Good search engine rankings are important to get tons of free visitors. But to get something for free, you need to make some efforts. To get thousands of visitors from search engines like Google, Bing etc you need to improve your search engine rankings and here are almost all of the important tips you need to know!
- Focus on the links that are pointing to your website
There are 100+ factors listed by Google that effect search engine rankings and links that are pointing to your website is one of the most important factors. You need to get quality links to your website in order to achieve higher search engine rankings. Also, you would need to make sure that the websites that are considered shady and low quality by Google should not link to you. While the latter is really tough, the former can be done by following some good link building tactics.
- Format your title tag
Each new page you create on your website consists of a title tag and you must ensure that the content between those tags has the keywords you want to target to get people on your site. Why do you think title of a blog post is important? Of course, a catchy title gets you attention of readers but at the same time it gets you search engine love. Make sure that the title of the page/post you’re creating consists of appropriate keywords. Now, what do we mean by keywords? We will discuss that in the next point.
- Keywords and their effect on search engine rankings
Keywords are those words through which people will search you for. The page you’re creating must have those kinds of keywords. For example, this write up is about how to improve your search engine rankings. Now, we would want people looking for improving search engine rankings to land on this page which you’re reading right now. So, our keyword in this case would be “improve your search engine rankings”. Note that we choose longer keywords instead of short one – search engine rankings, because longer keywords increase your chances of appearing at top of search engine results because of lesser competition. It is just a smart strategy we use to get traffic to our site through search engines. You can use that too.
- Add keywords in links
When you add links to your own site or some other site send out a link to you, if the link consists of a keyword at anchor text, that would again indicate the search engines to consider that your site has an authority on that particular word and people would be able to search you through those keywords just like the keywords that you include on your page to make you searchable. For example, we have a word “online marketing strategy” and we link to our article about online marketing strategy. Here online marketing strategy would act as a keyword in link and help our article about online marketing strategy appear for search term “online marketing strategy”. But the question is how to let google know that you’re using such keywords? The answer is in the next point.
- Use an SEO plugin or hire an SEO expert
If your website is hosted on a CMS like WordPress, you can easily download the most popular and effective SEO plugin SEO by Yoast to let search engines know about the keywords you’re using. When you install the plugin, you get to choose the keywords for every page you create. Choose them wisely. Make sure that keywords are present in your page’s content as well for a better effect.
- Use a sitemap
The same plugin also helps you create a sitemap for your site. Sign up for Google Webmasters and submit your website first. Then submit the sitemap. This would help Google understand the structure of your website in a better manner and boost your search engine rankings. You can do the same with Bing by using Bing Webmasters Tools. Google and Bing are the most popular search engines for now so you should just focus on these two when it comes to submission of sitemap.
- Optimize the images
You can get a lot of traffic from the images you use on your site’s pages. But who to make your images search engine friendly? By filling information in title, alt and description box. The alt tag of the image must contain a brief description of the picture. Search engines cannot see the picture; they can just see the alt tag. So whatever you write in alt tag would be what search engines understand about the image. Make sure you put your keywords in all three – image title, alt and description. But don’t keep all three exactly same.
- Use meta keywords tag
Make sure you have properly set meta title and meta description of your website. In fact, this is the first thing you must do to improve your search engine rankings. Meta keywords and description help you explain to search engines about what your website does and what kind of content it publishes or cater to. Also, note that there is another meta keywords tag which is usually ignored by Google. So, you can even consider to ignore this part but we recommend that you don’t for we saw an improvement in our search engine traffic when we defined this information properly.
- Put some effort on creating URLs
URL of the page is important. In fact, the urls that have keywords in them and are more understandable by users are going to be preferred by search engines. So, make sure the urls you create are well defined. In case, you use dynamic urls since a long time, we would recommend not changing them for it will affect your rankings adversely and would require a great effort to make a comeback. But in case, you’re starting off with a new project, make sure your urls look like ours.
- Don’t focus on Page Rank
Once upon a time, page rank was the most important factors used to determine the credibility of a site. But now it is dead. Literally dead for Google no longer updates that Page Rank. Factors like domain authority, page authority are more important now. Though you would still find people who would say that you have a low page rank and blah blah but those are the people who just failed to update their knowledge. So, either tell them to check their fact or just ignore working with such people.
- Fix broken links
You signed up for Google webmasters and submitted your sitemap. Right? Now you need to go and fix the broken links. Now go to crawl errors section and fix all the server errors, not found and soft 404 errors. Check out if the link is broken and if it can be fixed. If you just removed the link from your site and don’t plan to get it back, go to Google Index and use remove URLs option to remove the broken links and errors.
- Conduct keyword research
We talked about keywords. Right? Now that we know what keywords are and why are they important, we need to pick up popular keywords which people really use to search online and use them to build our authority. For this purpose, you need to do keyword research. You need to determine which keywords as well as keyword phrases are relevant to your business and target market. But how to do that? There are many keywords tools available which you can choose to search for relevant tools.
- Google keyword tool: this is one of the most popular and most widely used keyword tool. Also, it is free, so start using it now.
- com/trends: You can use this to keep yourself update to latest popular stuff over the internet. Find out what’s trending related to your business and use those trending keywords for creating new content.
- Google Alerts: You can also set up alerts for topics related to your business. This will show you what’s new and also help you come up with new content ideas.
- Focus on bringing engagement on your content
Once you’re done with keyword research, creating content that has all the relevant content in appropriate proportion, you need to focus on bringing engagement on the content. More comments, more social shares would lead to better ranking of that content. So, make sure you use all your marketing effort to get your content at other places where people would read and share it and your search engine rankings would automatically get boosted.
- Create Quality content
Having said the last point, it is important to mention this obvious thing. Your content must be of high quality. Why would anyone share a low quality content which doesn’t give them value? Why would anyone share a boring piece of article which no one would want to read? You need to create content that people would want to share. Make it interesting. Make it interactive and you would definitely see the magic that would improve your search engine rankings.
- Update content on regular basis
Why do you think brands are suggested to create blogs? Blog for business aren’t only for better relationships with existing customers but they serve a very important objective – blogs help in creating new content regularly which boost search engine rankings and make brands more visible in search engines. So, whether you’re a blog or a business, you need to make sure you produce regular content. Even your old piece of content must be updated, reshared and revisited to get it more attention. Have a link-worthy site
- Be slow and steady while building links
Our very first point was about building links to your site. We told you we are going to discuss more about it. Before explaining how to build good links, you must understand that you need to be slow and steady while building links. If you build links too quickly, your site might be considered as spam and get a google penalty which is the worst thing that can happen to your site’s image. So, pick up one or two keywords once and focus on them for like 5-6 months. Then leave them and move on to next keywords. Also, try to keep your link building efforts to maximum 5 per day. That’s a thing we follow and we would recommend.
- Make yourself popular on social media
Did you think social media was just for driving traffic to your website? No. It affects your search engine rankings too. The numbers of times you’re mentioned by people, the number of times your content is shared are an important search engine ranking factor. So, get social and try to create content that gets shared.
- Get more pages indexed by Google
In other words, start blogging. With each blog post, you get an extra page which have chances to get indexed and therefore increase your reputation in eyes of Google. So, whether you’re a business or a blog, the more content you create, the more Google love you get. But make sure it is good content.
- Improve user experience
If you will love your users, google will love you. Make your website responsive, mobile friendly and make it easy for users to navigate. Increase the page load speed and make user content engaging.
So, these are 19 things you need to start working on to improve your search engine rankings. Though such lists are endless but we believe that these points are the only ones you require to achieve real success. Try them!