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How a Local Search Engine Optimization Agency Can Quell Your SEO Frustration

How a Local Search Engine Optimization Agency Can Quell Your SEO Frustration

“Why is SEO so difficult?” It’s one of the most frequent questions we get at Smart WSI Marketing. And we hear it from people new to search engine optimization as well as those who thought they were winning the SEO game.

Plain and simple, the number one reason SEO is so frustrating is that the landscape’s always changing. What worked yesterday might not work today. And what works today might not work six months down the road.

For now, SEO remains one of the most valuable marketing strategies your business can use. Working with a local search engine optimization agency that understands SEO’s ever-evolving ways can help keep your audience engaged, drive new visitors to your site, and boost sales. Call us today for a consultation!

9 Reasons Why SEO is So Frustrating

In theory, you should be able to create a website, add several SEO techniques, build some links and then watch your rankings rise to the top. In practice, you need to try and try again, finding different ways to optimize to achieve better search results and rankings.

Let’s look at some of the reasons why so many business owners find SEO frustrating and how a local search engine optimization agency can help.

Constantly Changing Algorithms

Google has a long history of algorithm updates, search index changes, and refreshes, rolling out hundreds of updates and modifications since its inception. In 2020 alone, it made 4,500 search changes, including to its user interface and ranking system.

The search engine giant’s algorithm changes so frequently it’s challenging to keep up with every update. Some aren’t a big deal; others can literally make or break a business. To stay on top of Google’s algorithm changes, local search engine optimization agencies suggest techniques like:

  • Using Google Alerts and other third-party tools.
  • Staying up-to-date on insights from SEO Experts.
  • Creating high-quality content.
  • Making changes incrementally.
  • Having a recovery strategy.

Lower Quality Sites Can Outrank You

Competing for Google’s top spot often requires spending more time on your competitors’ sites to figure out how they’re outranking you. It’s particularly frustrating to see them rank higher when you know you have better content and stronger links and offer more benefits to customers. Shouldn’t your efforts be rewarded, and their worst practices punished?

The truth is there’s no single strategy for ranking well with Google. That’s because the search engine’s algorithm looks at several factors when evaluating where your website should rank, including user experience, page speed, and mobile design. So, a competitor’s website can be of lower quality and still rank well if its competition isn’t as strong or if it fulfills a very specific search query.

One current trend, featured snippets, is offering businesses new opportunities by allowing them to focus less on going head-to-head with a competitor’s website and more on answering user questions.

Ranking High Takes Forever

It’s perfectly normal to feel frustrated over how long SEO can take to work. The simple reason it takes so much time is that there are several factors involved in getting results, including:

  • SEO keyword difficulty
  • Competition
  • Inbound links
  • Domain age

Of these, competition is usually what makes SEO take longer than you’d like. The more competition your business has, the more time it will take to climb to the top of the SERPs. Because many other local search engine optimization agencies are making adjustments alongside you, you’ll likely need to wait several months or more before you see the effects of any SEO changes you make. Truth is, it drives us nuts too! But that’s just how it works.

The good news is that the longer you stick with SEO, the better your results will be.

Google Randomly Penalizes Sites

Google penalties punish websites with content that conflicts with the marketing practices the search engine enforces. The two types of penalties Google uses against sites are:

Manual penalties that occur when a real person from Google’s spam check team reviews your website and discovers something suspicious.

Algorithmic penalties that Google’s algorithm applies directly to your site.

No matter the type, a penalty’s never a positive thing, as it can pose a serious threat to your website’s visibility in organic search results. However, if you respect the game’s rules, Google’s algorithm will rank you higher and expose your website to more potential users and customers.

Your local search engine optimization agency can avoid Google penalties by not buying links, avoiding keyword stuffing, creating relevant content, and using various techniques to show you’re a trusted, legitimate business.

Rankings Can Disappear Overnight

There’s nothing worse than waking up one day to find your site’s hard-earned ranking has changed completely, disappearing from Google's top 10 or even top 100. Reasons for a sudden drop in ranking include a manual search engine penalty, a Google algorithm update, lost backlinks, and website changes.

Whatever the cause, a Google ranking drop can be both frustrating and frightening. Complicating matters is that Google uses more than 200 ranking factors, so it’s not always immediately clear why your site suffered an abrupt plunge.

