4 Crucial SEO Factors and How To Work On Them: An SEO Guide
It should be no hidden secret for any website owner how important SEO is for a website’s online visibility. Of course, there are other methods through which online businesses expand their exposure but it’s SEO that remains the most powerful of them all. It can be said that other marketing methods are a la carte methods whereas SEO is a set of methods. These methods comprise of the elements that not only provide a website with online visibility but also serve as strong factors that improve the overall impression of any online business.
Since Google has been launching the search algorithm and website ranking updates quite frequently in the past few years, many people have lost grasp of what the recent face of SEO is like. It can’t be said that SEO has completely changed and new things have been introduced in this digital marketing method over time but almost everything has been modified and made better than it used to be 3 to 4 years ago. However, if you are a business with online presence you want to specifically know the factors that can directly and direly affect your online SEO strategy.
Here are those most weighted SEO factors for you to work on:
Backlinks have become the most powerful thing since the last updates from Google that specifically focused on improving the quality of backlinks. There are many ways for you to look at how well you are performing with your backlinks. First of all, you should have the right tool in place to analyze where you are standing with your backlinks at any given moment. It has to be kept in mind that Google’s Penguin update was specifically released to get rid of the backlink spamming that was on the rise on internet at that time.
Google focused on the quality of backlinks and websites with the largest number of backlinks were not the best websites anymore. To make things worse, Google started penalizing the websites with spammy backlinks so these websites had to take instant measures to stay away from those penalties. Now, you have to have a very strong back linking strategy if you want to stay away from Google’s Penguin penalty. But how would you know what things to work on? Here are some elements within backlinks to look at to analyze your back linking strategy:
- Even though too many backlinks are not a good thing, it is important for you to know the total number of backlinks for your website before you start doing any backlink analysis.
- Now, the important thing here is to know how many of those backlinks are coming from unique domains. If you see a huge difference in the number of backlinks and unique domains, you might get in trouble because it shows clearly that you have too many links coming from the same website. This is considered spam by Google now.
- Next, you will have to look at the reputation and other page authority factors of the website to see how good the websites that are directing visitors to your website are. If most of those websites have low page authority and PageRank, you are going to pay the price for this soon. Keep backlinks only from the websites with good authority and reputation.
- While doing the backlink analysis you will also have to pay great attention to the type of anchor texts you are using. It is well worth to see how many backlinks are coming for each anchor text. This will give you a clear idea of any over-optimized anchor texts because such a situation can lead to penalty from Google. Use intelligent anchor texts and while anchor texts rich in keywords are good, keep your brand name alive in the anchor texts too. Too many backlinks from generic anchor texts can lead to penalty as well.
Here is an example to show you how generic anchor texts and their over-optimization can lead to penalties from Google.
Once again, it is extremely important to have the right tools to do proper analyses of your backlinks so make sure to invest in a good one as soon as possible.
2. Length Of Content And Overall Content
Read any SEO related article on the web and you will realize straight away that right beside backlinks the next most important thing is the content. There is a lot about content that needs to be understood in order to have a successful SEO strategy than just to know about keywords. It is now a thing of the past that the more keywords you had in your content the higher your content ranked. In the recent times and with all Google updates so far, stuffing unnecessary and unintelligent keywords in your content will only attract penalties.
No one knew just a couple of years ago that the length of content mattered that much. The recent studies and analyses show clearly that the length of your content matters a lot in addition to how informative and helpful it is for the website visitors. Here is an image that shows the importance of the length of content.
The image clearly shows that it is important for websites to come up with lengthy content but still keep it real and natural. Stuffing keywords would get you penalized because Google now focuses on the mix of words on your web page rather than seeing the number of times a keyword has been repeated. Other ways you can work on your web content is as below:
- Write long content with useful information in it that makes your visitors come back to the website. Keep away from repeating the same content on different pages.
- Keep your content updated as frequently as possible. The more updated your content is the higher it will rank. For example, recent studies show that nearly 60% of the online shoppers in US are frustrated by the presence of “out of stock” items on the website. At times they are angry because information they see on the website about the stock is different from the actual stock.
- Let people generate content for you because that not only gets you ranked high but also wins credibility for you among your visitors. This is done by letting people review your products on your websites and leave testimonials.
