SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, can sometimes feel like hocus-pocus. There is a method to achieving results, even with Google’s new Hummingbird Algorithm. This article will use infographic below, released by Column Five Designs, to guide you through successfully upgrading your SEO.
At first glance, you will notice the content is broken down into two categories: On-the-page SEO factors and Off-the-page SEO factors. On-the-page factors refer to the HTML, content, and general structure of your website. Off-the-page factors are how people get to your site– through “tweets,” guest article postings, or other backlinks. This article will focus on how to generate valuable content (On-the-page factor) and backlinking (Off-the-page factor).
Consider how you will track your SEO efforts–through Google Analytics, page ranking tools, etc.– in order to assess areas of weakness. Before starting any SEO goals or strategies, consider implementing valuable tracking systems for your website.
Upgrade Your SEO On-the-Page Factors: Content
Violation Elements: Thin content, Ad-heavy
Writing good content can be easy. Once you have a viable topic, begin gathering credited sources for research. It might seem school-ish, but your sources can come from many different areas. Find someone you can trust or have a connection to –you’ll feel more confident.
After you have found credible sources, try narrowing your topic down to a few topics that interest you. Start writing some phrases, “key” words, or general ideas for your topic. Keywords, though hailed by some as the most important factor in SEO optimization, are merely a way to streamline your article’s content.
4 tips to Upgrade your keyword selection:
- Open your search engine and type in a few ideas that come to mind. Look through the results to see if you should alter your keywords to best represent your topic
- Read through other articles on your given topic. Ask yourself what you like, or what you could offer differently. Know your competitors!
- Consider long-tailed keywords to enhance your value and narrow your topic. Instead of “red shoes,” try “Jimmy Choo red stilettos”
- Use analytical tools to generate new keywords ideas — Google Adwords or Analytics are some of the accessible and heavily documented resources on the web. Try this free keyword search tool.
Though keywords are a factor, keep in mind you should create keywords that appeal to people, not search engines. According to a study of 128 SEO professionals, targeted keywords were only 14.9% of the overall importance in google rankings –Backlinks at the page and domain level are the majority of importance. Bottom line –choose keywords and phrases for humans, not search engines. They are more than likely to share your articles through social media hubs or on their own website.
Once you have credible research and 2-3 targeted keywords, you’re ready for the writing process. Your primary goal is to reach your audience with information that can be easily digested. If successful, then your article will be shared amongst the web.
7 Tips to Upgrade your Writing while using keywords:
- While drafting your article, write your keywords in bold at the top of your article to streamline your message. Let them be your guide.
- Divide your writing into easily read chunks and bullet points –this will help the reader digest your message. Beware: make sure you have a flow between each subtopic.
- Put yourself into the reader’s shoes. Make up a character and act through the scenario: What would you want to read? What would turn you off?
- Find your identity– what makes you the best, or most unique?
- Highlight every use of your keyword to prevent overstuffing or underuse. You can even print the article off and circle them.
- Read your article out loud –sometimes a little tedious, but effective.
- Once your writing is complete, outline the structure of your article to if you’ve missed or overemphasized your target words.
Once you have your article written and published on your site, now it’s time to do the work. Make sure you have a document available to jot down ideas for article titles on hand at all times. Write several articles at a time, edit them leisurely, and queue post timings to a consistent pace. If you have difficulties keeping a consistent post routine, set a fixed deadline every week for new articles to be posted.
Upgrade Your SEO Off-the-Page Factors: Backlinks
Violation Elements: Paid linking, Privacy, Spamming
Backlink- (def.)an incoming hyperlink from one web page to another website. “the more backlinks you have pointing back to your site, the more popular it will be”
Learning how to obtain backlinks might be different depending on circumstance. Regardless of the circumstance, backlinking takes extended periods of time. It does not happen overnight. If you already have an existing site, perform a “link audit” to view your current backlinks.
7 Ideas to Generate Backlinks:
- Research the top sites in your field, and find their backlinks using Majestic SEO. Research their backlinks for ideas. The best way to find relevant sites, is to search using phrases or keywords. Think you found a good site? check the page rankings with this Moz Firefox extension.
- Offer yourself as an expert in your niche. Write articles, contribute to online forums such as Quora.com.
- Update local listings: Chamber of Commerce, local interest groups, and Meet-Ups are all great places to submit press releases and generate credible backlinks.
- Update non-local directories: Yellow pages, Google Maps, and Bing Maps.
- Write thoughtful product reviews on credible sites that have your product/niche.
- Put “Call to action” and “Share” buttons on your website articles and social media– someone might want to share your post on their website or blog.
Tracking your website’s backlinks using Google Webmaster tools or Majestic SEO will allow you to track your progress as time goes by. Be wary of offers to add backlinks to your site. With Google’s new Algorithm in place, spamming and purchasing backlinks are perhaps not as effective in modern SEO.
SEO is continually changing, but offering information with integrity is key. The more comfortable you are sharing your information with others, the more backlinks you will generate!