Website search engine ranking
Your website search engine ranking determines the number of sales leads you will receive via your website. The higher your rankings, the higher the frequency of sales leads you will receive.
For ecommerce websites, your search engine ranking directly affects your sales.
Search engine result pages
Search engine ranking can only refer to a single keyword phrase at a time.
However, your website search engine ranking is not monolithic, your ranking varies depending on the keyword phrase being used in the user query.
Search terms such as 'SEO', 'Search Engine Optimisation' and 'Search Engine Optimization' will all yield different SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages).
Keyword phrase competition
Competition for ranking on keyword phrases will also vary depending on the market you are in. 'Social Media Marketing' may be more competitive than 'Content Marketing'.
'Social Media Marketing Port Elizabeth' will be less competitive than 'Social Media Marketing Cape Town', which is, in turn, less competive than 'Social Media Marketing Johannesburg'.
Local search engine ranking results
The density of similar service providers competing for rankings on the same keyword phrase in a particular area will also influence search engine ranking results.
Search Engine Optimisation Strategy
Include the following essential 10 aspects n your SEO strategy for 2018:
1. Make sure all your website pages can be found (& indexed) by Google
By using Google's Search Console, you can check that the Search Engine site map and robots.txt file are allowing access to the all the important areas of your site.
All the content on your pages must be readable by Google in text format. This includes images and video, which must be clearly tagged so that Google can understand what these elements are.
Without this index you will not rank and Search Engine Optimisation will never work.
2. Research the relevant keyword phrases for your business
Every business provides an answer to a user problem. An example could be "Search Engine Optimisation Cape Town" or Search Engine Optimsation Johannesburg" to discover an SEO company specialising in this activity in a particular area.
Users may use variations of these keyword phrases i.e. 'SEO Cape Town' or 'SEO Port Elizabeth' and many others besides.
You need to discover all the keywords and phrases people are using to try to find solutions to their problems.
At the same time your website keywords need to mirror these keywords and phrases in the indexable content on your website in order to rank higher.
3 Analyse the competition for your keywords.
See what pages and websites are ranking higher than yours. Use the keywords phrases you have identified in actual searches on Google.
Use this SERP investigation to study the competition and analyse what the search engine has decided is most relevant on your competitor websites.
Ask yourself how you could do better. How can you improve on the competitor offerings? Can you make it easier to understand? Can you provide better information organised in a better way?
Also analyse the content on these pages and add to your list of possible keywords.
4 Create great content to showcase your keywords
Check that you have all the static pages to match your primary keywords. If you do not have these, create them. Makes sure that your primary keyword pages are supported by secondary keyword pages and, if necessary, tertiary keyword pages.
The principal is that each keyword should have its own page. Intelligently employ those primary, secondary, and related keywords on these pages.
Make sure that you use keywords to link internally on your website to relevant content. Example: A mention of 'website marketing' should link to a page entitled Website Marketing.
Make sure that you use a Blog to create great content to bookmark (share) on Social Networks. Each blog entry should also serve to discuss a keyword phrase.
Create authoritative content hierarchies, otherwise known as a semantic architecture.
At this point you should also be aiming to make the content as attractive as possible with suitable images, video or infographics. Enhancing the ability of others to share your content should be your main aim. Any media content must be tagged correctly.
Above all, make your website useful to your website visitors.
5 Make sure your content presentation is technically correct
The page title, meta description and URL are all imnportant signals to Google regarding the relevance of the page to the chosen keyword phrase. It makes absolute sense therefore to make sure that these page elements promote the keyword phrase.
Other On-Page elements, such as the Titles, are also critical. Make sure your on-page content remains congruent with the primary keyword phrase for the page. Stay on topic and make sure your content is organised logically.
(We still find so-called SEO experts creating metatags for pages. It's one sure fire way to know that the 'SEO expert' has no frikken clue.)
6 Aim to achieve authority in your particular area(s) of expertise
Brevity is the enemy of this endeavour. You should aim to present your subject matter as comprehensively as possible.
Domain authority is an indication of the value ascribed to your website relevance. The only way to do this is to create semantic content silos.
Aim to make your website the digital 'go-to' destination in your area of expertise.
7 Optimize your website pages to load as fast as possible
The speed optimisation of your pages, page elements and coding is critical for a great user experience, especially on mobile.
In some cases a simplified page structure may be the answer. But, in most cases the website technology used must be up-to-date to take advantage of technical improvements aimed at improving the user experience. Make sure your website is upgraded.
8 Deal with the trust issues
Security is critically important. HTTPS is an essential security signal to users that you are who you say you are. It also protects the exchange of information between your visitors and your website.
Remind your users that they have come to the right place, display your credentials and testimonials.
Correct grammatical usage and spelling is very important to assure users of your professionalism.
9 Choose the Social Channels you need to use to get your content out there to the right people.
If you continue to drive your social channels properly, the scope for retaining existing clients and finding new clients is endless.
10 Engage professionals for your SEO strategy
An SEO company with a proven track record that speaks for itself is a good way to go. Look at the search engine ranking of the SEO company you use. Where do they rank?
An even greater test would be to see where they have managed to rank their clients!
Too often we find that SEO and digital marketing is assigned to start-ups and fly-by-nights. A weekend course, for example, does not make an SEO expert on Monday morning.
Contact ITM for professional SEO - to lift your search engine rankings