Improving a website’s rankings does not happen overnight. A successful SEO strategy (being the no.1 product in organic search related to the keyword being searched for) that will help grow your business over time needs constant care and attention, with five key steps repeated again and again, each time using the new information you have gleaned from previous activity.
Start with keywords
Keywords help search engines such as Google understand what your webpages are about. When someone types a search query into Google, it will display a selection of results that it thinks are a good match for that query. Relevant content that contains relevant keywords is one of the main ways Google decides if a webpage is a good match for a particular search query.
Keywords should be relevant to your website, have a decent number of monthly searches and be something that you can realistically rank well for. If a keyword doesn’t meet these three criteria, there’s no point in optimising a webpage to rank for it.
Researching keywords isn’t enough, though. You also need to understand the intent people have when they search using those keywords, as Google will try to understand the intent behind a particular search so it can offer searches the most relevant results. To better optimise keyword intent, check the existing results for a particular keyword and see what kinds of pages Google is including.
Create high-quality content
High-quality content that includes relevant keywords and matches up to the search intent relating to those keywords is the basic requirement for ranking higher in Google. Without it, you’re unlikely to rank well in any search engine.
Examples of high-quality content includes, but is not limited to, keywords, full, accurate descriptions of your product/service, high-quality product photos, reviews and/or testimonials. If your budget is tight and can’t hire a professional writer, you can use AI tools to guide you on some ideas that your content would need to cover. Make sure you use these tools as an assistant to get a starting point and not fully rely on using the exact content that these tools are generating.
Once you’ve optimised your product/services pages, you can focus on other types of areas of your website. This could include blog posts, infographics, video content, interactive tools and more.
Share your content
Once you have created your content, sharing and promoting it is a must. If a page starts to get organic links to it, Google understands that users are finding the content useful and starts ranking it higher because of its popularity.
Anything that gets your business out there will increase the chances of you getting a link but always focus on quality over quantity. Partnering with influencers, generating PR coverage and promoting it on your social channels are all great tactics to get more eyes on your content.
Use internal linking
Although attracting links from other websites is necessary to grow your Google rankings, the links that exist between pages on your website are also important. Internal linking can help you rank higher in Google and other search engines.
For example, if you were selling widgets and you wrote a blog post about “Why buying a widget will make your life better”, the logical next step would be to link to your widget product page, so people can buy one after reading the post. That link could also boost your SEO.
To enable this, you must ensure that your internal links use appropriate anchor text (the text you click on to visit a link,) that informs customers of where the link will take them. It also needs to be related to the keywords you are trying to rank the linked page for.
Monitor your results
Monitoring the results of your SEO efforts is essential to ensure they are paying off. To do so, make sure that any SEO tool you use for keyword research comes with a rank tracking feature. You should also use Google Analytics to track increases in traffic and page value from your SEO efforts.
Keep repeating these steps
Following all these steps once should probably lead to a small SEO boost. But if you’re serious about ranking higher in Google, you need to keep working on these steps. There will always be new keywords to target and new links to be won.
Search engine optimisation can seem daunting, but breaking it down into smaller steps will make it easier to tackle. Start by identifying your top priority keywords and focus on optimising your site for these.