How to Improve SERP Rankings? In this guide, we’ll try to answer this question and thus, help you boost your rankings in Google.
Keeping reading… you’ll definitely love it!
What is Google Ranking?
Google ranking is an algorithm that measures the quality, the relative relevance, and importance of findings in a Google search.
In other words, Google deploys hundreds of metrics in order to sort out billions of pages to meet search intent and thus, offering users the most useful and relevant results within the shortest possible time.
Step-by-Step Guide to How to Improve SERP rankings
Here are the best strategies to how to improve SERP rankings.
- Strategy N°1: Improving On-Site SEO
- Strategy N°2: Adding LSI Keywords
- Strategy N°3: Monitoring Technical SEO
- Strategy N°4: Matching Content to Search Intent
- Strategy N°5: Reducing Bounce Rate
- Strategy N°6: Optimizing Around More Different Keywords
- Strategy N°7: Publishing High-Quality Content
- Strategy N°8: Building Quality Backlinks
- Strategy N°9: Making Your Content Easy to Read Through
- Strategy N°10: Boosting Your CTR
- Strategy N°11: Using Internal Linking
Strategy N°1: Improving On-Site SEO
Here’s the deal:
One of the best strategies to how to improve SERP rankings is On-Page SEO.
On-page SEO is the process of optimizing your page .This process doesn’t, generally, take more than a couple of minutes but results can be seen in a matter of days.
The optimization process can relate either to improving your page content or adding some target keywords to it.
OK, improving page content is clear…
But, how can we optimize our website or page around target keywords?
The first thing to do…
Make sure your title tag starts off with your target keyword.
This strategy is called “keyword Frontloading”
Is that really important?
Yes, it is…
Google gives slightly a little bit more importance to terms showing up early in title tags. Less importance will be given, however, to keywords showing up later on.
For example, the target keyword on this page is “Long-tail keywords”:
As you can clearly notice on this page, the target keyword is made toward the beginning of its title tag.
The second thing to do…
Make sure your article is more than 1500 words.
According to Google’s key ranking factors, the average Google first page result contains 1,447 words.
You can reach that word count and more by covering fully the topic you’re discussing on your page.
Try to give your readers everything they would want to know about what you’re discussing.
That way, they won’t need to look elsewhere.
N.B – This may not apply to e-commerce category pages as long-form content won’t simply make sense. But, if you have to, just go ahead with it.
Finally, spread your target keyword 2 to 3 times on your webpage.
Adding some relevant terms to a page, will be just like telling Google:
“This page is about this specific search query!”
Which will help give it a nice ranking boost in SERPS.
Don’t overdo it, however. Otherwise, we’ll be talking about “keyword stuffing” here.
If everything is clear till now…
Let’s move on to our second step…
Strategy N°2: Adding LSI Keywords
LSI keywords are one of the best on-site SEO techniques to help rank well in SERPS.
But, what are they exactly?
LSI keywords are phrases or words related to the topic discussed on your page.
For instance, here are some LSI keywords for the keyword “Protein Shake”.
LSI keywords will confirm to Google that your page is actually about that topic which is “Protein Shake” in our example.
Therefore, don’t hesitate to use as much LSI keywords as you can within your piece of content to help improve your ranking in Google.
The question now is…
How do you find those LSI keywords to use on your page?
For this, I would recommend using this free SEO tool: LSIGraph
You’ll have to just type in your target keyword…
…and you’ll get right away a list of great LSI keywords to use for your topic.
Everything is alright…
Let’s now move on to our 3rd step…
Strategy N°3: Monitoring Technical SEO
What every webmaster should know is that technical SEO issues can really impact negatively all SEO efforts made to rank in Google. Therefore, it’s really worth paying attention to them.
There are two things to definitely keep an eye on:
First , check for website’s mobile optimization
It’s recommended to regularly double-check that your website is 100% mobile-optimized.
They are many online tools, fortunately, to check for your website’s mobile optimization.
One of these tools is the Mobile-Friendly Testing tool from Google.
Type in your website URL and click “test URL”
If it’s all green and says “Page is usable on mobile” that means your website is 100% mobile optimized.
