Search engine optimisation is always changing. This much is true. Google changes its algorithms more than a little, and it’s normally thanks to the fact that our search behaviour is evolving. More of us are using mobile now to search than ever before, and the Big G really is pushing this into our SEO mindsets.
However, just because SEO evolves constantly doesn’t mean it’s hard to keep up. Google and other search engines normally signpost big changes on the horizon, too. There are also a few long-standing ways for you to really bolster your website’s SEO performance for years to come.
It’s 2021 – if you’re still not getting the clicks you deserve for the time, money and effort you’re putting in, here are a few tried and tested tips to get started with right now.
1. Voice Search Matters
Voice search isn’t the gimmick a lot of people assume it to be. Ask any leading SEO expert worth their salt will tell you that searching with your voice is a staple that’s going to grow and grow. We have the rise of the Amazon Alexa and iOS Siri, for example, to thank for this.
Already, at least 25% of people aged between 16 and 24 are voice searching through mobile. This means you’re going to need to optimise with voice search in mind, or risk getting left behind. To do this, start thinking like a voice searcher. You’ll likely want to focus on questions rather than straight keywords or phrases, for example.
So – ‘butchers in Bournemouth’ might become ‘where can I find a butchers in Bournemouth?’ – it’s all about creating short answers to clear questions, and you can do this in your text.
2. Longer Content is Key
Ok – it’s not always the case, but research shows that writing longer pieces offers you a better shot at creating quality backlinks.
There’s simple maths to this. The more you write, the more information you’ll present – and that, surely, means you have a better chance of appealing to people who want to link you.
It doesn’t always follow, but various studies suggest that while short blog copy is great for quick questions here and there, longer form copy is ideal if you want to become a genuine authority on a given topic.
Ultimately, your long form copy needs to be satisfying. If it doesn’t satisfy a need, and is mainly waffle or fluff, then it’s going nowhere. Write longer posts but deliver genuine value in each sentence.
3. Technical SEO is Still Huge
Many people just getting started in SEO might assume that keywords and link building is all there is to it. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find that technical SEO still has a big part to play in the success of many businesses online.
Technical SEO covers all kinds of bases. For one thing, it considers the speed and performance of your site. Is it quick to load on mobile? Have you set up Google AMP pages to your advantage? If your website isn’t loading quickly enough, clickers are going to happily hover over that back button.
What’s more, it pays to see what Google is doing as far as actually crawling your website. If you’re a novice when it comes to the finer point of SEO tech behind the simpler stuff, you should think about investing in crawler software. This will allow you to see what Google actually thinks of your site, and where you are going to need to do some tuning up behind the scenes, if any!
4. Go For UX, or User Experience
Google’s main focus in recent years has been UX, or user experience. This means that they will look favourably on websites and online services that offer intuitive and genuinely useful content and experiences, rather than those sites that are difficult to navigate.
You might not think Google will be able to work out how usable your site is from a quick glance, but don’t ever underestimate their crawlers. You need to make sure that your site isn’t just easy to work around through a human user perspective, but also through the perspective of a crawler, too. Again, see above for more detail on this side of things.
Ultimately, you need to protect against the bounce. This means you should ensure your website is modern, clearly mapped out, and above all, NOT infuriating. Therefore, think of your site as if you were a visitor. Take a look through it from the other side. Is it easy for you to find answers to questions? This is an SEO impact that some site designers forget about.
5. Broaden Your Backlinks
When it comes to getting links through to your website, it’s really tempting to strive for the big names, first and foremost. However, it’s also really worthwhile looking into smaller sites, too!
It might be worth you reaching out for backlinks from smaller sites if you offer a niche service or product, for example. Relevancy is key here, and this is certainly something that runs key to Google’s current algorithm load-out.
What’s more, learn to look carefully at the links that actually matter. Yes, being shrewd and filtering out poor quality links is an absolute must. However, you can actually be too precise on this. You need to try and strike a balance of sorts.
Do some research and plenty of reading into what makes healthy backlinking for your website or niche. Don’t be afraid to go for the better quality links, but at the same time, be ready to go for that midground.
SEO is a never ending art form. This guide only really scratches the surface as far as getting your site up competing with the best of the best is concerned. However, we think these tips and tricks will serve you well as a brilliant launching pad.
Need help with SEO strategy long-term? Reach out to Digifolk now and let us help you map out your online presence to drive organic interest for years to come.