30 Aug 2016 09:14:39
The Search Engine Optimization(SEO) journey has reached a dynamic touchpoint.The need to use simple and easy SEO ideas is more as users today are more aware, there is a desire to try out every element and an expectation to see this translated into visible ranking results.It is encouraging to see your business seamlessly connected to your customers through the art and the informed science of SEO.
How humans search and what do they search
Searches are an inevitable part of our lives, with billions of web searches made everyday. It is intriguing and a continuous challenge to understand the psychology of the target audience as search engines are not humans.Search engines are driven by text, they have web crawlers looking at site elements to understand what the site is about and where to position it. The search is a string of words, and the users search through the combination of these words. These are considered as keywords, and a good keyword planner could help you with understanding the keywords which users usually use.
Optimize keywords for humans
Keyword optimization helps with driving the traffic to your website. There is a plethora of tools which help with targeting the keywords. You can use Google AdWords Keyword planner, which aids in identifying keyword ideas.
Long tail keywords
You can focus on long tail keywords, which are specific and longer. This will make it easier to rank, and a user/visitor who finds your site will be closer to conversion that is, buying the product or service from your website.
The search string (search queries), is defined by the keywords which depict the underlying intent of the users. This can be broken down into Navigational (looking for a website, company or brand), Informational (learning something, curiosity), and Transactional (buying something). You can get more qualified traffic when you target the high intent keywords.
Focusing on quality content and optimizing
Quality matters and when it comes to content on your website, it definitely does. The easiest way to connect to your target audience is to have that appeal. Write and optimize your content for the search engines. The objective is not just to create quality content, but to intensify it. So how to write quality content?
- Research and brainstorm.
- Be technical, be innovative, be relevant and stay fresh. As you update your content, remember to update the legend of last updated.
- Avoid duplicate content, use Copyscape and Siteliner to check your content.
- In case you find there is any kind of repetition or duplication – rewrite.
- Always find competing content which will spell quality and you may also use a blurb or a factoid which makes it difficult for competitors to copy content.
Creating SEO friendly website(s)
A good website will keep your user engaged and satisfied. Hence it makes sense to create one which is SEO friendly and brings in the qualified traffic, and more importantly does not result into a bounce back.
- Start with choosing a good domain name (URL), which reflects the business you are into. Try to keep it short and memorable. Example: https://wix.com.
- Create titles and meta-description tags which are descriptive.
- Images could have the ALT tags so that the search engines can understand them better.
- You can generate an XML sitemap and add your site to the Google Webmaster tools, this will result in better crawling. You can sign-up for Webmaster tools through your Google account, go to Optimization – Sitemaps and submit your website’s sitemap. You can also add to Bing Webmaster Tools.
- Use the Google’s robots.txt tester tool to check the crawlability. You can alternately Googlebot your site and use the Webmaster tools to submit your website’s URL to Google’s index.
- Use Screaming Frog SEO Spider tool which will crawl your website and give you a quick snapshot on missing and duplicate page titles, H1 tags, H2 tags, ALT tags, meta descriptions, duplicate pages and 404 errors.
- Check the navigation structure of your website, also review the internal linking.
Fix 404 errors
Look at the 404 errors, and redirect the broken URL to a live page.
Backlinks and keyword links
Look at your backlinks and poor anchor text keyword links and do a clean-up.
- Check the webpage load time with the pagespeed tool, which gives you a full analysis with recommendations. You can also analyse your website with Pingdom and Gtmetrix. Make sure your page loads under 3 seconds.
Optimize for mobile devices
- Plan and focus on creation of platform-specific sites.
- Check if your site is optimized for mobile devices.
- Check how the display and navigation looks for both mobile and tablet devices.
Search Engine Results Page (SERP) and Click-through-rate (CTR) matters
- Continuous maintenance of the website can help optimize your website to improve its performance in the SERP.
- You can find your CTR through Search Console, which has Search Analytics and the option CTR in it.
You can use the following syntax to get an insight on what google actually envisages of your website.
site:www.abc.com in the search bar for the site www.abc.com
The input will give a visual snapshot of how your website looks in the search results, and further enable you to optimize on your high ranking pages.
Ranking and RankBrain algorithm
The new machine learning technology RankBrain from Google, with the hint of Artificial Intelligence(AI) a part of Google’s search algorithm Hummingbird, helps to find the most relevant pages from billions of webpages.
Ranking factors which you need to know
- The semantics like URL, page name, title, H1 tags, internal links, text of your website needs to be meticulously curated with apt description and make sure that they are not missing or duplicated. Also the backlinks, social participation, ratings, and brand searches will also contribute to ranking.
- The user clicks, internal bounces, SERP bounce, and conversions are also accounted for ranking.
The fundamental essence is to create content with the developer gloves of clean and well-written website elements which engages the user and leads to more organic traffic with the user experiencing the website with no technical glitches.
A key question – whom are you writing the content for? If you know the answer, then logically you must be able to reach your target audience, and ensure that it entices them to do that extra bit – talk about you, talk about your content, like it, share it, retweet, re-blog and most importantly participate and contribute. Social factors can help your rankings, get you more visibility and get your network growing.
- Shares help: Post content which can be shared. If the content tickles that funny-bone, gets users curious to try out something, is intensively researched, emotion provoking, you will find that users are engaged and this will lead to subsequent shares.
- Influencer marketing: You can engage influencers to contribute, in the form of posts or blogs. When influencers start talking, you get the right boost and you will find a lot of organic traffic.
- Syndicated website blogging: You can also contribute to blogs on high-quality sites, which will get you visibility.
- Rewards: You could have contests which will eventually have users participating in the open forum.
- Clicks from social media: The clicks from social media can grow your network base and also help in the ranking.
The SEO-world has evolved and the dynamism is seen in the user-connect. It is important to understand elements of this world, adapt the simple and easy SEO ideas, and ride the wave towards better prominence and some brilliant business.