It’s not enough to simply have a website or a blog today. Businesses regardless of size need to ensure their sites are fully optimized to enjoy more clients, sales and profits.
This is where the search engine optimization or SEO technique comes in. It refers to a marketing strategy that will enable a website to be found organically by the various search engines available. When done correctly, SEO can bring positive results to you and your business.
Organic search results are given more importance in that it is a natural result. In short, it is not influenced by certain factors such as buying keywords or ads to get a good placement in search results.
Websites get indexed and ranked by search engines based on a number of SEO factors. These factors have changed over time although some still remain.
Content is still King
For this year 2014, SearchMetrics revealed in its largest study of SEO factors that content remains as a major consideration. Marcus Tober of SearchMetrics said content is now the focus of SEO.
Based on its analysis of two new features (proof and relevant terms), the research firm found that there is a link between the quality of content of a website and its page rankings. The research team also noted that the length of content has increased in recent years. Google’s list of 200 ranking factors also stated that content with longer words are more preferred than the shorter superficial posts.
To ensure quality of content, the use of multimedia such as images, videos and other elements also provide a positive signal.
Content being the highest rated SEO factor these days does not surprise me one bit, said SEO professional Justin Franciscotty. Well written content that provides ostensible benefits for a websites ranking. Its what drive people to visit the website, click its links, and see what else the site has to offer.
Often times, the list of top landing pages for any given website will be its blog. Why? Because it is the piece of the website that has the most benefits for a random web user. It provides information, statistics, facts, conversation fodder that people in their industry are always searching for, added Justin Franciscotty.
Keyword in Pages and Posts
The use of keywords in a page is another vital SEO factor. If possible, these should be present in the title, description, main body or copy and subheadings (H1 and H2) of your content or articles.
According to Google’s 200 ranking factors, including your keyword in the title tag sends a strong onpage SEO signal. Moz data also confirms that title tags that begin with a keyword tend to do better in rankings than those that have the keyword at the end of the tag. It’s also worth noting that the title is considered the second most important piece of content in a web page.
Keep in mind, however, that a web page or blog post should have a balance of these keywords and not too much of them or what they refer to as keyword stuffing. Currently, the trend is geared towards creating keywords to topics for a more holistic content.
Keyword in Domain
Other than including them in your site’s content, the presence of keyword in a domain promotes relevancy. Although this may no longer give a major boost to your ranking, the fact that it’s still being considered should be enough reason for you to practice it.
Backlinks are links that you gain when another website links to your site and their presence makes a huge difference in your site’s search rankings. But to be considered legitimate and quality, a backlink has to come from an authority site in the same niche as your website or blog.
The quantity of these links on your site are as vital for search engines. But take note, that quality and quantity need to go together.
These user signals are actions made by people when they visit a website. In its latest research, SearchMetrics found that sites with top or good search rankings showed a higher click-through rate and time-on-site. Their bounce rate is also lower compared to the others.
How fast a page loads is a ranking factor as well. Search engines Google and Bing use this. Normally, a website’s speed can be measured by search engine spiders through the page’s code and file size.
Additionally, Google may also use Chrome user data to determine the loading time of a web page.
Updates are a vital component of SEO and considered a freshness factor. A site that is regularly updated has a better chance of getting indexed by search engines.