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An SEO Analysis of Obama vs. Romney
It’s election day in America. Millions of Americans will cast their vote today for either President Barack Obama or former Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney. The election is sure to be a nail-biter, and we may have to wait until the early morning hours to see who’s victorious. During the final days of the campaign, thousands of volunteers from both sides went door-to-door in an effort to get out the vote. Door-to-door campaigning is a form of outbound marketing, and while it may be effective to an extent, inbound marketing strategies are gaining unprecedented momentum in today’s world. Unlike outbound marketing, which relies on making a push towards prospective consumers (or voters in this case), inbound marketing is centered on earning people’s interest and pulling them in.
The rise of inbound marketing strategies is largely because people are more in control today of what information they receive and the mediums they receive it through. Some of the benefits and characteristics of inbound marketing:
- Communication is more interactive and engaging.
- Customers come to you via search engines, social media, etc.
- Marketers aim to provide value, educate, or entertain.
Designing a high-quality website that features useful, engaging content marketing efforts is at the heart of any successful inbound marketing strategy. Here at Blue Corona, we’re well-versed in completing thorough SEO analysis reports that can then be used to prepare a structure or framework for improving a website’s organic rankings on search engines. In the spirit of Election Day 2012, it’s our patriotic duty to complete a brief SEO analysis and on-page examination of both Obama’s and Romney’s campaign websites. This will give you a sense of the general process we use to strengthen the visibility and conversion rates of websites, whether it is car dealerships, HVACs, plumbing companies, gyms, e-commerce, or doctors’ websites.
SEO Analysis of Title Tags
Title tags continue to be one of the most important factors in achieving high search engine rankings. A title tag is an HTML element that effectively describes the topic and theme of an online document. Title tags appear in two important places: the search results page and the top bar of web browsers. Optimized title tags for SEO include keywords—typically ordered by priority or importance. If your brand name is well-known and well-established, it should be included within the title tag. Even the best known brands benefit from the addition of a few descriptive or targeted phrases because they strengthen the brand and boost search engine traffic. Ideally, the pipe symbol—two vertical lines that appear as a single line when typed—should separate keywords within a title tag to make it easier for users to distinguish between terms.
As a top SEO company, our content marketing specialists have a great deal of experience creating optimized title tags that have helped companies of all sizes improve search engine rankings—just something to keep in mind! Now, for the fun part. Let’s take a look at the title tags incorporated in both candidates’ homepages.
Obama: Barack Obama
Romney: Mitt Romney for President | Mitt Romney for President of the United States of America in 2012
Of course, both Obama and Romney are globally recognized names and even brands at this point, so it makes sense both title tags would include the candidate’s name. The Romney online political marketing team has chosen to incorporate more descriptive terms within the title tag that are separated by the pipe. It can be argued that Romney needs a more descriptive title tag since he is not as well known as Obama—both nationally and globally.
An important component of our SEO analysis is analyzing your website’s existing title tags and creating optimized title tags for new content. Since title tags are highly important search engine ranking signals, businesses should really focus on them or contact us to learn how we can help.
SEO Analysis of On-Page Content
An examination of on-page content is an important component of any SEO analysis. Here at Blue Corona, we love blogs! Blogs are known for their SEO value and inbound marketing potential because they have content, which is what the search engines use to locate and index results.
We’re happy to see that both campaign websites feature a blog. Simply including a blog on a website, however, is not enough. Updating a blog on a regular basis is enormously important for search engine ranking purposes. Search engines constantly crawl for new content online, as they want to create a positive search experience for users. Who wants outdated, irrelevant content appearing at the top of search engine rankings? We live in a fast-paced world where new stories emerge at breakneck speed. We’re very pleased to see that both Obama’s and Romney’s websites feature a freshly updated blog section.
Who has the time to post original, engaging content on a regular basis? It requires a thorough amount of research—something that’s very time consuming. Most of our clients are busy running gyms or repairing faulty HVAC units. This is precisely why outsourcing SEO to the experts is a wise investment that can return high yields.
