Gone are the days that the intricate, complicated custom content management system (CMS) will do the SEO job for you. Unfortunately, that’s a common challenge that new clients come with. An old CMS, plus a new client, isn’t exactly seamless, and it requires a ton of work. It may seem like a big stretch for your company to change to a new CMS, but the benefits are well worth the work!
Within a week of our work, the client jumped 27 spots all the way to 2 for one of their most desired keywords. Find out what changes we did!
Our client was in the B2B industrial industry, with a website built with a highly proprietary and old CMS. In regard to SEO, they were not receiving relevant traffic and not ranking well for targeted keywords.
While we know ranking isn’t everything - it certainly met a requirement of the client - and lets us know we are headed in the right direction to increase their organic traffic. We needed to solve their problem.
The way our client’s URLs had been structured made it extremely difficult for search engines to understand what the page was about. Descriptive, unique URLs were just what the doctor ordered, and significantly helped the site’s key pages move up in the rankings.
The client’s CMS showed URLs as:
Instead, we made their URLs unique and descriptive:
Topic-Focused H1 Tags
In another effort to create an easy-to-interpret content for the search engines, we cleaned up the H1 tags and focused the topics. Instead of just “Operation” for an H1 tag, we changed it to “How to Operate the XYZ Widget,” which makes a lot more sense to Google and gets the client indexed for the right keywords.
Use Proper Tracking Tools
Taking advantage of the customized reports in Google Analytics, we watched the organic traffic very closely.
We recommend tracking key pages (such as the Get a Quote page, which show leads) and metrics (average time on site) to show your progress over time. Additionally, tools like SEMRush can help you determine if you’re moving in the right direction by analyzing your ranking position.
A big theme to note here is that we didn’t make changes in huge, swift moves. We made it with small, strategic changes that built the client’s trust over time. One big solution does not fit all.
Was there one small move that made a big impact for SEO on any sites you’ve worked on? Let us know in the comments!
Beth Kahlich is a Dallas-based digital marketing trainer and consultant. In addition to operating the SEO training classes at the Search Engine Academy in Dallas, Texas, she currently serves on the board of the Dallas/Fort Worth Search Engine Marketing Association (DFWSEM) and is an instructor for SMU Continuing and Professional Education. Her students have included national and international firms from Fortune 100 companies all the way to locally owned businesses. Putting technical talk in plain English, her passion is empowering people to make better decisions about their online marketing.