People aren’t exclusively using Google for their search needs; they’re turning to various platforms, including social media channels, to find what they’re looking for. Therefore, focusing solely on Google’s rankings is just one avenue for enhancing your business’s discoverability and visibility. Now, let’s delve into the plethora of other options at your disposal for maximizing your online presence and discoverability.
SEO beyond Google? Yes. Indeed. SEO isn’t one-size-fits-all, as different platforms have unique ranking factors and offer visibility options that influence user behavior. In simple words, the end-game is for your company (and the company’s founders) to appear in different searches people -potential users- do and influence their decisions. Let’s break down the different types of SEO beyond just Google. And that needs to be your strategy. A holistic one.
SEO on Google
Obviously, that’s the first and the most common form of SEO. Over the years it became synonymous to Search Optimization. All SEO gurus will keep their focus on Google. Google has a variety of ranking factors like website speed, related keywords, quantity of content, mobile-friendliness, quality of content, and backlinks. Google SEO is typically what businesses first think of when considering SEO. The goal is to rank high on Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) for targeted keywords to increase visibility and traffic.Here is the truth nobody tells you about SEO on Google: You may never make it to the first-page @tmoulos Click To Tweet
Here’s why it may not always be possible to rank on Google:
High Competition: In some niches, the competition is incredibly fierce, with numerous well-established websites that have strong domain authority, numerous high-quality backlinks, and comprehensive, expert-level content. New or smaller websites may find it extremely challenging to compete.
Algorithmic Complexity: Google’s search algorithm is highly sophisticated and considers hundreds of ranking factors. Keeping up with the constant updates and tweaks to the algorithm is challenging, even for SEO experts.
Black-Hat Techniques: Some competitors may engage in black-hat SEO techniques to secure higher rankings. While Google aims to penalize such behavior, it can sometimes take time to do so, affecting your site’s ability to rank in the meantime.
Geographical Factors: Local SEO varies by region, and it might be difficult to rank globally or even nationally for keywords that have local intent.
Personalization: Google’s search results are increasingly personalized based on factors like search history, location, device used, and more. This means that even if you rank well generally, you might not appear in every individual’s personalized search results.
Budget Constraints: SEO often requires a long-term investment in content creation, backlink building, and technical optimization. Organizations with larger budgets and dedicated SEO teams have a significant advantage.
Limited Resources: SEO is a resource-intensive task requiring expertise in content creation, backlink building, technical SEO, keyword research, and more. Limited human and financial resources can affect your ability to implement a comprehensive SEO strategy.
Poor Website Quality: Issues like slow load speed, mobile unfriendliness, poor user experience, and thin or low-quality content can all impact your site’s ability to rank well, no matter how strong your other SEO efforts are.
Content Saturation: For some topics, there’s an oversaturation of content, making it difficult for new entries to rank unless they provide exceptional quality or a unique angle.
Search Intent Mismatch: Even with high-quality content and backlinks, if your page doesn’t match the intent behind a user’s search query, Google is unlikely to rank it highly.
Timing: SEO is often a long-term game. Websites that have been around for a longer time tend to have better domain authority and thus may rank higher simply because they’ve been indexed longer.
New or Less Popular Keywords: If you’re targeting new or less popular keywords that don’t have enough search volume, Google might not consider it worth ranking.
But that’s not the end of the word. You can still be visible and discoverable. Just keep reading and start implementing holistically.
SEO on YouTube
YouTube is the second-largest search engine after Google, making it crucial for video content creators. YouTube SEO involves optimizing video titles, descriptions, and tags. User engagement metrics like watch time likes, and shares are also important. Effective YouTube SEO can mean the difference between your video being seen by a handful of people and going viral.
Appearing in search results on YouTube involves a combination of various SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and ASO (App Store Optimization) strategies tailored specifically for the platform. Here are some actionable tips to improve your chances of ranking in YouTube searches:
Perform a specialized Keyword Research:
- Identify Target Keywords: Use tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or YouTube’s own search suggest feature to identify keywords relevant to your content.
- Search Volume & Competition: Look for keywords with high search volume but low competition for a better chance of ranking.
Optimize the Channel Name and Description
Use your target keywords naturally in your channel name and description to make it easier for YouTube to understand your channel’s niche.
