Every business with a website is looking to increase their visibility online and boost traffic, but not everyone is taking the right measures to attain this objective and boost their google ranking.
Some are still looking for shortcuts, but nowadays you can’t fool search engines. And, more importantly than that, you can’t fool the visitors to your website; Google will only love you if your audience loves you too.
SEO is not a sprint, but rather a marathon and anyone promising quick results should not be trusted.
In this article, we will break down the necessary steps needed to increase your visibility in search engine result pages, specifically your google ranking. Patience and continuous improvement are two important elements required, and the changes you make can take effect throughout a period which can vary from a couple of months, to a year; you just have to stay consistent. Here’s what you should look at in order to boost your google ranking:
Content is the most important part of search engine optimisation because Google is meant to highlight webpages that are relevant and interesting to visitors. High-quality and useful content will take your website to the first positions in the search engine rankings; poor quality, on the other hand, will put your website in a bad position from where it is almost impossible to recover.
In order to improve your Google ranking, content should be 2 things; relevant and of quality. Quality content is key and works best when you focus and create it specifically for your intended audience/user. When you specify your content to your audience, this increases website traffic and ensures that the traffic is of quality to you (people are on your website because they have found what they are looking for/want to be on the website, making them more inclined to purchase products/services).
One of the first questions that probably come to your mind when talking about content is what type of content can you choose to. Here is an image from the Search Engine Journal presenting the most popular types of content, divided into the following categories: images, traditional, videos, social media, audio, and documents.
Aside from choosing the types of content that suit your business and your audience, you should be aware of the following aspects as well:
- Avoiding duplicate content issues
- Keeping content up to date and regular – this is important as it ensures that the site is constantly ‘relevant’. An out-dated website is a big turnoff for visitors
- Ensuring that written content is overall perfect with no spelling errors
Another crucial action for optimising your website for search engines and increasing your Google ranking is represented by keywords, which go hand in hand with content. High-quality content will naturally include the right keywords, but even so you will have to research the best keywords for your industry.
The main challenge here is that you should always have a keyword/key phrase for each and every page, and make your choice carefully. This is because when a user is going to search something for example in Google, you want your webpage to come up first. In order to choose the best keywords for your business, try tools such as Google Ads, whose feature Keyword Planner provides data about Google search queries and resources for planning online advertising campaigns.
In order to increase your Google ranking through keywords, you need to use them properly. Try and use the keyword multiple times in the content of your webpage, especially in both introduction (first paragraph) and closing paragraph. Also ensure it is used in between at least 5 times. Some content writers make those keywords standout (bold, italics, heading tags) to highlight them.
According to the Business Dictionary, Meta data is “data that serves to provide context or additional information about other data. “ In websites, meta data are snippets of text that describe a page’s content; these texts do not appear on the web page but are visible only to search engines and tell them what the web page is about. There are two main types of metadata you need to use with your web pages:
- Title metadata – text that specifies the title of a web page and which is displayed on search engine results pages as the clickable headline for a result. Not only are these important for SEO and social sharing, but they also improve usability as human readers will be more likely to access your web page if they know what it is about.
- Description metadata – a brief summary of the web page. Description metadata is up to 160 characters long and it increases click-through rates as users are more compelled to access a web page when they have additional information about it right in SERPs.
- Keyword metadata – once important, these elements are no longer used by search engines.
Always include internal links in your webpage that directs users to another page on your site. Your content needs links in order to achieve a high Google ranking because these enable search engines to find posts and pages better when they are linked to other pages and give them an idea of how your website is structured. Internal linking will help you to establish a hierarchy on your website as they give more link value to the most important pages and tell search engines what webpages they should focus on.
Ensure all media in your website (both images and video) include either alt tags or alternative text descriptions. Alt tags are important because they allow search engines to find your page in the case of people who are using text-only browsers or screen readers. They can be easily optimised and will provide you with benefits such as helping search engines to interpret images – robots need alt tags in order to understand what an image is about.
The speed of your website is a Google ranking factor which means the quicker your website, the more chance it is to have a higher ranking in comparison to a slower website competitor. Not only does this boost SEO, but additionally it creates a better user experience. Having a poor site speed can seriously damage your SEO because Google now understands that the time it takes for a page to load is an important part of user experience and noticing delays causes friction for users. A study has shown that more than half of mobile users abandon a webpage if it takes more than 3 seconds to load, and that was back in 2016. In 2019, the usage of mobile devices has increased and users expect even faster loading times for the webpages they access.
Optimise for mobile
Having a mobile-friendly website implies that visitors who access your website from mobile devices have an experience optimised for their device. In fact, the correct term would be responsive web design, which makes it possible for your website designs to respond properly to any device and display size and offers you a streamlined experience when viewing a website.
Having a mobile-friendly website is crucial as mobile devices accounted for 49.7 per cent of web page views worldwide as of February 2017; moreover, Google has started introducing mobile-first indexing since March 2018. As a result, Google ranking is now determined by the mobile version of a page’s content, in order to help the search engine’s primarily mobile users to find what they’re looking for.
Words per page
A common question among business owners looking to add content to their websites is “What’s the best word count for Google?” We all know that it is important that you have enough content for Google to sort through and analyse its relevance.
There are multiple answers to this question, but there is no recipe for success. A company offering enterprise SEO services claims that the best length of content for SEO is the one that solves a problem best. And we agree with them.
Longer content does not necessarily mean that your Google ranking will skyrocket and shorter content will not keep you away from the first positions in search engine results either. When your content solves a problem and is useful to audiences, you surely have the right number of words that Google will love. People should stop applying the 500-word limit to every piece of content; you could ruin an excellent 200-word home page because you want to stick by the 500-word rule, and you could waste great potential for your blog posts by staying in the same limited 500-word content frame.
These actionable and proven SEO practices will help you get solid results in a relatively short time (months). You will need patience, determination, and maybe some help from an expert. Search engine optimisation is among the most successful services we provide at Visual Marketing Australia and you can also get excellent online results by contacting us for an obligation-free consultation today!