- With the global pandemic causing significant changes to the way we live our lives, businesses have had no option other than to adapt.
- It's now more important than ever to be able to reach your customers and ensure they can find your business online among your competitors.
- Just because you have a website doesn’t mean you’ll be the first to show up. You need to find ways to have your site rank high in those searches.
- Read on to learn ten tried and tested SEO strategies to start climbing to the top of the search engine results.
The coronavirus pandemic has seen huge changes happen over the past few months. These changes have affected how people work, move around and even purchase things.
With these changes, businesses have had to adapt, both internally and externally.
This shift in operations has caused many business owners to worry about sales. Fortunately, in this digital age, your consumers will not be too far away. This is because of the many possibilities that come with technology.
What’s important now is for businesses to reach those customers. But how do customers find your business? Well, the average person would go through search engines.
Now with search engines, having your site rank isn’t a ready thing. Just because you’re on the web doesn’t mean you’ll be the first to show up. You’ve got to find ways to have your site rank high in those searches.
That’s where SEO comes in.
What is SEO?
SEO is search engine optimisation.
SEO is the process by which your website is optimised in a way that Google will deem it highly relevant to the search query.
Last May, Google updated its Core Algorithm. What this means is that Google has changed the algorithm which determines these rankings.
With the rollout of the Core update, a lot of sites have found big changes in their rankings.
This is where you come in. Your site, new or otherwise, can find a way to the top of those search results. The trick is making sure you’ve got your eyes on the right details.
How can you improve search engine rankings?
Here are the top ten ways to improve your search engine rankings:
- Take a look at your branding
- Understand the current trends
- Don’t forget to advertise
- Optimise user experience on your site
- Get crafty!
- Aim for specific targets with the content you create
- Time for a site overhaul
- Maintain customer relations through vlogs and webinars
- Outsourcing isn’t a bad thing
1. Take a look at your branding
With the ongoing pandemic, how are you relevant? How will people see your site in this context?
These are examples of questions you should be asking yourself. Your business doesn’t have to go down. You just have to figure out how to change your angle.
Sports store? Well, people still need to work out, why not focus on your home workout kits?
It’s like finding a new spin. You have to know your brand for this to work. Try to do some research about how you, your products, and your services can be beneficial to people right now.
2. Understand the current trends
The trends are bound to have been affected by what’s happening now. Have you tried taking a look at them?
Google Trends is a great place to start. Just type in a keyword and it’ll show you data about that keyword. Things like how often it’s been searched in a given period.
These trends are important and you are bound to find a way to use this data for your business. Shoes are trending? Better start pushing your footwear products more while the trend lasts.
Take it a step further. Can you see a pattern to these trends? If you can, try to figure out where they might lead. If you can do that, you can jump ahead of the curve and be right on top of things when the trend starts.
3. Don’t forget to advertise
The kicker here is that a lot of businesses pulled their ads out as early as March. This means that Ad rates have dropped considerably since then. See where we’re going with this?
Your business deserves a spot on the online market and it’s up to you to do that. Try searching with the words “Buy [item] now”.
You’ll notice the top results are paid ads. Your business can be one of those results.
On average, you can expect cost-per-click ads to be in these ranges;
|$.50 - $2.00|
|Instragram||$.50 - $1.00|
|$1.00 - $2.00|
For those who have previously subscribed to Google’s ad service, you’ll be one of the lucky ones. Google has recently announced the release of ad credits for small and medium sized businesses.
Think of it as Google’s way of making sure you stay afloat during these difficult times.
4. Optimise user experience on your site
In a physical store, you’ll want to make sure that each customer has an easy time looking for the products or services they need. This goes for digital traffic as well.
Optimizing user experience simply means ensuring your site is easy to navigate and pleasing to browse. Like how you’ll want air conditioning or comfortable chairs in your store, the experience has to be pleasant.
Some things to keep an eye on are;
- Quick and easy site navigation
- Easy to read
- Optimized rich media (e.g. photos and videos)
Google takes notes of how fast your page loads too so you can expect this to help with your ranking. Both desktop and mobile versions will affect your ranking so it’s best to make sure that you’ve got things covered here.