Optimize the Video itself:
- Video Title: Use a compelling and keyword-rich title. The closer the keyword is to the beginning of the title, the better.
- Description: The video description should provide a detailed overview of the video’s content. Use keywords naturally, but avoid keyword stuffing.
- Tags: Use relevant tags that include your target keywords, synonyms, and related terms.
- Captions and Subtitles: Uploading captions not only makes your video accessible to a wider audience but also lets YouTube better understand the content of your video.
Invest in Content Quality:
- High-Quality Content: Make sure the video is high-quality, both in terms of the visuals and the content itself.
- User Engagement: Likes, comments, and shares are signals that indicate user engagement, which YouTube uses as a ranking factor.
Create Video Thumbnails:
Use eye-catching custom thumbnails to increase click-through rates (CTR).
Use playlists to group similar videos together. This encourages viewers to spend more time on your channel, which can positively affect your rankings.
Share on Other Platforms:
Share your video on social media, forums, and other platforms to increase views and backlinks.
Consistency in uploading new content not only keeps your audience engaged but may also positively impact how you rank in searches
SEO on Google Maps
SEO on Google Maps is part of what’s called local SEO that focuses on optimizing a business’s online presence so that it shows up in localized search results. Whether you’re a brick-and-mortar store or a service-based business operating in a specific geographic area, local SEO can be instrumental in driving organic, location-based traffic. Platforms like Google My Business, Yelp, and even local directories are essential channels for local SEO. They help improve visibility in local search results and in map-based queries, which can be particularly beneficial for small businesses aiming to attract nearby customers. Implementing a multi-faceted SEO strategy that includes local search optimization can offer a competitive advantage and help your business stand out in a crowded digital marketplace.
When users search for businesses “near me” or specify a location, Google Maps is one of the primary platforms that help them find what they’re looking for. Here’s how to improve your SEO on Google Maps:
Claim Your Google My Business (GMB) Listing:
Verify Ownership: The first step in optimizing for Google Maps is to claim and verify your Google My Business listing. This involves confirming that you are the owner of the business. Verification is typically done through a phone call or a postcard sent to your business address.
Complete Your Profile: Fill in all the details, including business name, address, phone number, website, hours of operation, and categories that apply to your business. The more complete your profile, the better.
Use Accurate and Consistent NAP Information:
Ensure that your Name, Address, and Phone number (NAP) are consistent across all online platforms and directories.
Add High-Quality Photos:
Adding high-quality images of your business, products, and services can help your listing attract more attention and provide potential customers with a visual idea of what to expect.
Gather and Respond to Reviews:
Encourage Reviews as positive reviews improve your business’s credibility and can influence Google’s ranking algorithm. Also, you do need to make sure to professionally respond to all reviews, both positive and negative. Google considers responsiveness as a sign of a good-quality business.
Add Local Citations:
Get your business listed in local directories and websites to improve your local search ranking factors. Ensure NAP consistency across these platforms.
Get Local Backlinks:
Focus on Quality Over Quantity. Aim to get backlinks from authoritative local websites, newspapers, and blogs. Google considers these as votes of confidence for your business.
On-Page SEO for Website:
Optimize your website using local keywords and also consider embedding a Google Map on your website, especially on your contact page, to make it easier for people to find you.
SEO on TikTok
Though not traditional SEO, TikTok optimization is emerging as a crucial practice for those looking to tap into the younger audience. Hashtags play a pivotal role, as does the initial user engagement your video receives. The TikTok algorithm looks at the watch time and interaction rate to determine how widely to distribute your content.
For online retailers, e-commerce SEO can make or break the business. Product listings must be optimized for search with relevant keywords, high-quality images, and clear descriptions. User experience factors like site speed and mobile optimization are also significant. The goal is to make your products easily findable both on Google and within internal site searches.
This is critical for news websites and online publications that aim to rank quickly for breaking news items. Optimizing headlines for click-through rates and writing compelling meta descriptions are essential. News SEO also involves structuring your articles to meet Google’s News Guidelines, which can improve visibility on Google News.
