Search Engine Optimization in 2020 is critical for the success of your online business. If you want to attract targeted traffic to your online store or your web pages then you must follow this step by step guide for optimization.
Often people ask how can I rank my website on Google through search engine optimization, to sum it up here is step by step approach that we will cover in detail about SEO in 2020.
To be honest
On-site SEO is the Fastest and most authentic way to improve your ranking on Google.
It takes 2 minutes to optimize each page and the results can be seen within days.
But how to do on-site optimization:
We have often discussed this in different live shows that how you can optimize for on-site SEO, however, I will write it here in steps for your understanding.
Number 1 thing is to include your keyword at the start of your title tag, preferably your focus keyword should be the first word/phrase in your title
Here’s an example:
“Make money from Fiverr in 2020” is the primary keyword I am targeting so I have used it at the start of my title. This is called “Frontloading” your keyword.
Why you should do it?
Google’s algorithm emphasizes more on the terms that show upfront in your title tag. The words at the end of the tag get lesser attention. Graphically this is how it should look:
For instance, my target keyword for this page is “problems with digital marketing”
So you can see my title starts with that keyword
Next, try to write your post longer than 1800 words. The top pages in Google search range from 1800-2400 words on average.
The longer your content, more information you can provide to the user in a helpful manner.
For instance, we recently started ranking for “Fiverr Search tags” which is a highly competitive keyword
We are competing against Fiverr itself and other popular sites on freelancing but since it’s a long form post along with helpful steps so it is ranking on top.
In this post we have covered everything one needs about freelancing on fiverr or ranking gigs on fiverr through search tags. The word count in this blog is 2767 words.
This does not mean that you create redundant posts or increase word count just for the sake of it.
Make sure that you write valuable and helpful content and there is no fluff.
When you can add value with your content, only then create long-form posts.
Add a meta description for a summary of your page. Some tips about writing a good meta description are:
This right here is the Meta description that shows an excerpt of your content when searched on Google.
Finally, add your keyword twice or thrice in your page
This is it, don’t try to overdo it as that will be considered keyword stuffing.
Just add relevant terms to your page naturally so that Google knows what your page is about.
Using LSI keywords in your content is an advanced SEO tactic.
And they are lucrative for rankings
So what exactly are LSI keywords?
LSI keywords are the words and phrases that are related to your topic.
Like LSI for cricket would be bat, ball, wicket, pitch, umpire, boundary, etc.
Here are some LSI keywords for “Cold Brew Coffee”.
The purpose of LSI is to let Google know that your content is actually about the topic and the primary keywords you targeted in your on-site SEO.
Google scans the entire content to understand if you have given enough information around a particular topic.
If you wish to rank on top for some topic, you must cover the entire topic along with its related terms using LSI.
So, how to find LSI keywords for your site
You can use different tools for LSI keywords. One of my personal favorite is LSI Graph which is a free SEO tool.
How do you find and use LSI keywords on your site?
Just enter your primary keyword in the tool
And it will generate LSI keywords related to that topic.
Most website owners do not care about technical SEO because they don’t know about it.
Technical SEO issues are rare but when they occur, they hurt your site.
There are specifically 3 things that you need to focus on for technical SEO:
To check if your site is mobile-friendly, simply head to Google’s mobile test tool and add your URL into the search bar and click TEST URL button.
If the results show you green, then your site is fine.
If not, then there is something you should fix as early as possible.
You should also see the load time of your website as an average load time of a website is a critical ranking factor for Google.
You can use Google developer tools to check page speed and load time of your website.
Its free to use and it guides you on what things you should fix on your website.
The next thing you should do is go to search console
And go to “Index” → “Coverage”
You can see here if Google is having any trouble in indexing your site.
As you can see, this image above is showing 1 valid error.
It’s not a big deal but you should fix it to be safe in future.
However if you see a lot of red errors in your search console then you must check right away.
Last thing, about technical SEO is if you are using WordPress, make sure to use the YOAST SEO plugin for your website.
Yoast will not magically improve your rankings or something but it helps you in SEO analysis of the content you post on your website.
Search intent is a popular term in the world of SEO. We have talked about intent in our past few live shows as well.
A search intent in simple words is what words user is using to search a certain thing on the internet.
Whether he is looking for information only or he wants to buy a product service, this is clarified with intent.
Like “web design” is a search term someone may use for finding good web designs, for reading about web design, for web design inspirations and all sorts of things.
However, if someone is typing “hire web design services” then their intent is hire someone for their web design.
Everyone is talking about search intent:
Search Intent is how Google monitors the traffic coming to your site and the value they receive.
Google observes how many people are visiting your website and what experience they are getting.
If people are interacting more on your website and receiving valuable information then your rankings will improve.
If users are not getting a good experience on your site, then it will move you down a few spots:
The key is to make sure the searcher gets what he is looking for. Make sure you are giving relevant information to particular users.
In simple words, it’s important to know
The next step you have to do in order to improve your site ranking is reducing the bounce rate
What is bounce rate anyway?
Bounce rate is how many people come to your site and leave instantly without staying on your page.
Google doesn’t like people coming to a website and bouncing off to other websites or pages.
If different people are coming on your site and leaving then it is a bad sign for you. Your rankings are surely going to drop if users don’t like your site or its content.
One way to reduce bounce rate is using the right search intent.
If you are giving users exactly what they need then there is no reason for them to bounce off to other pages.
Other things you can do to control bounce rate are:
Above the fold content: The first section of your website that people see before scrolling down is the above the fold.
Make sure you provide enough value or offers in this section.
