If you’ve been researching this space at all, you may already have come across hybrid tactics for spanning Pay Per Click (PPC) and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) campaigns. As Jacqueline Dooley explains in her article on Keyword Strategies for Hybrid SEO/PPC Search Campaigns, uniting these two tactics is a smart business move.
Actually, any SEO campaign should extend beyond the bounds of website structure to improve performance and extend brand reach across:
- PPC advertising
- Social media
- Content marketing
- Video & audio casting
But it is necessary begin somewhere. So today, I’ll briefly explore the development of a hybrid SEO strategy.
When to use a hybrid strategy
As we’ve already seen in networked and silo strategies, there’s an ideal application for hybrid SEO too. Not to say that any SEO strategy is misplaced. Of course, it’s possible to apply any tactic to any website. Hybrid strategies, however, work well where an overarching service category exists AND clearly defined core business operations.
A training company I recently worked with operates within the education sector. In a broad sense, they need to promote the quality of learning, certification levels etc. There was also a need to categorise different service offerings throughout the SEO and web content for:
- industry entry level
- skill consolidation
- professional development
How hybrid strategies work
Essentially, hybrid strategies use elements of both network and silo keyword application. What’s essential in this method is to hone keyword selection. That’s because a hybrid strategy will rely on application of a key selling message right through the keyword allocation and SEO copywriting.
So to begin with, a suite of network keywords is required. From that network, it will be necessary to select just a few keywords and phrases for site-wide application. The balance of network keywords is applied as usual across primary navigation pages.
Additionally, silo keywords will be called on. Silo application works in a similar way to a silo website strategy. However, it will be necessary to leave at least one secondary keyword position open across the site. Once keyword allocations are made, one phrase from the network shortlist is applied to each silo page.
In the case of our training company, all the primary pages (Home, About, Courses etc) target general education terms. Navigating to short courses or professional development sees visitors enter very specific keyword silos. But every silo subtly extends to those overarching network targets.
The hybrid strategy advantage
A hybrid strategy results in strong network relevance over primary navigation pages and casts an SEO net across the whole site. This tactic also offers the flexibility to add business offerings from time to time without disturbing the SEO balance.
From a copywriting perspective, hybrid strategies tend to be more content specific. This better connects the writing with logical page subject matter. Weaving keyword targets into web content also occurs more naturally.
This SEO copywriting style results in copy that’s more engaging and interesting to readers. In turn, good web content gives the site a higher visitor conversion rate. Which, after all, is what websites and SEO are all about.
3 take away tips
- Hybrid SEO blends keyword networking and silo tactics.
- A hybrid strategy can encompass website and PPC objectives.
- Add core business offerings without altering the SEO balance.