SEO on Amazon
If you’re selling products on Amazon, you’ll need to optimize for that platform’s unique algorithm, A9. This involves using relevant keywords in your product title and description, collecting positive customer reviews, and improving your Seller Authority. Your aim is to appear at the top of Amazon search results for specific product keywords. You can read more on nailing Amazon SEO
App Store SEO (ASO)
Similar to SEO, App Store Optimization (ASO) is the process of optimizing mobile apps to rank higher in app stores like Apple’s App Store and Google Play. Factors include app title, description, and reviews. High-quality screenshots and videos showcasing the app are also beneficial. ASO can significantly influence the number of downloads an app receives.
Understanding the nuances of these different SEO types is vital for anyone looking to have a robust online presence. Each platform has its unique challenges and opportunities, and mastering them can provide a significant advantage in crowded online spaces.
SEO on Job Posts
It’s about optimizing job listings so that they appear prominently in search engine results, both on traditional search engines like Google and specialized job search engines like Indeed, Glassdoor, or LinkedIn. The aim is to attract more and better-suited candidates by making your job posts easily discoverable.
Optimizing a job post for search engines involves several key considerations:
Use Clear and Specific Job Titles – The job title should be straightforward and include the key skills or qualifications necessary for the job. Avoid using internal jargon that external candidates might not understand.
Include Relevant Keywords – The job description should contain keywords related to the role, industry, and skills required. This will not only make the post more discoverable but also ensure that it attracts the most relevant applicants.
Location, Location, Location – If the role is location-dependent, make sure to include the city and state, as many job seekers use location-based search queries. If the role is remote, make sure to clearly state this.
Structure the Content – Well-organized content is easier for search engines to index. Use headings, bullet points, and paragraphs to break up the text. This also makes the post easier to read for job seekers.
Mobile Optimization – A significant number of job seekers use mobile devices for their search. Make sure your job post is mobile-friendly, not just in terms of the platform it’s posted on but also the layout and readability of the post itself.
Internal Links – If applicable, include links that point to different sections of your company website like ‘About Us,’ ‘Team,’ or ‘Culture.’ This can provide more information to potential applicants and also encourage more on-site activity, a factor that can positively influence SEO.
Update Posts Regularly – Search engines often prioritize fresh, up-to-date content. Regularly update job posts to reflect the most current information and keep them high in search rankings.
Utilize Meta Descriptions – If you’re posting the job listing on your company website, don’t forget to optimize the meta description to include key phrases and details. This snippet of information will appear in search results and can influence whether a user clicks through to view the full post.
By taking the time to optimize your job posts for SEO, you can significantly extend the reach of your recruitment efforts, drawing in a wider pool of qualified candidates more efficiently.
SEO on Instagram
It’s about optimizing your Instagram profile and content to increase its visibility, both within the platform and potentially on external search engines like Google. While Instagram isn’t a search engine in the traditional sense, it does have search functionalities that allow users to discover new profiles, posts, and hashtags. Dealing with those options can help you reach a broader audience, attract more followers, and engage better with your existing community. There are few you have to consider though:
Optimize Profile Name and Username – Your profile name and username are the only fields on Instagram that are searchable. Include keywords related to your industry or niche to improve your search visibility.
Bio Keywords – Your Instagram bio can’t be searched, but it’s the first thing people see when they visit your profile. Including relevant keywords and phrases can quickly communicate to visitors what you and your brand are about.
Bio Links – You can have up to 3 links on your bio. Use them to drive people to the most timely important pages such as: any promotion, your latest article, your team, your next event etc.
Hashtags – Hashtags act as keywords on Instagram. Use relevant and trending hashtags to make your posts discoverable. Don’t forget to also use niche-specific hashtags to reach a more targeted audience.
Alt Text for Images – Instagram allows you to add alt text to your images, making them accessible to those with visual impairments. This text is also crawlable by search engines, providing another avenue for optimization.
Captions – While not directly searchable within Instagram, a well-crafted caption that includes strategic keywords can add context to your posts, make them more engaging, and improve their discoverability through external search engines.
Geotagging – By adding a location to your posts, you make them more discoverable for users searching for content within a specific location.
Quality and Consistency – High-quality, consistent posting not only keeps your audience engaged but can also lead to your content being recommended more frequently by Instagram’s algorithm.
Engagement – The more likes, shares, and comments your posts get, the more likely they are to appear in users’ feeds and the “Explore” section. Engage with your audience through interactive content, questions, and timely responses to comments.
