The benefits of optimizing your website’s content for better search engine rank can go a long way for your business. According to the Forbes Agency Council, optimized website content can bring more traffic, increase conversion rates and brand exposure, and extend your reach to new markets. Optimizing your SEO should not be a complicated, time-consuming process. Here are a few quick, actionable tips for your SEO Analyst to use when optimizing your SEO and boosting your rankings.
How to Optimize Your SEO
Do A Keyword Research
In SEO (Search Engine Optimization), keywords are everything. Simply put, keywords are the most frequently used words that internet users choose when searching for your website, services, or products. Properly chosen keywords distributed on your website will lead to better ranking results. So make sure you do proper keyword research before starting any SEO campaign. Otherwise, the whole campaign would be relying on luck, not data.
Proper keyword research first includes making a list of relevant keywords. The list should not be too long and should not include any irrelevant keywords because it would distort the focus of your website’s content and weaken your search results. If your business sells different brands of smartphones, your most relevant keywords should include: “smartphone, mobile phone, telecommunication, iPhone, Apple, Samsung, used smartphone for sale, or new smartphone for sale.” Note how they are not too many and none of them are irrelevant.
Optimizing their use includes making sure every page and post on your website includes the main keyword, and that different words are available on different pages of your website. It is because search engines usually choose to rank the top page of your website.
A simple way to choose the right keyword is to ask your friends; send them your website and ask them what they think the website (or web page) is all about. The keywords which they would provide are most probably the keywords that they would be using when searching for your website. A final way is to Google your chosen keywords before deciding to adopt them. This would provide you details on how each of the keywords ranks from Google’s perspective.
Results that show content similar to that of your website mean that the chosen keyword is right, while results that show different content are an indication that it is not the best keyword. Look at the top 3 ranking pages on the search engine results. If these pages represent content that is not similar to yours, then the keyword is not suitable. Also, if the keyword results in many promoted links, this may be unsuitable because it pushes the main organic results (blue links) down. This decreases CTR (Click-Through Rate) and traffic to your website.
Check Your Competitors
Well established competitors in the market can provide hints on the best keywords to use. Browse their web pages and identify what are the common keywords they use that provide them with good rankings. Do that on multiple pages from your competitors’ websites and see which provide the best ranking results. Then copy these keywords and adopt them across your website, while giving prominence to the main pages.
Write Powerful Headlines
Now that you’re well prepared with the right keywords, your next step is to ensure the headline of your website and its content are compelling and attention-grabbing. Otherwise, you would risk having them ignored by your target audience. The headline should surely include some of your keywords and should also resonate with your audience. They should also be straight forward and clear, not too wordy and confusing. In addition, emotional headlines are eye-catching.
In one CTR study by Backlinko, it was revealed that emotional headlines had 7 percent more clicks than non-emotional headlines. Here’s a video that gives you relevant power words that you can add to your headlines to boost their attractiveness. Once you prepare a few well-crafted headlines, test their quality through this free headline analyzer by CoSchedule. This would give you a headline score by assessing your headline’s structure, grammar, and readability with practical recommendations on how to improve it for better search engine results.
Optimize Your Meta Descriptions
By definition, a meta description is a summary of your page’s content within the HTML code that is around 155 characters. It usually looks like this:
If a user searches for any word or phrase within that description, search engines would show it in search results. So make sure you also include keywords and phrases within the meta description. It will improve its chances of showing up on the top or first page of search engines. Note that some companies overlook meta descriptions because they do not appear on the main website and do not have an immediate impact on search rankings. While this is true, optimized meta descriptions can improve your click-through rate (CTR), which can improve your web ranking.
Evidence comes from a 2019 CTR study that analyzed as much as 5 million Google search results and found that pages that have a meta description receive 5.8 percent of more clicks than those without a description. It is because the more click you get, the more Google will consider your page to be authoritative.
A good meta description should be no more than 155 characters, should use an active voice, and should use a call-to-action and matches the page’s content. A best practice is to write different meta descriptions for each of your pages throughout your website.
Optimize the Images
Images within your web pages have two main objectives: first, to provide a visual break from the text, and second, to allow your pages to drive better organic traffic. But first, you need to compress your images before you upload them to your web pages. This is because large image file sizes can slow down your page loading speed. Tools such as TinyPNG or ImageOptim can help compress your images without affecting their quality. Next, make sure you provide proper descriptions of your images in the HTML meta tags. It is crucial because Google does not process the meaning of the images. It is up to you to tell them explicitly, by adding descriptive file names to all images and drive more traffic through the Google Image search. Here’s an example:
Answer Popular Questions with Content
Internet users do not only search for keywords and phrases. They also search for answers to questions. The trick here is to look for the most popular questions related to your field. After this, provide answers to the questions on your website.
You can browse Question and Answer websites such as Reddit, Yahoo! Answers, WikiAnswers, and Quora, which provide a wealth of content ideas. Browse through the categories on these websites. Look for website topic that is related to yours, or use the search bar, and look for the most frequently asked questions. Once you determine these questions you can provide the highest quality of answers on your website.
Below is an example of the search results for ‘SEO tips’ within Quora’s website.