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SEO

SEO Best Practises to Pursue

SEO recommended practices are constantly evolving. Businesses are tempted to use the latest shiny-object SEO strategies in their never-ending drive to rank high in search results. However, in the dash for Page 1, many businesses overlook the less-glamorous foundational powerhouses of successful SEO strategy.

While it is well worth the time and effort required to implement cutting-edge SEO approaches such as featured snippets, schema markup, and voice search, businesses should not overlook SEO’s tried-and-true basic tactics. In fact, they should work to improve these SEO best practices on a regular basis.

However, businesses must reinforce their SEO efforts in non-spammy methods, as Google will penalize “black hat” practices. The following are three of the most common SEO techniques that Google penalizes:

  1. Inadequate connection management
  2. Content of poor quality
  3. Stuffing keywords

Instead of using spammy approaches, marketers should practice white-hat link management, develop high-quality content, and strategically use keywords. This essay discusses how to reinforce these fundamental SEO best practices in 2018 while avoiding techniques that could result in your site being penalized.

Before we begin, keep in mind that if your on-page SEO isn’t in tip-top shape, the best practices listed below won’t be much assistance. Check out this checklist to make sure your strategy is sound.

Most Important SEO Best Practices

  • Expand Your Link Building Strategy
  • Create Useful In-Depth Content
  • Sharpen Your Keyword Game

SEO Best Practice 1 — Expand Your Link-Building Strategy

“We discovered that the number of sites connecting to a page connected with ranks more than anything else when we studied one million Google search results.” Backlinko.com is a website that provides backlinks.

Link building has always been an important aspect of SEO. The more high-quality links a specific page receives, the better it ranks—whether it receives a large number of links from semi-popular pages or a few links from top-ranking pages. Guest posting has become one of the most popular link-building strategies. However, it has been abused, as has any popular and effective technique. As a result, Google’s link algorithms were altered. Companies’ websites can now be classified as spam if they don’t do link-building correctly. The determination of how to use guest blogging and other types of content sharing as vital aspects of a “legal” link-building plan will be a difficulty in 2018.

What’s Out — Spammy Guest Posting

Google issued a warning against excessive guest posting on questionable sites in May 2017: “When Google discovers that a website is publishing articles that contain spammy links, this may influence Google’s opinion of the quality of the site and may harm its ranking.”

What’s In — Authority, Reciprocal Links, Outbound Links and Quality over Quantity

Link building is not going away, but it will be more crucial than ever to develop a plan for acquiring high-quality links. In the long run, a strong SEO strategy will shift toward relationship building and assisting a brand in developing powerful contacts and linkages. This necessitates a more diverse link-building strategy that incorporates the following elements:

Authority – The quality and quantity of links produced on any website over time is referred to as authority. The more a website’s authority, the more link juice it can pass on to other pages. Only link to websites that have high authority in your sector. When you do this, your own site will gain authority over time.

Quality trumps quantity when it comes to link building. Instead, focus on high-quality domains and make sure the links are built naturally and organically. Furthermore, having too many links will not only overwhelm your viewers but can also affect your SEO. There is no such thing as an ideal number. According to one expert, one good backlink is worth more than 100 low-quality connections.

Reciprocal Links – These are links that go from your website to a quality site as well as from the quality site to your website. Companies with mutually beneficial audiences frequently pre-arrange reciprocal links.

Relevant Inbound and Outbound Links – Internal links to other pages on your website, as well as external links to other websites, are essential. Create useful internal links inside your own content to allow readers to learn more about your brand. Make relevant outbound links to other websites where you found the research for your article.

