There is always something new popping up in the Search Engine Optimisation world. If you have decided to market your business online this is a world you will want to keep up with.
To help improve your search rankings, we have pulled together 10 of our favourite tips plus, 10 of our favourite tools that have worked for us. Overall, 20 actionable SEO tips and tools you can apply right here and now, to help your SEO efforts today.
TOP SEO TIPS
- Write unique and relevant meta descriptions for every page. As this is the first description of the page that a visitor will see when they type a query into Google, you want yours to be well-crafted, attractive and informative. Make sure all of your pages have unique descriptions and titles to avoid duplicate issues. Start with your main navigation pages then work through to the subpages if your website is large to tackle this tip.
- Remove pop-ups on mobile and interstitials from mobile. Ever since Google announced in January 2017 they were going to implement a penalty on sites still using intrusive pop-ups and interstitials, webmasters have been opting for alternatives to pop-ups. The key note here is to avoid full screen and too many pop ups. If you have an exit form pop up on one of your most popular resource pages this is good practice. If you have ads, a chatbot and an exit popup on every page, this is bad practice.
- Write for humans first, search engines second. Create unique and relevant content consistently, even though it is a challenge. Contributing new content that addresses the pain and gain points of your buyer personas can be a great way of attracting new visitors to your website, allow for backlink building and also keep up the freshness factor that crawlers seek.
- Backlinks or external links are links from websites other than your own. Creating content and earning shares from other sites is one way to build your backlinks, however reaching out for links is important too! Start with people you have good relationships with and who are relevant to your website and offerings.
- Create a plan to gather customer reviews. Reviews signal a strong trust factor to potential customers. Ensure you have a strategy in place to collect reviews such as a Google My Business Page, Testimonial sections on your website or Feedback surveys post purchase. Not only are reviews great for prospects, but search engines value them too.
- Create a custom 404 page. This is an easy add if it doesn’t already exist on your site. Instead of appearing as a failed search you can create a branded 404 page that helps visitors find what they are looking for. Add your own style, humour and tone for even better experiences for users.
- Ensure your URLS are readable and meaningful. If you are seeing numbers and characters these are not easy to understand for users. It is best to stick with words and dashes, no underscores or capital letters! If you have poor URLs, ensure to block them with robots.txt.
- Use the right keywords in your images. With majority of people searching with keywords and the small fact that google crawlers cannot see images, it is vital that you use the right keywords in your image names and alt text. Go through all your images and ensure the alt text describes the image accurately and your file names are helpful for you and crawlers.
- Ensure your site is secure by installing an SSL certificate. Search engines value sites that are secure, and one way to inspire confidence in the security of your site is by installing an SSL certificate and migrating your site from HTTP to HTTPS. E.g. http://collabagency.com.au à https://collabagency.com.au. As customers are required to give over more and more information, visitors and crawlers both value this seal of security on your website.
- Use internal linking. This will keep visitors moving to other relevant content on your own site and aid in answering the reader’s question. Adding relevant internal links also can decrease bounce rates and see user’s exploring deeper levels of your website.
TOP SEO TOOLS
- Google Analytics. Ensure your web analytics are set up to track the key metrics of what is occurring on your website. Understand your traffic, where visitors are dropping off and see if you can spot any trends.
- Google Search Console. If this is the first time you are setting up Google Search Console, make sure you add both www. And non-www versions of your site, also HTTP and HTTPs. Once each is set up, assign your preferred site. With Google Search Console you can keep up to date with any issues directly experienced by Google search crawlers. If you receive any penalties this is where you will be notified.
- Google My Business. If you have a physical presence or local store it is highly recommended to set up a Google My Business page. This is the card on the right-hand-side of a Google Search Results Page (SERPs) when looking for a specific business. Here you can include business hours, reviews, photos, posts and other information to confirm the legitimacy of your business to crawlers, and assist users.
- SEMrush. This research tool covers so many elements of SEO analysis, such as keyword research, site audits, backlink checkers, featured snippet research, position tracking just to name a few. This freemium product also has fantastic learning tools to help educate an in-house SEO or someone just wanting to wrap their head around a few terms and SEO strategies.
- Pingdom. This free page speed tool analyses your page performance and supplies suggestions to enhance user experience. With page speed being a strong ranking factor for users and crawlers, understanding how your page performs is vital. For example, Google has expressed that 2 seconds is the threshold for ecommerce sites to load.
- Keywords everywhere. This free Chrome plugin is a fantastic tool for content creators. Simply type in a query into Google once installed and you will receive related keywords, volume, CPC and competition to help you choose the best keywords for your blogs, pages, meta titles and more.
- Mention. This social media and web monitoring tool allow you to track social mentions, competitor activity, find influencers and more. This paid platform is useful for people who manage brands with a presence across multiple platforms. It is a great way to gather information around content areas that are trending or competitor activity online.
- HubSpot. The SEO and Content Strategy tools built into the HubSpot Marketing Software allow you to build authority, optimise your content and measure your return on investment. The HubSpot tools make creating content strategic and rewarding. There are free CRM tools and subscription pricing for marketing tools.
- Answer the public. This free content idea generator will give you a range of ideas, questions and queries around a chosen topic that your consumers are asking. This is a fantastic way to plan your blog content, FAQs or social media posts, by answering the pain and gain points that your audience is asking directly to search engines.
- Ahrefs. This link analysis tool identifies vital information such as issues impacting a site, quality of links, and linking patterns. Understanding who is linking to you and your competitors is a great way of evaluating who has greater authority in your market.
Every business wants more traffic, leads and sales, right? Using these tips and tools will help you to reap the benefits of increased traffic, which leads to more conversions, improves lead generation, and boosts sales.