7 Essential Elements of Ranking Higher on Google
I know. Writing a steady stream of content for your website can get monotonous, discouraging and even overwhelming. But it’s not all about coming up with new topics that haven’t been covered a thousand times before – it’s about adding your personal insights that will add value and gain the attention of your audience.
#1 Word Count
There really is no set number of words that need to be cranked out on each blog post, but it’s a fact, the longer posts are usually well researched with plenty of data to back them up. They serve as credible sources to journalists and bloggers that link back to the article as a source. Would you want to link back to content that only has a quick summary with one statistic? No, I didn’t think so. Your site needs to gain credibility and with that gained credibility other sites will link to you referencing your awesome articles, thus giving you the ability to rank high on Google with the only effort being, you wrote a kick ass knowledgeable post about a topic relating to your website.
2416 Words is The Average Word Count of Top Ranked Searches.
Recently, Neil Patel did A/B testing on his site and found that his homepage with 1,292 words led to more leads, well even better leads than a second webpage with only 488 words. You know why… the content on his page actually answered questions that were commonly asked from customers. He was literally already solving problems they have before they even bought his product! Pure genius? Nah, it’s called content marketing for a reason.
For more detailed information check out my post “How Long Should Your Blog Post Be for SEO in 2017” to give you an idea of what your word count should be.
#2 Long-Tail Search
Of course we should always be aiming for the top ranking spot in the SERPs! Although lately it seems that it isn’t enough to just write great content. For your best change to rank in Google you need to aim to write the best, most relevant, most informative and most unique piece of content on your topic.
Less Traffic but Higher Conversion
Long tail keywords are keywords or key phrases that are more specific and usually longer than more commonly searched keywords. The title says it all, long tail keywords do get less traffic but they will usually have a higher conversion value. Think about it, there is a market for virtually every product and in some cases this market is very, very small. So you would use long tail keywords because they are more specific and less common than other keywords that focus directly on your niche and they will bring the traffic… eventually.
Let’s get to the point. Why are long tail keywords important for SEO and Google Rankings? I can see two important reasons why you should focus on long tail keywords: easy ranking and higher conversions.
It really is much easier to tank for long tail keywords than focusing on more common keywords because fewer websites compete for high rankings in the result pages of Google. So if you have longer and more specific search terms, the easier it is to tank for the term. So you need to focus on a group of long tail keywords because this will result in a great deal of traffic altogether.
Just like I said before conversion is key. The benefit of you concentrating on long tail keywords is that visitors who find your website will be more likely to become regular visitors of your blog, maybe they even subscribe to your newsletter. And we all know the ultimate goal is to get your email list going! when you have longer and more precise search terms, the higher the chances of conversions you will have. It’s simple, people who use a very particular term have an idea of what they are looking for and when people know what they are looking for they are more prone to become frequent visitors. So, long tail keywords focus on an audience and this makes that focus a very, very profitable SEO-tactic and way to rank in Google.
Check out my post “What Is Long Tail SEO? How To Use Long Tail SEO” to find out more information.
#3 Content Marketing
Creating and distributing high-quality content with your blog, social media and email list is the key to achieving and sustaining high rankings. You need to build trust with your prospects and once you do, you will see an increase in sales or subscribers. I don’t think you should focus exclusively on optimizing your content for the search engines, take a holistic approach to create and promote excellent, well researched content that both the search engines and your readers will love!
Content marketing is the strategic marketing approach of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
So, basically instead of pitching your products or services, you deliver information that makes your buyer more intelligent. The essence of this content strategy is the belief that if we, as businesses, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, they ultimately reward us with their business and loyalty.
Thats right, I am using G.I. Joe – A Real American Hero as an example of content marketing… and this was done in 1982! Content marketing is all about story telling. Our attention as a society will always go to those who tell great stories.
So, when Hasbro and Marvel cooperated to launch their comic book series for G.I. Joe in 1982, their marketing strategy was simple. What they wanted was to create what Kenner Toy Company’s Star Wars action figures already had – a rich back story for their action toys.
Just after 2 months of releasing the first comic book, about 20% of their target audience, boys between the age of 5 and 12 had 2 or more G.I. Joe toys. And, the comic book only had 2 stories.
