Search engine optimisation is web marketing that helps improve your search engine rankings, which results in more traffic to your website. With so much information available, it's easy for businesses to be unsure what to do to achieve higher search engine rankings and more organic traffic.
Some of the most common questions we get asked everyday include:
- What is an SEO Growth Hack and how can I use this to increase my web rankings?
- What is Search Engine Optimisation and how is it achieved?
- What are the best SEO growth hacks to get better Google rankings?
- How to build an SEO optimised webpage and website?
- How can I drive traffic to your website?
- What is keyword research and how do I choose the best keywords for my site?
- What is the best "SEO hack"?
- Is loading speed really that important when it comes to build a website?
- What do I need to change about my website for better Google rankings?
In this post, I'm going to go through the best SEO growth hacks that all website owners can use to start getting better Google rankings and drive traffic to your website fast.
These changes, while easy to implement, can have an enormous impact on your search engine rankings almost instantly. Use the following guide to help guide your SEO efforts. Print it out, save it to Evernote, email to your marketing manager. Let's get started.
SEO Growth Hack 1: Start with an SEO Strategy
Sounds boring, but bear with me.
One of the biggest mistakes I see is businesses without a clear strategy. Every once in a while, they order backlinks, or fix up the occasional blog post. With a mediocre, unplanned strategy, it will likely lead to mediocre results.
Instead, the best way to make inroads with SEO is with a plan.
Check out our recommended SEO strategy here.
This strategy is based on the latest trends, what's working now with SEO. I continually update this strategy based on news and updates.
Start with a plan, a clear strategy, stick to it and I guarantee it will pay off.
SEO Growth Hack 2: SEO Url'sAccording to Matt Cutts, Google gives significantly more weight to the first 3 to 5 words in a URL. So instead of:
- https://www.dieselmarketer.com/a-really-really-long-url-that-is-very-long-and-not-seo-optimised OR
Additionally, this is shorter and easy for visitors to remember.
SEO Growth Hack 3: Titles
Always ensure your title tags are under 55 characters. Google only displayse first 50 to 60 characters of the title tag (or the maximum number of characters that will fit into any given 512–pixel display) in its search engine results.
Additionally, you should be mentioning your target keyword in your page title, which should be wrapped in a h1 tag.
SEO Growth Hack 4: Add Visual Media
Always embed visual media into your web pages. These include images, videos and pictures.
Adding media engages visitors, meaning they will stay on your website longer. The longer they stay on your website, the lower your bounce rate will be. The lower your bounce rate, the higher your website can rank.
Additionally, visual media often invokes users to share your content on social media - a link back to your site.
SEO Growth Hack 5: Link to Authority Sites
Always link back to authority websites to capitalise on SEO.
Outbound links to pages that are related to yours provide relevancy signals that will help search engines understand the topic under discussion on your website. It will also prove to the search engines that your web pages contain quality information.
SEO Growth Hack 6: Keywords
Start by searching for relevant keywords to include in your web pages. While there are a number of excellent paid tools, Google Webmaster Tools is the absolute best place for you to start searching for the right keywords.
Each webpage, including your homepage, should target 3-5 closely related keywords. Once you have these keywords, start optimising your website for these keywords.
- See how to find keywords for your website with our Google Keyword Planner Tutorial here.
SEO Growth Hack 7: Keyword Oriented Content
Producing content is one of the best ways to both improve search engine rankings and provide value to your visitors. Companies all over the web - from small business to fortune 500 companies - are using blogs and content to reach visitors and build relationships with their audience.
But how do I write keyword oriented content?
- Choose keywords that are low competition with high search volume
- Incorporate the main keyword into your meta description
- Use the main keyword in the first 100-150 words of the article
- Use a number of LSI ( latent semantic indexing) keywords. These keywords help Google identify what your post is about in a clearer way.
- How to Write SEO Content Tutorial
- Find keywords using Google Keyword Planner
SEO Growth Hack 8: ALT Tags and Image File Names
Absolutely make you sure you are optimising the ALT tags and the file names of your images. As you do this, include keywords for higher relevancy and better SEO. To optimise your name tags, separate each word from the next using dashes.
Therefore, the image name should look something like: keyword-one.jpg instead of 2015-10-14.jpg. It will also make greater sense for search engines and they will give your pages a higher rank. Adding an alt tag is another opportunity to show Google what your page is about. This is a simple html tag, for example:
<img src = "https://www.dieselmarketer.com/keyword-one.png" alt = "keyword one">
Alternatively, there are tools that can automatically do this for you, which can save you a lot of time and hassle.
