Mixing Your PPC and SEO - Shaken Not Stirred

Mixing Your PPC and SEO - Shaken Not Stirred

By Chad PollittJun 28 /2011

It’s common knowledge that it's not necessary to optimize your PPC landing pages for SEO right?  Nope - it’s not only possible, but it’s recommended in most cases.  Sound implausible?  Think about the incremental benefits to your inbound marketing campaign if you can land in the top five on Google organically for some of your keyword phrases.  Many SEO and PPC practitioners do not think it’s possible or plausible.  After seeing more than 40 successful deployments which saw over a 1200% increase in click-through rates versus PPC alone it's not only plausible, but suggested.

How to Search Engine Optimize PPC

SEO and PPCCurrently, Google’s ranking algorithm shows favoritism towards keyword rich domain names (www.keywordphrase.com).  Some recent comments from Google have indicated this factor is growing less important, but for now it is still relevant.  You can deploy as many keyword rich unique URL landing pages as your budget allows.  Make sure that the keyword phrases you’re going after aren’t uber-competitive and require thousands of backlinks to be successful organically.  Here are a few steps to ensure maximum organic rankings.

  1. Choose keyword phrases for the unique domain names by relevance, competition and traffic.
  2. Use the keyword phrase in the page title.
  3. Use the keyword phrase in an H1 on the landing page.
  4. Use the keyword phrase in image alternative text (multiple variations of the phrase if more than one image).
  5. Use the keyword phrase in the meta data.
  6. If there is content present on the landing page make sure it is optimized with the keyword phrase.  3-7% is recommended.
  7. Submit an XML Sitemap to Google for your landing pages.
  8. Add all of the unique URLs in a separate section on a main website’s HTML site map.  Make sure the anchor text is the keyword phrase in the URL.
  9. Build backlinks accordingly.

Search Engine Optimization with Segmentation

PPC campaigns that leverage a segmentation strategy have the opportunity to use a unique URL for each segment.  Whether you have two, three or up to seven segments link each one to a unique keyword rich URL and follow the steps above.

Search Engine Optimization with UI/UX Testing

Aside from the normal PPC testing, many internet marketing folks like to use Google Website Optimizer or one of the paid services to ensure maximum conversions.  Whether the testing is simple A/B or multivariate make sure the original and all subsequent variations follow the steps above.

Don’t expect to hit a home run with every unique URL landing page you deploy.  These deployments saw about 25% of the landing pages on the second or third page of Google organically.  However, the other 75% landed firmly on the first page and continued to provide revenue long after that PPC campaign was terminated.

Image Credit: Cowfish

The above originally appeared as a guest post on the Post-Click Marketing Blog on March 10, 2011.

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