If the tool comes up with any issues, however, try to fix them ASAP.
Second, pay attention to your website speed.
It’s no secret that a website’s average loading time is one of Google’s ranking factors.
Therefore, it is recommended to regularly double-check your website’s loading speed.
How can you check for your website’s loading speed?
PageSpeed Insights is a great tool for that.
Type in your website URL in the tool and click “Analyze”
PageSpeed Insights will then start analyzing your website’s loading time for both desktop and mobile versions.
This tool will come up with all possible issues with regard to your page speed so you can fix them.
Finally, check for any trouble with Google indexing your site.
For this, do the following:
- Log in to your Google Search Console account
- Go to “Indexing”
- Then to “Pages” in the sidebar
If Google is having trouble indexing your site, they’ll let you know here.
In case you see lots of red “Errors”, that’s something I would recommend fixing right away.
As a final point here, I would recommend to use the Yoast SEO plugin as well in case you are using WordPress.
This won’t directly help with your rankings but will help make your WordPress site SEO-friendly.
Strategy N°4: Matching Content to Search Intent
Search intent is the reason why users make a search query. Are they looking to make a purchase? Are they looking for a particular website? Or, do they want to learn something?
Fortunately, there is a wonderful tool made to help identify whether your website is a good fit for a specific target keyword
This tool is RankBrain.
The search intent metric is all about letting Google know how users interact with your site.
If your site is offering visitors generally what they are looking for, then your website ranking will improve in SERPS.
Otherwise, Google will bring it down a few spots.
We distinguish usually between four types of search intents as displayed here.
As it’s been said earlier, it’s all about Google making sure your website is offering users exactly what they are searching for.
When you do, Google will want to propose it for more and more users which will impact positively your ranking.
Strategy N°5: Reducing Bounce Rate
Bounce Rate is such an important indicator you’ll want to watch closely…
How to improve SERP rankings through bounce rate?
Well, Google does not like to see users quitting your website right after landing on it back to search results.
This simply means they are not finding what they are looking for. And if they are not, Google will drop your website many spots down, unfortunately.
Matching your content to search intent is the best way to improve your bounce rate.
If you’re giving your users what they are searching for, why would they bounce, then?
Besides Search Intent, there are a couple of other things you can work on as well to help reduce your bounce rate.
One of things you’ll want to look at is your website “Above the Fold” section.
This section is what your visitors see the first once they land on your website.
…and according to my experience, visitors decide largely to bounce or not depending on what they see in this section.
How can you use this section to reduce bounce rate?
Simply by pushing your content to the top. That way, your visitors can easily and in no time find what they are searching for.
HubSpot is a good website example to putting its content at the very top of their pages.
Another aspect you’ll want to consider to help reduce bounce rate is adding visual content to your page.
This can be in the form of videos, screenshots, and charts. Etc.
This will make your content look more interesting and easier to understand.
For instance, I’m always adding visuals like the following to my posts.
…This has kept and still keeps our bounce rate very low.
Strategy N°6: Optimize Around More Different Keywords
At this point, you should start seeing your page moving already a little bit higher in SERPS.
To help it get even more traffic…
Get it optimized around more different keywords.
Here is the process:
- Log in to your Google Search Console account
- Head to “Search results”, on the left sidebar
- Go to “Queries”
Here are displayed the queries you’re ranking for.
Most of the keywords displayed out there are keywords you already optimized your pages around.
Scan through them all, however, as you might come across a keyword or more that you haven’t optimized for.
And if you’re ranking for that or those keywords by accident, imagine how higher your ranking will be if you ever try to actually rank for them.
So you’ll definitely want to go back on those pages and sprinkle those exact terms a few times on them.
You could also produce some completely new pages to optimize around those keywords.
Both ways work.
Strategy N°7: Publishing High-Quality Content
Publishing high quality content is key to how to improve SERP rankings.
This is a fact that every webmaster should know…
Ok… but what is exactly a “high-quality content”?
Simply said, you should publish that type of content that people would want to share on social media…
A content that people would want to voluntarily link to.
Google’s algorithm is largely based on backlinks.
You already know that, right?
That means the more backlinks you get to your website, the higher it will rank in Google.