These changes are easy, quick wins that take seconds to implement but can have mass impact on your rankings. Additionally, SEO optimised images will often rank higher in Google's Image results.
SEO Growth Hack 9: Loading SpeedYour website load speed will impact your search engine rankings. The easiest wins:
- Have your website hosted on fast, reliable servers. If you are using Wordpress, caching plugins can be of great assistance
- Compress images using tools such as https://tinypng.com/. As you do this, remember that most retina displays require high resolution images so remember to preserve as much image integrity as yo u can
- A service like Cloudflare can also improve load speed
- Sign up for Google Page Speed to test, monitor and improve your site speed
All these tactics will improve the speeds at which you web pages load. Google has categorically stated that loading speeds are important SEO–ranking signals and around 75 percent of users will not revisit a website that takes more than 4 seconds to load.
SEO Growth Hack 10: Social Sharing
You should also optimise your web pages so that they can be shared on different social media platforms. Adding social media sharing buttons on your website will improve chances of getting inbound links indirectly.
Viral images can also help!
Sumo is one of the best (free) tools that can help do this, both on desktop and mobile devices. Make sure your share buttons include Facebook and Twitter. Depending on your audience, you may also want to add LinkedIn, Pinterest, Reddit or Google Plus.
SEO Growth Hack 11: Word CountWord count is important for both Google rankings and user experience. The more you can talk about a topic, the more people will know your authority. How long though? It varies from industry to industry. The best way to find out is by reverse engineering your competition. For example, if you're a plumber in Sydney, Australia:
- Google "Plumbers Sydney". Open the first 3 webpages
- Calculate each page's word count using a free online tool such as https://wordcounter.net
- From here, you'll be able to tell the approximate word count you need to compete with the top 3 search results
Of course, competing is the first step. To outrank your competitors, focus on content with a greater word count, new insights and incorporate visual media and videos.
Note: As a general rule of thumb, 2,000 words of content is almost always a good benchmark.
SEO Growth Hack 12: Mobile Friendly Matters
As you'll know from this post, the mobile-friendliness of your website now significantly impacts your search engine rankings.
This is why you need to always use responsive code to allow your web pages adapt to a variety of mobile devices. Responsiveness simply means that your website will adjust in size depending on the device being used to access it. Unresponsive websites have higher bounce rates on non–desktop devices.
These just signify poor user experience and search engine rankings often reflect this.
If you are using a CMS platform such as Wordpress or Shopify, most themes (including free themes) are responsive by default.
SEO Growth Hack 13: SEO Plugins
You can also use plugins to optimise your web pages further. This is especially true if you are using a WordPress website.
The advantages of plugins is they take a lot of the legwork out of manually marking up your webpage so it is search engine optimised. This translates to results being achieved easier and eliminating human error.
SEO Growth Hack 14: User Experience
It is also important to ensure that the user experience on your web pages is excellent.
What does good user experience look like?
The quickest way I've found is by looking at your competitors in the top 10 Google search results. This should tell you what Google likes and what you need to change to start outranking competitors.
Generally, you'll want to minimise the number of ads and pop ups on your pages. The format should also be clean and clear so that users want to stay on your website.
This closely correlates to reducing the bounce rate mentioned in growth hack 3 above.
SEO Growth Hack 15: Repeat visitorsThe most often overlooked way to get more traffic is to turn visitors into regular visitors. The more traffic your website has, the more Google will favour your site in the search engine rankings. How do you convert one time visitors into regular visitors?
- Firstly, you'll need a reliable email autoresponder to collect, manage and email subscribers, such as Mailchimp
- Secondly, place opt in forms in strategic spots on your website
- Thirdly, email your list when you have newsworthy items. This can quickly spike you're website traffic
Another powerful way is to set up a Facebook page and place like boxes on your website. This way, you're not only generating more traffic to your site, you're also improving your rankings.
And, FINALLY …
Remember: SEO changes.
What worked 2 years ago doesn't work today. You need to be on the ball, on point, or you risk harming your website for the long term. Constantly find out what is happening in the SEO industry. Update your SEO knowledge and use different resources to learn more about the latest search engine optimisation trends.
Start using these SEO growth hacks today to start increasing your organic Google rankings and traffic.