Luckily, the majority of ranking issues can be remedied with a bit of time and effort by your local search engine optimization agency. An advanced SEO audit can help uncover the problem, so you can get your website back on track.

Conflicting Advice on Link Building

“Link building is dead!” “Link building is essential to good SEO!” Who to believe can be confusing.

Google has been using links as a ranking factor since the 1990s, and they still matter greatly in 2022. SMBs that want to profit from their SEO strategy should ignore backlinks at their own risk, as the more high-quality, relevant backlinks your site’s pages have, the more traffic they’ll get.

What’s important to know is that how to “do” backlinks has changed over the years. The trick to linking success is learning to adapt to the latest changes in Google’s ranking algorithm and the latest changes in link-building itself. For instance, an algorithmic change in 2019 allowed Google to more easily distinguish between spammy and holistic links. The bottom line with links is they have to be earned, not bought. And earning them is typically a very manual and time-consuming process.

The SEO Process Never Ends

Big or small, niche or highly competitive, every business needs to continually update its SEO tactics and techniques. As more companies enter the digital world, the competition will only increase. Starting today to up your SEO game with a local search engine optimization agency gives you a huge advantage over newcomers and “SEO slackers” alike.

Because the SEO landscape will always shift, staying ahead of the curve is the only way to ensure you thrive and prosper year to year. Don’t neglect your SEO strategy. Instead, keep pushing to improve your rankings and acquire new keywords.

Most People Don’t Understand SEO

It’s estimated nearly half of SMBs don’t understand SEO. Some of the most common misconceptions about SEO include:

  • Viral content is the be-all, end-all. The truth is, it’s unique content that stands out and helps your website improve its ranking. Viral content is incredibly rare, and usually random.
  • SEO is unnecessary. Social media is all we need. Yet despite a rise in mobile, video, and social media marketing, SEO continues to yield more impressive results.
  • Incoming links aren’t good SEO. Not true. Incoming links are a powerful way to boost your ranking, except if the site linking to you has an authority issue.

Fewer People Understand How SEO Works

How much do you truly know about SEO? If the answer is “not much,” you’re not alone. That lack of knowledge has led many people to buy into some common SEO myths like SEO is a gimmick, spammy, and expensive. There’s also the belief that the SEO process is the same for everyone. But it’s definitely not. This is where the benefit of working with a local search engine optimization agency comes in. They can customer tailor an SEO strategy just for your business based on their “SEO nerd” knowledge that a busy business owner may not have the time for (or, let’s be honest, interest in) learning.

Search engine optimization is the process of driving traffic to your site as a result of organic, or natural search engine results. It aims to improve your website’s position in search results pages, and the higher your website is listed, the more people will see it.

Good SEO involves many different activities, such as:

  • Identifying relevant keywords.
  • Creating high-quality, useful content that’s been optimized for search engines and users.
  • Including relevant links from high-quality sites.
  • Measuring results.

While there are similarities between paid and organic search, such as keyword research, landing pages, and traffic, SEO also focuses on technical, on-page, and off-page optimization to ensure:

  • Your website is designed to improve SEO.
  • Your site’s content is relevant and provides an exceptional user experience.
  • Your website ranks through activities outside of the site.

Less Frustration, More Results From SEO

The ability to get SEO results can give you an impressive edge over your competition. Smart WSI Marketing is a local search engine optimization agency offering SEO services that leave you feeling less frustrated and more confident of success. To learn more about what we do, reach out to us today.

Lynne team member
Lynne Motkoski, Digital Marketing Consultant
Specialty: Digital Marketing Strategies
Education: MA Communications & Technology, BComm [U Alberta]

Lynne is known for her strategic approach to marketing communications, technologies, and lead generation. She has a passion for education, keeping up with current marketing trends and practices, and helping clients keep ahead of their competition.

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The Web Marketing Association (WMA) has just wrapped up it’s 26th awards season. WMA is made up of a committee of industry leaders and expert judges dedicated to raising the standards of excellence in web development. The committee receives global nominations in 97 categories across the industry, and since joining the race in 2007, the WSI family has received over 150 WMA awards, including top agency twice!