Instagram Stories and Reels – Don’t overlook the SEO potential of Instagram’s other features like Stories and Reels. Use keywords in your Story titles, descriptions, and hashtags. Instagram Reels are also discoverable, both within Instagram search and sometimes in Google search as well
SEO on Linkedin
It’s about optimizing your LinkedIn profile and about making activities to increase your visibility on the platform, thereby enhancing your networking opportunities and potentially even your prospects. LinkedIn has its search algorithm to provide users with relevant search results for people, jobs, companies, and other professional content. Here’s how to optimize your LinkedIn for discoverability and appear on user’s searches:
Profile Completeness – LinkedIn’s algorithm favors profiles that are 100% complete. Ensure that you have a professional profile picture, a compelling headline, a detailed “About” section, work experience, skills, and recommendations.
Keywords in Headline and Summary – Your headline and summary are critical fields for LinkedIn SEO. Incorporate relevant keywords that a person looking for someone with your skills might search for. These fields are highly weighted by LinkedIn’s search algorithm.
Experience and Job Titles – Be as descriptive as possible when listing your work experience and job titles. Using common industry terms will improve your profile’s discoverability. Add specific keywords that align with your skills and experiences in your job descriptions.
Skills and Endorsements – List all relevant skills on your profile. The more endorsements you have for each skill, the higher you’ll likely rank for it. Encourage colleagues and professional contacts to endorse you for skills they can vouch for.
Customized LinkedIn URL – Customize your LinkedIn URL to include your name and perhaps your industry or field. This not only looks more professional but is also beneficial for SEO both within LinkedIn and on search engines like Google.
Recommendations – Receiving and giving recommendations adds credibility to your profile and is also a factor that LinkedIn’s algorithm considers in its search results.
Engaging Content – Regularly post and engage with content relevant to your industry. Whether it’s sharing articles, commenting on posts, or publishing your content, being active improves your visibility on the platform.
Network Building – Connect with people in your industry, as well as those in related fields. A broader network increases the likelihood of your profile appearing in searches.
Company and School Pages – Make sure you’re linked to the official LinkedIn pages of your employer and educational institutions. This increases the chances of your profile appearing when someone searches for these entities.
Join and Participate in Groups – Being an active member of LinkedIn Groups related to your industry can boost your profile’s SEO. Contributions in these groups can sometimes be public and are indexable by search engines.
SEO on Twitter (Now X)
People search on Twitter (now X) as well. Therefore being visible is about optimizing your Twitter profile and tweet activity to enhance your visibility on both the platform and search engines like Google. While Twitter is not a search engine, it has a robust and very powerful internal search feature, and tweets often appear in Google search results. Maximizing your discoverability through SEO techniques can boost your reach, engagement, and follower count. Here is what to do:
Username and Handle – Choose a username and handle that are closely related to your brand or identity. Make it simple, memorable, and relevant to your industry.
Profile Optimization – Your Twitter bio should be concise and packed with relevant information about you or your brand. Use targeted keywords, as this text is crawlable by search engines and searchable within Twitter.
Profile Image and Header – Use high-quality, recognizable images for your profile and header. These are the first things people see when they land on your profile and should represent you or your brand effectively.
Utilize the pinned tweet feature – to keep an important tweet at the top of your profile. This could be a tweet that sums up your brand, features a new product, or highlights content you want to drive traffic to.
Optimize the Tweet Structure – Incorporate relevant keywords, hashtags, and mentions (@) in your tweets. These elements make your tweets more searchable both within Twitter and on Google. However, avoid overuse of keywords and hashtags, as this could look like spamming.
Use URL Shorteners – If you’re posting a link, use URL shorteners like Bit.ly to make your tweets more readable and to track click-through rates.
Post Consistently – Regular tweeting is essential for increasing your Twitter SEO. Consistency keeps your audience engaged and attracts new followers.
Create content that encourages likes, retweets, and replies. High engagement rates make your tweets more likely to be featured in your followers’ timelines and may even get them listed in Twitter’s “What’s Happening” section.
Leverage Visual Content – Images, GIFs, and videos typically receive more engagement than text-only tweets. More engagement translates into better visibility, both on Twitter and on external search engines.
