On-Page SEO (State Farm Websites)
Hi there! I’m Jason Crabtree, Director of Search Engine Optimization, for Agent Branding System. In this video, we’re going to talk about on-page website optimization for a State Farm website. You know, every State Farm agent has given their own microsite or their own individual website, which is part of the greater State Farm massive website, and we’re going to talk about how to specifically optimized an agent’s individual site to show up for local search terms. The goal of this is to help you, the agent, identify some of the key areas that you can easily optimize and get the most out of the microsite that State Farm provides you. I guess the first thing we want to ask ourselves “is search engine optimization even necessary?” My answer would be yes. The reason is that on Google alone there are over a hundred billion searches every single month. That means consumers are using the search engines to find goods and services in their local communities. Yahoo and Bing do the same thing. Their job as a search engine is to bring me back exactly what I’m looking for on the first try. The way that they do it is finding websites that are relevant to certain terms and phrases that consumers type into a search engine, and identifying websites that correlate to those terms and searches. They’re called keywords. There are many ways to promote your website online search engine optimization. It just so happens to be one of the first things you should do, and it’s the most obvious and easy thing to do. By looking at the website, you can usually tell what topic the website’s going to be relevant to. Optimizing the site helps you become more relevant in the eyes of the search engines. Therefore, you’re more likely to be served up in a search result when somebody searches for those phrases. Let’s clarify what on-page optimization Means. On-page sometimes referred to as “on-site SEO,” simply means that everything on a page of your website that the search engines can crawl and index. It is on the site or on the pages of the website. There are three core areas of a State Farm website that we can optimize. We don’t have a ton of control over this format, but there are three main things that we can focus on to get the most mileage out of your State Farm website. Those three things are content, keywords, and structure. Content, keywords, and structure. The main things that we can impact on our State Farm websites and the easiest part to see and optimize is the content (i.e., the text and the images.) Also, on other sites you might have videos or you might have downloadable PDFs or things like that, but on a State Farm agent website, we can impact the text and we can impact the image that you put on the site. I’ll explain how the first step in optimization is to identify your keywords. Keywords are phrases. They are terms that consumers type into the search box, or if they’re using their smartphone or semantic search, they may just say the words. An example of those might be “auto insurance San Diego.” That might be something that I would search as a consumer if I were looking for that type of business in my area. The easiest part to see and optimize on your website is the content. The content is any text that can be found on the pages of your website. On a State Farm website, you have multiple tabs, and all of those tabs have content. You’re also uploading an image of yourself, and I’ll talk about that in a minute. That’s also content, but the main thing we’re going to focus on is the text. The first step in optimizing your content is identifying your keywords. Keywords (you may have heard that term before, and some of you may know what it means some of you may not.) Let me explain quickly: keywords are the phrases and terms used by consumers typed into a search engine to find goods and services in their local area. So as a State Farm agent, you’re going to want to identify keywords that are relevant to your business. First step: List out your goods and services (e.g., auto insurance, life insurance, health insurance, renter’s insurance, and more.) You may also want to include some banking and financial services like mutual funds and annuities. Those would be your goods and services that you would list on your website. Now, in order to make that a proper keyword, you want to add geography. So now we take the targeted services and goods and services combine that with your local geography. So now you’ve got a phrase like “San Diego auto insurance,” “Bay Area mutual funds,” things like that that you would want to target your ideal client. On a search engine, what are they searching to find you? Where are they searching for it? That is your keyword list. Once you have your keyword list, you’re going to want to sprinkle these keywords throughout the website and other strategic key places. So now you’re working on your keyword structure. For example, where to place these keywords so that the search engines can crawl the website and index the site as relevant to those phrases. We’ve found that the mission tab on a State Farm website provides an agent an opportunity to create a paragraph where they can sprinkle in all of these keywords. It looks very natural. It looks very organic. It reads well, and the search engines are able to target your website for those particular keywords. You also, as an agent, provide a photo to State Farm for them to upload your agent picture onto your website. If you think about what most photos are titled when you take a picture with your digital camera or to take a picture with your phone, it usually comes out saved automatically as something like 0001.jpg or something along those lines. What you want to do before you submit that picture to the State Farm corporate to to upload to your website, you want to rename that photo name it with keyword instead of 0001.jpg which nobody ever searches on a search engine. However, you could rename that photo “San Diego auto insurance.” That’s another way to get those keywords in front of a search engine. When they crawl and index that page, they can’t tell what the picture is, but if you give them a label that has a keyword in it, they’re more likely to rank you for that keyword. Having this optimized content strategically sprinkled throughout your website gives the search engines a better way to index and rank your site for those phrases. Remember, if you don’t mention the words on your website, it’s very unlikely that you’re ever going to show up in a search result for that phrase. There you have it! The three main areas of focus for optimizing a State Farm website: Content, keywords, and structure. Place them all together in the right fashion, and you’re on your way to ranking well. If you found this information useful and informative please share it with your colleagues. Share it on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, and other any place that they might search for a video that would help them understand this information. I’m Jason Crabtree, thanks again for your time.