Search engine optimization, also known as SEO, is a term that as been around since the beginning of Google. It is a marketing tool that can be used by all businesses, no matter the size or type, to generate targeted traffic without spending money on things such as Facebook Ads or Google Adwords.
While it does take a great deal of time and effort to gain visibility through search engine optimization, it is well worth it when you consider the results it can bring.
As with many things on the internet, many aspects of SEO are constantly changing. Every year there are new trends and updates that change the way SEO is done. And even with all the changes and updates, the basics of SEO have not and more than likely will not ever change.
With that being said, here are 3 SEO best practices that you can always count on:
1 – Fresh, High Quality Content Matters
One of the most important ranking factors Google looks at when it comes to ranking content is quality. This of course should come as no surprise. After all, Google’s number one objective is to provide its users with the best possible search results.
Publishing fresh content on a regular basis shows the search engines that you are keeping your website up to date. Please note it’s not just about fresh content, it’s also about high quality content.
You can publish a new blog post everyday, but if that blog post provides little value it will not get the benefits of search engine optimization.
High quality content is what will help you attract shares and backlinks, two metrics search engines use to identify authority websites.
While search engine optimization isn’t the only reason you should focus on creating high quality content, it is one of the most important reasons.
Content marketing isn’t going anywhere and its time all business owners start taking it seriously. Plan on making quality content a huge part of your marketing strategy as you prepare to launch your new online business.
2 – Strategic Link Building Is a Must
Creating high quality content is only the first step in the search engine optimization process. After you hit publish is when the real work begins. Google has made it very clear that links are still the authority signal in their ranking algorithm.
But they can’t be links from just anywhere. Just like quality content is a must, so are quality links. Its better to have a few high quality links than thousands of low quality links.
To get the most out of search engine optimization you must have an effective link building strategy. Make sure your strategy focuses on getting links from websites that have a lot of authority in the eyes of Google.
You also want to make sure you get links from websites that are relevant to your topic. For example, if you create content in the weight loss niche, don’t get links from websites that are in the marketing niche. Relevancy matters when it comes to link building.
The good news is there are tools like Ahrefs.com that can help you grow your search traffic by researching your competitors and learning why they are ranking so high. You can then use that information to outrank them in the search results.
Many times getting links from authority sites is as simple as offering to contribute a relevant blog post. As long as you meet the requirements you should have no problem finding opportunities to be a guest contributor.
Link building is not easy. It takes time and effort to convince others to link back to your website. But when done right you will be able to skyrocket your rankings and drive a ton of free traffic to your website.
Check out this video to see how digital marketing expert Neil Patel was able to build over 23,000 unique links to his website NeilPatel.com.
3 – Focus On Providing a Good User Experience
Yes! User experience can and does affect search engine rankings. If you create high quality content and build high quality links only for visitors to quickly leave due to a poor user experience, your search engine rankings will suffer as a result.
Google’s objective is to send its visitors to high quality pages that provide them with the best possible experience. The algorithm will look at how long a visitor stays on your site as well as how many pages they view when determining your rank.
Rankbrain, a machine learning system Google uses to help sort search results, has become the third most important signal contributing to the results of a search query.
Rankbrain puts a lot of weight on dwell time, which they define as the amount of time a Google searcher stays on your page. Pages with the highest dwell time tend to rank higher in the search results.
According to SearchMetrics the average dwell time for a page that ranks in the top 10 on Google is just over 3 minutes. If you want to improve your dwell time it starts with improving the user experience.
One simple way to improve user experience is to include benefit driven subheadings in all of your content. By breaking up your content using subheadings you will make it a lot easier to read which means more people will actually read it.
You should also break up your content into small paragraphs. When a visitor seems big chunks of content they feel intimidated. As a result they will quickly hit the back button and never return to your website.
Each paragraph you write should be no more than 2 or 3 sentences. This makes your content easy on the eyes and easy to consume.
And there you have it, 3 SEO tips for new online business owners. Follow these tips and you will notice your search traffic start to gradually increase month after month.
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