If you are doing any kind of online business, you must need Search Engine Optimization, abbreviated as SEO. It is a goldmine for everyone who owns an online business. If you want to grow your business with digital marketing, SEO is the key that opens the door to your success. So first, let me tell you, what is SEO? And what is the goal of SEO?
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What is SEO and Why Would You Need It?
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of optimizing your website in such a way that it can rank higher in search engine results like Google. For that, you have to take care of multiple parameters like web structure, page speed, content quality, link building, etc. So Google can efficiently understand your content and identify your authority to prioritize your website.
Once you get to the top of the Google search results, you get:
- More Traffic
- More brand awareness
- The More Leads
- More Conversion (Sales)
But keep in mind, you need to be consistent with this. Because your competitors are also doing SEO for their businesses and Google regularly analyses and show the best possible results to its users. So you must keep outsmarting your competition to dominate Google’s top searches.
Simply put, you can’t just expect Google to rank your content in search results without proper SEO. So I must say, Search Engine Optimization is the backbone for the success of your online business.
You spend months, sometimes years, building a website or blog. So you invest money and time in starting an online business, and it is very crucial to do search engine optimization to get profit and save from loss.
To put it simply,
The more efficiently you implement SEO, the better Google will understand your content and eventually rank you higher in search results. This is the main goal of SEO. Now, I have come up with the best marketing strategies or practices in form of an SEO checklist to achieve this goal.
So what strategies should you follow to rank your website on Google?
SEO Checklist To Obtain Google Ranking
1. Effective Keyword Research
It is the foundation of any SEO campaign. Because all search engines identify your content with target keywords, you are focusing.
Whenever users search for a specific term or phrase, Google recognizes it as a keyword and looks for the available indexed web content that is closely related to that term. These are the keywords that tell Google what people are looking for and what your content is about. So you need to structure your content around the searched keyword and its related terms called LSI.
If you wish SEO magic to work for you, then selecting effective keywords is the first and foremost thing to consider. For that, experts use various keyword research tools to select effective keywords that people are most looking for.
These tools provide detailed analysis regarding:
- Search volume (What people are looking for mostly)
- Click Ratio (On which keywords people respond mostly)
- Keyword difficulty level (how competitive the keyword is to rank for)
- Keywords with low competition and high search volume
By using these tools, you can find effective keywords for your niche. You can even analyze your competitors for multiple SEO tasks.
Some of these SEO tools are:
- Google Adwords
- Keyword planner
2. High-Quality Content
The second important strategy is to write unique and high-quality content that provides value to the user. You must have heard the quote:
“Content is King.”
Why? Because they know the content is the core of the SEO Checklist. A lot of people ask, what is high-quality content?
- The content fulfills the users’ demands. Because search engines love user-friendly content, this is why If users get engaged, liked, and satisfied, They spend more time on your writing piece and take action. Then, ultimately, positive signals go to search engines and you potentially rank higher in the algorithms.
- You need to populate your content on different platforms to attract search engines. This job is done by your potential visitors who like and share your content after inspiration. That’s why a writer should identify first what the intent of the keyword or topic is on which he is going to write. So he can cover all aspects and satisfy his readers.
- The content should be unique and easily readable. That means you must focus on writing small sentences and paragraphs.
- It should be organized with proper headings and subheadings by using tags H1, H2, H3.
- To start, every page should include at least 300 words of unique content.
3. On-Page SEO Checklist
Creating quality content is not enough, you also need to optimize it for SEO.
So how do you do that?
On-Page SEO includes various tasks to complete before publishing content. So make sure you cover all the following pillar points for On-Page optimization.
- Choose one primary keyword and include it in your URL.
- Make your URL short.
- Use modifiers to optimize the page title.
- Choose LSI keywords, related keywords in content that help search engines understand what your content is about.
- Use your keywords in the title tag, and meta description and
- Make the meta description unique and optimize for CTR (click through ratio).
