As someone who teaches search engine optimization, I highly recommend press releases to my students as an SEO tactic. Press releases do more than one simple thing, however, and many of the press release services do not fully understand the search engine optimization value of press releases.
So what are the four true value points of press releases for Seo? Here we go –
Direct Traffic from Press Releases
Press Releases and SEO Real people read press releases! Real people click on press releases! And real people engage from your press releases! Now, let’s be honest, many of our press releases are not the highest quality content, and the places through which they are placed via the syndication services are not the highest quality places either. However, if you write a strong title and select strong keywords you can get your press releases into quality websites such as the San Francisco Chronicle or other major newspapers. So I would say this direct traffic benefit from press releases is about 2% of the value.
Editor Attention from Press Releases
Now, many people have the mistaken idea that real-world editors are pulling content from syndication services on a daily basis. Sadly, nothing could be further from the truth. I have worked as a journalist, and I have been sent many, many press releases. Very few went anywhere if they were either not directly of interest to our high technology coverage and or they were followed up with a phone call or personal email. Nonetheless, press releases do have some value for getting the attention of the real-world editors. I consider this the winning the lottery aspect of a search engine optimization friendly press release. You probably will not win, but if you do you will win big and get additional coverage of your new product for the new item through the attention of real-world editors. So I would say this is less than 1% of the value.
Link Benefit from Press Releases
If you create a press release that is keyword heavy, and you correctly placed the keywords into the title tag of the press release, and sculpt a keyword-heavy link, and write keyword-heavy content, and pay one of the better syndication services, you can get many, many wonderful links from press releases! Don’t let Google or anyone else tell you that press releases do not have an SEO benefit. Even if just a small percentage of the syndicated occurrences of your press release retain a do follow the link, you are getting link juice from those press releases. Even more so because you write the content, you can optimize the content with keyword-heavy text that is also natural syntax. I think this is 80% of the benefit of press releases.
Direct Benefit of Press Releases for Search Engine Optimization
Finally, your press releases can show up directly on Google searches if you write them in the correct fashion. So a Google search on your target keywords may show one of your press releases, or one of its occurrences in syndicated fashion, in the top 10 positions. I would say this is approximately 20% of the value.
Things Don’t Add Up
Now, if you add all of the percentages you will see that press releases add up to more than 100% of value. I am not a mathematician, but I do mean to imply that there are synergies here. Showing up in one position helps the other position, in the sum is greater than the whole of its parts, or whatever those mathematicians say.
Bottom line – press releases have at least four major benefits. So go out and write to press releases, people!