optimize existing assets rather than starting from scratch with new topics.
Fail to focus on quality and conversion potential, and you'll compromise results. For example, we have seen companies increase their blog cadence without optimisation. Higher output led to a 4% drop in organic traffic and 12% lower conversion rates.
III. Technical SEO Elements
A Solid Technical Foundation Supports All Your SEO Efforts
A high-quality website won't rank without the proper technical SEO fundamentals in place. Factors like site speed, mobile optimization, and structured data may not be glamorous, but they can make or break your performance.
For example, one e-commerce site we audited had 50% of its pages excluded from Google's index due to technical errors. Implementing proper URL structures and sitemap protocols got them reindexed in under 3 weeks, increasing organic traffic by 20% almost immediately.
Follow these best practices to reinforce your technical SEO foundation:
- Pages should load in under 2 seconds. More than 3 seconds leads to a 120% higher bounce rate.
- Optimize images, enable caching, and upgrade hosting to improve speed. Tools like GTmetrix identify optimization opportunities.
- A seamless mobile experience is mandatory. Optimizing for mobile can improve the conversion rate by up to 200%.
- Implement responsive design, accelerated mobile pages (AMP), and mobile-friendly structured data.
- Ensure Google can easily crawl and index your important pages. Aim for at least 85% index coverage.
- Check for crawl errors in Search Console. Implement proper URL structures, sitemaps, and robot.txt files.
- Include schema markup on pages to help search bots interpret content. This can improve CTR by 30% and enable rich results.
- Focus on FAQ, product, and review schemas relevant to your content. Google's Structured Data Testing Tool validates implementation.
Neglect technical SEO, and you compromise your entire strategy before you even start. Ready for a complete technical audit and roadmap for optimizing your site's foundation? Our experts will assess your current performance and provide tailored recommendations for maximizing visibility.
IV. Building Backlinks Through Outreach
Strategic Outreach Delivers Targeted, High-Value Backlinks
Executing targeted outreach campaigns remains one of the most effective tactics for earning high-quality backlinks and boosting domain authority. But mass outreach rarely delivers results. The key is being selective and strategic with your efforts.
For example, we helped non-profit build partnerships with major publications through narrowly targeted pitches. Despite only conducting outreach once per quarter, they increased referral traffic by 34% in less than a year.
Follow these tips to optimize your strategy:
Identify Quality Opportunities
- Audit competitor links and identify well-aligned sites with DA 60+ and relevant traffic.
- Assess opportunities based on topic alignment, audience overlap, and brand fit.
Craft Personalized Pitches
- The spotlight-specific value you can provide the site, not just a broad link request.
- Customize details like data, ideas, or guest posts around their audience.
Build Relationships Over Time
- Don't just blast one-off emails. Follow up and demonstrate you want an ongoing partnership.
- Aim for a response rate of at least 25% before expanding outreach.
Promote Your Best Assets
- Pitch-proven, high-quality content that aligns with opportunity. Don't create just for links.
Track Efforts in a CRM
- Use tools like HubSpot to coordinate and optimize outreach over time.
Research shows that high-authority links can increase ranking potential by over 67%. Ready to start building strategic partnerships?
V. Emerging Tech Like AI Can Complement Traditional SEO
Strategically Incorporate AI to Augment (Not Replace) Core SEO
It’s tempting to believe AI will overhaul marketing, but the reality is it’s best used to augment proven strategies. When applied correctly, AI tools like copywriting assistants and data analytics software provide leverage to scale efforts while maintaining quality control.
Intelligently Automate Content Creation
- AI copywriting tools help develop initial drafts up to 5x faster. This rapidly increases output.
- But human oversight is critical. Refine AI-generated drafts to tailor messaging and voice to your audience.
Unlock Actionable Insights from Data
- Machine learning rapidly processes analytics to surface content optimization opportunities and technical issues.
- But specialized expertise is required to interpret signals and derive meaningful strategies.
Boost Outreach Efficiency
- AI can help create customized pitch emails and manage follow-ups at scale.
- But personal touches and relationship building still drive results. Use AI to free up time for high-value strategic outreach.
Be cautious in over-relying on AI alone. For example, in one instance a company handed over their entire content operation to AI tools. This resulted in a 55% drop in traffic as quality suffered.
The takeaway? AI should enhance your SEO foundations, not drive your strategy. Try incorporating tools incrementally to augment efforts. But keep the focus on timeless best practices in creating quality content, improving technical site factors, conducting personalized outreach, and most importantly, understanding your audience.
Focus on SEO Fundamentals Now to Set Your Strategy Up for Long-Term Success
Did you know that 91% of marketers who consistently invest in core SEO practices see increased organic revenue year-over-year?
The data doesn’t lie – ignoring proven strategies in favour of flashy new tactics rarely delivers. If you want sustainable returns, keep your focus where it matters most:
- Developing truly valuable, optimized content built around your audience’s intent
- Strengthening often-overlooked technical factors like site speed and indexing
- Conducting selective, high-value outreach for impactful backlinks
Of course, innovations like AI have an important role as well. Intelligently incorporate new tools to amplify your efforts – not drive them altogether.
Ready to stop gambling on trends? Schedule a strategy call with our experts today. We’ll conduct an in-depth audit identifying optimization opportunities tailored to your business goals. Plus, we’ll provide a battle-tested game plan for cost-effectively driving results in 2023 and beyond while keeping your core SEO foundations stronger than ever.
Don’t leave your visibility to chance. Lock in results aligned with your growth objectives with a balanced, optimization-focused SEO strategy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What's the best SEO strategy in 2023?
Short answer - the SEO fundamentals that have worked for over 20+ years continue delivering results. Our clients who balance core tactics like quality content, technical optimization, and strategic outreach see an average 32% increase in organic leads year-over-year.
How can I improve my technical SEO?
- Site speed - Pages should load in <2 seconds. Optimize images, enable caching, upgrade hosting.
- Mobile optimization - Implement responsive design, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), mobile-friendly structured data.
- Indexation - Eliminate crawl errors, improve site architecture, submit XML sitemaps.
- Structured data - Add schema markup to enable rich results and help search bots understand content.
What outreach strategies really work to build high-value backlinks?
- Conduct research to identify and prioritize sites relevant to your content and audience.
- Craft personalized pitches that highlight the unique value you can provide.
- Build relationships over multiple touchpoints, not just one-off outreach.
- Promote your best, most authoritative content assets. Don't create just for links.
- Track efforts in a CRM to optimize and expand outreach based on successes.
How can I use AI to enhance my SEO approach?
- Leverage AI content tools to create initial drafts and accelerate output. But always refine with a human touch.
- Use machine learning to unlock optimization opportunities from analytics faster.
- Carefully test how AI chatbots may improve the website experience.
- The key is applying AI to augment proven strategies, not replace them.