The coronavirus outbreak has wreaked havoc globally by affecting social, financial and economic sectors worldwide. With the World Health Organization declaring the outbreak of coronavirus COVID-19 a public health emergency earlier this year, local governments are doing all they can to lessen the devastating impacts of the virus.
Small businesses have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak with many left with no choice but to let go of staff, work remotely and close physical stores. Location and industry-based lockdowns have made digital marketing more important than ever as the globe takes a step back from physical interactions.
With profits greatly reduced, not every business can afford to hire SEO agencies to improve and protect their SEO rankings during this crisis. Fortunately, there are a number of free and affordable SEO strategies that your business can implement during this hard time to maintain a steady supply of organic search results until your business is back on its feet.
Utilise the below strategies to protect your SEO rankings during the coronavirus pandemic:
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Continue ‘Business As Usual’
If you’re worried about protecting your SEO rankings, chances are you’ve already put a lot of time, money and effort into optimising your site for search engine success. In the midst of a financial and economic crisis such as the Coronavirus pandemic, one of the most important things to do is continue writing and posting great quality content as usual.
As you’re probably aware, engaging and well-written blogs alone won’t boost your business to the top of Google search results. To do so you need a long-term SEO strategy that will increase your brand awareness and drive your organic search results through the roof.
How do you write content guaranteed to protect and boost your SEO rankings?
1. Identify & Utilize Priority Keywords
Standing out from the clutter and outranking your competitors is crucial to your SEO success. Google can process over 40,000 search queries every second! To avoid blending into this sea of results, spend time thinking about exactly what words and phrases your audience would type into a search engine. For best results utilize long-tail keywords.
Long-tail keywords are search phrases consisting of 3 or more words. While these keywords have less search volume compared to short-tail keywords, long-tail keywords have more specific intent. This means the users you are targeting know exactly what information they are after and you are able to target your ‘end-of-funnel’ consumers more easily.
Here at Australian Internet Advertising, our SEO experts utilise a range of high-end software to identify competitive keywords in your niche and implement them into a killer SEO strategy destined for success. While the software our experts use is not always accessible to the public, there is a range of beginner-friendly keyword research tools available. Examples of these are: Google AdWords Keyword Planner and Google Correlate.
2. Avoid Keyword Stuffing
Remember, you are writing for people… not a search engine.
While including priority keywords in your blogs and web pages is important, ensuring readability is essential. Keyword stuffing is the process of overloading your content with keywords in an attempt to improve search rankings. Not only does this process annoy your users, it can actually harm your ranking on Google!
So, how do you include your priority keywords without keyword stuffing?
Write content that provides value to users.
Search engines favour pages that provide value and a good experience to users. Longer content that covers a topic in detail is more likely to get the attention of a search engine. Longer content is also valuable as there is more room for you to space out your keywords. Aim to insert your keywords only when it naturally flows with the text.
3. Keep Your Content Fresh
Ensuring your content is current and frequently updated is crucial to protecting your SEO rankings during the coronavirus outbreak.
This doesn’t necessarily mean constantly creating new content. Making updates and improvements to your old content takes less work and is equally as valuable. Be sure to review any older content on your site and ensure the information provided is still valid and useful to users.
Most users are more likely to click on articles that are recently published or updated as opposed to content that is older. Think about it: if you are searching for the ‘best Nike running shoes’, a blog from 2012 isn’t going to give you the results you are after. Remember to put yourself into your consumers shoes and identify their search intent and tailor your content towards this.
Regularly updating and adding content to your site shows Google and other search engines that your site is well maintained, up to date and can be trusted to provide reliable information.
Ensuring your content is valuable and relevant can also reduce your bounce rate. A high bounce rate tells search engines that your site doesn’t contain valuable information to searchers and that the user experience may be poor. If you direct your organic traffic to high quality blog posts and articles, users will be more likely to spend more time on your website and may even check out other content you’ve written.
Important note: Don’t fall into the trap of uploading content for the sake of uploading content. As we’ve touched on above, search engines favour content that provides value to its users. Spamming your site with pointless blogs and articles will actually harm your SEO rankings. Quality over quantity is key! Spend more time working on a single great blog than on 5 sub-par posts.