What to Do Now — Start a Link-Building Campaign

A link-building campaign is a process of actively attempting to increase the number of links pointing to your website. Use the following strategies:

  • Create a Company Blog that is both informative and entertaining. Blogs offer the unique capacity to consistently provide new content, participate in online conversations, and gain listings and connections from other blogs.
  • Calculate the Worth of Other Websites. Search for some of the keywords and phrases that other sites target before linking to them. For example, if you were attempting to rank for the phrase “medical supplies,” obtaining links from pages that currently rank for this phrase would be quite beneficial. Avoid, however, linking to competitors.
  • Encourage your customers to follow you on social media. Do your customers wear your t-shirts or use your coffee mugs? Why not broaden your corporate promotion to the internet? Send your trusted partners partnership badges, as well as your consumers graphic symbols that link back to your website.
  • Make an impression on the press with newsworthy content. Getting the attention of the media, bloggers, and news sites is a tried-and-true method of gaining links.
  • Examine the backlinks of your competitors. Examining your competitors’ inbound links provides you with useful information for expanding your links.

SEO Best Practice 2 — Create Useful, In-depth Content

Google has made it quite apparent that producing high-quality content that answers people’s inquiries is the best approach to achieve both rankings and engaged traffic.

When it comes to content, Google reserves the first page for businesses that give great experiences to their visitors. As a result, when it comes to ranking in 2018, a site’s content is critical. In fact, the value of high-quality content has grown considerably over time. Gone are the days of mass-producing low-quality, content-farm-like copy. Today’s material must be outstanding, valuable, and engaging to visitors. Even the best new SEO best practices will be ineffective if you post low-quality content.

What’s Out — Low-Quality Content

The internet’s engine is content. Nonetheless, far too many businesses continue to produce a torrent of low-quality material, and they are paying a significant price as a result. Google’s capacity to distinguish between high-quality and low-quality information is always increasing. Avoid the temptation to cut corners and save money by providing low-quality content.

What’s In — Relevant, Newsworthy, Quality Content

Make an extra effort to create high-quality content. Each page must have material that is well-written, instructive, valuable, and in-depth. Invest substantially in your content, and you will reap the benefits in terms of brand messaging and traffic. Visitors will be engaged and encouraged to share great material if it is created well. In 2018, prioritise the following content generation strategies:

Create Relevant, Newsworthy Content – Before you begin writing, ask yourself, “What about this content would my readers find compelling?” What are the questions it answers? What kinds of solutions does it offer? Google has created algorithms that prioritize companies that provide the best responses. Furthermore, content that generates genuine engagement (as measured by click-throughs, shares, tweets, and so on) receives a big boost in search engine results.

Make Your Content Credible – Demonstrate the legitimacy of your site by employing original research, citations, links, reviews, and testimonials.

Create Useful Content – The Holy Grail of SEO is useful content. People use the internet to learn new things. So provide them with information that they may use. Create educational content that solves difficulties.

What to Do Now — Use a Content Strategy Tool

HubSpot has just released a new tool called Content Strategy. It assists marketers in identifying and creating clusters of web pages and blog content around each of their primary subjects, with the goal of improving search rankings and driving more and higher-quality visitors. The technology assists businesses in avoiding wasting time developing content that is ineffective, allowing them to focus on creating material that customers want to read—and search engines want to rank. Other tools, such as SEMrush, might also assist you in developing this plan.

These tools assist in the following ways:

  • Shift your focus from keywords to topics. Today, search engines reward websites with topic-organized information. The HubSpot content strategy tool analyses your website and recommends subjects based on relevancy, competition, and popularity. It also aids in the organisation of themes into content clusters that define and elevate a company’s authority on the topics, and therefore their influence in search engines.
  • Produce Topical Content. HubSpot’s marketing and sales tools work in tandem with the new Content Strategy tool, bringing strategy and planning together with actual execution. Companies, for example, can use HubSpot templates to create influential “pillar” pages on sites regarding the key topics you’ve chosen. Then, using HubSpot’s blogging tool, they can construct clusters of keyword-relevant blog posts centred on the pillar sites.
  • Track the Return on Investment of Your Content Strategy. Because the Content Strategy tool is coupled with HubSpot’s reporting tools, businesses can assess the impact of each topic cluster on creating traffic, contacts, and customers. This allows for more time to be spent on high-impact subjects that boost ROI.

SEO Best Practice 3 — Sharpen Your Keyword Game

“Keyword research will always be necessary.”

