How To Be First On Google In 2018
As we approach 2018 and the years to come, technology presents an even bigger opportunity to employ the most advanced search engine optimization (SEO) techniques that allow businesses to place the right content in the right places in order to improve their search results, gain new business opportunities and improve sales. Great news for businesses that struggle to hone in a sufficient number of customers through traditional marketing methods.
Google may have unpredictable ranking standards, but it is thus far the most used algorithms that attract more than 60% of searches conducted every day by internet users. Optimizing your website pages for long clicks will attract more people to the site because your users will be satisfied with the fast-loading pages on your website thus generate more engagement with the content. It will also extend the reach of your business and drive significant sales. This is not a task for the faint hearted because Google is constantly updating its algorithms, but with a little help, you can manage to make your content stand out and break through the 2017 clutter. The following are the most important points to keep in mind if you want to optimize our website, keep up with the trends and be the first on Google in 2018.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
You will have to rewrite your site template to accommodate multimedia, including a clear width and height as well as support slideshows, and social media embeds via their own extended component. If your website takes just seconds to load, among the many benefits will be an improvement to your bounce rate, improve a visibility among users who are specifically looking for AMP results in their search and speed in their overall experience for mobile users.
Additionally, if your site is too bulky, old, or has had a few URL structural changes over the years, chances are you are experiencing issues caused by 301 and 302 redirects. Not only will redirects hurt your bottom line, but also Google will drop your mobile ranking if your mobile site does not load quickly. Your site should have a single 301 redirect in place (between the initial URL and the destination URL) because not only do you ruin your user-experience, but unnecessary redirect can also result to a slower site speed and make it problematic for Google to crawl the site, which can affect how well pages are indexed.
301 redirects are necessary, and they have been recommended for SEO reasons, but they become a time waster in your code, especially when you consider mobile networks when they begin slowing down page load time, they decrease the redirection time of the site, or they take visitors to a dead or unsafe URL. Such cases call for a redirect chain clean up.
If your site is performing poorly or doesn’t appear in Google search results thus far, you should consider addressing the following key issues;
- Google has not indexed your website if it’s still new
- You need a robots.txt file to ensure you are not blocking any content or sections of your website you want to be crawled by Googlebot
- You need to setup and submit a Sitemap that helps Google know all the pages on your site, including URLs during its crawling process by installing SEO plugins such as WordPress SEO or Google XML Sitemap
- Go for SSL certificates and change your site from Http to Https in order to secure the connection with the user and eliminate a 404 or Page Not Found error that appears when there are broken links on a website thus rendering a specific page unavailable or nonexistent. This not only provides a poor experience, but the search engines will see it as an indicator of low quality
- Making your URLs more user-friendly will set proper expectations and build trust with others
- Determine the most profitable keyword for your business, and have the knowledge it takes to move you to Page 1 ranking
- Conduct a manual SEO audit of your website in regards to on and off-site optimization as well as keyword selection
- Use Google keyword planner to gauge the competitiveness of various keywords and use meta-tags
- Analyze your technical SEO for specific URL search engine performance
Great User Experience – Responsive and Mobile-Friendly
According to Google’s guidelines, for a website to increase its content visibility, its pages should be made with a great user experience in mind, not for keyword-stuffed search engines. Therefore, in addition to using clean URLs, web content creators need to ensure that the architecture and design of a site are easy to navigate and conforms to the digital landscape as much as possible. This means using meta-tags, shorter sentences, paragraphs, tiled sections and numbered list in order to enrich a mobile user reading experience.
There are common page stumbling blocks that can be avoided by conducting a basic user testing that ensures that not only can visitors navigate them easily, but the pages are intuitive and target-specific enough that people are not confused about the next action they are expected to take on a page. The last thing you need is an increase in bounce rates because there is way too much information on pages for people to easily absorb in a sitting and using specific keyword terms that will lure a user to read on will boost conversions and decrease the bounce rates. This can be achieved through the following ways:
- Eliminate the pages that are causing the most bounce rates
- Understand your target audience and blend a great browsing experience with this in mind in order to retain your users
- Improve the functionality of the page and most importantly, it speeds by including Sitemaps
- Improve your content readability by using an easy-to-read format
- Design your visual content in accordance with the industry guidelines favoring both the desktop and mobile experience
- Avoid irrelevant popups that disrupt the user
- Have a compelling and informative headline
- Incorporate intelligent benefits that speak profoundly to a user’s needs
- Employ easy to use structure and simple and effective navigation that focuses on easy accessibility
- Engage users with a great call-to-action
- Your brand storytelling must be fresh, truthful, captivating and memorable
- Target high-value keywords with a high-value persona, conversion, brand, and traffic in mind
- Optimize meta descriptions for an increase in click-through rate (CTR)
- Inspire trust, confidence, and eliminate the buying dilemma in users by building credibility
- Ensure you own your own brand’s navigational query
Quality Content and Unique Content
The most important strategy for attracting more customers and driving sales through the internet is ensuring that your content is frequently reached by potential buyers. This begs the questions: Is your content unique, original, informative, engaging, accurate, factual, or spam-free? Is your content better than your rivals? It is no secret that users love to read updated content and so does Google particularly when it comes to indexing a website. There are many ways to create great content that will not only see your website on the sought-after first page of Google, but it will also build awareness of your brand and position you as a trustworthy, authoritative source of information.
