7 SEO Strategies You Should Implement Today.
Stay ahead of the competitor with your SEO and get fast digital growth.
Analyse Your Competitors
SEO is a competitive landscape so reverse-engineer competitor strategies to gain an advantage.
Healthy competition is part of everyday life, and business is no different. It encourages innovation and makes you want to do better in every aspect of your business. Figuring out how to beat your competitors on the search engine results page (SERP) follow the same principle – discover your top competitors, identify why they are outranking you, and evaluate how to beat them to number one.
Analysing your competitors is different when it comes to search engine optimisation (SEO). There are unexpected things that you might come across that or things that you have to think about differently.
When it comes to SEO, your top SEO competitors are the ones ranking on the first page for the keywords your targeting, regardless of whether they’re your normal business competitors.
When competing for ranking on the results page, you may find that you’re competing against companies and organisations you wouldn’t even think of – if you’re selling sheds, you’d expect to come against your normal competitors, but you may find yourself attempting to outrank the support body Men’s Sheds Association on certain keywords.
Google will rank the sites it believes are most useful for searcher, which means that often on informational queries, these high authority sites or associations will end up ranking well.
Keywords and Content
You’ll need to assess the strength of your competitor on the SERP, which means looking into their keyword profile. This allows you to understand their approach to SEO and which resources you’ll need to invest to beat them on the results page. Identity which keywords they’re ranking for. Ask yourself; Is the page transactional, navigational or informational?
How many words does it have?
What style is it written in – listicle, longform, video?
How often is the content updated?
How much similar content is on the domain?
Answers to the questions above will help you to understand Google’s perceived intent of the keyword.
Analysing these kinds of thing sand making the relevant changes can seem small, since switching up your content is a simple job. However, these improvements can dramatically increase your ranking and visibility over the medium and long term.
5 Tools TO Use
SEMrush – semrush.com
This all-in-one marketing toolkit allows you to identify your organic competitors and displays the proportion of branded to non-branded traffic.
Ahrefs – ahrefs.com
This is one of the best link analysis tools that also has a fantastic competitor analysis tool based on keywords.
Similar Web – similarweb.com
A great tool that shows you exactly how a website attracts traffic across all channels like social, search and more.
Buzzsumo – buzzsumo.com
This popular tool allows you to analyse what content performs best for any topic, as well as for any competitor.
Moz – moz.com
One of the most popular applications on the market, it gives you plenty of ways to analyse your competitors.
How To Become An Entity
Becoming an entity in Google’s eyes is your ticket to visibility.
Defined by Google, an entity is “ A thing or concept that is singular, unique, well-defined and distinguishable.”
In basic terms, an entity is a person, place, thing or an idea; an entity is any concept that can be uniquely defined. It can be a word, a colour, a theory – as long as it is distinct and exists independently. This means that the meaning of an entity will translate in any language; The Beatles, whether you speak English or not, are a named entity who are understood as such worldwide. Entities most often appear a Google knowledge graph result. They appear on the right of the SERP and aim to give quick important information about a search subject.
What Does It Take To Be An Entity?
If you’re looking for your brand to become an entity, you’ll need to provide a range of information to the search engines. Google takes information from places such as Wikipedia and other high authority websites, as well as things such as Schema Markup on your website. Typically, Google needs over 20 signals that you’re trusted brand and recognised entity before it will enter you into knowledge graph.
Obviously some of this (such as Wikipedia) isn’t within your control, but in order to appear on a knowledge graph, there are changes you can make to things you own that can help. Ensure that your social profiles, website and references to your brand are always consistent; use your full brand name and similar keywords to describe your service whenever you are working with an external source. If you are a digital marketing agency, then refer to yourself as a ‘digital marketing agency’ at all times rather than calling yourself a ‘digital agency’ or an ‘seo agency’.
Get Your Site Marked Up
Search Engines take information from Schema Markup on your website. Schema is micro data that you can add to your website HTML, improving the way that search engines read and crawl your website. In turn, search engines will present relevant information from the schema on knowledge graph when people search for your brand terms. Organisation Schema will help Google to understand your brand and associated social profiles by marking them as @sameas. This helps Google understand the connection between your owned assets online.
Build authoritative links into the site which reference your business on a relevant page. Relevant references will support Google in understanding what your business does and seeing you as an authority in it.
People are worried by the knowledge graph, thinking that they won’t be able to control what information is shown. However Google is giving people more and more control over the information and appearance of the knowledge graphs. It’s as simple as going through a verification process on Google so that you can claim your knowledge graph and suggest edits to it.
5 Ways To Own The SERP
There is no silver bullet for owning the SERP. SEO is a long term game – it takes dedication to see results. There are things you can do to help your website be more relevant to searches.
Ensure Your Website Is Mobile-first
It had been coming for a long time, but about two years ago Google started rolling out their mobile-first indexing. What this means is that Google uses the mobile version of a page when it comes to indexing and ranking. This means you need to ensure that your website is mobile friendly, which means it must be responsive and fast.
Optimise and increase speed for user experience
A website that loads quickly offers a better user experience, and can rank well in search results. As soon as your website isn’t delivering at speed a competitor will appear above you in the rankings. There is a high premium on the site speed and low attention span these days, so make sure that your desktop and mobile sites are optimised for it.
