Before we begin, I’d like to preface this post by saying there is no single “silver bullet” tactic that will guarantee you top ranking in Google, Bing and Yahoo. In fact, there are hundreds of different ranking signals that search engines review before determining what websites should rank well for different keywords. From on-page items, to inbound links, social media engagement to domain history — all of these items are part of the complete algorithms the search engines use.
However, some search engine ranking signals are weighted much more heavily than others.
A new survey from Ascend2, asked over 250 marketing influencers to rank their most effective and most difficult SEO tactics. Here’s what they found:
And the most effective SEO tactic is…relevant content creation!
Relevant Content Creation
By adding relevant content to your website you can transform your site from a brochure-type site, into a valuable resource that drives SEO value. Content in the form of blog posts, articles, research, charts/data, video,etc. captures the attention of search engines and users. By continually adding new content to your site you can quickly increase keyword density, total indexed pages, and search visibility. Creating valuable content also greatly increases the likelihood that other websites will want to link back to your website.
If you focus on ranking for keywords or phrases that no one uses, you’ll get no benefit. Likewise, if you focus on an extremely popular term that had high competition, you may not be able to crack into the first page of rankings and will have limited benefits too. Before engaging in SEO or content creation do your research. At BARQAR we use a mix of in-depth keyword research tools (SEMrush, Ahrefs and more) to identify keyword volume, competition levels and opportunity. We focus on terms that will drive quality traffic to your website and we don’t just guess! It’s all based on data and research!
Social Media Integration
Search engines will come out and say that social media doesn’t have a direct impact on search rankings. It does. We have found through correlation studies that as companies and brands begin to build a strong social media following that engages with content, their search rankings improve. After developing relevant, keyword-rich content for your website, post it to your social accounts (Facebook pages, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn Groups, Instagram, etc.). Drive initial engagement by getting your internal staff to Like, Comment, Share, Retweet, etc. the content. This will spur further engagement which over time will help positively impact search rankings.
Building more links within your website will help improve your site’s relevancy and improve search rankings. Internal links (links from one page of your website to another), can make site navigation easier for visitors and search engines. This can help keep visitors more engaged on your site, drive more page visits, time-on-site and other factors that help with search rankings. But perhaps more important are inbound external links. Earning links from other reputable sites is an indicator that your site adds value and should rank highly. Want more inbound links? Start writing great content that people want to link to!
Mobile Responsive Design
In my opinion, this should be ranked higher on the list and will become a big SEO ranking factor in 2017. There are now more mobile users on the Internet than desktop users. Google’s stated goal is to the make the Internet more mobile friendly and they are rewarding mobile responsive websites with higher search rankings. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, it’s time to invest in a new site.
Making sure that each page on your website has unique meta page titles and descriptions is still very important. Make sure your page titles have keywords you want to rank well for and also makes sense to the user/reader.
Website Loading Speed
Just like mobile, I believe that loading speed is underrated on this list. Sites that load quickly on both desktop and mobile are being rewarded with higher search rankings. Check your page load speed with Google’s free tool and look for ways to improve load time if any issues are noted.
Buffalo’s Top SEO Company
BARQAR is one of the top SEO companies in Buffalo. We have a team of SEO and content marketing specialists that help companies not only in Buffalo but all across the country. With a team of over 50 professional writers, we can help you create custom-written, SEO-rich content that improves search rankings, drives more traffic to your website and increases inbound leads. Learn more about our SEO and Content Marketing solutions.