- Must Use the keyword in the first 100-150 words
- Use H2–H6 tags for subheadings.
- Structure your content nicely (Scannable)
- Avoid keyword stuffing (Use keyword where contextually fit in the sentence)
- Use images or videos with alt-text containing keyword
- Interlink the relevant pages or articles
- Include outbound links of authority sites
- Match your word count to those ranking
- Keep updating the content every 3 to 6 months
You will rock, if you follow these strategies, but don’t forget your users. Because most people forget the user intent while following these steps. So I highly recommend writing for your users or visitors that puts a real value on them.
Building backlinks is a part of off-page SEO. It is the process of developing the authority of your website in the Google algorithm through content marketing. By staying away from your site, you work on other platforms for branding.
If you want search engines to consider your website to rank higher, then you need useful links from authority sites. It is the most important factor that Google uses to rank websites. The more websites refer to your web page, the more chances you get for a better position in search.
Now, what is the useful link? It means the quality of backlinks, not the quantity. The one that you get from your relevant niche site. Like Google says:
“If other prominent sites on the subject link to the page, that’s a good sign that the information is of high quality.”
So the goal of SEO is to get authority links from other relevant sites to yours. These backlinks are actually the currency for your website that helps you develop your brand. When you consistently get links from other brands, the search engine recognizes that it is trusted, hence ranking it accordingly.
Now, how can you attract useful and effective backlinks? People use different strategies to build their links. Some are:
- Make and include attractive infographics in your content.
- Outreach for guest post links
- Build forum and blog comment links by contributing to these platforms
- Publish a press release about a website on different news networks
- Research and analyze competitor sites’ backlinks and outreach to them to get themselves
- Social bookmarking
To complete these tasks, I prefer to use the AHREFS tool, which helps me analyze my competitors’ backlink strategies and build my plan in less time.
Note: You can also outsource these services if you are working on multiple projects. But you need to master it first to get better results.
5. Web Page Loading Speed
The days have gone by when you had to wait impatiently to open a page with dial-up connections. Now the technology has developed and users are also used to it. They can’t just wait so long. That means a site should be easy to access for the user. Google uses website speed as one of the ranking factors. So, to rank blog posts or pages higher in Google, website speed is the real essence.
Do you know that about 40% of users close the webpage and move ahead if it doesn’t load or open in 3+ seconds?
The lower the page load speed, the more potential users you will lose. That’s called the bounce rate, and it will increase. More time to load a page will increase your bounce rate, which is not healthy for your SEO success.
The time taken by the page to load has a direct impact on the user experience, as described below in the image.
How can you improve your website loading time?
You can do multiple tasks to speed up website loading speed. Here I made a checklist for page load speed improvement. You need to take care of these.
- Minimizing HTTP requests
- Remove the unnecessary images
- Reduce or compress the size of images
- Combining files
- Uninstall the apps that are delaying the speed
6. Mobile Friendliness
In the current world, the majority of people use mobile phones to access the internet. So Google observes your website for mobile-friendliness as well. This is another important ranking factor of SEO. That’s why I added this factor to my SEO checklist.
You may have seen multiple sites that look beautifully framed when opened on large screens. But when seen on small screens like mobile phones and ipads, their content and images are scattered or broken into different parts. The users can’t move easily throughout the website and have to scroll a lot to see the required areas on the website. That means your site is not mobile responsive.
This makes users irritated, and hence they move away. This behavior transfers the negative signal towards the search engines about that website, and your site’s ranking goes down.
To avoid such circumstances, you need to make your website mobile responsive. As a result, when visitors arrive at your website using mobile phones of various sizes, they will be able to easily access each section. The more user-friendly a website is, the more Google will prefer it for ranking.
Other necessary strategies are:
7. Site Authority
8. Social Media Legitimacy
Believe me, you can attract a lot of traffic from search engines if you follow the above strategies effectively and consistently. It is not rocket science.
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