While Google and other search engines continually update their algorithms, Search Engine Optimization foundations are constant: proper site structure, keyword research, and high-quality content. Follow these five tips to improve your SEO and help your business be found online.
If there’s one component to SEO, everyone has heard of its keywords. While keywords used to be the main factor in SEO, their influence has evolved. Now keywords must be well-researched, carefully chosen, and strategically used within your content.
So what is a keyword? It’s a word or phrase that searchers use to find content online. When brands pay attention to what their prospects are searching for, they can use these same phrases to connect with potential customers looking for similar products.
It’s essential to look for highly searched keywords with low competition. Make sure to mix up short-term keywords (hotel Chicago) and long-form keywords (hotel Chicago west loop reviews) and incorporate them naturally within your content.
Content is key to SEO as it is how you reach and engage audiences. Once again, you want to think about the people searching and engaging with your content. Write in a conversational tone people will connect and respond to. To increase visibility, you need to focus on relevant topics within your industry. If you own a furniture store, you could post content offering decorating tips or how to pick a sofa. Providing prospects with informative and valuable content puts you top-of-mind when they’re ready to make a purchase.
Today, content must be informative, engaging, relevant, and shareable.
Content comes in many forms:
- Blog posts
- Web pages
- White papers and eBooks
- Long-form articles
- Social media
A backlink is created when one website links to another website. You may have heard people refer to ‘inbound links’ or ‘incoming links,’ these other terms for backlinks. To get the most out of your content, you should be prepared to commit a decent amount of time to promote and build backlinks to your content.
Backlinks are essential to SEO as they draw traffic to your website and establish credibility, which helps brands rank higher in search results. Google admits backlinks are one of the top-ranking features.
There are many tactics to building backlinks, but a few common ways are:
- Guest blogging
- Mentioning influencers in your content
- Creating high-quality, shareable infographics
When it comes to SEO, remember you’re working for two customers — the humans searching for content and the bots crawling and indexing for search engines. Algorithm updates have drastically improved the ‘humanness’ of bots, but there are still many differences, and you want to optimize for both.
Creating a well-structured website that is easy for users to navigate will compel a casual visitor to stay longer, increase page views and decrease bounce rate. Creating pages optimized for search can get technical, so it’s best to work with an established agency, like New Path, or a professional web-developer for the best results.
A few key features to get you started:
- Ensure your website loads fast: Both people and search engines prioritize a website’s loading speed, so keep load time down and visitors on your website.
- Make sure you’re mobile-friendly: More than 60% of searches are on mobile devices. You must have a responsive website for mobile search.
- Make sure your website is secure: This is especially important for e-commerce sites.
- Create a site-map: A site-map is a map, listing all your pages letting search engines know how your content is related.
- Internally link pages: Linking to various pages on your site helps search engines crawl your site quickly for the most relevant content.
Local SEO is becoming more critical as more people continue to use mobile devices for search. With the rise in mobile search, search engines have begun showing more local results for searches. You need to be optimizing your content and website for your location(s). Make sure your website makes it clear — to people and web crawlers — where you are and what you do. List your company on Google My Business and with local business directories.
Keep in mind how people speak. With the increase in mobile usage and voice assistant devices like Alexa, comes an increase in voice searches. Voice search is a direct influence on local search. Focus on questions.
Ultimately, SEO can help your business grow as you build relationships with your audience, provide a better customer experience, establish yourself as an authority, convert leads, and generate revenue.
Therefore it is essential to understand what SEO is, how it can help you meet your digital marketing goals, and evolving best practices.
Learn more about New Path Digital’s SEO services and People-First Marketing.