There’s no disputing the fact that the buying process has changed dramatically since the days of the Yellow Pages. Now that the Internet has leveled the playing field and shifted business directories from local to global, there’s a lot more competition. When a person performs a Google search, they don’t just see results from companies in their area – local businesses are up against everyone else in their industry across the country.

More than two-thirds of B2B buyers now purchase goods online, up from 57% last year, according to the State of B2B Procurement Study: Uncovering the Shifting Landscape in B2B Commerce study by Acquity Group. What’s more, 44% of respondents have researched company products on a smartphone or tablet in the past year.

With prospects researching and spending more online, that means companies should incorporate search engine optimization (SEO) tactics into their overall marketing strategy to generate leads, boost website traffic, and improve conversion.

According to Oracle’s most recent Marketing Budgets Report, 77% of businesses plan to spend more on digital marketing, with SEO representing the third-largest channel of investment.   

Some of the most recent SEO tactics include mobile search optimization, social media integration, frequent website updating, and more. While these new tactics are beneficial in boosting natural search engine rankings, don’t make the mistake of ditching the tried-and-true SEO tactics that are still successful today.

Below we explore some of the most successful SEO strategies that may have fallen by the wayside.

1. Quality Content Creation

Creating high-quality content remains one of the most effective SEO tactics to date. In fact, 54% of survey respondents stated that quality content is the most effective SEO tactic they use to achieve SEO success, according to research from Conductor. That’s because search engines such as Google and Bing reward companies that develop content that’s informative, relevant, and tied directly to consumers’ needs. After all, it’s a search engine’s job to provide users with the very best results.

2. Keyword Research

Keyword research comes in as the second most effective SEO strategy, with 46% of respondents supporting it. Keyword research—or identifying and optimizing for keywords that people are searching for in search engines—should be a critical element of your marketing strategy. Optimizing your content with keywords that your target market is searching for will ensure that your business’s website is the one that your desired audience comes across first, and not your competitors.

3. Link Building

Link building—or the process of acquiring backlinks primarily through content promotion and outreach—also ranks as one of the top SEO strategies. According to supporting research from Skyrocket SEO and Moz, 40% of respondents claimed that more than half (51%-75%) of their overall SEO budget is allocated to building links. When you acquire a lot of backlinks from authoritative sites, search engines take it as a sign that your content is relevant and informative, and will reward you by pushing you toward the top of their rankings.

Although these SEO tactics may have gotten muddled while you focused on other initiatives, they can still be effective. Revisit and/or revamp these SEO strategies to help your business climb to the top of search engine rankings and drive more relevant, profitable traffic to your site.

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