Keywords have existed since the inception of the Internet. However, black-hat individuals misused the search strategy, causing Google to change its algorithms. Keywords, on the other hand, remain an essential component of effective SEO. They can enhance the quantity of targeted traffic that comes to a website when applied correctly. Rather than abandoning keywords, businesses could double down, but in the proper, “white-hat” ways.

What’s Out — Keyword Stuffing

The days of keyword stuffing getting you ranked on page one are long gone. Keyword stuffing is the practice of stuffing keywords into a webpage in order to affect a site’s ranking in Google search results. Previously, businesses could use their core industry keywords and search terms all over their web pages and achieve good rankings. Google caught on and put a stop to it. Google now penalizes websites for using this old tactic, relegating keyword-stuffed sites to spam.

What’s In — Keyword Proximity, Density, Frequency, Prominence and Stemming

Keywords are still used in SEO-optimized content. Instead of stuffing, new keyword proximity, density, frequency, prominence, and stemming strategies should be used.

Keyword Proximity – Place your keywords prominently on web pages and maintain them at a sensible distance away.

Keyword Density – Control the percentage of keywords in relation to the overall amount of words on a page. There is no hard and fast rule about density, but a good starting point is anywhere from 2 to 8%. Use a few versions of the relevant keywords throughout the content, and arrange them in places where they seem natural and make sense.

Keyword Frequency – Like density, this requires you to keep track of how frequently specific terms appear in your text.

Keyword Prominence – Keyword prominence refers to the prominence of your keywords on your website. In other words, how close your keywords are to the beginning of the web page, phrase, title, H tag, and meta description.

Keyword stemming entails employing variations of keywords in semantic categories, such as singular-plural, related prefixes, and synonyms, in addition to exact keyword matches.

What to Do Now — Set Up a Keyword Library

With all of the new restrictions and penalties around keywords, it might be difficult to choose the appropriate terms every time you create fresh content. Enter keyword libraries (also known as keyword databases), which serve as a repository for a company’s most important terms. Keyword libraries provide rapid access to the keywords that should be used in content creation. One method is to enter a list of studied keywords into a spreadsheet. You can also utilise the keyword tool provided by HubSpot. Both ways will make it simple for anybody involved in content creation to identify the appropriate keywords. Here’s how to do it:

  • Collect Your Keywords — Make a list of adjectives that define your organisation, products, and services that are on-brand. Put yourself in the shoes of someone who is looking for what you have to give. What terminology will they employ? What issues do you assist in resolving? What keywords do your rivals use?
  • Locate New Keywords – Use keyword research tools like Google AdWords Keyword Planner or SEMrush to find the best on-brand terms to add to your library. Along with creating new keywords, you can also learn which words or phrases people use to find and click on your website. Discover which keywords are being utilised in organic and sponsored search.
  • Construct Your Library — Using a spreadsheet is the simplest approach to create a keyword library. You could also buy keyword database software.
  • Establish Theme Tabs – If you have many keyword themes, create tabs for each of them, such as campaigns, products, and service categories. You can further subdivide categories into important subjects. Each tab will have a distinct collection of keywords.
  • Obtain Feedback and Alignment – Consult with company stakeholders to ensure buy-in. You may also hire an SEO expert to help you fine-tune your library and apply your keyword plan.
  • Distribute the Keyword Library – Distribute your keyword library to all team members and departments who develop content or messaging for your brand, such as sales, media, advertising, and public relations.
  • Maintain Your Library – Keywords frequently change over time, either due to greater competition or a shift in your client or product emphasis. As a result, you should examine and update your keyword library on a regular basis.

Rather than focusing solely on the most recent SEO shiny-object methods, first strengthen the three core SEO best practices—link building, excellent content, and keywords. While they are under Google’s spam radar, these tactics will continue to be critical for successful SEO strategies in the coming year. When you start seeing gains in search traffic, higher rankings, more frequent search engine crawling, more visitor engagement, and increased referring link traffic, your efforts will be well worth it.

Need help with getting your business found online? Stridec is a top SEO agency in Singapore that can help you achieve your objectives with a structured and effective SEO programme that will get your more customers and sales. Contact us for a discussion now.