How Should Game Producer Companies Strategize in SEO?
While game production companies spend thousands of dollars while preparing games, in some cases they may not pay enough attention to SEO. In this article, I will try to explain the points to be considered in SEO specific to the gaming industry.
While big budgets are allocated for marketing and advertising, small investments in SEO can bring games to a much wider audience. Given that Google plays a big role in gaming, utilizing SEO strategies for gaming sites is one of the most effective ways to increase SEO visibility and authority.
With this process, which we can call Steam SEO, you can optimize many areas up to the subcategories of your game store on Steam. By creating highly readable game descriptions for your game, you can ensure that your page ranks higher in both Steam searches and search engine results. Since this area is very valuable, it will be useful to conduct professional keyword research:
Make sure to customize the meta description of your game. Even plan A/B tests if necessary:
In-game achievements will also generate search volumes on their own. These volumes may seem low, but when you consider that your users will stay in-game much longer to get this achievement, you can create pages on your site with information and even tips about these achievements:
Always translate your game into different languages if your budget allows. This way, your Steam store will be at the top of search results in the local language because you're offering a localized experience in that country. You can prioritize and plan this based on either Conversion or the population/gaming statistics of the country where that language is spoken:
You might consider similar suggestions if you publish your games on sites like the Epic Store.
You can create a knowledge base by predicting what your target audience can search for your game. Historical games with a large scenario related to the knowledge base gain much more visibility in SEO when we consider the volumes.
For example, someone playing Empire Total War can learn how to change from a Republic to a Constitutional Monarchy from a guide on the game's main site. In this way, you will keep your users on your site. If you have different DLCs for the game, you can even promote them on the site and earn money from these packages.
Also, in games that are close to real life or have a historical background, you can get much more visibility with some words because real search terms and in-game search terms can overlap. Like "Ottoman Empire":
For games where characters are at the forefront, I recommend creating pages dedicated to different characters. You can attract users by producing game-related content such as game reviews, guides, tips, tactics, etc.
What are the people who play your game talking about? Maybe your users are discussing a bug that got a passing grade from your testing team but no one else thought of it. You can track these bugs and what your users are asking for on Reddit or other relevant gaming forums. If you have the solution to the problems on your own site, you can build teams that answer these questions using relevant URLs and get backlinks naturally.
You can organize Game quizzes to increase engagement with your community. For example, users can test their gaming knowledge with quizzes such as How well do you know CS:GO. Since users will search to find the results of these quizzes, again the volume will be turned to our advantage.
Of course, the gaming industry may not have as many specific competitors as an e-commerce site, but even this is enough to evaluate the available data. Games that may be competitors, such as CS:GO and Valorant, can analyze their websites on a regular basis. For example, if you have a simulation game, you can constantly analyze game sites close to you with tools like Ahrefs or Semrush. In this way, you can find content gaps and produce content related to these gaps.
Technical SEO is a huge topic, so I won't go into details, but make sure your sites are technically ready for Googlebot and other search engine bots. In the example below, although the site has Turkish language support, we can see the lack of hreflang:
In fact, if you have commands in your robots.txt file that prevent search engines such as Yandex or Bing from crawling your site, and you serve in that language, be sure to change these commands. If you don't have a robots.txt file, I suggest you create it immediately:
You can answer these questions by analyzing what users are asking on Google about your game. In this way, you can always rank first in queries related to your brand, keep your target audience on your site, and bring traffic to your site completely:
Always analyze the results in the SERP and develop your content strategy on how to respond:
With the help of Google Trends, you can also detect instant trending queries that may be late to be reflected in SEO tools, you can make a mailing via alert and automate these processes with AI:
When it comes to gaming, I couldn't not include Twitch. If the content produced by Twitch streamers is also suitable for your audience, you can contact the streamers to direct more users to your site. You can spread your SEO strategy to a wider scope with links from broadcasts or different campaigns.
Gamers want to see how games are played to learn from other gamers or to see if the game is worth buying. Adding links to your video content is also one of the best ways to increase traffic to your gaming site and help optimize your videos for SEO. In response to this demand, you can prioritize YouTube-specific efforts like YouTube SEO:
Queries about new game releases or additional packs such as DLC are always sought after. For example, before Age of Empires 4 was released, "will it be released" queries were always asked for years. Therefore, if you can give an estimated time for new versions of games, you will both provide clear information to publishers and prevent different news about you. It would also be an important step to gain the trust of users.
For example, on a page like "When is Hearts of Iron 5 coming out?" you can provide information about the future of the game and make detailed descriptions. These pages may not be possible for every type of game but, I wanted to include this detail in the article for games that are updated a little more constantly.
You can have your game reviewed on as many different game review platforms as possible. Thanks to these reviews, you can make different users aware of your game and show the rating of your game clearly to everyone. In a way, it will also be very valuable for EEAT. An example reviewed by PC Gamer:
With backlinks from relevant review sites, you can increase the authority of your site and attract more visitors to your site. If possible, you can even provide Google with a direct URL from in-game information screens without users typing their problems, and you can quickly resolve their problems.
My article was actually created to contribute a little bit to the SEO strategy of game producer companies. Enjoy your games, everyone!