The world of search engine optimization is ever-evolving. Some of the most effective SEO strategies from 10 years ago no longer work today. Google is always updating their algorithm, and companies respond by updating their SEO strategies and techniques.
In the era of the digital consumer, entrepreneurs and small business owners need to understand how SEO works. Even if you plan on outsourcing your SEO efforts, you still need to be aware of the most effective SEO strategies to properly evaluate SEO companies. Here’s a list to get you started.
1 – Create Content Based on the Needs of Your Target Audience
Google keeps getting better at recognizing and valuing content written for humans rather than search engines. Ten years ago, you could skyrocket to the first page of a search result by stuffing mediocre content with your target keywords and publishing daily.
Today, one of the most effective SEO strategies for content is to emphasize on providing a tangible benefit to your audience with each piece of material.
First, create a buyer persona of your ideal reader. Use the following questions as a guide:
- What are their age, job, and income level?
- Where do they live?
- Why are they interested in your product or service?
- How familiar are they with your niche?
- What problems or pains do they have that your product or service solves?
- What words or phrases are they typing into Google to get to your site?
The answers to the last two questions will give you the raw material for your keyword and content strategy. Pick the top five pains or problems you come up with and make sure each piece of content addresses at least one issue. Great content will always be one of the most effective SEO strategies.
2 – Make User Experience a Priority
Part of what sets excellent content apart from the rest is it’s optimized for user experience as much as it is for search engines.
Most readers scan for information. They’ll read the introduction, and then browse subheadings for the most relevant information.
Make sure your content is broken up into lists, short paragraphs, and descriptive subheadings. Look at your article from the reader’s perspective during the editing process.
The ultimate goal of SEO is to get visitors to stay on your site. Putting the user first in every design and content decision helps achieve this goal.
3 – Optimize Your Website for Mobile
A couple of years ago, Google started indexing for mobile search queries based on the mobile version rather than the standard version site. Couple this with the fact that the amount of mobile searches keeps increasing year-over-year, and it’s easy to see why optimizing for mobile is one of the most effective SEO strategies.
Test your website on your mobile device right now. How does it look? Does it provide the same quality of user experience as the desktop version?
4 – Secure the Featured Snippet for Your Keywords
Have you noticed a change in how Google displays their search results? For over 20 percent of search queries and counting, Google now displays a featured snippet at the top. It is especially noticeable in question-based queries.
Google’s goal is to provide the answer to the query without making the searcher read an entire article. This is why building your content and SEO strategy around the questions your target audience are asking is so important. Answering questions about your content is how you secure the featured snippet.
5 – Build Relationships With Influential People and Publications in Your Niche
Getting backlinks from high-authority sites in your niche is a crucial strategy for ranking on the first page. Off-page SEO strategies like link outreach and guest-blogging are the way to get these backlinks organically.
The first step is to create quality content. No one will link to your content if it isn’t great. Who would send their readers to an article with little value?
The next step is to Google your targeted keywords and make a list of publications. Dig deep into the search results and find second and third-tier publications. Fish in the small ponds before you go deep-sea fishing.
Finally, use an influencer marketing tool to identify influencers in your niche. Start building relationships with these influencers on social media and try to get them to amplify your content.
Follow these five most effective SEO strategies, and you’ll see an uptick in traffic to your website in no time. If you need assistance with developing and implementing effective SEO strategies for your business, schedule a consultation with us today.