SEO is a moving target. What was popular a couple of years ago, is now deemed out dated and will get your website penalised. Now you have to be so careful when it comes to your SEO marketing that even the slightest infringement on Google’s guidelines are going to get you into real trouble. If you have been using old school SEO techniques and can’t seem to get your rankings back on track, then following are some really useful points that will help you win the battle and get your web page right up there on the search engines.
1. Have You Developed a Realistic Keyword Strategy?
Choosing the right keywords are really the cornerstone of any SEO campaign. You need to look at keywords that the consumer is going to target and base your strategy around these. Obviously many Brisbane businesses want to be right up there where their competitors are, but in some cases this is going to be a long drawn out campaign.
The best thing that you should do for short to medium SEO gains is to look at keywords that are realistic and achievable. Obviously going for the ‘money’ keywords are ideal, but we live in the real world here and this can often take many months if not years to achieve if the keywords are ultra competitive. For example if you are selling running shoes you do not want to be targeting the keyword shoes. You want to target the long tail keywords like ‘cross country running shoes’ or track and field running shoes’. These keywords will be easier to rank and will start to generate web traffic and in turn sales and inquiries much quicker.
Going for these long tail keywords is a popular method amongst SEO firms as clients are now wanting faster and quicker results. Plus long tail keywords a much more targeted. Your customer is more likely to buy from you for these very targeted keyword searches. It is much better to go for a whole bunch of easy to rank long tail keywords that extremely hard, very competitive words. A warning here, check the amount of traffic these keywords are getting on a monthly basis. After all, there is no point spending all your efforts trying to rank for words that no one is searching for.
2. How original is your Content?
I see people trying to take short cuts all the time when it comes to content. They might read an article or a blog post from a competitors website and like what they see. They then copy and paste this content onto their own website. The Google algorithm is far to sophisticated for this and will pick up on duplicate content very quickly. So if you are tempted to steal a bit of copy and think that no one is watching you are mistaken. Be really careful here and make sure that every word written comes from your hand. Duplicate copy whilst easy to do is going to kill your SEO.
3. Is each Individual Web Page Perfectly Optimised?
You have to make sure that the title of each and every individual landing page on your website is perfectly optimised. You can start with your titles. These are really important and this is what Google indexes first and sets the tone for the page content. So if you are a vet in Brisbane for example, your home page title should be about Veterinary Practices in Brisbane. The tiles of each subsequent page should vary depending on the page topic. Again if one of your services is Pet Vaccinations then the title of this page should be all about this. Remember to not over stuff as many keywords in your title as possible in the hope of getting better rankings. The key here is to sound as natural as possible. Use between 55-60 characters only!
What about your meta descriptions? Google has kinda down played the importance of these BUT use them as a great sales tool to entice your audience to click on your website..
Make sure other on page elements are totally Google compliant such as website download times. This is REALLY IMPORTANT so be very aware of this. Slow site speeds will have a huge impact on your SEO so do everything you can to minimise large images on your banner – keep site speed download times to less than a couple of seconds.
4. Never Buy Links
You see these all the time. These are websites that offer to sell you links for a couple of dollars. Whilst this may seem like a great idea to boost page rank and drive authority, this will get detected by Google. The outcome will be a penalised website. Sure you can buy a few links on local directory websites that are well know, but if you deviate from this and go crazy with link buying, you will get hammered by Google.
The best way to improve rankings is to either get a SEO agency like ours to handle your SEO or to create compelling , shareable content on your blogs that will make readers want to share them. This can and I must admit be very difficult to do, so if you are unclear about this, it’s best to leave it to the experts.
The trick here is to write content very organically over time (do not over publish content with 10 articles per day) and this will get picked up by Google and ranked. NEVER EVER but 1000’s of links that point to your home page – this is a massive No No!
5. Write Content for your Client Base – not for the search engines!
Keyword density and over optimisation of a set of keywords is SO 5 years ago. It was really popular before Google put an end to this with it’s Panda update. People used to go crazy and try to fit as many keywords as they could on their home page and it did work for a long time. Try doing it today and see what happens. NOTHING! All you end up looking like is a weirdo because people can’t understand what is written. PLUS you are going to annoy potential customers who may want to buy from you. Not a good look I’m afraid.
The key here is to write fresh, new, relevant content that they search engines are going to love and in turn want to rank you. Write for the people who will read your website and give them something that they might want to share. This is the ONLY way (amongst our SEO help) that your website will ever rank. When writing content ask yourself constantly, am I writing for the search engines or am I giving my customer base useful information that will help them. Take this blog article for instance. I am writing this for people who may have had a bad past SEO experience and can’t work out why. Or, for businesses whose online rankings are suffering and need to be pointed in the right direction – basically I am writing for a base of businesses who may end up using our services.
6. Watch Those Bounce Rates Decline
Having a high bounce rate means that web browsers land on your home page and exit the site from that page. They do not go any further and are unlikely to make an inquiry. This is really bad for your business and Google can pick up on this. The higher the bounce rate the worse it is for your SEO rankings. Why? Cause Google thinks that your site is of little interest or value for the consumer and will rank it behind better, higher quality sites with lower bounce rates.
If you are able to get your web designers to develop a site that looks great and is easy to navigate and combine this with killer web copy then your bounce rates should start declining. That is, the user is going to want to spend more time on your website searching for information and looking around. This is awesome and exactly what Google wants. Hence watch your rankings begin to rise!
7. Don’t Use Cheap SEO Companies.
I have written about this on many of my blogs BUT I just need to hammer home this point. You basically get what you pay for and if you decide to pay next to nothing for your SEO monthly fee that’s exactly what you are going to get. If you think this is a false claim, you are really mistaken, cause I get calls daily from Brissy businesses that have been completely ripped off by using a cheap, offshore SEO agencies. Without going into the how this happens in too much detail, all you need to know is that these guys are out for the scam and your money. It’s common for them to lock you into contracts and then do absolutely nothing – BE VERY WARNED ABOUT THIS!