The 3 SEO Tips Every Enterprise Business Should Know
While Google has gotten better and better at preventing miscellaneous or manipulative sites from rising to the top of the SERP, there’s still a good amount of work involved in taking your site to the top. These days, there are no shortcuts in SEO. Keyword-stuffing or spammy links won’t help you anymore; in fact, they might be your downfall.
For a site to ace SEO, it needs to be technically sound, have great content, and attract strong backlinks.
This is a double-edged sword for enterprise businesses. While your enterprise business likely has the resources to implement SEO strategies that will easily overtake their smaller competitors, the scale of large sites opens you up to large technical problems that can torpedo organic search efforts.
Read on to learn how you can avoid enterprise-scale SEO pitfalls and dominate the SERP.
1) Leverage long-tails
As an enterprise business, your focus is likely on a few broad, high-traffic terms.
Maybe you’re Nike and your primary goal is to rank for “running shoes.” As a large, well-known brand, you do have a much better chance to rank for these highly competitive terms than many small businesses. However, by focusing your strategy exclusively on high-search-volume terms, you’re missing out on the chance to use your site’s size to your advantage.
Taking the time to write unique meta data and content for your fringe pages can pay big dividends in terms of conversions. While it’s great to rank for “running shoes,” it’s arguably better to rank for “black mesh running shoes.”
This long-tailed search signifies a greater buyer intent. If a customer clicks your link at the top of the SERP page and finds exactly what they’re looking for, they are much more likely to buy your product than a person in the early stages of their purchase journey.
Take advantage of the full breadth of your products. Don’t just have a sweaters page. Have a red sweaters page, and a knit sweaters page, and cashmere sweaters page. Don’t just have a coding classes page. Have a 1-year coding program page, a 4-year coding degree page, and a 2-week coding workshop page.
These terms may bring in less traffic than their broader cousins, but they’re less competitive and have much higher buyer intent.
2) Beware of the technical problems that come with a large site
The large scope of an enterprise site will be helpful when you’re trying to rank for long-tailed terms, but it comes with a price.
There are many technical issues that arise from a large site, but duplication is generally the easiest to identify. It’s also one of the most damaging.
Generally, large sites use a template or facets to generate the huge amount of content on their site. Unfortunately, this invites duplication.
From an SEO perspective, duplicate pages are a huge problem. When a search engine crawls a website and discovers two pages with the exact same content from the same domain, it’s unsure what page should rank first.
This leads to situations where a procedurally generated duplicate page is either outranking the “natural” page you would want to rank or traffic gets split between them – confusing your reporting and potentially causing dispersed backlinks.
For a more detailed guide on how to identify and combat duplication, check out our post on duplicate content.
3) Plan ahead
This advice sounds obvious, but it’s especially important when you’re dealing with larger companies and larger websites.
Search engine optimization takes time. One of the most frustrating aspects of the discipline is that changes you make don’t always show immediate results.
It takes time for pages to be indexed and credited properly. It takes time for content to be weighted appropriately. It takes time for Google to deindex defunct pages.
This is an SEO issue for any business, but becomes especially pronounced when the scale of the problems is larger and the company (likely) has multiple people who need to give approval before a project can begin.
If you’re an enterprise client, aim to have one point of contact that communicates with your digital marketing agency. That person can pull the trigger on SEO projects and pass along information to the rest of your team. Nothing kills momentum like a department that’s slow to communicate or issue approval.
So, that’s all there is to optimizing an enterprise website?
Of course not. SEO contains so many elements and an enterprise site just multiplies them.
While every website is different and has a different set of liabilities and opportunities, the above tips are universally applicable.
If you’re interested in learning more specifically about what opportunities your enterprise website has, request a free audit from PSM.
Benn Myers is a Northwestern University alum who came to Chicago from Boulder, Colorado. His lifelong affinity for Nerds Ropes leaves him wishing he could be their spokesperson, but in the meantime he’ll ponder whether Voltaire’s real life wit would live up to the hype.