In my last post, I have explained what will cause your website to lose Google search rankings. In that article, I have clearly explained the practices and concepts which one should be aware of, neglecting those will surely ensure you lose all your search rankings and then the business goes for a toss.
In this article, I will look into the other side of the table – What will ensure your website’s search rankings improve over time?
This is a question which every website owner or business owner desperately wants the answer for –
What do I need to do to ensure the search rankings of my websites improve? What will cause the Search rankings to skyrocket and bring me more business? What is the magic formula for Google search rankings?The secret is – there is no magic formula for improving Google search rankings.
It won’t happen overnight and it cannot be achieved without hard work, research and being really really useful to the audience you are serving.
That said, here are a few things you should know to ensure the search rankings of your website improve over time. If you follow these principles holistically and pay close attention to the finer details, you will have no problems ranking for the most important keywords for your business.
Create Useful, Resourceful, Engaging and Exclusive Content
We all know that content is the product.
Content is what people want to read, it is the content which brings the user to your online shop. The user is typing specific words in search engines looking for a solution to something and it is the content on your website which should match the user’s query and bring him to your doors.
Content = Product = Business.
It is that simple.
Hence, focus 90% of your time creating useful, engaging, resourceful and exclusive content. Create content which people want to read. Create content which people enjoy and would rather share with their friends and community. Create content which solves a burning problem. Create content which nobody has created before. Build resource and put together different angles of solving the same problem. Be creative and think from the user’s point of view. Think through what are the things that the user will expect once he reaches your landing page? Make a list of user’s expectation and then address that need in the form of compelling content which gets the point across in the most straightforward way.
This is what most people do not do.
They focus on the details – making more money, more business and forget the main thing – the product is the business and if the product is not good, the business will never come.
If you want to gain Google search rankings for a chosen set of keywords, you have to ensure you have the best content available for those words, better than your competitors and better than anyone else. You have to ensure that the content on your website satisfies the user’s problem and needs and there is no other way of going about it other than creating really useful, engaging, compelling and exclusive content.
Get Endorsements (Links) From Similar Sites
Content is primary and links are secondary. Content is king and backlink is queen.
Having great content is not enough since backlinks are equally important for the authority of a website. Links are useful because other people can find your content from other sites that are already popular and links also pass on “Search juice” or “Pagerank juice” from the source website to your website, thereby helping it achieve better rankings for key search terms.
If your website is already popular and has a decent amount of content in it, it helps to invest some of your time in winning links from other sites in the same “Niche” or “Industry”. If the content is compelling enough, links should come to your website naturally, there is no need to ping each and every website owner asking for a link back. However, if your website is not getting links that fast, it helps to be proactive and reach out to some popular bloggers or webmasters and request a link to a very popular post or resource you have built.
Don’t overdo it but it helps to build good quality backlinks once in a while. And by building links, I do not mean you go out and “Purchase” links from SEO agencies or other consulting firms. Do not do that. Instead, build relationships with other website owners in the same industry and try to build links through a mutual connection and not spamming the inbox of hundreds of thousands of website owners whom you do not know and have no relationship with.
Create a Fast Website
Fast is better than slow.
Google and other search engines pay heavy important to the page loading time of an entire site and also to specific pages on the site. Ideally, the pages on your website should load within 4 seconds of the visitor making the request. IF it takes anything longer than 4 seconds, your website is slow and most definitely will have troubles improving it’s Google search rankings.
Ensure your website loads super fast, like a bullet. If you are using Shared hosting provider to host your website, upgrade to a better web hosting provider and switch to VPS or Dedicated hosting. You may also want to consider optimized hosting for WordPress if your website is built with WordPress. Go through the source code of your website and trying to optimize it for better loading time. Clean up useless plugins and scripts from your website and ensure that the software running your website is maintained periodically. Do whatever it takes to build a fast website and ensure that the speed with which pages load in a visitors’ browser is instantaneous.
Create Exclusive Content Before Others
You know what attracts eyeballs on the web? It is nothing but “Exclusivity”
If you find something really interesting and useful before others ( your competitors ), you have an opportunity to create “Exclusive content”. Content which is available only on your website and nowhere else. This is the type of content which attracts the attention of other bloggers, webmaster, website owners, businesses and anyone who is interested in the resource you just published. This is the type of content which gets most of the links because this content is available only on your website and nowhere else.
Always be on the lookout for creating “Exclusive” content before your competitors. This is very hard and takes lots and lots of hard work but it is eventually worth it. It also helps you to establish your brand as an authority on the subject and helps tremendously in gaining trust, credibility, and popularity among your audience.
Focus on creating exclusive content which cannot be found elsewhere and your search rankings will come in time.
Create a Google Friendly Website
Not all websites or blogs are “Google friendly”.
In fact, it is harder to create a website which Google hates compared to creating a website which Google Loves. Despite this fact, people fall for all the wrong things and they mess up their sites in such a way that Google does not love them and the search rankings never improve.
Learn how to create a Google-friendly website. Go through all the material on the web, go through Google’s search quality guidelines, Search engine starter guide and YouTube videos to understand what makes a Google friendly website. Sharpen your concepts as much as you can and put those learnings into action. Refine your website in every possible way that it is friendly to search engines and that they can find the content on your website easily.
A lot of the times many websites who have very useful content are not as “Google friendly” and they miss out on business because their search rankings do not improve despite toiling efforts. Some of the key points of building a “Google friendly” site are given below
- Choose a short, easy to remember domain name.
- Choose good URL structures
- Have XML and HTML Sitemaps in your website
- Verify your website in Google Search console
- Think of the words users will type in search engines. Include those words in your content
- Write Content that is useful and solves a problem
- Attract links naturally from other sites.
- Post regularly, be consistent with your content and be patient.
- Write long form of content and avoid short, filler posts
- Spell check your content, proofread and then publish.
- Interlink your posts and pages together.
- Do not practice any blackhat SEO technique.
Invest in a Team – Do not Go All Alone
Most website owners are solopreneurs – trying to build something on their own. While there is nothing wrong with going all alone, it helps if you put together a team and let the team take care of the business. When you are just starting out, you will be all alone but if your website traffic grows and the business slowly improves, keep investing the additional money in building a team of experts who will create a better website with useful content in it. 5 people working day and night on a website will surely beat one, and it is a common observation that websites who have dedicated team maintaining them trumps websites that is just a one man’s show.
When you have a team in place, you can distribute various responsibilities to each team members and ensure operations and key tasks are accomplished in the highest quality possible. A team also takes the burden off your shoulders, so you can focus on important things and let you active team be a foundation of your business.
Solo website owners also suffer from burnouts from time to time so having a team of writers, bloggers, designers and other craftsmen is definitely an idea worth pursuing.
Link the Good Stuff Together
One of the fundamental aspects of building a high-quality website is to showcase your best content from the most popular pages.
If you have a website on a topic, it helps to link the best pages together like a “Garland”. Develop deep links from internal pages and let the Google Juice flow around the website from one page to another page as naturally as possible. Do not buy scripts or third-party software that injects links automatically, but take the time out to go through the content of each page and try to develop links naturally from the body copy of a page.
Create “Sneeze pages” or special landing pages on your website which showcases the “Good pages” or pages that convert the most for your business. The end goal is to show your best product as vividly as possible so that people are exposed to the best content and they end up making a purchasing decision or they really like the experience they just had.
Be Sure to read our SEO Guide which contains useful information about SEO and we have discussed in detail key SEO Concepts with examples.