Beauty is of no use if it cannot be seen. Good writing does not benefit anyone if it cannot be read. A brilliantly designed website is wasted if it does not come up in searches so people can access it. These are universal facts and there is no working around them.
But how can you ensure that your website is viewed and accessed by as many as possible? That is accomplished with the help of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO represents a number of steps that are taken to ensure that the website improves its ranking and gets listed higher in search results. Let us consider the top 10 ways you can ensure SEO keeping in mind prevailing trends.
1) Know Your Audience
This is the first step that should be taken into consideration when building a website and developing content for the website. What is your target audience? That would depend on the product or service you are offering. Once you know which section of internet users you are targeting you could consider their interests. Would they appreciate brief, to-the-point information? Or, would they appreciate a more detailed explanation that would help them understand what they are considering? Would they appreciate graphics, and if so, which form of graphics would interest and benefit them the most? Graphics could include pictures, diagrams, charts, animations, videos and so on.
There is no substitute for good quality content. Effective content is when what is written moves, motivates, and connects with the potential client. It should inform and educate. It should provide clear solutions to real problems that potential customers have. It should motivate the user to take the next step down the marketing funnel. Use the right keywords naturally and effectively. Depending on the audience, appropriate infographics could be used effectively. Longer, comprehensive writings generally attain higher SEO. Fresh, good content that is regularly added to your website will greatly increase the website’s chances of ranking higher in search results. Ensure that your website is well organized. Use lists and headings to summarize the contents of each page. This makes it easier for search engines to parse and index your website.
3) Mobile Compatibility
Google uses a mobile-first index that gives priority to websites with mobile versions that run seamlessly. With the easy and cheap availability of mobile devices and the internet, website searches via a mobile device outnumber website searches on a computer. These two factors clearly demonstrate that optimizing for mobile usage is of prime importance. Ensure that the website works well on screens of different sizes. If you have popups, you need to ensure that they do not negatively impact the user experience.
4) Voice Search
Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Echo, and Google Assistant are becoming increasingly popular. People find it more convenient and expect quick, specific responses. With its growing usage, optimizing for voice search should be one of your priorities. This would involve optimizing your content for longer and more natural question type keywords. With the increasing shift to voice searches, this effort is sure to pay off in the near future.
5) Use Artificial Intelligence
Google’s RankBrain uses AI to ensure that Google’s search results are constantly being refined. It finds patterns and context on websites that are then used by search engines to generate more relevant results. There are AI tools that you could use to analyze your website data. You can then discern patterns easily and make adjustments to improve the SEO of your website.
6) Use Social Media Channels
There is a direct link between social sharing and website ranking. It appears that the more your content is shared on social media, the more traffic your website experiences. This improves brand awareness. It is wise to select a few Social Media Channels and make good use of them to share content. The more social media links you have that refer to your website, the better it is.
7) Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness
Expertise authority trustworthiness, or EAT as it is called in Google’s guidelines, is designed to rank websites according to their reputation. Thus, it is important to be recognized as an authority, a trustworthy source of information, on the subject. In the short term, this is what Google and other search engines are looking at as they prioritize search results. Get respected authority figures to write to you and give them the credit. Use data from well-known entities. Strive to be recognized as the go-to source of reliable information on the subject. A website’s SEO would also depend on the amount of traffic it receives from branded searches. Cultivate backlinks from different authoritative domains.
8) Page Speed
Ensure that the page load time is no more than two seconds. Search engines prioritize the customer’s interests and want them to have a good user experience. Thus, a website that loads faster is more likely to come up higher on the search results page. Google also stated in 2018 that one of the factors they would be accounted for is the page loading speed on mobile devices.
9) On page optimization
Ensure that your content answers the common questions raised. Ensure that all questions and queries receive a quick response. Use chatbots to speed up the process and handle common queries. Shorten the number of steps leading to conversion on the website. Ensure that the internal search works effectively. Provide users with clear information on where they are in the fulfillment funnel. These are some ways you could ensure that your website is most effective. However, also remember that this has a direct relationship with the SEO of the website.
10) SSL Certificates
Security is a top priority. Search engines want to assure users that they have a secure connection. Therefore, it is wise to use SSL certificates and have https webpages, so that you can avoid getting struck down from the search results as Google updates its algorithms.
SEO is of paramount importance to any website. Without this, the very purpose of the website would not be served. Keeping the above points in mind and following through on them will ensure a well-designed website that serves its purpose and brings in results.