Build Your Backlink Profile
Backlinks are still a part of the foundation ensuring that a website ranks highly, so it’s worth spending time building a website’s backlink profile. Do a little bit of research to make sure that the websites linking back to you are high quality authoritative, but once you build that list, try to get them to link back to yours.
Create High Quality Content
There’s been a focus on high quality content over the last few years. It’s worth spending time on the content you’re serving to your users to make sure that it is a good as possible. Your content should answer questions, engage your audience, inform and entertain them. Good content helps to drive better, more qualified users to your website, as well as helping to generate brand awareness.
Content doesn’t have to be just a load of blogs posts either – it can be infographics, videos, charts, images, quizzes; whatever it is that drives a better customer experience.
Capture A Featured Snippet
Having good structured data on your website (schema.org) is a really good way of winning a featured snippet.
A featured snippet, also called ‘position zero’ is the box that appears above all other organic results on the page and presents the answer to the user’s query, alongside a link where the content comes from.
Winning position zero has become a prominent way to increase your organic traffic, and all it takes is a little research into your niche to find out what your users are most often searching for.
5 Tips For Voice Search
Mind Your Language
When you think about voice, you need to consider how people actually talk. Consider the user when you’re optimising your website content – people will search with voice by asking long questions rather than just typing brief keywords into Google, so your content should be optimised for medium and long phrases, as much as keywords.
Ensure You’re Answering The Right Kinds Of Questions
You want voice assistants to consider using your site for their answers, so you need to find out how people are asking their questions. Use a tool such as Answer the Public (answerthepublic.com) or scrape Google’s People Also Ask to help you figure out what questions your customers are asking and how they are asking them.
Semantic search has become increasingly common in voice. This is when queries are connected, and follow-up queries often do not include the initial keywords. To optimise for this, you need to ensure that all relevant questions and answers on your site are either on the same page or closely linked together to help Google read them as related content.
Make Your Website Mobile-friendly – again!
Most voice searches start from a mobile device, so it goes without saying that your website is mobile friendly. As Google typically reads that first ‘featured snippet’ or answers box’ in the mobile SERP, it’s key that you rank well to have the chance to be seen as the preferred voice answer. The rise of voice search has made mobile friendliness more important than ever!
Keep It Local
People tend to use voice search to discover where they should go – so if you own the best bagel shop in Brixton, it’s worth optimising for words relevant to Brixton, South London and such on your website. When people ask ‘what are the nearest bagels to me’ you’ll ideally be the destination.
Integrate With Other Channels
Stay visible by making use of all digital channels, focusing in on where you know you’ll find your audience.
Remember that marketers are here to position brands and products effectively to consumers. It is essential to build strategies that work together in order to maximise the value to the business and to consumers. Your strategy should be founded in research from the market, competitors and consumers.
User journeys to conversion are complex, with multiple touchpoints across multiple devices. While you might ‘win’ in particular keywords sets. If their next query takes place on a different device with no search history, you risk them not seeing your result.
It’s important to be visible across as many platforms and channels as possible – this means using social media, PPC, display and video to guarantee that you are always front of mind for your potential customers. Where budgets are limited, understand your target audience and their behaviour. Where to they consume content online? What devices do they use? Questions are they likely to ask about your product or service? Videos are they likely to watch in their path to purchase?
Only then can you begin to understand where best to concentrate your efforts, and where to make sure you and your message are visible.
Improve User Experience
Website optimisation and user experience no longer exist separately. Your website must strive to satisfy user queries, while ensuring that the user has an easy and memorable experience on each page.
Optimising your website for search and the user experience are one and the same thing. We’re past the days when you could just stuff a page of keywords to help it rank. Today, websites need to consider the users’ experience as a central part of any design.
Capture Attention With Metadata
Anytime you are making changes to your website, you need to keep your users in mind. You need to consider how they think about your products, and also what their intent is. You need to entice them to click on your website, so ditch any bland language and copy currently housed there.
Never Overlook Speed or Navigation
When you get visitors on your website, you also want to make that they can navigate effectively throughout. Don’t hide things away in a menu link – display what you offer clearly on your navigation bar.
When your customers finally arrive at a page, include a breadcrumb trail – that is, show them how they arrived at that link on your site so that they know where they are. As mentioned previously, speed is key, and that even comes down to how your website is hosted. Sharing server space is going to slow you down, so if you have the capacity you should strongly consider outing your website on a dedicated server. Most web hosts offer this kind of service, so ask them about what they can do to speed up your site for minimal cost.
Don’t Forget The CTA
Finally, it might seem obvious, but including calls-to-action on your pages gives you the opportunity to entice users deeper into your website. Ensure that your CTAs let your visitors know where they will get to by clicking, and increase the possibility of them converting when they arrive there. The longer you can keep them on-site, the more chance you have of them converting into a customer.
Don’t Forget Local
Make Local SEO part of your overall business strategy to cover all search bases.
If it’s relevant to you – that is, if you have a bricks and mortar location as part of your business – then local SEO should be a key part of your website strategy. Local SEO promotes your website visibility on location-based searches, and it’s important to keep in mind when optimising your website. It’s basic stuff, but you need to make sure that things like your business address and phone numbers are up to date across your website, as well as on any map listing and the knowledge graph. Adding things like your opening hours and reviews is always beneficial too (as long as they’re positive!)