Search Engine Optimization aka SEO has become tougher than what was years back. Today, tons of websites launch every day, building a huge competition for the newbie and existing webmasters. However, the ultimate purpose of everyone is to sustain the realm of SERP (Search Engine Result Pages).
Those who still believe in the competence of SEO are getting fruitful results. However, noobs are the highly impacted category that has ZERO ideas of SEO. With a lack of knowledge, they end up quitting their webmaster efforts or continuously following dead practices.
Even newbies deserve high business visibility in search engines. But how can they draw such results? The right knowledge and right recommendations are the keys to their success.
This article will enrich your existing efforts with the right SEO practices that will undoubtedly lead to:
- Increased Traffic to your Website
- High Business Visibility
- Top Search Rankings
- Significant Hike in Leads
- Overall Business Growth
Let’s start with the basic introduction to SEO.
What is Search Engine Optimization aka SEO?
Search Engine Optimization is the practice of regularly optimizing your website to serve your customers/visitors and rank high in the search results. Google is the prime search engine considered (& followed) for SEO.
When working with SEO, you shouldn’t skip other digital marketing practices that commonly include:
- Content Marketing
- Web Development (Coding)
- Conversion Rate Optimization
The cumulative outcome of the above-listed points will help you rank high in the search results and cover all major aspects of digital marketing.
Now, without distraction, let’s stick to SEO and;
Find out How you can Boost your Business Visibility in Search Engines.
1. Optimize Your Website:
The first step to land in competition is optimizing your website. Without proper OnPage optimization, it’s tough to get into search results and outrank your competitors.
Proper optimization of your website w.r.t. Google guidelines is termed as OnPage Optimization.
SEO Starter Guide by Google is the perfect platform to start with.
2. Write SEO Friendly Content Regularly:
Yes, we already know that you have already written ample content on your website (in form of Blogs and Web pages). But writing a piece of content without knowledge and strategy is half work done that gives no or negligible results.
Writing high-quality content is what can take your efforts to the peak of SERP.
Write more above people’s pain points and your content will earn more visibility than before. The best way to find topics is to understand users’ journeys.
Image via: online.visual-paradigm.com
From Awareness to Purchase, you must know that what type of content is required to reach the right audience and serve them best. Check out this image to understand our content strategy according to the Customer’s journey.
Image via: Brafton.com
3. Use Headlines and Sub-headings:
Headings are the halts of your content that helps readers better understand your entire content. The same concept works with search bots/crawlers as well. HTML provides you with the entire family of heading tags starting with H1 and ending at H6 in a hierarchical format.
The heading 1 (H1) tag is the most important one. Hence, your Title is highly preferred as H1 Tag.
Further, separate your content into multiple sub-headings starting with H2 till H6.
NOTE: It’s not mandatory to use all heading tags.
Image via: mylittlebigweb.com
4. Add Links to Content:
Adding links to other related content is a good practice to showcase your expertise. If you already have content related to a specific topic of your new content, don’t miss out to link it.
Two types of links are recommended in your content.
- Internal Links: Links to other web pages within your website.
- External Links: Links to other web pages from other websites.
Using internal linking is highly recommended to increase the website’s link web. Whereas external links to high authority websites help you in building authority.
Remember, you must use rel=”nofollow”, rel=”sponsor” and other anchor attributes to ensure your webpage’s link juice isn’t passed to low-quality websites.
5. Optimize the Length of Your Article/Blog/Webpage:
What’s the standard length for any Blog or Webpage?
Well, there isn’t any specified content length. Instead, SEO experts always suggest you to write till it provides quality information and maintains relevancy to the topic.
According to Hubspot, the average length of quality content resides between 2100 to 2400 words. However, this isn’t fixed.
When writing a Blog/Article/Webpage, don’t forget to consider these points:
- Keep the content 100% related to the topic
- Avoid overstuffing your content to make it long
- Don’t write content in essay format. Separate it into parts (using subheadings as we’ve discussed above)
- Do smart use of Primary keywords, LSI keywords, and Related keywords
6. Choose Your Keywords Wisely:
What are Keywords?
Keywords are words or groups of words that user uses to perform a search in a search engine. Keywords are the sole of your content. You should always give time to keyword research before adding it to your content.
Right keyword selection helps you garnish your content. Keywords also let search engines understand your content and better rank them for the specific keyword intention.
Image via: Optinmonster.com
Commonly used tools to find potential keywords for your business.