That picture is only about 1/10th of my G.I. Joe collection. They are all my original ones from when I was growing up. I have an entire room dedicated to them that is almost finished. I will show you guys some pictures when it’s finished!
Anyway! After 7 years, the G.I. Joe series was one of Marvel’s strongest titles and 2 out of 3 boys in the same age category owned at least one G.I. Joe action figure! Crazy right? Now that is how you use content to market a product.
I know, a lot has changed since then and you are probably saying, what worked back in the 80’s won’t work today. Well, maybe you are right but it is still the same exact concept. Use content to market your product or service… simple.
Check out my post on Why Content Marketing is Important for Your Business to Rank on Google.
#4 Engage Your Audience
Oh, you get 100,000 hits a month and still aren’t making squat? That’s because while you might have great keywords that get you traffic, your visitors aren’t converting and your content sucks. You need them to engage with your content – whether that’s sharing the post, linking to it, downloading an ebook, subscribing to your newsletter or some other form of conversation.
Every website is competing with rival brands to increase its engagement levels. Even if you attract a huge amount of traffic, this won’t mean much unless you are able to engage visitors and get them to perform the desired action.
Check out some of my tips on How to Engage Your Audience The Right Way!
Engaging users is the crucial first step in the conversion process. You need to engage your audience before you can convince them to buy or subscribe. Also, you don’t want users to leave your website within a few seconds because that will negatively impact your bounce rate. So that brings us to #5…
#5 Reduce Page Load Time
I’m sure you have had an experience with a slow loading page on a website, it’s frustrating for sure. You find a site that looks really interesting, then you click on the link only to sit and wait for it to load – I would bet you left the website because you didn’t want to wait and you can find the information somewhere else just as fast.
Besides the user experience, page speed can also impact your Google Rankings. A slow page speed means that search engines can crawl fewer pages using their allocated crawl budget and this could negatively affect your indexation. So here are few tips to help page speed:
- Enable compression – use Gzip
- Reduce Redirects
- Leverage Browser Caching
- Improve Server Response Time
- Use a Content Distribution Network
- Optimize Images
Check out my detailed post about How To Reduce Page Load Time For WordPress for more information.
#6 Keyword in First 100 Words
This may seem like something that doesn’t matter, but it does and it’s important. The best place to start putting keywords in an article is within the first 100 words. This might seem obvious but a large number of bloggers prefer a long into before bothering with a keyword. I would not advise this because of the obvious reasons that Google wouldn’t find it very relevant in the search results. Google needs to be able to find your keyword faster and in front so that it will understand the topic and relevance of your article. Something this simple will help you rank in Google faster and more effectively for your keywords.
#7 Internal Linking
Internal linking is critical to decreasing a website’s bounce rate and optimization as it links to the different pages on your website together. We call this Link Juice. When you use link juice, the users/viewers stay on the website longer and the site traffic also increases. It improves the navigational experience for the user altogether.
Oh, and it will reduce the bounce rate of your site which will help you rank higher in Google.
Bounce rate is measured by how many users visit only one page and then leave. Easy and accessible internal linking will naturally decrease this as users will be directed to other relevant articles.
Also, Google bots are designed to emulate user behavioral patters and evaluate your website. So you need a smart and efficient network of links on the pages to help crawlers find regions which are not frequently visited by users, thus boosting your site’s ranking!
#8 Use LSI Keywords In Content
LSI keywords are synonyms and variations of your main keyworkds which may be in the form of a phrase or word. Latent semantic indexing keywords are part of Google’s algorithm to understand user search habits and give users the best quality content for their search queries.
How do you find those LSI keywords?
Say your main keywork is “on page SEO techniques”. Go to Google and search for your target keyword and scroll down to the Searches Related to..” area at the bottom of the page:
Right at the bottom you can find 8 LSI keywords that can be directly used in your content – Google literally provided you with exactly what you need to rank!
Websites are critical to our businesses and recognition, but it’s the keywords and more importantly, the ranking which make us significant. To maintain a name in the industry it’s important that your website is relevant to the user’s search criteria.
So, if you are wondering how to get a brand new website ranked on Google, remember these easy 8 methods mentioned in this article.
Anything I missed? Please write it down in the comment section.
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