Did you know that 81% of consumers perform online research before making a purchase? 60% of them use a search engine to find out more about the products and services they are interested in. If you are relying on Google to bring people on your website, then this might be great news for you. However, it’s important to also note that 75% of online users rarely scroll past the first page of search engine results. And, to make matters even more challenging, there are over one trillion searches every month. It goes without saying that a good SEO strategy is paramount if you want to reach your audience and get them to visit your site.
Let’s face it! Most small business owners can’t afford to rank high on Google for the most competitive keywords. There are already large corporations with huge digital marketing budgets capitalizing on the top industry keywords. Not to mention all the content creators who are trying to rank high for the same keywords.
So, if you’ve been focusing almost all of your SEO efforts on keyword research without much to show for, then it may be time to try a different strategy. Don’t worry! You don’t have to start from scratch and, most importantly, it won’t take you forever to see an improvement. In fact, the strategies we are about to teach you can improve your SEO ranking in just one day. Yes, you heard that right: you can start ranking higher in SERPs in ONE DAY.
Are you intrigued?
Let’s dive right into it, shall we?
Improve Your Page Loading Time
Internet users are notorious for their lack of patience. There’s always a better page with better content and better loading time that they can access, so why waste any time with yours?
How slow is too slow, you ask?
Research shows that 40% of users will leave a page if it takes more than three seconds to load. But, the worst part is that 80% of the visitors will not return to a page that took too long to load.
If people are leaving your website because it’s taking an extra few seconds to load, then Google will see this as a poor user experience and reduce your SEO ranking.
Thankfully, there are few quick ways you can improve your website loading time and improve the user experience as well as your ranking.
First of all, check Google’s PageSpeed Insights to see just how fast your website is loading. The data there will tell you what you need to do to improve your site’s loading time.
Here are a few things that usually work:
● Compress the images on your website;
● Reduce your web pages file size;
● Find a better host provider;
● Check your website’s themes and plugin-ins and delete any unnecessary one’s;
● Minimize the number of redirects.
Focus on Creating Quality Content
“Dwell time” is the amount of time people spend on your page is one of the most important and neglected ranking factors in our opinion. A lot of small business owners focus on getting their page at the top of search engine results, but rarely ask themselves what happens after people click on their blog post. Well, if people land on your page and then immediately bounce, then that sends a clear message to Google: people don’t like your page. And if Google thinks your page is not useful, it will quickly downrank it.
But, when you provide quality content to your audience, they tend to stay longer on the page to consume the valuable information you are giving them, therefore increasing your dwell time.
Research shows that long-form content (articles between 2000-2500 words) tend to perform better and usually ranks higher than short blog posts. Of course, the word count isn’t the only factor that matters here. No one will read a 2000-words article if the content is boring or not helpful. But, long-form articles give you more opportunities to include more keywords and outbound links, which can influence how high you rank on page search results.
Fix Broken Links
Broken links translate into poor user experience. Picture this: you were looking for a rare copy of a nursery rhymes book to give your sister in law who just had a baby. You finally find something, but when you click on the link, you get to a 404 page. You can imagine just how frustrating a broken link can be to a user.
Search engines see broken links as a sign of a website that has been neglected. And, because Google doesn’t want to direct users to an invalid page on your website, it won’t rank it high in the search results page.
You don’t have to go through all the pages on your website to check for broken links. Here are a few tools that can help you in this regard:
● Dead Link Checker
● Screaming Frog SEO Spider
● Google Webmaster Tool
You can use these tools to check your entire website or just specific pages on your site. You will be notified the second a link is broken so that you can take care of it immediately. Fixing dead links doesn’t take long and comes with numerous benefits:
● It improves your site’s ranking in no time;
● It makes your site more user-friendly and provides good user-experience;
● It drives more traffic to your website.
Focus on Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI)
Latent Semantic Indexing, or LSI for short, are conceptually related terms that Google and other search engines use to understand the content on a page.
Let us elaborate.
In the old days of SEO, Google relied on search terms to understand what a page was about. So, if you used the keyword “web design services” over and over again, then Google would understand that your page was selling web design services.
But, the search engines have evolved tremendously in the last years and have become more sophisticated than ever before. Now you don’t need to repeat the same keyword multiple times in your content to get Google to understand your page’s topic. In fact, this practice is frowned upon today as Google now uses LSI keywords to interpret a page’s meaning.
This advancement in the way Google works has to do with user behaviour too. Most people nowadays don’t use simple keywords when they are looking for information online. They are more likely to say “cheap car insurance in Melbourne” rather than just “car insurance.” Moreover, with the advent of voice search, the language consumers are using is becoming more similar to natural speech than the robotic keywords we used to type into the search engine pages. As such, people are more likely to say something like “OK, Google, find a good pizza place near me” than “pizza restaurant.”
So, how do LSI keywords work exactly?
