Did you know that 61% of all site traffic comes from search engines? For the modern business, search engines are essential to being found and making revenue.
But it’s not enough just to appear on a search engine results page (SERP). Most traffic goes to the sites listed on the first page of search results – if you’re not there, you might as well not be in the search at all. Why? Consumers tend to find what they’re looking for within the first few results, don’t feel like scrolling and/or are short on time.
How do you avoid this fare and drive more traffic to your site? Create an effective search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.
SEO is an umbrella term that covers everything you can use to ensure your website and its content are visible on SERPs. While paid search is important, most web traffic comes from organic search, so that will be our focus.
Here are five things you can do to improve your organic SEO efforts and push your business up the search rankings in 2021!
1. Audit your competition
One of the best ways to improve your rankings in search results is to check out your competitor’s SEO status and tactics. If you’re in a competitive field and other businesses are doing well, it’s worth learning from them. Review what they’re doing in the following areas:
- Google My Business ranking for top keywords
- Organic rankings for top keywords
- Review links for quantity and quality
- Number of links
- Site speed
- Social stats
Use this information as a benchmark against your own efforts and make changes accordingly.
2. Keywords matter
Implementing keywords into the content on your website, blog and URL is an essential part of any good SEO strategy. However, more isn’t always better. As the old adage says, quality over quantity. Putting too many or using the wrong keywords can hinder your efforts.
To avoid this, you need to do some research and find ones that are specific to your business, industry and customer needs. This will ensure that you target the correct audience.
Unless you’re a massive organization, choose long-tail keywords over competitive and difficult to rank for short-tail keywords. When visitors are actively shopping for a product or service, they’ll use longer, detailed phrases instead of popular, generic words that don’t directly lead them to what they want. Obviously, you won’t know what these are until you do some research, whether it’s manual searches or using a professional keyword research tool, to better understand your audience.
Imagine this scenario. You’re a plumbing company in Vancouver, Canada who wants to appear in front of local customers who may have clogged toilets. For the best results, you would try to rank for something specific like “clogged toilets in Vancouver” rather than the more generic “plumbing.” In the long run, your company will get less hits but the ones you do receive are more likely be converted into sales.
3. Hone your meta descriptions
Meta descriptions are a small snippet of what the user will see on your webpage, usually no more than 160 characters. While this feature won’t necessarily improve your overall ranking, it will help searchers understand your business and increase the likelihood that they will click on your result.
Done properly, a meta description is succinct, clear and relevant to your headline and the content of your article. Pinpoint the long-tail keywords you want to rank for, search for it and take note of the meta description of the business ranking first; this will give you a good idea of how to structure yours.
4. Get your blog on
Creating blogs can be fun, but they also serve a specific purpose. Google’s algorithm calls for continuous web content and publishing if your business wants to appear high on the search rankings.
Don’t blog willy nilly however – have a plan in mind. To make the most of your blog posts, keep them relevant to the industry and include the necessary keywords. Use this space to create quality content that addresses the needs, concerns and intentions of your target audience. The better the content, the better your end results.
5. Optimize your website
While you do want to drive visitors to your website, you also need to make sure that you give them the best possible experience once they get there. If your site is not mobile-friendly, difficult to navigate or devoid of quality content, users will not stick around. Focus on making things as easy as possible.
To that point, your site should also include plenty of internal links and backlinks. The former gives viewers more reading options within an article, drives traffic to the rest of your site and boosts the trustworthiness of your content.
The latter increases your site’s authority. This is one of the pillars of SEO. Users crave reliable sources of information, products and services. Authority equals credibility. If you have numerous authoritative websites linking to your content, the more likely it is that your site will become an authority as well! When you become one of the leading voices on a given topic, search engine algorithms will point users to your pages when it matches their search queries.
Need more? The experts at the Mike Agency are happy to assist you with all your SEO and digital reputation needs, so that you can start 2021 off with a bang! Give us a call or email us, we’re here to help.