Microsites, or, How to win at SEO

Posted: September 9, 2010 in Digital Marketing, Microsites, Search Engine Optimisation, SEO, Web Design
Tags: , ,

OK, so stating Microsites are a way to ‘win’ at SEO is a little over the top, but once you read on, you’ll realise the potential of Microsites.

As most people know, ranking a website for a particular key phrase/s that isn’t relevant to your URL is sometimes rather difficult.  It can certainly be done over time, if you remain patient, and continue to follow some basic SEO fundamentals.  But, there is a much better, simpler, and quicker way to drive traffic from the key terms that are competitive in your market.

Microsites

To most SEOs, the term Microsites will not be new.  Here is an example of a microsite, and it’s usage within the highly competitive Electricity Suppliers market.  Most of the players in the electrical suppliers market spend thousands on both SEO and PPC to drive traffic and then sales through their websites.

As an example, we are going to look further into the company called GoSwitch.  GoSwitch is an online portal for people to research a range of utilities providers. In their own words:

GoSwitch.com.au is Australia’s leading price comparison service for electricity and gas.

We brought together some of the leading members of the Internet community to bring transparency to the electricity and gas markets to allow consumers to find a cheaper electricity and gas supplier and switch to it for free

GoSwitch made the decision to invest in a marketing strategy that included web design, SEO, and PPC.  There are numerous key phrases related to electricity suppliers that would be quite valuable, should you obtain a page one ranking in the search engines.  One of those words is ‘connect electricity’.  As you can imagine, connecting electricity is something that occurs regularly around the world on a daily basis, hence the key phrases associated with electricity connections are very competitive in both SEO and PPC.

Now, GoSwitch can certainly choose, or continue, to optimise their current site for ‘connect electricity’, but it’s very competitive, and will take some time to achieve good traffic numbers from a high search engine ranking.

The PPC route is an option, but the term “Connect Electricity” costs around $2.00 per click, so could quickly become very expensive.

So, the most effective and value for money way to capture the 1,500 or so searches each month, was to create a microsite to get to the top of the organic searches.

So, the first step was to secure a domain name, and this was fortunately achieved using the exact term – www.connectelectricity.com.au.  Next step, was to cover of the basics of an SEO content strategy – title tags, meta description, at least 300 words of content on each page containing the term ‘connect electricity’ a few times, and also contained in the H1 tags, bolded in some places in the content, and also H2 tags if they exist.

It’s also important that you include internal links between sections of content, and also content with links back to your main or parent site, as this will give that a boost up the page rankings as well.  You’re then ready to start building back links for the microsite.

This method can be a fast and relatively cheap way of getting ranked quickly on the search engines for quite competitive terms.  If you put in the effort to search for quality terms with available domain names, it will certainly be worth the effort.

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