- Google Search Console
- Ahrefs Keywords Explorer
- Google Keyword Planner
- Answer the Public
- Keyword Surfer
- Bulk Keyword Generator
NOTE: Never do keyword stuffing. Moreover, prefer using LSI (Latent Semantic Index) and related keywords to make your content readable and easy to understand.
Always include your prime keywords in
- Main title of your content
- Subheading of your content
- First 100 words of your content
- Title Tag
7. Optimize your Images:
Images are the essential asset of your web pages that boost the user experience and bind them to your content. Rich media lets you build connectivity between the reader and your content.
The inclusion of rich media helps you decrease the bounce rate of your website. Use rich media to help the readers better understand your motive.
Yet, optimizing your content is essential to provide information to the search engine. Don’t forget to add ALT (Alternative Tag) in your images.
Image via: wpbeginner.com
NOTE: Prefer defining your image instead of putting keywords. Further, limit the ALT tag to a few words only.
When using images for your web content, don’t miss the following pointers.
- Use high-quality images
- Customize the filename
- Use alt text
- Add image captions
- Reduce the image file size
- Find the right quality-to-size ratio
- Choose the right file type (JPEG, PNG)
- Add images to your sitemap
8. Work on Website Speed:
Digital marketers are already aware of the upcoming Core Web Vitals, which will include website speed as a strong ranking factor.
FACT: pages that load within two seconds have an average bounce rate of 9%, while pages that load in five seconds see their bounce rates skyrocket to 38%.
Hence, you should check your website speed and rectify the lagging issues. Use Page Insights or GTMetrix to find your website speed alongside possible remedies to them.
Image via: kinsta.com
Common practices to increase your website speed:
- Enable compression
- Reduce redirects
- Leverage browser caching
- Improve server response time
- Use a content distribution network (CDN)
- Optimize images
9. Make Mobile Responsive Website:
With nearly 80% of mobile users across the globe, the internet is now migrating from desktop searches to mobile searches. There isn’t a single reason behind having a mobile-friendly website.
Reasons why mobile responsive website matters:
- 30% of all mobile searches are location-related (Google)
- Mobile accounts for 58% of all Google searches (Hitwise)
- Organic CTR on mobile is roughly 50% less than that of desktop (SparkToro)
If you already have a website, dive into your Web Search Consider finding Website issues (including mobile responsive issues).
Further, you can test your website in Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool.
Now, you have earned enough knowledge to boost your business visibility in the search engines. But Wait! There are some back practices associated with SEO, which every SEO noob must know.
Best SEO Practices Every SEO Noob Must Know
Putting your 90% efforts in white hat SEO practices and 10% in blackhat will bring ZERO outcomes. So, it’s better to know and avoid them right away (if you are following anyone).
1- Thin Content: Using thin content is today an outdated technique that penalizes you with Panda Update. Creating multiple pages on a keyword list will result in thin content pages.
What To Do?: Instead focus on a detailed page including all the keywords in your keyword list. Again, stop overusing keywords and stretching the content.
Image via: Moz.com
2- Duplicate Content: Rewriting a single piece of content multiple times is termed content duplicacy. This is the practice of republishing one content on multiple web pages with minor tweaks.
What To Do: Firstly, don’t make multiple pages with similar content.
- Option 1: Redirect all of them on the master page
- Option 2: Use Canonical tag to ensure search bot/crawler prioritize the main page and skip others
Image via: Marketing91.com
3- Cloaking: It is the practice of showing hiding content in your HTML to portray different content for the viewer and search engine.
- Hiding content in HTML code is the most common example of cloaking.
What To Do: Make sure your website doesn’t hide any content in the HTML Code. Check the cached version of your website to find any loopholes and rectify them immediately.
4- Keyword Stuffing: Flooding your content with keywords is termed keyword stuffing.
Google always considers keywords to understand your content and its interlinked web pages. If bots/crawler finds everything cool, the webpage is rewarded with better SERP rankings. Else, it is omitted from search results.
What To Do: Always invest time in searching valuable and related keywords for your content. Use Google Keyword Planner, and a few other Freemium tools to find the right keyword.
If you are good to go with these practices, don’t wait for the right time to start putting in your efforts.
Let us know your thoughts on how this guide can be of great benefit to you by the comment section below. As we have tried to bring all the best SEO practices for every SEO Noob that ought to know.
About Guest Author:
Gajendra Singh Rathore is a digital marketing expert and associated with a digital marketing agency in Toronto. He is always eager to learn, experiment, and implement. Astronomy is his escape from the outside world.