1. Focus on keywords with high search volume
First things first, you need to identify keywords that have a high search volume. If you optimize a page on your site or a blog for a phrase no one is searching for, it won't get read. To find the right keywords, you can use tools like Moz Keyword Explorer, Google Search Console, or SERanking to see how many people are actually searching for a phrase in a given month.
2. Choose keywords you can actually rank for
As a general rule of thumb, you only have a chance of ranking for a phrase if your domain authority is in the same range as other first page results. Next, you need to identify keywords your site actually has a chance of ranking for. High search volume is great, but you won't be able to rank for all the high-volume phrases. And focusing an article on a phrase that is way too difficult to rank for is pointless, not to mention a waste of time. All of the above-mentioned keyword research tools will provide a "difficulty ranking" metric alongside the average search volume for each phrase.
Once you have that “difficulty ranking” metric, how do you determine your chance of ranking for that phrase? You need to first identify your domain authority, which is essentially a measurement of how credible Google thinks your site is. You can use tools such as Moz, SEMrush, or Ahrefs to see what your domain authority is.
If the other sites ranking for that phrase have much higher domain authorities than your site, you don't stand a chance, no matter how great your content is. Instead, focus on a less competitive phrase. Long-tail keywords or more specific phrases often have lower difficulty levels.
3. Create long-form content
Brevity is beautiful, but not when it comes to blogging. Google rewards informative content that's going to provide the best answer for search queries. In fact, SEO studies have shown that 3,000+ word blogs get 3x more traffic and 4x more shares than articles that are half of that length. And the average first-position article in search results is more than 2,500 words in length.
Of course, that doesn’t mean your blogs need to be that long. Even at our digital agency in Denver, we've found 500+ word blogs can perform very well, especially for local businesses.
4. Keep it relevant
Google is basically an encyclopedia for every topic imaginable. That means there are billions and billions of search results.
How do you ensure your site will top the list? By writing a relevant article. The keywords you've selected throughout your article will be indicative of its relevance to the topic. Include it in the title, first paragraph, and a few times sprinkled throughout.
There's no set rule for how frequently you should include your keywords, but generally speaking, try to shoot for 2-4 times every 500 words.
5. Don't try to trick a robot; write high-quality content
Optimizing an article to rank well on Google is about a lot more than writing a lengthy article and stuffing in keywords. Remember: your content should be drafted for humans first and search engines second. Unless you create a log that you truly think is one of the top 10 pages on Google, you shouldn't expect to rank.
Be sure to provide in-depth knowledge, add in statistics, link to studies, and find contributor quotes.
6. Ensure it's easily digestible
Have you ever clicked on a search engine result and immediately clicked the back button on your browser? More likely than not, it's because the content was hard to read. Perhaps it was a big block of text with no subheaders. Or maybe the font was too small to read without squinting.
In order for people to stay on your site, your article needs to be easy to digest. Most people are scanning for a specific set of information anyway. You can make your content more consumable by sticking with these steps:
- Write short paragraphs that are no longer than three lines.
- Keep it concise. Never use ten words when five words will do. Here are some tips for clear and concise writing.
- Use bolded subheaders to draw attention to important points.
- Use bullet or numbered lists whenever you can.
7. Create content for featured snippets
Featured snippets are becoming more and more important in SEO. If you’re unfamiliar, featured snippets appear at the top of search engine results in a rectangular box. They’re considered “position zero” and often have higher-than-average click-through rates.
The type of content that performs best as a featured snippet tends to be answers to questions in the form of numbered lists or bullet points.
8. Rewrite your existing "almost" first-page ranking posts
Optimizing old blog posts that already rank fairly high (think: page two or three of search results) can be a great way to drive more traffic to your site. And, it takes less time than writing a new post from scratch. To identify these “almost” first-page ranking posts:
Go to Google Search Console > Queries > Average Position
Identify any blog posts that are ranking 10 or higher and use these 2021 SEO tips to optimize them to rank higher.
9. Focus on comprehensive, evergreen content
Trending and timely pieces of content certainly have their place in an SEO strategy, but evergreen content will always be king. The goal of evergreen content is to create content that solves consumers’ problems for many years to come.
Improve your SEO strategy with a top digital agency in Denver
If your SEO strategy could use a little TLC, reach out to us today at Real FiG Advertising + Marketing. As a top digital agency in Denver, we take a personalized approach to every client we work with. We’ll take the time to understand your target audience and create high-quality, targeted content that ranks well and converts site visitors.
What are you waiting for? Reach out to us today to learn more.