Cross-Promote – Include your Twitter handle on your other social media platforms, email signature, and website to generate more profile visits, thereby improving its SEO value.
SEO on ask.com
Optimizing for Ask.com SEO may not be a top priority for many digital marketers, given the search engine’s relatively low market share compared to giants like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. However, understanding SEO practices for various search engines, including smaller ones like Ask.com, can provide a well-rounded approach to your overall SEO strategy. Don’t bother with ask.com if you are not in the US as Ask.com sees most of its traffic from users located in the United States (53% of its traffic, to be exact.). If you decide to deal with Ask.com that’s what you need to do:
Understand the Algorithm – Ask.com, like other search engines, uses an algorithm to determine the relevancy of web pages for a given search query. However, Ask.com has historically been more question-oriented, so ensuring your content answers specific questions relevant to your industry may be beneficial.
Use Keywords effectively – As with other search engines, effective use of keywords is crucial. Incorporate targeted keywords in your title tags, meta descriptions, headers, and body content. Since Ask.com is tailored to answer questions, consider focusing on long-tail keywords in a question format.
Invest in High-quality, unique, and informative content – Content that directly answers questions, offers value, and satisfies user intent could be more favorably ranked on Ask.com.
On-Page SEO – Ensure your on-page elements like title tags, meta descriptions, image alt text, and URL structure are optimized. Proper HTML markup is also important for helping Ask.com understand the structure and content of your page.
Create Backlinks – The quality and number of backlinks to your site also influence your site’s ranking on Ask.com. Aim for high-quality, relevant backlinks to boost your website’s authority.
Create a supreme User Experience – A clean website layout, easy navigation, and quick load times can contribute to a better user experience, a factor that can affect your website’s ranking across all search engines, including Ask.com.
Optimize for mobile – With the increasing number of searches conducted on mobile devices, ensure your website is mobile-friendly. This is a ranking factor on most search engines today.
Local SEO – If you’re a local business, local SEO strategies like claiming and verifying online business listings, collecting reviews, and local keyword optimization can also help you rank better on Ask.com.
Social Signals – Though the impact of social media activity on SEO is a subject of debate, maintaining an active social media presence can help in terms of overall online visibility.
Picking up by AI?
That’s the one-million-dollar question. As people start searching on AI tools such as perplexity, chatgpt, bard, etc. Can I do something to be picked up by them?
Well, the short answer is “No”.
The long answer is to do all of the above and then AI will be trained to use your content as references and you will appear in their answers.
The longer answer is to deal in particular with the following activities:
- Building your Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T): Create high-quality content that establishes your site as an authority on topics you specialize in. This makes it more likely that your site will be cited in any context, AI-generated or otherwise.
- SEO Optimization: Invest in SEO best practices to make sure your site ranks well on search engine results pages (SERPs) for relevant queries. This could include keyword optimization, high-quality backlinks, fast page loading times, and an easy-to-navigate website layout.
- Content Relevance: Make sure the content on your website is highly relevant to the questions people are asking. This would make it a suitable reference when someone is looking for specific information.
- Structured Data: Use schema markup to make it easy for search engines to understand the content of your site. This can help with your site being featured in rich snippets or being easily cataloged and referred to for relevant topics.
- User Engagement: Encourage user interaction on your site. Comments, reviews, and social shares can provide social proof, making your site appear more reputable and reliable.
- Community Engagement: Engage with the community through social media, forums, or blogs. Being active in related communities online can make your site a go-to resource for certain topics, making it more likely to be mentioned in various contexts.
- Continuous Updates: Search engines prefer up-to-date, fresh content. Make sure to regularly update your site and keep the information current to remain a reliable resource.
- Legal and Ethical Guidelines: Ensure that you’re adhering to all legal and ethical guidelines in your field, especially if you’re providing medical, financial, or legal information. This will build trust among users and possibly make your site a referenced source.
Still missing the truth about SEO? You may not make it. So, stop keeping all your eggs in one basket
Start working on all the rest and you will see your discoverability skyrocketing
Enjoy the journey!
Theodore has a 20-year experience in running successful and profitable software products. During his free time, he coaches and consults startups. His career includes managerial posts for companies both in Greece and abroad and he has significant skills on intrapreneurship and entrepreneurship.