However, certain fundamental SEO best practices remain unchanged. For instance, keyword targeting with the only objective to improve organic page rankings is no longer effective, but keywords are still important for SEO. I will use as an example keyword in this article “SEO Galway”.
With so many SEO tactics in place, it becomes tricky to determine which ones to embrace and which techniques you can afford to ignore. And, what are the SEO best practices that will lead to quality results?
Check out the 9 valuable tips for effective SEO. Following these tactics with dedication can improve your search engine rankings and drive more organic web traffic.
Ready for the SEO tips and tricks? Let us dive in right away:
Keywords, Keywords, Keywords!
Using keywords for SEO has traveled a long way. Today, search engines like Google do not rank pages solely on the basis of how keywords are used. However, effective keyword research and targeting is still one of the best SEO practices. Start with in-depth keyword research for your niche. You can use Google keyword planner or any advanced keyword research tool to get a list of most relevant keywords and their search volume trends. There are some good keywords research tools available online for free I personally use lsigraph.com this tool allows you generating semantic, long-tail, and LSI keywords for free.
Ditch short key phrases and target long-tail keywords more to boost your page rankings on search engines. Google now ranks pages largely on the basis of how well they address a specific search query, i.e., it has become more user-centric than ever. Since web users have become very specific about what and how they search online, long-tail keywords have gained more prominence. Increased popularity of voice search has further spiked the use of long-tail keywords.
Using long-tail keywords in your content is one of the SEO best practices to drive targeted traffic who are very specific in their search (they tend to search for what they actually want to buy). Keep a keyword density of 2%–5%, sprinkled naturally throughout the content. Make sure you add “high commercial intent keywords” throughout the site including page titles, URLs, meta tag, meta description, and image file names. Doing this will make your site rank better when people search for the related keywords.
Create Eye-Catchy and Unique Meta Descriptions for Each Page
To reap profits from your SEO efforts, you have to first understand what are the technical SEO best practices? And meta description is certainly one of it. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most neglected ones. A meta description is the first thing that people see when your page appears on the search engine result page. Whether or not a user will click on the link depends on how inviting the meta description is. However, beware of using duplicate meta descriptions for multiple web pages of similar types. Yes, Google hates duplicate content and using the same meta description for all your web pages can get you into real trouble. Create unique and relevant meta descriptions for every page. Include the targeted keywords and a Call to Action that inspires users to click.
Characteristics of a good meta description
– Up to 155 characters – and sometimes more
– Actionable and written in an active voice
– Including a call-to-action
– Containing the focus keyword
– Possibly showing specifications
– Matching the content
Learn the Tactic of Link Building
Before you say link building is dead, read this.
For Google, the priority is to provide users with the “most relevant” search results possible. In the process of providing users with what they are looking for, Google considers a vital factor – authority. One of the most effective ways of building authority is to get a high number of quality links directed to your website. So link building is still on SEO news, helping you get great results.
However, the strategy should be to get backlinks from authority websites. And reputable websites will only link to you when you have an awesome content or a great website that they would like to share. Use a mix of do-follow and no-follow links to get an organic link profile that Google will love to reward.
Link building is not all about getting inbound links. Linking out to authoritative and relevant content is a part of smart SEO best practices. According to Rand Fishkin, the founder of Moz, “Linking out sends trackable traffic, it makes your site a more valuable and scalable resource”. So adopt a combined strategy of inbound links and linking out.
Write Content with Focus on Readers First
If your SEO strategy is solely focused on keyword targeting and search engine ranking, it is high time that you recheck what are SEO best practices and latest algorithm updates.
Today, Google rewards page ranking not on the basis of how well you have targeted the relevant keywords, but on how relevant the content is, click-through-rate, and the level of user engagement. Therefore, focus more on enhancing user experience and engagement by creating content with “readers first” on the mind.
Ever wonder how the same content marketing strategies work wonders for some businesses but seem to be a “fail” for others? That is because the latter prioritizes on making the search engines happy than the actual readers.