Let’s imagine that you just published a content marketing guide. Google will scan your content for the keyword “content marketing”, so it’s important to use it in your blog post as well as your title tag and image alt text. But, the search engine will also look for LSI keywords, such as blog post, content format, buyer persona, and so on.
Google actually made it clear that they are using “words frequently occurring together” to understand an article’s main topic. In other words, using just keywords is not enough anymore to get your page to rank high. Google also looks for terms closely related to your main keyword to understand your page and decide if it will rank it high in the search engine results page.
How do you find LSI keywords?
The simplest and easiest way is to use Google Autocomplete. Go to Google, type in your primary keywords, and look through the suggestions. For the keyword ” content marketing,” for example, you can find LSI like “strategy,” “example,” “manage,” just to name a few. You can also use UberSuggest or the Keyword Tool to look for more ideas.
Write Catchy Meta Descriptions
The meta description may not be a ranking factor, but it can certainly influence your click-through-rate and, ultimately, your SEO ranking. The meta description appears in the search engine results and, if well written, it can persuade users to click on your page and read your content.
But, how do you convince prospects that your content is with their time in just 160 characters? Here are some ideas:
● Tell Readers What They’ll Find: The 5 Ws (and 1 H) is the formula journalists use when writing the lead of their articles. Who? What? Why? When? Where? How? The answers to these questions offer the basic information a reader needs to decide if they want to continue reading your blog post. Creative, mysterious, and whimsical descriptions don’t really have their place here as users want to know from a quick glance if the content on your page will provide an answer to their question or not. That’s why it’s best to keep your meta descriptions descriptive and to the point;
● Keep Them Short: Google limits meta descriptions to 160 characters and you should aim for that word count. However, keep in mind that the optimal length can vary and that your ultimate purpose is to provide value and drive clicks and not fit a certain box.
● Avoid Duplicating Your Meta Description: It should go without saying that each meta description should be unique to the page it’s representing.
Encourage Social Sharing
If you run an online business, then you need to be active on social media – everybody knows this.
But, what most people aren’t aware of is that the number of social media shares that your content gets can influence your SEO rank.
How is that possible?
The answer is quite simple: social shares drive traffic, and traffic is one of the major ranking factors for SEO.
When a lot of people share your content, they are sending more traffic to your website. As your traffic rates are increasing, so are your rankings.
Here’s an interesting case study to show you the power of social media shares.
One company found that their ranking for the keyword “Google images” rose from the 74th position to the 8th position in just one day. The “culprit” was a Reddit post about Google’s advances in object detection and image understanding that sent about 20.000 unique visitors to the blog post in just a few short hours.
That’s just an example of how much social media can influence your ranking. Now, imagine if you would encourage social sharing with every blog post you publish.
By installing social media shares on your website, you will make it easier for your readers to share your content with their network and drive more traffic to your page. Moreover, social sharing can also boost your sales. 43% of social media users have purchased an item after sharing it or liking it on a social network, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly
You’re probably reading this article from your mobile phone while waiting in line to get your coffee. You may already suspect that mobile use is on the rise, but did you know that it has actually overtaken computer and laptop devices?
That’s true! Over 60% of Google’s traffic now comes from mobile devices. And, it makes perfect sense if you think about it. Your phone is always by your side, readily available for you to use it, and search for the information that interests you with just a few taps and swipes.
Since the vast majority of Google’s traffic comes from mobile devices, the search engine giant has taken the necessary steps to ensure that users will have a stellar experience while navigating the web from their phones. As of April 2015, Google started penalizing websites that aren’t mobile-friendly by de-ranking them.
Use the Mobile-Friendly Test to ensure that your website complies with Google’s requirements and it’s optimised for mobile.
Check Your Website’s Navigation
Internet users are lazy creatures. If they can’t find the information they need in just a few short seconds, they will simply leave. If that happens to often, then the high bounce rate and low dwell time will affect your SEO ranking.
You may be proud of your site’s creative architecture, but if users have to solve a puzzle to get to the information that interests them, then you may have a problem on your hand.
Your site’s navigation should be simple, intuitive, and logical. Users should find their way around your website without putting too much thought into it.
Flat site architecture is an optimal solution as it makes it easy for users to navigate it, but it also brings forward the links to all your essential pages, thus making it easier for search engines to crawl your website.
We Can Help You Improve Your SEO Ranking
Here at Australian Internet Advertising, we don’t believe in silver bullets that magically fix all your problems. But, we believe that with a smart SEO strategy and a lot of hard work, you can improve your ranking and make it to the top of search engine results. Of course, there are also the las hanging fruits that can provide you a much-needed boost in a short time. You just need to know where to look for them and, luckily for you, we know.
Give us a call or send us a message and our Search Engine Optimisation Experts will have a look at your website and tell you what it needs and how you can improve its rankings.