How to approach SEO in 2018 and beyond?
This is the big question that you are grappling with, right?
There are so many things that you can do, and that’s the real problem. What to choose from countless tips and tricks that the Internet is overloaded with and what to avoid?
Some of the things seem fascinating but they are not actionable. On the other hand, there are things that you find actionable but don’t know how to put them into practice. It’s quite a puzzle, isn’t it?
Here’s the comprehensive but succinct overview of all the essential tricks and tips that you can deploy in 2018 and beyond!
Let’s jump right in…
Essential SEO Tips
Align Keyword Research
Keywords are timeless. Everything else may have changed but not the vital role of keywords.
Google processes billions of searches and it’s quite clear users are searching for specific things.
Users are trying to solve a problem. Their search is all about find a solution.
Is your company also trying to solve the same problem? Is your site in alignment with this?
In other words, are you also using the right keywords which are being used at the moment?
If not, you can immediately work on this and strike this alignment.
Focus on the intent of the searchers as well. Let the primary keywords be meaningfully embedded in your content followed by secondary keywords.
So focus on keyword research and get your site ranked higher!
Technical SEO is not important; it’s crucial.
You need to get it right.
You need to get the keywords in your page titles. The reason? This is where Google looks first to find out whether the content is relevant or not.
You also got to use header tags. It is good for content organization and hierarchy.
Put in place meta description that lures the users. Mind you, it should also include your keyword phrase. Earlier, meta descriptions would not ideally stretch beyond 160 characters but there are variations now.
You need to use keyword phrases in image alt tags as well to show that your content is relevant. Besides, there is a separate image search in place wherein people can discover your content.
Schema markup is also important. Use it appropriately.
Technical SEO is endless; it will depend on how much you decide to invest in it. You need to leverage technical SEO not just 2018 but all the years to come as it is here to stay!
Study the SERP
No matter what people say, Search Engine Results Page is extremely important.
You might find it commonplace and try some other fancy SEO trick.
But SERP is vital if you want to rank higher in search results in Google.
The reason why it matters so much is because it gives you hints and clues to how Google thinks.
Until and unless you understand how Google thinks, you may not be able to align your SEO strategy with it.
SERP basically comprises three types of components:
- Search Query
- Organic Results
What matters for you is what comes up in organic results. Try and place a search query and see what comes up in top search results. It’s a key to understand what Google considers important and hence ranks higher.
It’s vital for you to understand what Google considers relevant and work out your strategy accordingly rather than trying to force Google to rank you higher anyhow.
Try to Build Authority through Relevant Content
Content is the undisputed king of the Internet.
But all companies create content. Why do only some companies make it to the top?
The answer is: Authority.
Google considers some sites as authority and ranks them higher.
You might wonder why.
The reason is pretty simple: users are looking for a solution. The site that provides the relevant content containing the solution is the authority site on this.
Google will recognize it over time.
If you fail to provide such content and build authority, Google will realize it over time that your site is not good enough and rank others higher.
You will keep wondering what went wrong. You might try a few other SEO tricks but nothing will yield results unless Google attributes authority to your site.
So try all the tricks you want but ultimately your goal should be to build authority for 2018 and beyond.
Optimize Page Speed
You might want your site to look visually stunning. It’s great for users to come to your site and adore it.
You might care for security of your site quite important and accordingly work out your strategy too.
But at the end of the day, remember, if it has to come up in search results and help users, you need to optimize page speed.
Focus on page speed not just in 2018 but also going forward.
User Experience (RankBrain)
Like it or not, Artificial Intelligence is here and it’s going to be here for a long, long time.
Google has also begun to capitalize on it.
RankBrain is what Google uses as an indicator of how to rank pages.
It includes signals such as:
- Click-through Rate
- Bounce Rate
- Dwell Time
In simple terms, if users come to your page, don’t like it and go away, Google doesn’t consider your page relevant. If this becomes a pattern, you would struggle to rank higher.
On the other hand, if users click through and hang around your site, Google tends to think that your page is relevant and will rank it higher.
In a nut-shell, when you focus on titles, content and descriptions so that you can provide value to the user, you have a greater chance to rank higher.
The Web is nothing if not a network of links.
Links are till date vital to the way the web operates and hence an important factor in SEO.
There are three types of links:
- Inbound Links
- Outbound Links
- Internal Links
Inbound links help Google determine your authority and quality of content. At the same time, outbound links are helpful because that this shows that you are directing users to relevant and authoritative content outside.
Linking to your own content on your site helps Google and users identify the way pages are inter-connected and relevant. When a user visits a page and sees the link to another page, he will go through that page as well. This will lead him/her to discover the true value of your content and facilitate better access to relevant content.
All of this will help the users and Google to consider you as authority in a particular subject. This will help Google rank you higher.
Also read About: 11 Link Building Ideas For High Quality Link Building in 2018
SEO is endless. But the more you explore it and derive meaningful tips for your respective needs, the better are your chances of ranking higher.
Hope these tips will help you sharpen your focus as far as SEO is concerned and channelize your efforts in a direction of higher ranking.
As you would agree, SEO is an ever-evolving story. However, in 2018, these are the top tips and will still be relevant for the next year too!
So leverage these tips in your SEO campaign in 2018 and beyond!
Derek Luise is working as a content writer and blogger with Ranking By SEO for last six years. He can be seen blogging about digital marketing, SEO, SMO, PPC, etc.