Create content for humans – “who have eyes to read and credit cards to purchase your product.”
Here are some quick tips to create awesome content for your readers:
- Write in-depth, long-form content that deals with a topic exhaustively, providing valuable insights into the readers.
- Have a unique and eye-catchy title that instantly catches the attention.
- Make the content engaging and easy to read by including bullets, sub-heads, images, infographics, etc.
- Update fresh and interesting content frequently to give something new to your readers every time. It also gives authority to your website.
Use Meaningful and Simple URLs Only
Wondering what are technical SEO best practices that can boost your website ranking significantly? Keeping your website URLs simple, crisp, and relevant is one of the best SEO tactics to rank higher on search engines. And improved page rankings mean more website traffic and better conversions.
If web users are unable to understand your URL, then it is likely that search engines will be even more confused. So keep it short, easy to understand, and meaningful. Experts advise that having 2–4 words is enough to create a page URL. This makes it easily recognizable and search engine friendly.
Here are some interesting tips for you to improve your URL structure:
- Never use capital letters in URLs that may confuse search engines and visitors.
- Google algorithm is unable to read “underscore.” So always use “hyphen” in URLs.
- Summarise the page content in the least possible words in the URL. For example https://seoplan.co/10-strategic-seo-tips-you-need-to-know/
- Use robots.txt to prevent search engines from crawling bad URLs that point to our canonical URL.
Focus on Local SEO
Local SEO is an effective way to promote your local business online. The SEO strategy is crucial for small businesses or companies with multiple locations where the goal is to promote the products and services to local customers exactly when they are searching for them online. Unlike SEO which targets “generic” search queries, local SEO is targeted towards “local intent.”
So how is local SEO different from SEO? Well, there is a fine line of difference. For instance, effective SEO can help your page gain authority and rank for a generic search query like “tips to fix a blocked faucet.” However, when the query has strong purchase intent, people would search “best plumber in Dublin”, “plumbers near me”, “SEO Galway” or “Local SEO Galway” That is where your local SEO strategies would come to play.
Local SEO is a powerful tool to get you in front of the local customers at the right time when they are looking for products or services related to yours. In a scenario where 64% of local customers use search engines and online directories to find local businesses, it is imperative for you to adopt the strategy.
Wondering what are local SEO best practices? Here are some ideas for you:
- ‘Localise’ your website by adding your city, region, or country name throughout the site and in a natural way. Targeting keywords with city name is also a good tactic.
- Feature your website on authoritative citation sites and online directories.
- Enlist your website on Google My Business.
- Get high-quality and relevant inbound links.
Eliminate Anything that is Slowing Down Your Website
Page loading time is an important on-page SEO metric that you should take into account. If your website takes decades to load, it is likely to have a higher bounce rate. Bounce rate directly impacts your search engine rankings. So remove everything that is making your site run slow – large image files, irrelevant plugins, music players, flash content, etc. Request a free website audit from us we, Auditing your website can determine whether or not it’s optimized to achieve your traffic goals, and if not, how you can improve it to increase performance.
Leverage Internal Linking
There is perhaps no other basic SEO strategy than including internal links into your site. It is one of the easiest ways to improve page rankings and boost traffic inflow. Having internal links not only helps your visitors navigate your website with ease, but also allows Google to identify and crawl all your pages.
Whenever you create fresh content, make it a point to link back to your archives or other related pages of your website. However, avoid making it too spammy.
Measure and Analyse Your SEO Success
It is rightly said, “if you can measure it, then you can improve it.” In SEO, effective monitoring and analysis is the key to success. SEO experts regularly track data regarding search engine rankings, links, referrals, conversion rate by keywords, and more to analyze the health of your SEO strategy. This helps eliminate the bottlenecks and improve your SEO performance.
These 9 SEO best practices will help you take your SEO strategy to the next level. SEO takes time to show results, but with hard work and dedication, you can generate organic traffic to your website, driving increased sales and better ROI.