12 Ways To Improve Your SEO Rankings
Every day, consumers turn to search engines to find what they are looking for. Google processes approximately 3.5 billion searches every day! So, if you want to succeed in this hyper-competitive business environment, you must reach your target audience online.
Here is where SEO comes in. If done right, SEO can help your business land on the first page of Google search, and this is where you want to be. The first page of Google receives 95% of all web traffic, scattering the remaining 5% amongst hundreds of other pages. So, if you are counting on search engines to bring you potential customers, you need your website to rank as high as possible.
What Is SEO?
Let us start with the basics. What is SEO? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and it is the process of improving your site to increase its visibility on search engines. Search engines go from page to page to rank websites, collecting information about them and then ranking them based on what the search engine deems most relevant to users. Practicing SEO is vital to achieving a high organic search ranking, and in turn, improving the visibility of your brand and boosting brand awareness.
How Can I Improve My SEO Rankings?
Simply put, the better visibility your pages have in search results, the more likely you are to gain the attention of prospective and existing customers. So, follow these suggestions to improve your SEO and watch your website rise to the top of search engine results.
1. Find your target keywords
One of the first and most important steps to developing a successful SEO strategy is identifying your target keywords. These keywords are the primary words/phrases that encapsulate your brand. To find your keywords, you will want to conduct keyword research with tools such as Google Ads Keyword Planner, Moz, or Wordtracker. These tools can help you determine which keywords are most relevant to your audience. Ultimately, finding your target keywords will build the foundation for your content strategy by giving you a guide on creating relevant content that specifically targets your audience.
2. Put your target keywords to work
To improve your on-page SEO, you will want to optimize individual web pages on your site by using your target keywords. By doing this, individual pages on your website will rank higher in search results. We recommend using an on-page plugin like Moz On-Page Grader or HubSpot's Website Grader to visualize how your on-page SEO stacks up. After analyzing your on-page SEO, you should adjust your pages to enhance your search ranking further.
3. Create a killer content strategy
After you find your target keywords, focus on creating a content strategy that is attractive to your target audience. Understand the intent of your audience and leverage it to create a strategy that will attract them to your website. A great content strategy helps you be consistent and stay relevant while also improving your SEO!
4. Make relevant, valuable content
While there are many factors to consider if you want to create a good experience for your visitors and improve your rankings, none of them will matter if your content is not good. The quality of your content is not only dependent on it being error-free and well-written. It also needs to match the expectations of your audience. Valuable and relevant content will result in your visitors staying longer on your site, which will lead to a higher ranking.
5. Write click-worthy titles and descriptions
Now that you have great content, you will want to make it more appealing on the search results pages. Having a great title and description will help you lure users in, get more clicks, thereby increasing your ranking. However, these cannot be superficial clicks, so make sure that your title and description are coherent with your content. Otherwise, your site's ranking will drop.
6. Start blogging!
Starting a blog is a great way to populate your website with rich, entertaining, and relevant content for your visitors to enjoy. In turn, this will help you increase your authority. More importantly, it pays off! Companies with blogs generate 67% more leads monthly! Be sure to promote this content across other channels- such as social media, email marketing, and digital advertising- to drive even more traffic back to your website.
7. Use outbound links
Outbound (external) links not only help you improve your SEO, but it establishes you as a trustworthy source. Outbound links are used to point back to the source where you got the data you are showing on your blog. However, you do not want to overdo it! Too many links could have the opposite effect, it might make your website appear as spam and makes for an unpleasant user experience.
8. Optimize images
While many people overlook image optimization when trying to boost their SEO, it can drive a lot of traffic to your website when done properly. More importantly, if your images are poorly optimized, it could lead to slow web pages, which will affect your overall rating. One of the easiest and most effective ways to optimize your images is using alt text (text that describes an image).
9. Improve your loading screen
Research shows 40% of visitors will abandon websites if the page takes longer than 3 seconds to load. What is even more shocking is that 80% of those visitors will not return to that website! So if you want to improve your SEO, you will want to get a quick benchmark on how fast your site loads with Google’s PageSpeed Insights. If you find that your site loads slowly, there are a few things that could help:
-Compress the images on your site.
-Reduce web page file size.
-Delete unnecessary 3rd party scripts.
-Move to a better host.
10. Make sure your site is mobile friendly
Google rewards websites that are mobile-optimized. That is because over 60% of Google searches come from mobile devices! So, if your website is not mobile-friendly, you could not only be dropping in rank but losing a lot of potential customers.
11. Encourage sharing on social media
It is pretty much common knowledge that every business and website could benefit from being active on social media. What is not as well known is that social media can also improve your SEO ranking if people share links to your website on social media. To encourage sharing on social media, include social sharing icons in your content and share links to your content on your social media pages.
12. Learn from your analytics
Last but not least, tracking the performance of your website can help you understand what is working and what is not. By doing so, you will be able to curate your content to match the likes and dislikes of your audience in mind. There are many metrics that you can analyze to see where you have room for improvement. Below, we have included the most common metrics that you should consider looking at:
-Average time spent on a page:
The amount of time visitors spend on your page is very telling of how your content is performing. It also gives you an insight into your audience’s reading habits. For instance, by looking at what pages your users spend the most time on, you’ll get a better understanding of the content they like.
The bounce rate indicates how many visitors leave your website without going to another page. High bounce rates are a sign that you should improve your page.
Gaining insight into which sources bring traffic to your website can be very valuable. This metric can show you where you are wasting your efforts and where to focus them instead.
We hope that this blog helped you clarify the importance of SEO and what you can do to climb up on the search page rankings! If you would like to read more tips and advice on marketing and branding, check out the rest of Power Move Marketing's blogs!
Author: Julia Prieto