Google is still one of the largest traffic sources on the internet.
Ranking high for any keyword could bring you hundreds or even thousands of new customers.
However, the competition is very fierce and getting a spot on the top is becoming harder and harder.
So, I have put together a checklist of some of the most important actions you should take to rank high in Google search for any keyword successfully.
Before creating any content for your business, preparation is a critical part of the overall process.
Writing a blog post without knowing what keywords you should target is like riding a bike with no handlebars.
Well-researched keywords could be the main reason for your SEO success.
So, what should you consider while analyzing keywords?
Here are the three top points:
• The length of the keyword. Very often the biggest mistake marketers make is they try to target keywords that are too broad and competitive, for example “cars,” “computers,” or “shoes.” Usually, it is almost impossible to outrank the competition with these keywords because they are owned by big companies that spend millions to keep themselves in those positions. By the way, more than half of all the search volume for these words might not even be related to your content. For example, people might be looking where to buy new shoes, but your content is about sewing them yourself. Instead, you should target more specific keywords like “buy Adidas basketball shoes” or even narrower like “buy Adidas D Rose 7 Boost Basketball Shoes.”
• Evaluate the competition. As I mentioned before, ranking for broad keywords might be mission impossible, but not always. Carefully investigate every possible variation of your chosen keywords and pick the ones that have the lowest competition and still receives a decent amount of searches. Pro Tip: Analyse the competitive power of your website against how difficult it is to rank for your target keyword to give you more chance of success.
• Know your visitor’s intentions. While searching for the same keyword, different people might have totally different objectives. Are they looking to buy something, are they looking how to sell something or maybe they are just researching? Same broad keywords might have different intentions. The longer the keyword, the more targeted visitors you will receive. Make sure you know your potential customer and answer the question they are searching for and you will succeed.
Action step: Find keywords closely related to your topic with decent search volume and lowest competition.
Yes, using keywords in the title is a must for your SEO success.
Google algorithm uses headlines as one of the criteria to decide what might be the main topic of your article.
So, having keywords in your title is a good reference of what could be expected.
Secondly, a good headline will increase your CTR which is also important for SEO. For more information on boosting your organic CTR, check out this article.
For example, if people are searching for the keyword “start your online business” and they do not see any of these words in your title in the search result then there is a good chance they will simply skip your website.
But if your title words match any word of user’s search query then all those words will be bolded in the search list and users might easily spot it. So, there is a double benefit.
Make sure you use keywords at the beginning of a headline.
Many tests have shown that first few words have a bigger weight than last ones when Google is analysing your page.
And people usually reading your headline are focusing on the first few words, so you must catch their attention as soon as possible.
For example, if you are targeting a keyword “start an online business,” then a title:
“How to start an online business – 5 easy steps to follow” is much better than
“Follow these 5 easy steps to start an online business successfully.”.
Action step: Use your main keywords in the headline.
Yes, you can do comprehensive research and come up with an exceptional headline, but if your content is just a waste of time for the reader, then all the work done so far is for nothing.
You must remember that you need to provide value to your audience and provide answers to their questions.
People should want to read your article again and share with their audience, however, how can you achieve this?
Let’s take a look at an example.
Nowadays, list-articles are gaining huge success among bloggers. Let’s say you are thinking of writing an article “10 ways to get traffic to your website”.
A person reads your post and thinks: “Well, it was a great list. I should use some of those tips.”
But what happens later is that he will forget your website as soon as he closes the page.
What you should do instead is include additional sub-lists for every tip you are giving.
Extend every point with a detailed step by step process of implementing those strategies into their process.
That way people will want to come back, again and again, to read your post and they even might share your article with their audience.
WARNING: Do not overstuff you content with keywords. Keep it natural. The Google algorithm is smart enough to realize what you are talking about without seeing too many keywords repeating through the text. And too many keywords might be treated as spam.
Bonus tip: Use synonyms to achieve even greater results.
Google algorithm is very powerful these days, and it can recognize synonyms and other keyword-related words used in the text.
So be creative and make your content even more colorful.
Action step: Create a unique, high-quality and rich content.
Once your content is published, you need to show it to the world.
Only if people see your content they might link to it.
Most people call it link building, but actually, it is a website promotion hoping to receive some backlinks to your original content.
Of course, the first thing you do after publishing an article, you send an email to your list, share it on the social media and other marketing channels you own.
But what’s next?
Or what should you do if you don’t have a large list and social media accounts? Well, there are some other powerful ways to earn links.
Here are four of them:
A. Send an email to every website owner you mentioned in your article. Very often people do not notice that you have linked to their content. Just write a polite email thanking for the content and mention that you have linked to it in your article. Some people will ignore it, some will just thank you, but others might be very grateful and share your content with their audience or even link back in their next post.
Action step: Email to the people you have mentioned in your article.
B. Find niche specific forums and post your topic there. Almost every industry has some top forums where lots of people gather in one place to discuss various subjects. Find those forums and create a thread closely related to your content. For example, you can make a short version of your main article and publish on one of the forums. And at the end put a link to your website for people who would like to read more about the topic. That way you will get traffic, you will get some shares, and you might even get some backlinks.
Action step: Find the largest forums in your industry, create a thread related to the topic and link back to your content. Provide quality and start conversations in forums by answering peoples questions for better results.
C. Use Google search and get a list of top 20, 50 or 100 results of keywords you are targeting or keywords related to your topic and let them know about your content. It is an excellent way to get some exposure for your article because you are sending emails to people that might be very interested in your topic. They might share your content, or they might even link to you on their websites.
Action step: Email people that might be interested in your content.
D. And finally, the last step and an effective strategy is guest posting.
Writing articles on other sites could be one of the easiest ways to get backlinks and it doesn’t just have to be a whole guest post.
You could offer to upgrade just a small section of an old post with outdated content for webmasters.
In return, you get exposure, and a chance to put a link to your website at the same time.
And the owner receives a fresh content.
Both sides win.
But what most people do not know is that the higher your link is in the text, the stronger impact it has.
As you know, most of the blogs that allow guest posting usually put your link at the end of the article in the bio section.
But what you should do, is ask the owner to allow linking from anywhere in text instead.
For example, if you are writing a list post, you can create a resource section at the end of each point for people who want to read some additional information.
And in one of those sections, you can put one or two of your links. Just make sure your link is relevant to the content.
To get even better results, you should find a website with content that is linking to your original article and reference to that third-party website in your guest post as another resource.
That way you will get the double benefit and some greater chances of improving your search rankings. Just do not forget, everything should look natural!
Action step: Find blogs that accept guest posts and offer one or find outdated content to update with your new article or findings to back it up.
These are the main action steps you should take if you want your content to climb high in the Google search rankings.
Keep this checklist near you every time you create new content and make sure you accomplish all the steps listed above.