5. Get crafty!
It's time to get creative. With more content on your site, the more you’ll be able to share.
To stay relevant, make sure you’ve got content that you can share consistently. Google will be using this when ranking your site too. This shows Google that your site is constantly being updated.
Remember, Google’s priority is the searcher, not the business. This means that you’ll have to make sure you have something to offer them.
The point here is not to create spammy content. The goal is to create quality, information-based content that your site visitors can enjoy.
This in turn can be shared by those visitors and increase your reach.
Go for quality rather than quantity. It’s more important to regularly publish a few articles over time than to publish 10 in one go. Think of it from the customers’ perspectives.
This way, your site will always look fresh and appealing.
6. Aim for specific targets with the content you create
Now, when creating content, it’s better if you have an audience in mind. Try to figure out who will be benefiting from your content.
The content you create can’t aim for everyone. That would either make it unsatisfactory or just way too general. A useful tool here would be those keyword tools you can find all over the web.
Choose a keyword for the topic you have in mind and try giving it a search. Take that information and try to analyze it.
Are people interested in this? No? Better find a different topic or keyword for that topic.
Yes, it’s going to take some time to do the research. Think about it this way; it’s very inexpensive. Unless you’re shelling out for those premium features on those tools, keyword research shouldn’t cost you much except time.
Has your site traffic gone down or increased during the pandemic? Well, if you don’t know, its best to start learning.
You have tools available on the web like Google Analytics. This tool gives you insights on what is going on on your site in terms of traffic.
With this data, you can see if any of your pages are doing better than the rest.
Does your home page gather a lot of visitors? Do they follow the links to your other pages? Time to find out.
You can use this data to better plan for the future. This way, you won’t be wasting time trying to figure out through trial and error. Get a handle on how people view your site and you can adapt to the situation.
8. Time for a site overhaul
Yeah, it sounds like a lot of work. Your site is bound to have a few things that have slipped under the rug. Time to clean those out.
One notable thing to watch out for is the health of your links. Are your links leading to where they should be? Or have the domains changed and you’re sending your visitors to a dead page?
Link building is still an important aspect of your site. In fact, in a 2020 link building survey from Linkdoctor.io, 79.05% of respondents said that they found Link Building to be effective.
Add to that the fact that links are one way that Google’s algorithm determines site Authority. This means that bad links mean bad ranks.
Other things to watch out for our irrelevant tags and overuse of keywords. In the context of SEO, you’ll want to avoid these.
9. Maintain customer relations through vlogs and webinars
Like we said before, a lot of businesses have been struggling with connecting with their customers.
With Webinars, you’re able to share a moment with them. You’ll be able to choose a topic that is relevant to both of you.
Additionally, if you can share a lot of information, customers will place more trust in you and your brand.
All you’ll need here is a decent video conferencing application and a lecture plan.
Another approach is through Vlogs. These have the advantage of being pre-recorded. You can plan out a schedule for publishing these vlogs and have a one-way communication scheme with customers.
Plan out topics for both. Make sure they are relevant to what’s happening. Once you determine relevance, find a way to make your business relevant to the topic.
This way, customers will be more comfortable placing their trust in your brand.
10. Outsourcing isn’t a bad thing
Say you don’t have the time to get to the nitty-gritty of your site. If this is the case, you can find professional SEO services for your needs.
The best thing about outsourcing to SEO professionals is that, well, they’re professionals. They have a plan for these things and they will know what to do for specific scenarios.
While you will be paying their fees, you can at least rest easy knowing that you won’t have to worry about that part of your business.
That means you’ll have more time to tackle other business-related issues.
The main point is, you’re going to have to adapt.
The pandemic has caused a lot of businesses to change how they do things and that includes you. The good thing here is, SEO has long-term benefits.
Once the pandemic is over your search engine rankings will still be important. You’ll still find the need to reach out to customers through the internet.
So with that in mind, you might as well invest the time (and money) in SEO now.
Even with outsourcing, SEO will still be a relatively inexpensive marketing effort. Your business only has more to gain from improving on it.
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