The world of search engine optimization (SEO) is a big and confusing place. The landscape changes fast and often. If you don't keep up, it's easy to get left behind as a new update dominates the search engines.
As a busy insurance agent, it's tough to keep up. Not to worry, though.
Despite the changing world of SEO, there are still must-haves you'll always need. Make those priority one for your insurance website.
When you have a handle on the basics, there are a few more nice-to-haves.
Google notices when a website is dormant or updated. There's an easy way to update your insurance website. Getting fresh, new content on your website can get your site ranking higher.
Blogging is a tried and true method. The key here is consistency. Even one blog post per month with good, descriptive titles will help.
Write about things your own clients have asked you about. Update them on your business if there are new hires or changes. And, if you're involved in the community, show it!
If you're trying to go after Texas auto insurance, good luck. Unless you're a big agency, it'll be tough to get noticed. Those popular keywords are expensive and competitive.
If you're just starting out with SEO, target your local demographic. Start with your city, community, or area.
People in your town are searching for insurance. It's a lot less competitive on the search results page for Frisco auto insurance.
To achieve this, include your target locale on the home page and page titles after your business name.
A couple years ago, this would have fallen in the nice-to-haves category. Not anymore.
More and more of today's consumers use search on their phones. Thus, Google is putting huge importance on mobile search results and traffic.
It can be a little scary to optimize for mobile. But, the basic rule of thumb is to keep it simple and clean.
Think about the websites you have visited on your phone. Try applying those elements to your insurance website.
A good place to start is getting rid of pop-up ads. Keep your titles and meta descriptions lean to account for less screen space. And, optimize for local search! How many times have you searched for a local business on your phone?
Backlinks are great boosters to SEO. They are links on other websites that lead to your site. If other websites are linking back to yours, Google takes notices and gives you a higher ranking.
Don't use shady tactics to get backlinks. Setting up crummy websites just to link back to yours is not advisable.
Google can tell the difference between a good link from a good website and link farming. Connect with local businesses in your area to set up links to each other's websites.
This is almost a must-have, but a lot of reviews can be out of your power. Reviews are crucial to good SEO.
Encourage clients to leave reviews after visiting your website or agency. Use promotional materials (signs, advertisements, etc.) to remind clients to post a review.
They can review your agency on Google, Yelp, or your website. Once you have a good crop of reviews, feature them on your agency website!
Online testimonials are a great look for any business, no matter the SEO advantages.
Online business listings on Yelp, Yellow Pages and Angie's List boost your SEO profile.
Duplicate listings are common, as are listings made without your involvement. Track down your agency on these websites and correct any mistakes you see. Make sure all information is current. Delete duplicate listings.
Your business name, address and phone number should match the one on your agency website. Google doesn't like getting confused or decoding which information is the right one.
Then, go about adding more to networks you're not listed on!
These SEO must-haves and nice-to-haves are a great starting point. As an independent agent, these tactics can separate you from your competition.
Remember: Your agency isn't visible to online customers if it isn't visible to Google.
About the Author
Josh Bowe joined the SEO team in 2014. He helps ITC customers improve their search engine rankings. Josh previously worked as a sports reporter, and he has a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Texas at Arlington. Born in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Josh is a big sports fan, especially the NBA and Dallas Mavericks.More Content by Josh Bowe