Wikipedia defines Search Engine Optimization as “the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results — often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results.” According to a recent survey almost 100% of survey responders cited Google as the place where they begin a search. Because of this, enhancing your company’s SEO, plays a vital role in generating new leads, gaining prospective customers and retaining current ones. Below are 3 proven methods to get the SEO results you are after:

1) Publish content frequently. Search engines love fresh, updated content. Creating a detailed editorial calendar can help you keep on track of possible publishing opportunities. Holidays, company milestones, and industry events are all great topics for creating compelling and relevant content. If you don’t have time to come up with brand new content on a regular basis, you can collate stories from within your organization or curate from social media or news monitoring services so that you are ensuring constant and consistent content. Publishing frequently on your social media networks also increases the chances of your news being shared more regularly. Using industry-standard platforms such as Hootsuite or Buffer can help you schedule your posts at peak times for your traffic base. Creating short tweets or relevant Instagram photos is a great way to get noticed and followed. A recently published article offers some great tips on content generating ideas.

2) Publish relevant content. Context is everything in today’s 24×7 news environment. If you can provide thought leadership and subject matter expert content on news topics that are most popular on an ongoing basis, you will gain trust and popularity. Ultimately, this will lead to better search engine results. Leverage online editorial calendars to give you a wider view and pre-schedule seasonal content. Search online news databases such as Google News, Cision or LexisNexis for hot daily topics. Finally, keep on top of what is happening in social media to help predict trends or be alerted to breaking news. The days of creating a static content editorial calendar each month are over. Today’s content needs to be relevant and timely which means you need to have tools in place to constantly monitor what is happening in your industry and be able to react swiftly to get your message into the mix.

3) Publish targeted content. Due to Google’s algorithm changes, irrelevant content does not help with search engine relevancy as much as it once did. Ensure that you have researched the keywords that best define your company and your content. Ideally, you should research keywords that are frequently used in your industry. Look into your competitor’s keywords as well, to ensure that you have covered all possible instances. Define your outbound audience as well. Follow journalists and bloggers in your industry on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn and share your stories with them. Develop email lists of very targeted journalists who specialize in writing news about your industry. The more focused and targeted your content is, the more likely your search engine relevancy will increase.

Content drives SEO. The more applicable, timely, and properly structured content that you are publishing to your website, the better chances of increasing links, inbound traffic, and relevancy. Integrating your content and publishing with a social media distribution strategy will also help you continue to build popularity over time, again increasing the chances of getting ranked higher in search engine results.