What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and how does it work?

SEO is simply improving your website in the eyes of Google. Giving Google what it wants. Google wants to give its searchers the most relevant, credible and free information possible. SEO works by making your website more relevant and credible over time by providing better content and links from other websites to yours.

Greenwich SEO works with your website provider to make changes that Google has been proven to favor. We then work on building the number of websites linking to your website. Over time, Google starts to recognise your website and its value over similar websites and ranks you higher and higher in the search results.

  • What is a keyword? 

A keyword simply means a search term or search phrase that you put into Google when your are searching for something. For example, is you search for ‘dog trainer’ this is just two keywords or one key phrase.

Within the SEO world “keyword” is the common jargon, so we’ll often use the term “keyword” to refer to a search term like ‘mortgage brokers’ when in fact this is a key phrase comprised of two keywords.

Because our SEO fees are based on the number of keywords you select, prospective clients often ask us about this. For example, whether a term like ‘Greenwich attorney’ is two keywords or one. From our perspective, the term ‘Greenwich attorney’ counts as only one of the keywords you will choose as part of your SEO program. If you’re unsure, just ask us.

  • How much will it cost to get my website ranking higher on Google? 

Very good question.  We have a number of packages available, but since not all sites are created the same, the answer depends on several factors. One: the competitiveness of the keywords you want to target. Two: the rank you want to attain on Google. Three: whether you want to rank your website internationally.  We are highly confident that you will begin to see results after the first month, but significant changes and stability generally take a minimum of six months.

  • What’s stopping you from doing SEO for my competitors as well? 

First of all, there’s lots of space on Google for everyone. With an unlimited number of keywords to pick from, you can become the top dog for several keywords and still leave a massive market open for your competition.

However we don’t offer exclusivity and have many clients from the same industries all benefiting from our SEO work. Think of SEO as a form of compound interest for your website, the more time and money you invest into it the greater the results will be. The reality is getting in front of your competitors isn’t hard, it simply requires more effot. That’s why the websites ranking on the first page of Google in your industry are the ones who have committed to that effort.

  • Will the effects of SEO wear off if I don’t maintain the website? 

In short, yes. Google is changing everyday and your competition is always sniping at your heels to take over your spot. Over time, Google changes what it likes to see in websites and your competition decides to improve their website to knock you off your top spot.

To remain at the top spot, you need a firm like Greenwich SEO looking after your website who are keeping up with the latest trends on Google and are actively making your website better in the eyes of Google.

  • What if I get to the first page of Google, but my traffic doesn’t improve? 

If this happens then there are bigger problems in your business, problems that even the best optimised site on Google cannot solve. SEO cannot turn a bad business into a thriving one.

A common problem is that there isn’t a viable market for your product or service, or you website isn’t converting the visitors that come to your site into sales Before we choose you as a client we will do an analysis of your business and market and find out if SEO will really help your business. We can find out how many people are searching for your product or service each month in New Zealand and globally to discover whether SEO will pay for itself in the long run.

  • Why not use Google Adwords for traffic? There’s no upfront investment. I only pay as I go. 

Correct on both counts. Google Adwords is an excellent way of getting people to your website. This is a great short term solution if you cannot wait for Google to recognise your improving website. The only disadvantages of Google Adwords are the time needed to manage a campaign, the lack of long term value and the rising costs of AdWords.

The other downside to Google AdWords is as soon as you stop a campaign the traffic stops. With SEO you are able to build a consistent stream of targeted traffic to your website and seeing your business appear at the top of the search results is great for building trust and promoting your business.

  • What makes Greenwich SEO better for my website than any other SEO company? 

Why should you choose Greenwich SEO?  We don’t really mind if you choose another company. However, within the region, there’s only three or four SEO companies that are worth talking to.  To be frank, no one else has the resources or experience to compete with us, you would just be wasting your money.

  • How long will it take to get my website on the first page on Google? 

Your progress up the rankings depends on three things. One, the current state of your website. Two, the keywords you want to rank highly for. Three, how competitive your competition is on Google.

For example, let’s say you have a brand new website, with a new domain name and want to rank highly for the highly competitive ‘Mortgage Broker’. We typically would advise you to wait before we took the account; however, you’re looking at between nine months to a year to achieve a first page ranking.

Another example, let’s imagine you have an established PR3 website that is already on the second page for the keyword ‘Greenwich real estate’. In this situation, to achieve a first page ranking you’re looking at no more than 3-4 months to get on the first page.

In short, you’re looking at anywhere between three months to one year depending on where you are in that continuium.

The great thing is, your progress up the rankings is easy to see. Within the first 30 days you’ll start to see results and more people clicking through to your website.

  • I’m already quite high on Google. Can you get me higher and keep me there? 

Yes. Getting your website to rank higher on Google is only a matter or time. To keep it there requires continual maintenance and tuning to ensure your website is exactly what Google wants.

You see, Google is changing all the time. It wants to continually offer better search results for it’s users and weed out badly optimised websites using ‘tricky’ or deceptive tactics to get there. This means you need to stay on top of the changes that Google is making and ahead of your competitors that want to knock you off your top ranking.

The good news is, we offer a very inexpensive maintenance program that guarantees to maintain your ranking for your keywords. If you see your ranking drop outside the top 10 at the end of the month, just let us know and we will get your website back into the top 10 before restarting the maintenance fee.

The investment in maintaining and improving your website is dependant on several factors such as your keywords and the competitiveness of your market. The minimum maintenance fee is $399 per month, so it’s not worthwhile for everyone. It can range up to $1999 a month depending on how competitive your market in and how many keywords you want to maintain. The benefit of a maintenance program is that you often get higher rankings than expected at no extra cost.

  • I need customers right now. How long until I start to see real results? 

Depending on your website, the market you’re competing in and the words you want to rank highly for on Google, it can take anywhere between three and six months. You will certainly see an improvement within the first 90 days (if not the first 30). In time, you will come up against stiffer competition in the first page of results, particularly in the top five.

Getting into the top three and to #1 takes longer and there can be a wide gap in the relative scores Google keeps for your website compared to your competitors. In general, the more competitive the market and the more general the keywords you choose, the longer it will take to get to the top.

  • I want my website to be at the top of Google. Can it be done? 

Yes, it can be done. The only question is what keywords you choose and how long it will take to get to the #1 spot. No one can guarantee your website a #1 ranking, except Google itself.

Internally with our own websites, we aim for a 12 month time-frame to achieve a top ranking. This is a slower, more methodical approach to SEO rather than the intense SEO clients are usually after. There’s several reasons we take the slower approach.

One, SEO conducted over a consistent long term basis (at least 12 months) is of higher quality and a more natural way to go about search engine optimisation. This has many benefits over the long term in relation to PageRank, authority of the site, long tail traffic and stability of the website ranking.

Two, we don’t care where our website ranks on Google. We care about traffic, especially targeted traffic. A top ranking is of no value is it does not bring a significant amount of traffic. Even with a high volume of traffic, this is only valuable if incoming visitors are targeted and want to buy, rather than browse. That’s why we focus on long tail (long search phrases) traffic as this is relatively uncompetitive and often the best traffic. Not every visitor to your website is made equal. Some are worth more than others. Much more.