Search Engine Optimization or SEO is one of the most important parts of any MSP’s marketing strategy. Every MSP that our team speaks with states that search engine optimization and getting their website to rank as high as possible on Google is of utmost importance.
The question many of the managed service providers ask is:
“How long does it take to get our website on the first page of Google?”
Isn’t this a great question? Here’s a quick answer. Overnight or several years. Many factors come into play.
Here are 5 factors that will help or prevent your MSP website from ranking on Google.
- Stop thinking search engine optimization: Wait for a second, isn’t this article about search engine optimization or SEO? Yes, it is, but I have a better recommendation for you. I want you to think, search engine domination and not search engine optimization. This is an important mindset shift I want you all to think about.
- Content rules: In the world of online marketing, excellent content is king. When you have a sound content strategy, your SEO blossoms. If you don’t have a solid content strategy or you hire some Indian SEO guy for $50 a month, your SEO will flush down the crapper faster than you can say SEO. I’m a huge fan of “They Ask, You Answer,” thanks to Scott Putnam of Apex Technology Management in Redding, CA. The “They Ask, You Answer” content strategy is solid and should be used as your guide when creating content. More on this later.
- No Social Media Engagement: Social Media is a must in today’s world. After all, how will you connect with your audience? Email marketing is almost dead, and telemarketing has been dead for the past five years. Social Media marketing is one of the only ways for direct connection with your target market. Besides the obvious, social media activity and shares are the “goose that lays the golden eggs” for your SEO strategy.
- Just Say No: Just say NO to keyword stuffing. And, did I mention the Indian SEO guy for $50 a month? SEO brings out the best in the snake oil salesmen. Stay clear of these guys at all costs. Anyone promising overnight first page rankings and abundance of traffic has probably just completed a trip to Colorado and loaded up their bag with the “wacky stuff” they sell there. Avoid this pitfall and never work with these people.
- Competition: The terms IT support and IT services have a tremendous amount of competition. In some major metro areas, it can be next to impossible to rank for these keywords. However, if you adopt the “They Ask, You Answer” mentality, you can find out what questions your clients and prospects have and use this to your advantage with your SEO.
If you elect to work with an MSP marketing company with a proven track record of success with SEO, great. However, make sure they do these 5 things:
- Employ a solid content strategy that addresses the concerns or wants of your business community. Don’t write content that doesn’t meet the simple requirements of answering the questions or solving the problems your clients and prospects experience. Use their words as your words and make sure your MSP marketing agency understands this.
- Write frequently. I recently completed an experiment with a top-notch MSP in Los Angeles where we interviewed 10 of their existing clients and got over 150 questions. That’s almost a year’s worth of content every three days.
- Get social. Like we mentioned above, social media activity is good for your health and your search engine optimization. The more connections and shares you have, the higher your SEO rankings will become
- Trust the professionals. There are literally, hundreds of SEO experts. Make sure the company you work with understands the MSP industry, how great content works, and the technical aspects of a solid SEO strategy. Be involved, but let the professionals do their job.
- Google Search Console: If the SEO company doesn’t understand Google Search Console, run away. It’s important for you to understand this vital resource as well.
These are just a few answers to “How long will it take to get my MSP website to rank on Google?”
There are many good resources available to MSPs. Seek out the guidance of a professional and remember, content is the first and only starting place. Without great and relevant content your site will never rank.
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Stuart Crawford serves as Creative Director and CEO with Sebring, FL and Fort Erie, ON-based Ulistic, a specialty MSP Marketing firm focused on information technology marketing and business development. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience pertaining to how technology business owners and IT firms can use marketing as a vehicle to obtain success.