For the newcomer to SEO, understanding how to maximize your rankings can feel overwhelming. As a local business, sometimes the best thing you can do is invest in professional SEO or email marketing strategy. To help you get started, we put together a quick list of some top methods in SEO. Try out the tips below and watch your website climb the ranks! 

#1 Mobile-Friendly:  

Websites need to be mobile responsive in this day and age. There has been a huge increase in the use of mobile platforms for day-to-day searches. In response, search engines are changing to prioritize websites that support mobile. 

The more functional you make your website with mobile, the better. Adaptive menus, legible text, and fast load times are all big factors. With the introduction of 5G, there is no way the mobile trend is dying out anytime soon. According to Safari Digital Sydney, mobile searches eclipsed desktop searches back in 2016 and accounted for more than 63% of total organic traffic in 2021. As such, search engines want to show websites that provide a positive mobile experience.

Using external links has always been a key component of SEO. The best way to use external links is sourcing to authority websites. Google recognizes when your website links to another page. When that page already has a high ranking and good traffic, it is considered an authoritative source. Knowing this helps Google establish credibility with your website, and boosts your SEO. This way you’ll get recommended to more users as a credible website. Don’t forget to use those links wisely. 

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#3 Get an SSL Certificate: 

A few years ago, Google decided that security would be a bigger push for search engine results. If your website doesn’t have encryption yet, it will have a huge impact on your organic search results. Getting secured isn’t very difficult. The time and cost are minimal compared to the benefit you receive.

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Don’t wait to get your website secured. Online security is important for you and your users. Secured websites also tend to load faster. Make sure you invest in an SSL certificate for the best SEO results. 

#4 Good Content Matters: 

You want to make sure the content on your website is clear and useful. Search engines need to be able to identify what it is you offer to the user. This means more than just important keywords and phrases. You need to create well-structured and edited content. Make sure your sentences are easy to understand. Include lots of transitional phrasing to help guide the reader. Don’t forget to use subheadings to keep everything organized and simple to navigate. Google picks up on these practices. Even if you have a well-designed website, be sure to include stellar content as well. Otherwise, there is no chance of hitting the top results. 

Voice Searching is still a new feature people are getting used to, but is definitely up and coming. Now is a great time to start thinking about how to incorporate voice search into your SEO strategy. The best way is to use long-tail keywords or phrases. This works really well for local businesses. Most keyword phrases will be something like “restaurants near me.” Or sometimes even more complete sentences. The more specific you can get the better. This will definitely help your local SEO results and is sure to become a bigger factor in the future. 

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#6 Use Video Content: 

Video is one of the best ways to engage users. It easily draws a website visitor’s attention and keeps them on your website longer. Because bounce rate is so crucial to SEO, anything to keep your users engaged longer is a big plus. Plus, long blocks of texts are not always what people looking for. Sometimes a quick informational video does the trick better. If you can incorporate both together, even better! Take some time to invest in quality video content for your website. 

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#7 High-speed Websites: 

Load times are an important factor Google looks for in search results. If your web pages are experiencing very long load times, don’t expect to get the traffic you need. This is partly because it affects the overall user experience. But Google also looks at technical optimization for fast speeds. Make sure your web coding is the best it can be. Don’t overuse large media files, and take advantage of compression tools. There are some good plug-ins to download as well. They can help monitor your website’s speed, and give suggestions on how to improve. 

#8 Use Smarter URLs: 

To boost your SEO, keep your URLs shorter. When you post new content, if the URL is shorter and more focused on the subject, it makes it much easier for search engines to identify. It also helps users find what they looking for. Another good idea is to include your main keywords as well. Generic URLs with a long string of random characters are confusing. Take the time to label them properly, and integrate the necessary keywords. 

Linking to your other pages is another longtime SEO practice. Link your keywords to other important information across your website. The more interconnecting the pages, the better. A good idea is to always link to your homepage. This way search engines will pick up on the multiple sources of links when they crawl your website page. Ideally, your homepage should have links to everything else on your website. Include internal links when you can, and increase the number of times people stay on your content. 

#10 Create a Brand Image: 

Building a reputation is one of the best ways to get noticed. Focus on using social media to market and establish your brand. As you get verified accounts and a steady following, Google will have an easier time finding you. You’ll start to become the authority page that other people are linking to!

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#11 Domain Age: 

This factor is somewhat out of your control. It turns out the majority of top-ranking websites have a domain that is at least a couple of years old. While you can’t magically make your website older, you can reinvest in older domains. If you were thinking of starting from scratch, it might be better to stick with your older website. Or if you are just starting out, this is an incentive to start creating content sooner. The longer you put work into your website, the stronger its SEO rank will become. Make that time investment worth it! 

#12 Use Keyword ALT tags on Images: 

The ALT tag is a description of an image on your website. Changing the ALT tag has an impact on search results when a user does an image search. To help boost your SEO, label the ATL tags with relevant keywords. Choose words that actually describe the image on your website. This way when a user searches for an image, they will find the link to your website from the picture that you included. 

Summary:

SEO can be tricky stuff. There is a lot of hard work that goes into discovering what works best. Plus, the rules of what does work are always evolving. You need to be extra proactive when working to optimize your SEO website. That means doing all the things on this list and taking it even a step further. 

When you need to take your website to the next level of rankings, considering opting for an SEO service. Sometimes these things are just better left to the professionals. However, this list should help give you a few ideas on where to start. Good luck with growing your traffic! 

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