Sometimes it seems like you can’t make progress on getting your website and keywords ranked for organic SEO no matter what you do; and, other times you know it’s impossible. Take heart, here’s some tips that will make it easier to get the rankings you desire, and will have earned, by following these tips.
Have you consciously identified what your important keywords are? Do you know what kind of traffic they generate, who your competitors are, and how strong your competition is? You should. This is the first step in getting ranked. A couple of points to consider:
• Are you unlucky enough to have major brands sitting on the first page of the search results, i.e., if you sell tires: Tire Rack, Walmart, and Discount Tire Direct are all sitting there? Then, this is not your keyword. You will NEVER replace them. Find equivalent keywords where the competition is less severe, i.e., “fort Lauderdale local tire store”.
• If your business is local, definitely include your location with your keyworks as noted above. “Local” can mean other than a city. Neighborhoods are even more specific, and less competitive. Of course, you will need content to support each neighborhood, but look at this as a long-term strategy, you don’t have to do it all at once.
• Now that you know your keywords, are you using them in every posting you make: blogging, article and PR writing, content on your web pages, directory and classified postings, etc.? You should be. (Even if you’re writing about hiring a new manager, put in a sentence or two that highlights your keywords; not all of them in one posting, of course).
The easiest way to do this is use Google Keyword Planner to both identify the keywords and determining the search volumes.
It’s hard to beat your competition without knowing who they are and what they’re doing. Check the search results for your keywords. The companies on the first page are your competition (ignoring the national brands). You want to know the strength of their website versus yours, how often do they do postings, creating fresh content, and how many backlinks they have. There are any number of software programs and browser extensions that will help determine that. (By the way, check the search results using Incognito or private mode. The search engines know who you are and serve up results based on your history.)
Take a look at their web page that relates to the keyword. Does it have more content, better navigation, more ”call to action” prompts, or other elements that make it superior to your page?
There have been studies by a number of well-known SEO companies that have correlated the depth of the content with rankings. Make sure your web pages have sufficient content that is keyword-focused. 500 words is decent, 750 better, and 1,000 or more the goal. That also goes for articles, blogs, and landing pages (“landing pages” are single page vehicles to enhance conversion rates by giving a visitor the content related to what they were searching for while at the same time offering stronger call to action prompts. They can be used for both organic SEO and PPC purposes. If you’re not using them, think about starting.). More is better, especially if it is keyword-focused.
Using keywords in the title tag, first sentence of the content, in H1-H5 header tags associated with the content (every page should have an H1 tag slightly different than the one used in the title), and as tags for any images is important.
Understand that Google can understand variations of the keywords, so “tire sale”, “sale on tires”, and “tires on sale” are relatively equivalent. (LSIGraph can quickly help identify alternatives, and it’s free.)
Not only should you include the keyword in the title tag and first sentence, but the closer it is to the beginning, the more effective it is. Not sure why, but it’s been tested and proven. Again, variations of the keyword can be used.
Speaking of titles, it’s good to make them interesting and attract readers. The words “best”. “top”, numerical values, i.e., “6 best reasons”, etc. give you a better chance of getting ranked. (Note the title and first sentence of this article.)
a. Internal Links. It has now been shown that a strong interlining of pages on your website improve the overall strength of your site, and help get better rankings; so, any article or blog you write and post on your site should have a link to at least one other page. Links on the bottom of the Home Page for city pages, product category pages, services, etc. will be strengthened with a link from the Home Page.
b. External Links. External links have been shown to be the most important element in achieving rankings. So, the more the better with two caveats: one, profile links have very little value; and two, links from sites that have domain authorities less than "10" are of little value. Note how many links your competitor has and how strong they are. (We can provide a competitive analysis that breaks down their link profile, so you can evaluate where you stand versus the competition. Ask for your analysis.)
It might seem complicated, but it isn’t. What’s required is steady work, not one-time efforts. And, always remember quality over quantity as well as “fresh is best”. We can develop a comprehensive online marketing plan for you; and, remember, we guarantee results. Give us a call or fill out the form to let us know of your interest.