Having been affected by both Google Penguin and Panda, I look out for SEO strategies from reliable sources.
So, here’s a breakdown of Neil Patel’s post:
1. Your URL matters
I’ve known this for a while, but it’s good to be reminded. You should have a keyword extension, not numbers. (The infographic over at QuickSprout will show this - see the link above.)
2. Titles count.
I’ve been writing about creating optimized page and post titles for a while now. Make it powerful, be sure to have your keyword in it and keep, it under 55 characters.
3. Visuals are a must.
I just wrote an article that will be posted early next month including the importance of using visuals. Add ‘optimized’ images, videos, animations, and so on to your pages and posts.
Optimized in this case means to “fill in all the blanks:’ Have a keyword effective title, fill in the ALT text, fill in the description, and even the image file URL should be keyword effective.
4. The link element.
Link to high-quality websites. This type of link is outbound or external.
According to Patel, links “to related pages is a relevancy signal that helps Google figure out what your page’s topic is about. It also shows Google that your page is a hub of quality info.”
5. Input your keyword in the first 100-150 words in your post.
This I didn’t know. I just write. I strive for clarity and don’t really pay attention to where I’m dropping my keywords. I know this has to be a mistake. I’ll be paying more attention to this element.
6. Use related keywords.
This one I knew and do incorporate it into my posts.
Instead of using the same keyword, say “baking cakes,” mix it up.
You might use, “vanilla cake,” “baking a cake,” “baking cookies,” “cake mix,” “baking.” You get the idea.
Just be sure whatever words you use, they’re relevant to the post and your post is readable and easily understandable with them in it.
Don’t ever force keywords into your content. Your content needs to flow naturally.
7. Website loading speed.
Yes, even how fast your site loads is a ranking factor. The infographic gives a tip on how to hack a faster load time.
8. It’s all about shareability.
Be sure to have your Social Share buttons front and center.
9. Give your post a high word count.
Patel noted that “pages that ranked on page 1 of Google have a word count above 2,000 words.”
Boy, that’s a lot of writing.
And, I recently read conflicting advice that said to keep each page around 400 words. According to that article, Google likes shorter content.
I read so much, I forgot where I read that.
So, I did a Google search for this information. I found that 400 words is mentioned a few times, but not recently. The thing with marketing strategies and Google is it’s always changing. It could very well be that longer content is now perceived by the search engines as providing more value for the reader.
I think I average between 400 and 800 words for my posts. I write till I think I’ve gotten my point across or explained something so it’s easily readable and understandable.
10. Use a responsive theme.
A responsive theme is one that appears on digital devices, such as your iPhone or iPad. Why is this important?
Tablets, smartphones, and other digital devices use is steadily increasing. According to PewResearch Internet Project, “As of May 2013, 63% of adult cell owners use their phones to go online.”
That was over a year and a half ago. Guaranteed, that percentage has grown by leaps and bounds since then.
Summing it Up
There is so much involved in keeping up with SEO. And, once you get a handle on it, Google changes the rules.
One of the tidbits of information in the infographic is that Google ranks more than 200 elements on your website. It would take a team to keep up with that.
So, for now, try to tweak your website with these 10 ranking elements and it should make a difference in your search ranking.
If you missed the QuickSprout link above, go here to read the infographic:
How to Structure a Perfect SEO Optimized Website
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