As a business owner, you may already know that a website is crucial for your success in this day and age. You can connect with consumers in the digital sphere, wherein they’re either scrolling through their news feeds or searching for solutions to their queries.
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps you reach out to your target audience through Google or Bing. This digital marketing strategy is all about enhancing the elements of your site to ensure that it can be crawled by search engine bots and added to their indexes. Moreover, SEO also boosts the visibility of your domain to web users who are most likely to convert to paying customers, according to their browsing and buying habits.
You should have a solid SEO strategy in place so that your business can grow. Here are some common practices that can help you get started:
1. Research The Web Intensively
Research is a crucial first step that you should take before any venture. You may have done market analysis before you set up your business so that you’ll know whether the products and services you offer will be appealing to consumers. The same goes for SEO. You have to know the digital landscape before you can create a campaign that will help you succeed. SEO practices abound these days, but you have to personalize your approach and find the methods that will work for your company.
One of the best ways to go about this is to know your SEO rivals. These are other sites and blogs that compete for the same keywords as you on search engines. A competitive research tool can help you identify their traffic, audiences, and lead sources so that you can emulate and improve on them.
Research can also help you figure out the short- and long-tail keywords that you should focus on for your digital marketing campaign. This way, you can incorporate them into your content and improve searchability.
Knowledge is always an advantage in business. You should be aware of what your competitors are doing, which is how you can stay one step ahead with your SEO campaign.
2. Enhance User Experience For Your Site
Human users are the stars of the World Wide Web. That’s why Google and Bing send out their crawlers to explore billions of web pages to deliver high-quality solutions in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
User experience (UX) is a crucial ranking factor. Search engines favor sites that prioritize giving their web visitors the best content and design.
These are a few factors that you should optimize:
Page Speed – A slow website will prove to be frustrating to web users. They can easily abandon your site and look for answers to their queries elsewhere. That’s why you should take note of the rate at which your web page’s elements load and improve them as much as you can.
Mobile-Friendliness – With most consumers opting to browse the web through their phones, it makes a lot of sense to ensure that your site looks good even when viewed through different screen sizes. Search engines take note of the mobile-friendliness and responsiveness of websites for their ranking.
Navigation – The design of your website must be intuitive for web users. For instance, most domains redirect visitors to their homepages if they click on the logo. You can implement this shortcut in your blog as well for better accessibility.
URL Structure – The URL of your site’s pages is also an integral part of UX. Make sure that it’s readable for human users since it can help them go from one page to another easily. Plus, it’s more convenient to bookmark your content and return to it once they need it again.
3. Acquire Backlinks Through Link Building
Link building is the process of getting backlinks, which are hyperlinks from other websites that direct people to your domain. Search engines use these links to assess a site’s quality since they’re considered to be votes of confidence on the published content.
However, the source’s credibility also plays a significant role in the rank that it passes through the backlink. You must prioritize getting your links published on authority sites in your niche. Plus, you’ll improve the chances of conversions since these websites have established a following among users who’ve expressed interest in the same products and services that you offer.
Find tools that help you check backlinks, whether internal or external. For the former, you should determine the quality of inbound links that you have to avoid damaging your rank. Additionally, you can find link building opportunities by looking at your competitors’ profiles and reaching out to sites that link to them, but not to you.
4. Produce Compelling Content in Different Formats
Since web users’ needs and preferences come first in SEO, you should be creating content for humans first, and optimization for search engine crawlers comes second. Aside from links, keywords and your overall content play a significant role in determining your place in the SERPs.
You should produce content that’s informative, yet engaging and entertaining at the same time. Moreover, use different media formats that will add a visual appeal to your blog posts. While text will always be important, especially in providing an anchor for your links, images, such as infographics, and videos allow you to relay your message in a comprehensive yet easily digestible way.
Videos, in particular, are the most favored format by web users these days. You should dedicate resources to producing video content that’s backlink-worthy.
5. Maximize Local SEO
Local SEO can also help you boost your SEO and create a strong online presence. This strategy pertains to using your geographical location to promote your content on search engines. It can be as simple as adding your city or town to your target keywords.
For instance, if you’re a Massachusetts company that sells kitchenware, you can optimize your content with key phrases, like ‘kitchen tools in Boston’ or ‘Salem kitchenware company.’ Through this, customers nearby can be directed to your shop.
Setting up a Google My Business (GMB) profile is useful as well. The company has provided this tool to allow owners to manage and optimize your profile on the search engine. Essentially, it’s your business listing on the platform, which is displayed when a user searches for companies in your industry or your exact brand name.
Your GMB profile shows up on the SERPs and Google Maps. Creating an account lets you provide first-hand information on your company. Once your listing is approved, users can then leave reviews and ask questions regarding your brand, as well as products and services.
If you’ve established a relatively steady online presence, your GMB listing might already be visible to Google users. With this, you should verify that you own the company so that you can manage the information that’s published.
6. Track Your Progress With Web Analytics
You ought to have web analytics set up right at the start of your SEO campaign. This way, you can monitor which strategies are effective in boosting your site’s visibility and rank on search engines.
Google has provided free tools, such as its Search Console, to make it more convenient for site administrators to track their SEO progress. Numerous factors influence your search engine ranking. You should stay on top of your campaigns to ensure that all options are maximized.
Some factors that you should monitor are:
Conversion Rates – This variable can be gleaned from the actions that you want web users to take, not just by converting from visitors to paying customers. Having this data can help you improve your calls-to-action (CTAs).
Traffic Sources – You should also identify your top sources of traffic. This way, you can evaluate which platforms to focus your resources on to get the most out of them.
Visitor Interactions – Heatmaps are valuable for pinpointing the areas on your site that garner the most interactions from visitors. These are the sections that are working well in retaining your audience’s attention. The insight that you get from analyzing this factor can facilitate the improvement of other portions.
Bounce Rate – The bounce rate is the percentage of new visitors who open your website and abandon it without moving past the first page. A high bounce rate may point to low-quality traffic sources or ineffective landing pages, among others.
Session Duration – This factor pertains to the length of time that a web user stays in your domain. The premise is that your website provides relevant information to the visitor if they stay long enough to read your content.
7. Optimize Your Site’s Back-End
The front-end of your website refers to the elements that human users can view on the page, such as the content and other media, which should be rightfully optimized. Nonetheless, you should also enhance back-end elements, like codes, sitemaps, and meta information, so that search engine crawlers can explore and index your domain with ease.
SEO is highly useful for connecting to potential customers. You should have a solid campaign for your business and take advantage of the global reach of the World Wide Web. Follow these common practices to get started.