I think you got it know…
Yeah, the best way to build backlinks to your website will be through publishing that content people will want to actually link to.
This strategy is known also as ““link bait”
Amongst the ways to increase your chance getting people to link to your content:
Making of your content a data Source
That means to publish a content that is backed and packed with stats, data and figures which is the kind of content bloggers and journalists would want to cite and link to as a data source.
Producing Long-Form Content
We’ve talked about longer content back in strategy N°1.
The reason we’re discussing it again here is that it turns out to be ALSO great for getting backlinks.
According to my experience, content that is 3000 words and more tends to be the best when it comes to linkbuilding.
Publishing Visual Content
Including visual content such as:
…Will make your content more appealing and GREAT for getting links.
Strategy N°8: Building Backlinks to Your Website
Producing insanely quality content is a wonderful thing.
But still you’ll need people to see it to link to it, right?
In other words:
You needn’t to just publish it and wait and see…
You should know that such an approach is not working as your content will be a mere drop in an ocean of blog articles, Instagram stories, Facebook posts, and videos that are being published every month.
According to a WordPress report, 70 million new posts come out every month.
What you should understand from all that is you need to promote actively your content if you want people to find it and thus, link to it.
For this, I recommend focusing on these 2 link building strategies techniques:
Getting links via dead links
This is also known as “Broken Link Building” or “Fixing Broken Links Technique”
Here is an AMAZING guide, I strongly recommend to review as it explains step by step how you can gain some powerful backlinks through this technique.
In the world of SEO, guest posting is such a controversial topic.
And this is not for nothing…
Guest posting can be definitely spammy.
According to Google, large scale cam paigns using “keyword-rich” anchor text links are to definitely AVOID.
Therefore, as long as you are not using keyword-rich anchor text in your backlinks, you’re all good.
Strategy N°9: Make Your Content Easy to Read Through
According to a HubSpot study, it’s been found that people spend, on average, 54 seconds on a webpage.
What does this mean?
This means that you have as a webmaster less than a minute to make an impression on your visitors and attain engagement.
Here are some GREAT tips to make your content easy to read through:
- Use precise and understandable sentences.
- Break your content into easy-to-read chunks.
- Make use of bullet points, and subheadings
- Write in active voice
- Add content visuals to further appeal to your website visitors
Strategy N°10: Boosting Click-Through-Rate (CTR)
It’s no secret that now click-through rate is being used in Google algorithm.
According to a related study, a correlation has been found between Google rankings and “Expected CTR”.
In other words:
The higher your organic click-through rate, the higher your ranking will be.
High CTR will tell Google that your webpage is what visitors are searching for.
So Google will rank your page higher in search results to make it easier for them to find it.
To get more clicks, follow these simple tips:
- Use Emotional Title Tags. Emotional tags are titles that stand out like the following:
- Use Short, Descriptive URLs. Short descriptive Urls give users and search engines an instant understanding of what your webpage is about.
- Use Rich Snippets. Rich Snippets like stars really help websites stand out in the search results.
- Use Compelling Meta Descriptions. Meta descriptions are initially meant to help “sell” your webpage. Here is an example of what a compelling meta description should be like:
Strategy N°11: Using Internal Linking
One of the easiest ways to improve Google ranking is…
What is it exactly? And how to improve SERP rankings through internal linking?
It’s simply the process of linking from one page on your website to another page on your same website.
Another good thing in here is that…
You can use exact-match anchor text in your internal links without being fearful of any Google penalty.
According to Gary Illyes from Google:
“You can abuse your internal links as much as you want AFAIK”.
I hope you GUYS so enjoyed my guide on how to improve SERP rankings.
Now I’d like to know of your thoughts:
With which strategy are you starting first?
Will it be with building backlinks, or rather internal linking?
Let me know, either way, by leaving a comment below right away.
Frequently Asked Question
How long does it take for content to rank on Google?
It can take anywhere from 3 to 6 months for a fully optimized website to rank in Google. This period may, however, go far beyond 12 months in case of a stiff competition and a non-optimized content.
(Featured Image Credit(free) : Niilo Isotalo / unsplash photos)
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