We want to get as much targeted eyeballs (traffic) to our websites and offers as possible, right?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) helps our websites to show up high (ideally on page one) in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERP).
But how to rank on Google, BING, Yahoo & Co seems like an ongoing battle with new tactics, tricks and shiny objects all the time.
Google introduces algorithmic changes almost every month now, and presents new, unexpected ranking factors.
Or some SEO “guru” discovered a new “ranking secret”.
Oh, and it just so happens that he sells the secret in a new SEO ranking course. lol
Let’s get back to what’s real, what works today, and what will work going forward.
I’m a big fan of the 80/20 principle.
If you consistently apply a few, very basic but evergreen SEO best practices and combine them with decent, unique content after you’ve done your keyword research, then you’re already ahead of at least 80% of your competition.
Because ranking in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) is actually not that complicated.
Let’s dive in.
==> Download The SEO Cheat Sheet (PDF) Here
(it’s part of the Online Business Blueprint)
On Page SEO
This is everything you can do on your website.
Let’s look at each one:
- mobile first
- UX first (user experience)
- put yourself in their shoes, what would you like, what do you want the experience to be?
- make your website as light and as fast as possible
- don’t spam
- no gimmicks, no tricks
- come up with an attention-grabbing, interesting title
- title will show up in the SERPs (blue/bold/bigger/LINK text to your post)
- can be different to your blog post or page title (but should be the same most of the time)
- place your keyword within the title
- usually limited to 60 characters
- create an interesting description (put yourself in the shoes of your audience)
- meta description will usually show up in the SERPs under your title
- place your keyword within the meta description (ideally early in the description)
- usually limited to 160 characters
Slug / Permalink
- be systematic about it
- keep it simple
- make it short and to the point
- include your keyword if possible
Internal Link Strategy
- create links pointing to other pages and relevant content on your website
- don’t overcomplicate, apply where possible but don’t overdo it
- again, think about your reader/audience first - make consuming your content a great experience
- always think User Experience (UX) first!
- use relevant, related anchor text but no tricks or gimmicks - your visitors will thank you
- make related content easily accessible
- create a logical, organized site (and article) structure
- keep both simple and relevant
- don’t overcomplicate
- use only one h1 headline per article
- choose a suitable category
Images + Alt Text
- incorporate relevant images in your articles, but don’t overdo it
- always create an “alt text” for all your images
(Rich) Media Embeds
- use relevant video embeds where possible
- must add value, otherwise no point in doing it
- don’t overdo it, think UX first!
- use common embed practises, ideally YouTube, no proprietary video player software, no outdated flash, etc.
- link to external sources and authority sites if suitable and relevant
- one to three outgoing links would be ideal, but focus on what’s best for your reader (UX - User eXperience)
- ask for comments within the last paragraphs of your article
- publish and moderate comments as soon as possible
- add value for readers and/or thank the commentator
- add frequent questions to FAQ, link to relevant conent
- make it easy for visitors to engage
Now, let’s take a look at off page factors:
Off Page SEO
This is everything you can do off your website that will help your website rankings.
(Re-)Submit Your Sitemap + Fetch As Google
- inside of Google Search Console / BING Webmaster Tools
- add the permalink of your article (request indexing of new content)
- (re-)submit your sitemap
- always do this after publishing new content and you’ll train the search engine crawlers to visit your site more regularly
- always perform this after updating/revamping existing content
- respond quickly and appropriately to crawling errors and warnings
Error Checking / Handling
- regularly check for (crawl-)errors
- fix any errors as soon as possible
- resubmit pages after fixing the errors
External Link Building / Incoming Link Strategy
- being engaged in (niche-related) discussions, blog commenting
- maintain your social profiles, keep everything up to date
- authority-type backlinks via blogger/publisher outreach
- press releases / press outreach
- guest posts
- broken link strategy
- don’t overthink, especially in the beginning
- keep things simple, don’t overcomplicate
- always think UX (user experience) first
- mobile first
- fast, lean, secure, relevant, up to date
- remarkable content (entertaining, helpful, actionable)
- no spam, no tricks, no gimmicks
- consistently apply and stick to the important basics above
- regularly update and revamp old content
- your site will gain authority over time
- again: excellent user experience is the priority
- always think value first for your readers
- regular, fresh content (consistency)
Don’t overcomplicate it, keep things simple.
And consistently apply the basics.
I hope you find this resource helpful!
Thank you for reading and stay awesome,
Tim for Online Business Dude
PS: Download The SEO Cheat Sheet (PDF) Here
(part of the Online Business Blueprint)