In the Search world, creating relevant content about your company and products/services is at the core of a strong ongoing strategy. Investor Relations (IR) reporting is a guaranteed stream of content being generated at a publicly traded company. Because creating content can be the bane of an SEO program, investor relations can be a gold mine for easy SEO opportunity.
With the demands of Investor Relations reporting, having a strong online platform to manage investor relations needs takes on a great deal of importance. To be time- and cost-effective, many Marketing Communications teams turn to externally hosted platforms for these services.
Although building an investor relations site as part of your corporate website allows for ultimate flexibility, costs and project support often lead organizations to use externally hosted solutions that are specifically designed for the investor audience. Even with external sites, there are ways to capture the SEO value that will benefit your company’s main website SEO efforts.
1. Be the Master of Your Own Domain
Even with a hosted solution, most vendors allow you to set up a site as a subdomain – such as investor.company.com. By using this setup within your own domain, the search engines will allow your primary domain to get SEO credit for the subdomain content.
Most vendors will default to a setup of company.vendor.com as the domain. That means your company.com; domain isn’t getting any SEO love. It might be a few more dollars for the subdomain, but it is worth it in the long run.
2. Keep Your Own Count
Most companies will tout the great reports they can provide to you. However, it is difficult to see the relationship between the traffic on your investor site and your primary domain without having them both in the same analytics tool.
By using your current web analytics tool (such as Webtrends or Google Analytics), this setup provides deeper insight into inbound search traffic as opposed to other “count” reports. Using the same tool ensures you are measuring sessions, users and other metrics in the same way.
For example, if a user finds the investor.company.com site through a search engine then navigates to your primary domain, this user will be tracked as a search-generated session. If analytic systems are not connected, it will look like the user is a referral from the investor site instead of having been generated from a search engine.
When applying analytics to a subdomain, that account can be set up as a separate account. However, instead of creating two analytics accounts (one for the primary domain and one for investors), you will likely benefit by setting up one that tracks both the primary domain and the investor domain.
By using this configuration, all of the interaction between the two sites (i.e, subdomain and the main domain) will be captured. In addition, any search-generated users will still be listed as search and not referring traffic, and credit will be attributed to the proper inbound channel.
3. Be in Control of Meta Data
If you have taken the time to optimize your website, make sure the investor relations site offers the tools that allow you to update the SEO elements, including title tag, meta description and image alt tags. Because these elements are key to SEO indexing, a site should allow you to control and update the meta information and insert alt tag content to enhance your search listings and results.
4. Use Links in Press Releases to Deep Pages
One important SEO element Google counts is website links. Getting external links has a high impact, but internal links are important as well. Content in press releases often refers to specific markets, departments or products. Use these references as opportunities to direct users to deeper content in your website.
In addition, press releases, or portions of them, will get copied and redistributed. By including links to specific pages, search engines will index these links. In addition, those links will also drive referral user traffic, so it is like a 2-for-1 tactic.
5. Don’t Be a Lazy Meta Data Creator
Because the IR team is usually not responsible for managing the full website, companies often forget to create SEO meta information for the investor site. With all the needed functionality, make sure to create title tags and meta descriptions for your content pages, and alt tags for any images or charts you add.
These updates to meta information will allow for better exposure in the search engine results. And, improved SEO performance will benefit the company website.