The first page on Google captures around 71% of search traffic clicks. Simply moving up one position in the Google ranks can increase your click-through-rate by 30%. It’s clear that cajoling Google into liking your site and improving your ranking comes with massive benefits. It increases your organic search traffic and likely your customer conversion rate, too.
So, what is the secret to better Google rankings? There is no one special method, but rather a mixture of multiple elements and hard work. Check out these nine tried and tested strategies to improve your rankings.
1. Assess Your Current Search Ranking
The first step to improving your rankings and organic traffic is understanding where you currently stand. This way you will know how much work to put in and you can track and monitor your rankings to see if your implemented methods are working.
There are a couple of tools you can use to do this but the best (and free) one is Google Search Console. You can see where your pages are ranking for specific keywords and monitor the average ranking over time.
2. Optimized SEO Content
Having excellent content that focuses on search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the best and easiest ways to improve your rankings and traffic. Your content should follow SEO best practices.
This means it should be well-written, make use of targeted keywords and match searcher intent, among other things. Content is one of the most influential elements on your site for SEO. If you work to perfect your on-page SEO, you’re guaranteed increased organic search traffic.
3. Secure Backlinks
Link building is a crucial aspect of improving your SEO and ranking highly on Google. You need high authority and trusted sites to link to your sites. Google recognizes this and will reward you with higher rankings — it’s one of the most influential ranking factors. There are a couple of ways that you can do this. Some strategies include guest posting, utilizing resource pages, partnering with other sites, or choosing to buy permanent backlinks.
4. Optimize For Local Search
A common search from mobile phones is for ‘businesses near me.’ So, it’s important that you optimize your site for local searches to pop up for users in your area. Do this by claiming your Google My Business listing, getting your business listed in local directories, and improving your online presence with reviews. Ensure that your Google My Business profile is always up-to-date and post your business on local listing sights on platforms such as Facebook and Yelp.
5. Improve Your Site Speed
Did you know that most people will leave a page if it doesn’t load within 3 seconds? You need to check your site speed, frequently monitor it and improve it as necessary. Google uses mobile page speed as a ranking factor.
So, not only will you lose out on converting customers and organic traffic if your page is slow but you risk Google not ranking you. You can optimize your speed by adjusting image sizes and enabling browser caching.
6. Optimize For Mobile
The majority of website traffic comes from mobile devices and Google is turning more to ranking mobile-friendly sites. Your site should be 100% optimized for mobile in order to secure a good Google placement. In January 2017 Google released an update: “Starting today, pages, where content is not easily accessible to a user on the transition from the mobile search results, may not rank as high.”
You can easily check if your site is mobile-friendly with Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. You need to check that navigation is easy and accessible on mobile, that images are optimized for mobile and that performance is high.
7. Work On Internal Links
Make use of internal linking on your site. This is when you link from one page to other pages on your website. You can use exact-match anchor text for internal links (something you should avoid with backlinks).
Choose high-priority pages that are ranking relatively well but could use some improvement. Then, link to them from your website pages every opportunity that you get. Additionally, check that none of your internal (or external) links are broken as this will affect your user experience and search ranking.
8. Improve User Experience
There are four extremely important ranking factors that will determine your Google ranking. These are website visits, time on site, pages per session, and bounce rate. All four of these factors are directly connected to your site’s user experience.
If people enjoy using your website, they’ll stay on it longer, use more pages, and generally interact more with it. It’s important, therefore, to provide an excellent user experience. Some things to focus on are easy navigation, fantastic website design, load time, and excellent content.
9. Reduce Your Bounce Rate
What is bounce rate? This is when users land on your site, hang around for a few seconds and leave. Google doesn’t like to see this as it means that users aren’t satisfied with your site and it’s not worth ranking. There are a couple of ways to reduce your bounce rate.
As mentioned above, providing an excellent user experience is one powerful way to keep users on your site. Another important strategy is to ensure that your content matches searcher intent. It’s all good and well to optimize for keywords.
But if a user searches ‘best camping spots in Texas’ and comes across your page which mentions the keyword but actually offers different information, they’re unlikely to stick around. Improve your ‘above the fold’ area (the first thing people see when they land on your site). This first impression is an important factor that influences bounce rate.
Work Hard To Improve Google Rankings
All of these strategies and tips may seem a bit overwhelming. However, once you audit your site to identify problems and work to resolve them, then it’s just a matter of maintaining your site to keep it up-to-date.
By implementing these methods, you’re sure to see your Google rankings climb over time. Did you find this post helpful? Our site is full of important digital tips and tricks— keep exploring for more!
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