17 Actionable Tips To Improve SEO Ranking Right Away
Want to improve your SEO ranking on Google?
Then, you have landed on the right page.
Here, in this post, I am going offer you 17 actionable SEO tips that will help you gain higher SEO rankings in 2018.
So, let’s begin without wasting any time!
1. Find how RankBrain works and optimize accordingly
In case you don’t know, RankBrain is a machine learning algorithm Google uses to decide ranks in SERPs.
Google has already cleared out that RankBrain comes under their top 3 SEO ranking factors.
So, the real question is-
How to improve SEO ranking when Google RankBrain is making all the decisions?
Here are 3 actions that will help you do that:
Learn Google RankBrain
This machine learning algorithm deciphers three major factors:
- Searcher’s intent
- Bounce rate
Understand your SERPs
You must know which SERPs you are targeting with your content:
- Inspect content quality of top 5 results available on SERPs you want to target.
- Collect a list of keywords and adjectives that are common in most of the results.
- See which topics dominate those SERPs.
Work on content and CTR
RankBrain judges your content as an observer only.
According to Backlinko, low bounce rate helps you increase search engine ranking on Google.
If people click on your page frequently and don’t bounce back, RankBrain feels no hesitation in improving your SEO ranking.
In a nutshell, Google RankBrain likes your content when people like your content.
I have a strategy for improving CTR later in this post (See tip#15).
To reduce bounce rate:
- Use titles and subheadings to engage readers throughout a content piece.
- Find simpler words to explain your points.
- Avoid large chunks of words. Limit your paragraphs to 1-3 lines only.
- Update old posts with newer and better information.
- Incorporate internal linking to improve dwell time.
(I’ll discuss more on internal linking later in this post.)
2. Move to “Https” to offer a secure platform
Dr. Peter J. Meyers of Moz informs that almost 50% results on Google SERP-1 have “HTTPS” sites.
While this does not directly impact your SEO ranking, you should move to “HTTPS” as soon as possible.
Google takes HTTPS seriously, so you should take it seriously too.
3. Make your site mobile responsive
Google judges hundreds of factors before indexing your pages.
And, there is a huge focus on mobile responsiveness right now. In fact, Google is steadily moving towards giving more importance to how sites perform on mobile.
Your site needs to go beyond mobile-friendliness and become ready for mobile-first.
Upgrade following elements on your site:
- Make sure that your content is readable on small screens.
- Compress and optimize images and other media for fast page load speed.
- Get a site design that changes shape according to device size.
4. Get rid of thin content on your site
Quality content has always been and is going to be the most important ranking factor.
Thin or low-quality content ruins site authority and stops you from gaining higher rankings. It has both direct and indirect impacts on SEO rankings.
Unfortunately, there is no quick or automatic way to resolve thin content issue.
You have to sit down and work manually in order to find and resolve this problem:
- Give at least 1 hour daily to update and upgrade your old posts.
- Find content pieces that have very low or absolutely no organic traffic.
- Locate content with less than 1000 word count.
- Keep a track of broken links on your site.
When you know which content pieces need work, make required changes, pack them with valuable information and repost one by one.
5. Use your competitors’ work to your advantage
The harsh truth of rankings is that you need to beat others in order to go on the top.
Successful companies invest a ton in conducting research work. Then, they come up with their content strategy that ensures top rankings.
So, if you look closely, your competitors can give you valuable SEO tips on keywords, content topics, media usage and much more.
You can use their efforts to your advantage.
Here is how you can improve SEO ranking via competitor analysis:
- Make a list of sites similar to your niche.
- Use a tool such as SEMRush to analyze their keyword rankings.
- Align them in a decreasing order of Google search ranking performance.
- Understand their content presentation techniques and keyword usage.
- See how they use infographic, videos and images.
- Apply those SEO techniques in your content strategy.
6. Prioritize searcher’s intent in keyword research
For many, keyword research revolves around:
- Accuracy- “Wow, these keywords look suitable for my topic.”
- Competition- “This keyword has low-competition. So, I can expect higher SEO keyword ranking.”
- Volume- “People are searching this term a lot. This will increase my traffic.”
If you use these factors to judge a keyword, you are absolutely right. However, there is one other factor which you should include.
And that is- searcher’s intent.
If a person searches for “Cheese burger” on Google, there are multiple intents possible. Such as:
- “What is a cheese burger?”
- “Where can I eat a cheese burger?” Or,
- “How to make a cheese burger?”
So, if you can’t justify searcher’s intent of keyword “cheese burger”, your content quality won’t matter at all.
Here is how to use keyword intent to improve search engine ranking:
- Analyze SERPs to find what people want to know with a certain keyword.
- Include keywords with similar user intent in your content. (See Tip#8)
- Design your content to fulfill the intent of selected keywords.
7. Attain promotional and SEO properties in your titles
Titles are the clickable headlines of your page that appear on Google.
They play a direct role in your SEO to increase search engine ranking. But, you need to obtain promotional and SEO properties together in your content titles.
Why is that?
First of all, a title needs to send the right signals to search engines, so they can improve SEO ranking of your content.
Plus, a title should be attractive enough to induce clicks from SERPs to your page.
Now, in order to gain each characteristic, you need to:
- Add target keyword at the beginning of your title.
- Use effective adjectives whenever seems right.
- Incorporate “How to…”, “Top 10..”, “21 secrets..” and other attractive title formats.
- Keep it as crisp as possible.
- Don’t fool your audience. Explain what you can deliver.
An SEO-friendly title for this post could be- “Tips to improve SEO ranking”
Simple and short, right! But it doesn’t have that engaging factor.
So, I should add a few adjectives here and there.