Affordable & Quality Backlinks
Ensuring your website has a supply of quality backlinks is important in maintaining and boosting your SEO rankings.
Backlinks are inbound hyperlinks from a separate website directing back to your own site. Backlinks are valuable to search engines as it helps them discover new web pages and assess their authority and relevance. Think of backlinks as other websites vouching for your content. If a high authority website links to your site, it tells search engines that your content is valuable and holds authority.
Due to the popularity and success of backlinks in improving SEO rankings, the practice of purchasing backlinks has become a common practice in online marketing. What some users may not know however, is that merely gaining a high quantity of backlinks is not enough, the quality of your backlinks is crucial to your search ranking. Purchasing or acquiring bad backlinks can actually do more harm than good when it comes to SEO rankings.
How do I get quality backlinks?
1. Earned Backlinks
Earned backlinks can be a great way to improve SEO rankings for businesses with a limited advertising budget. It is important to note: you will save money going this route however, it will require substantially more of your time. Assess which is more valuable to your business and choose appropriately.
There are multiple methods to gaining backlinks organically. Below are a few of our top picks:
- Broken-Link Method
This method involves scouring high ranking websites relevant to your niche and discovering any broken links that may exist. Once you find a broken link, contact the webmaster to alert them of the issue. At the same time, recommend a page of your website which is a suitable replacement for the link. This method is highly effective as you are doing the webmaster a favour by reporting the broken link and as a result they are more likely to link back to your website and return the favour. The success of this method weighs heavily on how your content relates to the broken link. Ensure the page you present is a suitable replacement to the content originally linked.
- Utilise Infographics
Infographics are easy to understand and share, making them one of the most popular methods for bringing traffic to your website. When creating your infographic be sure to focus on a unique and interesting topic to your audience. Avoid remaking existing infographics as there is reduced value in duplicated content.
Once you have created your infographic and posted on your website, outreach to people who have previously linked or expressed interest in similar topics. It is best not to outright ask for a link to your graphic, rather to ask for feedback on it or let them know you have created content they may find valuable. If they find value in your infographic they will be more likely to share the post with their audience.
- Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is an extremely effective way of reaching a new audience and boosting SEO rankings. Many high authority sites accept guest contributors for their blogs. In exchange for creating unique and valuable content for their users, you gain a quality backlink to your site. This method not only gains your site a quality backlink but also gets your content in front of new readers which can in turn expand your audience.
This method can also be extremely competitive. Some users have found greater chances at success by including an outline of exactly what you would cover in your blog, rather than just the proposal alone.
2. Paid Backlinks
Purchasing backlinks provides businesses with access to links from high authority sites which would not always be possible organically. It is absolutely essential to ensure you are purchasing backlinks for a reputable and high authority site.
There are multiple backlink purchasing sites available should you wish to take this route. As a rule of thumb, the higher the website’s domain authority, the more expensive it will be to purchase a backlink. Purchasing backlines is not cheap with the average cost of buying a backlink was $352.92 in 2016.
While purchasing backlinks may seem expensive it can be an extremely effective way of boosting your websites search rankings and maintaining a steady flow of traffic and customers to your business.
3. Backlinks From High Domain Authority Sites
Domain authority is a rating score referring to how likely a website is to rank on a search engine’s result pages. Domain authority ranges from a score of 1 to 100, with 100 being the highest authority score available.
Ensuring you gain backlinks from a website with a high domain authority is crucial to the success of your search rankings. There are a number of free domain authority checking sites you can utilize to ensure your efforts are well spent.
Not only can acquiring backlinks from high authority sites improve your search rankings, it can also increase your own domain authority ranking.
Maintaining and boosting your website’s SEO is more important than even during a time of crisis like the coronavirus pandemic. It is crucial to remember that SEO and online marketing are long-term investments which ensure a steady supply of interest and customers in your business.
If what we’ve mentioned above still sounds like gibberish to you or you’re ready to take your business to the next level, book your free 30-minute strategy with our SEO experts. Please understand that your obligation-free consultation is with an Australian Search Engine Optimisation specialist, not a salesperson. Only book in if you are serious about setting up your business for long-term online success.