Ranking for a keyword in Google may seem like an arduous undertaking, especially for a new website trying to rank for a popular keyword, but it is not impossible. You will need help to design an entire website that follows SEO best practices and Google webmaster guidelines. You will also need a sizeable network and contacts to share new content with in order to rank quickly for a keyword.
An initial keyword research, as well as that of your competition, is very important if you want to rank first. For example, a keyword with the highest volume may seem like the best way to go but they often too competitive. You are more likely to succeed in ranking for a keyword if you choose one that is relevant to your business and target audience. Pay particular attention to the domains and URL in the top 10 and whether they have a similar keyword including the title tags, the type of content that is high-ranking, the top ranking businesses and how authoritative their sites are. Target more specific, lead-driving and competitive long-tail keywords that make it easy to gauge a user’s intent.
According to Google founders, the perfect search engine should serve only one result that satisfies the searcher’s need, so they don’t bounce back to the search results and go looking for a better answer. With this in mind you need to:
- Conceptualize the actual content you are going to create whether you are doing everything in-house or outsourcing
- Avoid keyword-stuffed spam, pages full of ads and unnecessary popups
- Avoid anything that violates Google guidelines such as keyword stuffing without context or duplicate content issues that seem spammy and annihilates a website
- Check navigation and all user experience factors
- Publish content that is tied to an event, the new, an upcoming trend or other interested parties at your company in order to push your content out into the world
- Promote your content aggressively through your business social accounts or widgets
- Check your keyword ranking manually to ensure that your content is highly visible, optimized and of high quality
Ranking as Quick Answers. SEO Excellence
Your website will be featured in Google answers if it contains highly authoritative pages with quality, well-structured content that is intended to answer specific questions that users might have. Google’s algorithm ranks such sites by examining their backlink profile of the page and domain, the relevancy of the text, evidence of user engagement, including the time a user spends on a page and a page’s bounce rate. Google also checks for well-structured content and in order to rank for quick answers on it you must:
- Focus on the user intent by selecting a captivating topic for the customers
- Create quality and relevant content
- Organize the page with user experience in mind
- Clearly, define a how-to list and “how to” in content and bullet points clearly present answers where applicable
- Apply all SEO practices such as technical SEO tactics, on-page optimization, theme-relevant cross-linking, and call-to-action button
Interactive search queries and conversational search have become an important tool for businesses to have on their websites because now more than ever, users are looking for direct answers rather than have to troll the internet for hours on end. This is where long-tail keywords come in handy as the information will need to be more specific and user-centric content, written in a conversational tone using keywords that incorporate natural speech patterns.
You can now create individual pages and snippets of content that focus on conversational keywords, solely based on commonly searched long tail keywords, a list of queries and statements you get from your customers using an HTML add-on called schema markup that translates your content to the search engine for it to better understand the context and display flawless information for the user.
Quality Link Building
Page authority plays a significant role in how the external links known as backlinks point users to your page. Also known as inbound or incoming links, the appearance of such backlinks on your website has been ranked first in Google’s search algorithm because they help its crawlers find any site and show users whether your site is worth visiting or not. It is a sign of quality if your pages contain links that come from a reputable source. Subsequently, your site will be regarded confidently by visitors and search engines.
