Make you SEO invisible

The other half of Ranking

I began today as always checking my benchmark search results to see if there is anything moving today. I discussed this previously as something every lifetime SEO will do for fun and information. This is the process as basic as morning coffee; it is checking the search results for 5-10 keywords everyday to learn patterns that may apply to any algorithm changes.
So I came across another SEO company seeming to have moved a post or two. There was nothing of interest in this slight move but It started my “morning click around”. I ended up on that Charlotte SEO company’s blog and then to one of their clients websites. The SEO Company posted in their blog for a client with a short article deep linking to all of their clients internal topical pages. I don’t generally use my blog to link build for a client. Using my own blog in this way provides little help since my writing and their websites topic differ so much. Also, doing this for every client will mean I am linking to dozens of different topic websites and in the end providing little to no benefit to the clients website.
It all comes down to the limited benefit versus the spammy look of having a blog post about real estate with 15 links in it on my blog. I feel it makes us both look bad and doesn’t do much for either of us.

So I get to the website which is a real estate website for waterfront homes.

The site was built, designed and SEO’d by the SEO Company. You can often spot these sites designed by someone who “does SEO” as they are clearly not the work of a professional designer. If you are building a website and also performing on page SEO the key aspect is to make the latter invisible.
With skill in CSS there is no aspect of on page SEO that cannot be done in a transparent way. A lot of people can “do SEO” to some degree, and some will even put the work expert in their title when doing so, but then why is it so obvious?

Sample A: Is a screenshot of the site I found today, a background image over 600px high with a rounded rectangle box made in Photoshop with text floated over the top of it inside of a table. The text is both stuffed and too big for the space. This appears ‘SITEWIDE’ on a high end real estate brokers online presence.

Sample B: Is from the last site I built, for an insurance agent modified for the sample. CSS div, floated left, top of every page with a clear call to action. I also get 3 main keywords into the small paragraph but in a way that sounds natural friendly and tempting to click. I also get SPAN tags around my keyword to emphasize them with slight color changes. My DIVS can stretch and change and are flexible while always looking perfectly formatted.

Both sample accomplish the same thing, but only one will make a buyer feel he is dealing with a professional who displays a professional image.

If you can’t implement all of the on page aspects, titles, image descriptions and in line linking in such a way that does not detract from the cosmetic then you have still more to learn.
When I see great CSS masters like Stu Nichols create animation, zoom effects and amazing tool tips with pure CSS I am left thinking anyone calling themselves an expert should be able to to create professional visuals on a page while still getting the code they require for SEO practices.
Take a look at the images here. Image ‘A’ is a screen shot of the site I found today. This is in the header of every page of a high end real estate website that was built by a local SEO company. The typed text on top of a background image is generally good practice. But, do you want text that doesn’t fit and is poorly formatted on top center of EVERY PAGE a client sees? You are selling $1M+ homes, do you feel this instills confidence in your shoppers on your website?

Part of “making a sale” is ranking and the other part is providing a page, once found, that will live up to what the person searching requires to continue down the funnel.
While this keyword stuffed paragraph in the top of the code might help you rank it will do more harm than good in the long run.
Do you want your girlfriend coming over with you just woke up and look a mess? Do you want your family to visit when your house is a mess?
Do you want potential clients and inevitable word of mouth marketers coming to your site because it is top ranked and then deciding that your company is unprofessional due to a website that suggests it?

I agree it is all about ranking, but SEO is the key to the door only and it should be done with a skilled hand that makes it transparent on an already attractive website. If you cannot implement what you want to accomplish with keywords and code inside of a web design that sells your image then you are missing half of the point of selling online.

On an episode of the cartoon Futurama. Bender meets who is presumed to be “God”.

And when he asks “God” why he doesn’t do more actively in people lives to help, god tells him:

“When you do thing right, people won’t know you have done anything at all.”

And this line is the difference between “a SEO” and the most skilled SEO’s and inbound marketers. They both do similar things, some accomplish the same task without being so obvious to the point of having an overall negative effect on your sales funnel.

About author

Todd Kron

of Sellaholics is a veteran of Analytics, PPC, Display, video, UX, conversion optimization, affiliate programs, web design and web programming since 2002. My background includes affiliate sales to 6 figures, director of a web design agency, and currently the digital manager for a leading energy company located in Huntersville, NC. From search to sale 1000 different ways is my background. Sellaholics is a Google Partner Agency.