Search engine optimization (SEO) is a complicated topic. There are many facets to running a solid SEO operation and it requires that you are able to have a full understanding of the technical and strategic elements of the channel as a whole. There are 67,000 searches performed on Google every second, making it perhaps the most important digital channel for businesses with a long-term approach.
There are two main branches in the SEO tree — on-page optimization and off-page optimization. On-page optimization includes all of the elements and facets of SEO that take place on your own website. That includes technical considerations, content considerations, and ensuring that your metadata is being utilized correctly.
Off-page SEO is a completely different beast. It includes all of the things that you can do outside of your own website to improve your standing in Google and other search engines.
Let’s dive into what off-page SEO is, how it affects your standing in search engines, and what steps you can take to improve your off-page SEO.
What is Off-Page SEO?
To put it simply, off-page SEO refers to anything outside of your website that impacts your rankings in search engines. There are an untold number of off-page SEO elements, and Google simply does not publish their algorithm so there may be no way to know exactly what factors they are taking into consideration when they rank websites.
When combined with solid on-page SEO, off-page SEO can play a huge role in your ultimate ranking for highly valuable search results pages. Optimizing your off-site ranking factors requires that you take a large number of things into consideration. Ultimately, these actions are focused on improving the popularity, trustworthiness, and authority of your website and brand as a whole.
Mostly, off-page SEO focuses on who links to your website. Receiving links from accomplished, reputable places online (can be a brand, person, website, etc.) works as a vote of confidence for your own website and helps to improve your off-page SEO.
What Does Off-Page SEO Include?
Google is constantly altering the algorithms that they use to rank websites on their search results pages. There are a large number of factors that play into your overall ranking and some factors are weighted to be more important than others.
Let’s dive into some of the different considerations that Google and other search engines take into account to evaluate whether your site is a good site to refer their visitors to:
- Backlinks. Backlinks are the foundation of off-page SEO. A link to your website from another website is viewed as a vote of confidence in your brand. Backlinks are often the main focus of any off-page SEO campaign. Receiving a link to your website from a big brand like New York Times or someone else that conveys a lot of trust can provide a huge boost to your brand’s presence in search. There are many strategies that companies can employ to build backlinks over time, but going over that would require a post specifically about that.
- Reviews. What people have to say about your business matters. Google uses reviews on their own platform and others to inform their sense of trust in your business. When your business is listed on many directory sites and enjoys positive reviews on those sites, Google and other search engines are more likely to see your company website as an authority.
- Social presence. Your presence on social platforms plays a small role in your ability to rank in search engines. Google knows that companies that maintain an active social media presence are more likely to be reliable companies that they feel comfortable referring their users to. Maintaining an active social presence on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn will not only improve awareness for your business but will also improve your standing in search engines as well.
To put it more simply — off-page SEO refers to anywhere that your website could (or potentially should) be mentioned. Off-page SEO is your broader presence on the web and all of the steps that you take to maintain that for the purpose of improving your standing in search engines. The more often that you are mentioned on reliable and trustworthy websites, the better your results will be.
Content Quality Matters
Google’s long-term strategy is to get better at judging the quality of the content that websites publish. 65% of web users say that the content they consume online is unreliable.
Ideally, they would like to get better at determining what quality means so that they can make sure that they are delivering their users highly valuable content. Right now they rely heavily on user data to determine whether the content on a specific page is of high-quality or not. They use factors like time spent on the page, bounce rates, and engagement statistics to determine if a user found a particular piece of content valuable or not.
Both on-page and off-page, you should try to align your brand with the highest possible content quality. IF you publish a guest post — make sure that post is spectacular. Not only will the post perform better and generate more traffic, but it will also help to boost your own SEO efforts as well. With half of all searches coming in at four words or longer, it’s important that your content covers subjects thoroughly and completely so that you can rank for as many longtail keywords as possible.
By ensuring that the things that you publish are always of the highest quality, you put yourself in position to catch the eyes of your ideal prospects while benefiting in terms of SEO. Publishing extremely high-value content is always something that I push my clients toward.
A Well-Rounded Strategy
Ultimately, if you want to find success in SEO, you need a well-rounded strategy. That strategy needs to take both on-site and off-page SEO into account to ensure that you are putting yourself in the best position for success. This article should help you to better understand what off-page SEO is and how it fits into the bigger picture of your complete SEO strategy.
Here at RiseFuel, we create SEO and complete 3 inbound marketing strategies for our clients. If you need help putting together a plan for your business, reach out today to schedule your free consultation.