With the transition into the new era of digital marketing precipitated by the Covid-19-related shopping disruptions, the SEO landscape in 2021 looks like nothing before. With eCommerce sales expected to jump from 14.1% in 2019 to 22% by 2023, mobile shopping dominating the online retail and UX becoming a ranking factor. In such a dynamic and highly competitive environment, businesses are facing both challenges for growth and technological setbacks, while trying to adapt to the consumer market. With a 78% market share and 3.5 billion searches per day on Google, there is no doubt that getting a competitive advantage implies obeying Google’s rules in a smarter way than your rivals.
1) Plan your keyword research strategically
Keyword research has always been the core of writing content and optimising it for your online audience. Good keyword research, however, represents the liaison between your users’ intent and your business goals. To find the perfect match, you need to invest in audience research, topic research, and competition research, and plan your marketing strategy accordingly.
How can you cut through and run a keyword campaign that will make the process more efficient and help your content rank higher in Google? Assess your website’s performance: which pages are doing well, where you might need to improve, audit the keywords you have for low performing pages and find the gaps in keywords that your rivals are ranking for already. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner, SemRush Keyword Overview, check for longtails using Alsoasked. Select keywords based on their potential, low competitive difficulty, and how suggestive they are for the type of content you provide. Analyse the organic results pages and use your copywriting skills to make your content stand out.
2) Use latent semantic indexing (LSI)
In the past decade, Google has become better at interpreting content that targets multiple terms and understanding the relationship between related queries. It only means one thing: your pages shouldn’t solely focus on your main keywords. From synonyms to keyword variants, longtails, and related phrases, Google adds extra emphasis on semantic analysis to provide users with the most relevant results for a particular search query. Writing quality content covering LSI keywords is a good incentive for adding more informative text your users are craving for. It also helps decrease the bounce rate by giving readers more reasons to stick around. In turn, it would increase your page relevance to a particular search and boost its rankings.
3) Upgrade your website footer
Webmasters don’t think much about their footers and sitewide links, but when it comes to your SEO performance, small changes could go a long way. Back in the days, having external links in your footer was a black hat technique and would risk a penalty. Nowadays, they don’t carry any value. Just in case, a good practice would be to keep these links internal.
4) Optimise outbound links tactics
Using outbound links can have a series of benefits for your website if you follow best practices and link to fresh content from high authority websites. This will improve your website’s reputation as quality content will boost your content’s value and show relevant sources to develop networking and encourage them to link back to you
It nurtures your readers’ trust and helps you gain ranking power. It will also help Google understand your content and give you, in exchange, higher rankings. Improve internal linking by updating the new content to link to older pages and the other way around. The process helps build authority, distribute PageRank, and improve organic ranking. Plus, it encourages users to stick around and consume your content in a meaningful way, keeping bounce rates at bay.
5) Fix broken links
Broken links harm user experience, website performance, reputation, and naturally, revenue. You can use tools like Dead Link Checker to discover them more easily. For internal sources, find a valid replacement, or remove it completely. Fixing broken external links is challenging since you have no control. Chances for this to happen are lower if you point to authority websites, but if it does, contact the owner of the website and remove the link at your end. Keep in mind that regularly crawling your website and fixing broken links is part of a healthy SEO routine. It is worth investing the time and effort to prevent the secondary effects they undeniably have on your site’s performance.
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