Include your call to action in this area for higher clicks.
People decide to stay or leave the site depending on what they see in this section.
One way to make your above the fold content better is pushing your content to the top.
For example, you can see that our homepage shows users what they can get through using dankash in the main section of the site.
If you are creating blog posts, try to include the main points in the start like I have done in this blog.
(include image of the points listed in start of blog)
This helps because people can jump straight to the section they are most interested in.
Last thing; add visual content in your posts including screenshots, graphs, videos, and images to build engagement.
If you are following the steps above, you should start seeing significant improvements in your rankings.
Now we will focus on bringing more traffic to your pages.
How will we do that?
Optimize for different keywords
Here is how you can do it
Go to Google search console and open the performance on search results report.
Most of the keywords you see here will be the ones you are already optimizing for.
However you will also notice some keywords that you did not target and yet you are ranking for them
Imagine how easy it will be ranking for those keywords if you actually targeting them.
If you can rank on some queries by accident, then what will the results be when you actually target those keywords.
Look at the keywords that you did not already optimize and start creating content around those.
You can add them in your existing posts or create new page for particular keywords.
Both are fine.
Do this process a few times to get ideal results.
We have heard this term over and over, publish high quality content.
Even though it is true but it’s still hard to create high quality content.
High quality content is the type of content that not only you like but also users like and want to share on social media.
This is important because social shares are backlinks.
The more backlinks your post generates the better it is in eyes of Google,
How do you build backlinks to your site?
By creating content that people actually like to link to. Here are some ways to increase the chances of people sharing your content on the social web.
Offer data insights: Do you research, build data and create insights in the industry that people can refer in their blogs.
Create long form content: We talked about long form content in the start of the blog as well. Long form content also gets more backlinks as compared to shorter ones.
There is no fix count for long form blogs but ideally blogs with 3k words and above gets more backlinks.
Post Visual Content: Visual content includes all sorts of engaging pieces like:
Visual content is shared on social media and is must for building an engagement among audiences.
Create flow charts, and infographics about your industry
Creating high quality content is important but it’s critical that people actually see your content for it to build engagement.
Simply, you don’t just create a blog post and hope that people see it rather you have to market it the right way.
There is tons of content produced every day in form of blogs, videos, stories, and social memes.
According to WordPress 70 million new posts are published every month.
When you are competing in such a saturated environment you must make sure your content reaches the right people.
If you want people to link to your content, you need to actively promote it.
You can build quality back links by
Following the above steps, you should start seeing your site perform better on Google.
That’s great news
But how will you know whether these rankings are working for you or not?
How are you going to monitor your SEO performance daily or hourly?
In this step we will discuss how you can monitor your SEO performance like an expert.
Google Analytics “Organic Traffic”
Rankings are great but organic traffic is gold.
Sometimes people use black hat techniques to rank on top pages but that’s not ideal. A recent study by Ahrefs stated that ranking on top of Google is sort of overrated.
What does this mean? Top ranking does not always mean top traffic
How is this possible?
There are multiple reasons for this:
Click through rate is how many people clicked and opened your result after seeing it. Sometimes result number one on Google gets lesser traffic than result number 2, due to CTR
If you can double your CTR then you can also double your traffic through that keyword.
For example you are ranking for keyword A and your competitor is also ranking for keyword A.
But your competitor is ranking top for keyword B and Keyword C as well.
Since they are ranking for more keywords, they will get higher traffic than you.
Google rankings are important but most critical factor for tracking SEO is organic traffic.
Use Google Analytics and search console to measure which pages or keywords are getting most clicks and try to work on those.
Like we discussed earlier, create content around keywords that are already ranking without your conscious efforts.
My favorite tip is to set goals in Google analytics and measure performance according to those goals.
Getting a lot of impressions is not our goal, rather we want clicks so that more and more users actually visit our site and consume our content.
We all know that Google uses CTR in their algorithm.
Many studies have found a direct link between expected CTR and Google rankings.
To make it simple:
Higher your organic click through rate, the better your rankings will be
CTR shows Google that your page is valuable for the users. If the searchers are getting what they are looking for then Google is happy, searchers are happy, rankings are better.
The more value a page offers to the users the higher it will rank so that more people can find it.
Here a few things you can do to get more clicks on your pages.
Use Short URLs: Short URLs are good for SEO and also for Google searches as they are representing page content in a precise manner.
Use Snippets: If you want your site to stand out in the SERPS then you should use rich snippets like stars, reviews, and cards.
Compelling Meta Descriptions: Use this to sell your page and offer value upfront.
Need an easy tip to enhance your Google rankings?
Use internal linking
This means that your content is interlinked with each other. Link from one page of your site to another page of your site based on relevance
You can use exact match anchor text for internal links in your site.
Let’s say you create a post about glowing skin face mask. You get good response on that post and people ask you about glowing skin facial as well.
You create another post about glowing skin facial and link both posts with each other as both are related to each other.
Internal linking is like a map for your content.
If someone is on your site and looking at one piece of content, they might also be interested in similar pieces of content that you have created around the same topic.
The next big thing in IT is voice. It is going to be digital frontier because it saves a lot of time and manual effort on the user’s end.
Right now 3 out of 5 searches performed on Google are voice based.
If you optimize your site for voice searches by including Q/A keywords and lists or bullets then Google will route more people performing voice searches to your site.
To get detailed insight to voice and audio optimization watch this live show:
These are all the steps that will help you improve your rankings on Google in 202o.
If you have any questions about search engine optimization in 2020 feel free to ask in the comments.