Then, a click-worthy title appears- “17 actionable tips to improve your SEO ranking right away.”
8. Master the art of multiple keyword targeting
You already know the importance of keyword intent in SEO rankings.
Just use that knowledge when you are collecting long tail keywords and LSIs for your core keyword.
Then, sprinkle these keywords strategically when optimizing content to improve SEO ranking.
Keyword placement works better in certain places. So-
- Place your main keyword in content headline.
- Use long tail keywords to create subheadings.
- Choose LSIs for internal linking.
- Repeat your main keyword about 8 to 10 times in a 1000-1500 word long content.
9. Make your content worthy of backlinks
There is no way you can rank in Google without backlinks.
Thankfully, people love sharing content online. All you need is high-quality content variety to offer.
Bottom line, Quality content helps in link building, which allows you to improve SEO ranking in Google.
You are asking- How to make content worthy of backlinks?
You can follow these ideas:
- Create more data-driven content with surveys, research work and studies.
- Use studies conducted by reputed sites to solidify your point.
- Achieve content variety with infographics, videos, interviews, and other types.
- Write list articles to engage influencers.
- Offer solutions for your audiences’ problems.
- Target trending and seasonal topics in your niche.
10. Discuss conversation driving ideas in your content
How do you rate your content’s success?
Obviously, if people read and go away, then, content isn’t successful, right!
You want them to share your content on social media and websites. Which allows you to make that content valuable and increase search engine ranking.
Conversations play a big part in this process.
Conversations around your content drive people to share your content more. And, high social engagements get you higher SEO rankings.
There are many ways to improve SEO in terms of conversation driving content:
- Offer new insights with your content.
- Induce people to compare ideas.
- Provide solutions and generate curiosity at the same time.
- Encourage people to comment.
- Answer every question that audiences ask regarding your content.
- Don’t force your point of view. Welcome ideas that contradict with yours.
11. Develop a writing style that aligns with voice search
You can’t avoid voice search anymore!
Google says that about 72% of people use voice search devices on a daily basis.
This makes your overall rankings dependent on voice search rankings.
But, ranking for voice search requires you to develop a natural language in your writing. Brian Dean of Backlinko confirms that Google looks for short and easy-to-read answers when ranking for voice searches.
To improve SEO ranking for voice search:
- Include a Q&A format in your content.
- Offer crisp and concise answers.
- Use simple and commonly used words in your content.
- Combine similar queries together in one content piece.
12. Aim for comprehensiveness with longer word counts
SERPs are filled with examples where long form content pieces gain top rankings.
Most top ranking results in Google have more than 2000 word count.
But, many people mistake word count with comprehensiveness. It is not the word count that leads to ranking boost.
Thousands of words can’t improve SEO ranking of your content. You need high-quality to justify the need for those thousands of words.
When writing a long form content:
- Combine highly relevant topics together.
- Present simple topics at the beginning of your content.
- Create an outline that doesn’t bore your readers.
13. Dazzle with SEO optimized images
Google’s image search can bring you a great load of traffic. Images also keep your visitors engaged, which reduces bounce rate.
So, adding images is an amazing way to increase search engine ranking.
But, don’t expect any result if you don’t pay attention to image SEO.
First of all, you need highly relevant images that can empower your content.
- Optimize format and size of your images.
- Add your target keyword in Alt tags and file name.
14. Provide meaningful internal links
Let’s accept it: there is no way to cover every single topic in one content piece.
But you can link your relevant content pieces together to help users.
The same habit also allows search engines to understand your content and its topical value.
When creating internal links, always try to achieve these goals:
- High relevance to help audiences.
- Traffic flow to achieve desired conversions.
- Helping new pages to gain traffic through successful pages on your site.
15. Increase CTR with eye-catching meta description
We already know that organic clicks help you improve SEO ranking on Google.
But, how do you get people to click on your pages?
By writing a compelling meta title and description.
I have covered titles already, so let’s jump to meta descriptions.
Google has officially increased organic snippet description length in SERPs. Now you can write up to 250-320 words in meta description.
Here is what you need to include in order increase search engine ranking:
- Write a genuine and crisp summary of your content.
- Steal popularly used adjectives in the targeted SERPs.
- Include relevant keywords without overstuffing.
- Wrap information around a motivational writing style.
16. Create evergreen URLs for your pages
Customized URLs get more clicks on Google.
And again- more clicks mean higher SEO ranking.
It is important that you create evergreen URLs to avoid low clicks in future.
If a URL includes “seo-ranking-factors-in-2018”, it will not be useful in 2019.
On the other hand, URL “seo-ranking-factors” can keep that page relevant for a long time. All you have to do is change title with the current year and update fresh information.
So, how to write evergreen URLs?
- Keep it simple and short.
- Include your target keyword.
- Avoid adding year if you want to update in future.
17. Promote more than you create
Do you think that a page builds authority and ranking with time?
No, it doesn’t. Authority and ranking depend on marketing.
How long it takes to market that page is totally up to you.
Content promotion should always be more extreme than content creation.
Because you don’t want your quality work to stay hidden in the vast world of digital marketing.
Here are things you can do to improve SEO ranking faster with promotion:
- Start forum posting to gain more traffic.
- Build an email list of users for personalized content marketing.
- Write exciting social media posts and motivate people to your site.
- Answer questions on Quora and drive traffic back to your content.
- Connect with influencers on Twitter through your content.
Ready to improve your search engine rankings!
Which of the 17 SEO ranking tips do you want to try right now?
Do you want to implement Google RankBrain strategies?
Or, want to write longer posts with comprehensive content quality?
Leave a comment below to tell me what you think.