In addition to blogs, we understand the importance of city/state landing pages for geo-targeted SEO. If someone searches on Google for “Volunteer Obama Cleveland” or “Volunteer Romney Pittsburgh,” for example, he or she will be directed to a relevant, geo-targeted webpage within the respective candidate’s website. Does your business target five major cities? The content marketing experts at Blue Corona can create a geo-targeted SEO plan for you.
SEO Analysis of Keyword Rankings
SEO is one of the most important and profitable tactics in any effective inbound marketing strategy. Proper keyword research is vital to SEO. For Obama’s and Romney’s respective websites, it’s a safe bet to say that many of the visitors entered both websites directly by entering the URL in their web browser. It’s also reasonable to say many visitors searched the candidates’ name on a search engine such as Google, Yahoo, or Bing. I’m willing to bet a far fewer number of visitors searched for non-branded terms—search terms that do not include “Obama” or “Romney” in it. Let’s take a look at some of these terms (relevant to the election and politics) and where both respective websites rank for it on Google (as of Nov. 2):
- Economy: Obama’s website comes in at position 15; Romney’s website is not ranked in the top 50 search positions.
- Taxes: Obama’s website is ranked 25; Romney’s website is ranked 43.
- Healthcare: Obama’s website is ranked 11; Romney’s website is ranked 5.
- Job Creation: Obama’s website is ranked 34; Romney’s website is not ranked in the top 50.
- National Defense: Obama’s website is not ranked in the top 50; Romney’s website is ranked 5.
Non-branded search terms are extremely important for companies and brands that are not yet well known. Websites for such companies rely on traffic from visitors (often in a geo-targeted area) who are searching for specific services. A lesser known roofing company in MD, for example, may want to target the keywords “Baltimore roofing company” or “Baltimore roofing installation” through landing pages, blog posts, and FAQs. Our SEO analysis will determine which keywords you should be targeting, and we’ll take a look at the keywords your competitors are using.
Social Media and Inbound Marketing Strategies
Companies can tap into social media to boost brand recognition to new heights and generate leads. There are over one billion Facebook users; 400 million registered Google Plus users; and 140 million Twitter users. YouTube alone gets over four billion views per day. Both Obama’s and Romney’s online political marketing teams have taken advantage of social media integration.
The Obama campaign website has added the following social media integration bar above blog posts:
The Romney campaign website uses the following social media integration bar above posts:
Both campaign websites allow visitors to tap into the following social networking tools:
- Google Plus
The content marketing specialists at Blue Corona can integrate social media into your website to provide a major boost to your brand! Just contact us to learn how we can help you tap into social media for marketing and promotional purposes.
Great on-page content optimized around targeted keywords (determined by our SEO analysis) and marketing through social media will certainly increase traffic to your website. Now, it’s time for you to think about conversion rate optimization. Throughout the election cycle, the Obama and Romney election teams wanted web visitors to donate money. Let’s take a look at the design and placement of their conversion buttons (taken from a few days ago):
The Obama website’s primary call-to-action button is green and placed closer to the middle of the homepage.
The Romney website’s primary call-to-action button is red and placed at the top right corner of the homepage.
It’s important to note that both websites feature multiple call-to-action buttons, but these are the most prominent and visually magnetic. Here at Blue Corona, we know that call-to-action buttons must be tweaked and tested for conversion rate optimization. The color, size, location, and text of call-to-action buttons can all significantly impact conversion rates. Most of the types of clients we work with—HVACs, plumbing companies, fitness centers, car dealerships, Realtors, and home remodeling services—have “contact us” buttons on their websites. Sound familiar? Blue Corona can help you optimize your call-to-action button.
Do you realize what we just did here? We completed a brief, yet pretty thorough, SEO analysis of both Obama’s and Romney’s respective websites. We can do the same for your website and create a game plan to improve your site’s online visibility and conversion rates.
Contact us so we can complete a full SEO analysis of your website and help prepare a customized inbound marketing strategy for you.
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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