Irrelevant links that you add to your site are not only viewed as spam by search engines and penalized in the rankings, but they can also create a poor user experience and harm your site’s SEO value, which is why link swapping and guest posting to increase traffic should contain pertinent information and keywords that are not only relevant to a search, but they are easy to navigate and helpful to users. The following are a few ways to create quality backlinks on your site:
- Promote your website through article marketing on reputable and quality websites
- Make use of social bookmarking and social networking sites that permit you to add links to your website
- Use press release websites that supply quality content to other sites, thus giving your website more exposure – you need a newsworthy and attractive title that will draw people to your press release
- Get quality backlinks through link exchanges to get keyword ranking
- Guest blog
- Fix your broken backlinks to lessen 404 errors
- Ensure you have more backlinks from unique root domains linking back to you than your competitor
- Your link velocity should be steady. A slow backlink profile will not get you on the much coveted first page of Google
- Avoid being flagged or penalized by Google by creating a natural anchor text profile – Branded anchors, in this case, are the safest for a branded domain but not so much for an exact match domain
Featured Snippets and Quick Answers
About 30 % of Google search results have a featured snippet that appears above the organic results in the SERP. Using Featured Snippets can help users locate your page and lead to increased traffic on your website. You can either run a paid campaign or get a top rank in Google in order to earn a featured snippet and because there is no way of knowing how the Google algorithm works, sticking to SEO fundamentals like prioritizing voice-activated search, or having a great content strategy and following Google’s Q&A patterns may improve your chances of getting a featured snippet. Additionally, you can also increase mobile searches and improve user experience by utilizing Google quick answer box.
Clever Keyword & Seo Strategy
Identifying relevant keywords to use in your content is very important. However, it is not uncommon for many businesses including some SEO companies to pick keywords that either have high search volumes, are popular in their field, are too ambitious, or too conservative, all the while, forgetting that the most important strategy in a keyword search is to understand that every user or buyer has a different need, concern, as well as the intent and he or she will use different words when looking for something on the internet. You may be tempted to use a little of everything hoping to cover all your angles, but what you end up having is an overstuffed, ambiguous and spammy looking content.
Keyword quality with various search intents in mind rather than keyword quantity, in this case, is key in order to gain a greater number of relevant traffic that drives sales and reach potential customers earlier in the buying process. To produce outstanding content means that you must do your research so as to gain more exposure and while at it, find all possible keywords that your prospective customers would use to find you. Here are important points to keep in mind during a keyword search:
- It is recommended to have a few keyword tools handy when trying to figure out which keyword variations match your business needs. Such tools will not only automatically sort keywords into related groupings for you, but also show you what keywords your competitors are targeting or those that are currently experiencing a spike in search volume.
- Ensure that your content hasn’t been copied from any other site. Therefore, use relevant content for your business and if necessary, modify entire your site to create entirely new sections and pages that are better optimized for a great user experience.
- Keyword allocation matters. It is important to know where to place all the keywords on your website before you end up adding irrelevant keywords to pages whose content does not match the search intent.
- Choose keywords that match your customer’s concerns and avoid those that are irrelevant to them.
- Avoid generic keywords instead use niche or “low-hanging fruit” Keywords that are not only easy to find and target customers who are easiest to close without much effort; such keywords have great search volumes and the potential to drive business sales
- Avoid “black hat tricks” to push rankings
- Write a fully optimized title tag by ensuring that it is not mass replicated. It also helps to adhere to the google guidelines in terms of its length, wording, relevance, keyword separation, and placement.
- Use a clean and SEO optimized URL that provides the user with the clarity of knowing what the destination page will be about, which ultimately means site’s search visibility and an added search engine ranking credit to your page. Keeping them as simple, relevant, compelling, and accurate as possible is SEO best practices for URLs.
- Focus on keyword relevance, uniqueness, and value instead of the number of times a keyword appears on the page. Keywords should definitely appear in the URL, the title, and H1 tags, on the subheading, on the image file and ALT text, on the Meta description, and in links to related content.
- Have a keyword-optimized, but relevant anchor text when building backlinks and keep track of it
- Always filter your post comments to avoid a high number of spam comments. Achieve this by using cookies, adding captcha verification, removing website URL fields from the comment form, disabling HTML in comments, or simply disabling trackbacks
- Last but not least, improve your website authority and ranking by creating outbound links to relevant and high ranking pages that are significant to your business according to Google
If your ultimate goal is to have a professional website that will position your business first on Google in 2018 and if you want to ensure that all your Onsite and Offsite SEO critical points are addressed in a professional manner, then it is time to hire Low Cost Web Agency’s Website Design Services and Web Marketing services, which are cost-effective and easily accessible. Keeping your site optimized should be your first priority and Search Engine Optimization tasks are difficult and require a professional who will ensure that your site is designed with the latest technology and trends in mind so that your website receives great rankings from search engines for optimal success.