- Keep the content a mix of images, text and videos.
3. Website Design And Mobile Friendliness
As mentioned at the beginning, SEO is not just one thing but a term given to many different processes going on together to improve a website’s ranking on search engines. Another important part of SEO is improving your website design and making it mobile friendly. It has to be kept in mind here that this was another one of the most important updates from Google. Mobile friendly update, which was dubbed Mobilegeddon by most online SEO professionals, was supposed to make websites conform to the latest shift to the usage of mobiles by global population.
After the update was rolled out it was clear that Google had really rolled out this update for websites’ mobile rankings. The ranking on desktop devices did not change much for most websites but websites that did not have enough mobile friendliness in them were pushed down in results.
Here’s an image to show the impact:
The warnings had already been released that websites with less mobile friendly features will suffer a big blow when searched on mobile devices. Websites that made the necessary changes were not impacted by this update. What are the things that need to be worked on in order to improve ranking for mobile devices? Here they are:
- First, you will have to work on your website design in order to ensure it conforms to the various mobile device screen sizes. There are two ways to go about this challenge. First, you can start a mobile friendly website from the scratch and dedicate this website for mobile users. The other method is to convert your existing website into a responsive website. This website will change its size according to the device it is being viewed on.
- You have to reduce the scrolling as much as possible and introduce images that clear the picture for the mobile user when he’s looking at the web page without requiring too much scrolling.
- Use HTML5 as much as possible and steer away completely from the use of flash on your website.
- The images and content on your website should be according to how a mobile user would interact with a website. On mobile devices users use their fingers to browse around and if your content is too small for them to tap the content easily, you will be penalized for that.
- Your web page should only have enough information to be helpful for the visitor. You don’t want to stuff too much content and make your pages heavy because how fast your website loads matters big time in lowering or raising your website ranking.
4. Many On-page SEO Factors
On-page SEO requires working on several factors right on the face of the website to improve website’s ranking. Some of the stuff is not as technical as other stuff. In simple words, there are some things included in on-page SEO that you can perform yourself. However, for some you will require the help of SEO professionals. Ask SEO consultant you can trust, content is the most important thing that you need to work on in order to improve the ranking of your website and have a great on-page SEO strategy.
Here is something to start with:
And here are the on-page elements that you should be working on if you want better visibility on search engines.
- When you are told about content of your website you mainly think of the text that it is written on your web pages. That is a very limited way of thinking about content. In the recent times it has been proved that video content is the most important type of content that you need to put on your website. The best thing that video content does is it keeps your visitors on your website for a long time.
- Page titles are the next important thing. Your page titles should not only be telling the search engine what the page contains but they should also contain your primary keywords in them.
- Write descriptive, clear and on-point descriptions for your pages so visitors feel like clicking on your results on the search results. For Google only the first 160 characters of your description matter so make sure to include your primary and secondary keywords within that range.
- Make pages readable by using proper headings and page breaks where necessary. 12px is considered a good size for the font on most web pages. Do not write lengthy paragraphs as it reduces the readability of your text content.
- Use images but include descriptions and captions with them. Keep images of only high quality and make sure to use the size that seems fittest on the page. Do not forget to use the alt tag for describing your images to the search engine crawlers.
- Improve your website URLs by making them descriptive. You are allowed to have 255 characters on your URLs. The URL itself should tell what is on the page and different words should be separated from each other with the use of hyphen.
- There should be categories of pages where one page leads to the related page in a hierarchy. A sitemap is also a great thing to include on the website to help users find information easily.
- Have a strong internal linking strategy where your web pages are interlinked. When a Google spider lands on your main page it will go to other pages through the links you have on this page. However, only use internal links when there is a need.
- Lastly, no matter what text content you put on the page, it has to be original not only to avoid Google from penalizing you but to stay away from any lawsuits from the original creators of that content too.
Most of the most important stuff that’s part of SEO has been described above. There are many other things that you can take into consideration in order to improve your SEO strategy but these are the heavyweights of SEO. An important point to make here is that all the 4 points mentioned above have been part of Google’s major updates i.e. these are the elements around which Google’s major updates were revolving. Lastly, even the upcoming updates will be focused on the factors given above.
Book a top Motivational Speaker for your next digital conference!