Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) The 2020 Ultimate Guide

Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) The 2020 Ultimate Guide

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

For the SEO experts, this is the definitive guide to the 2020 SEO strategies.

It is simple and straight onto the point.

In this SEO guide, I will share with you the following:

  • Ranking in the 3 pack.
  • Building NAP citations
  • Optimizing your GMB profile.
  • And many more.

Let’s hit the road!

Table of Contents

Chapter I: Basics of Local SEO

We will start with the basics of the local SEO.

I will include interesting data that proves the importance of SEO to local businesses.

Next I will introduce you to The Map Pack and show you how it works.

Finally, I will give you every possible clue of how The Map Pack works.

Let’s take a look.

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO refers to the knowledge of how to optimize your business website so that you can increase traffic, leads and also brand awareness through the use of local search. Some of the most common tasks that are often associated with local SEO strategies include the following:

  • Finding local keywords
  • Optimizing Google My Business profile for your business
  • Building “NAP” citations

What is the Importance of Local SEO?

Let me show you some stats on what other experts are saying about local SEO. Nonetheless, I intend to start with some rather cool stats that actually show you how important general SEO is for any local businesses.

Recently, a study shows that 46% of all the searches that are done in Google must contain some “local intent”.

“Around me” for instance, most searches have now grown to be 150% faster than the traditional, local-based search that was the previous trend and that’s according to Google.

More importantly, up to 29% of all the Google SERPs have also said to contain some part of local packs in their results.

While Google cites that 74% of the consumers that always search for anything local using their phone will visit your store on the same day that the search is done.

NOTE:

In line with what I have cited above, there is no shred of doubt that local searches actually make up some huge percentage of the SEO world. Therefore, you can simply get your local business at the top of these searches, you could easily see a spike in your conversion rates too. It is that simple!

How Local SEO Works

How does local SEO work? It might take you by surprise that even a high-level Local SEO will work like the “normal” Google search.

When a web visitor searches on the Google’s search tab, Google will scan through its indexed pages and provide the visitor with the best results for their question.

Even so, the one thing that makes the Local SEO strategy extremely unique is the different set of ranking technique that Google uses with the local search results.

These unique sets of ranking signals, include:

  • Location of the search
  • NAP citations
  • The presence of Google My Business listing
  • The keywords used in the Google My Business profiling
  • Views of the online reviews
  • Keywords used by the online reviews
  • Level of “check-ins” around that location
  • Number of shares on the social media
  • Google Maps star rating for the business

 

While some may relate to the general SEO strategy, some are actually different. As such, they bring in a very different approach.

Chapter II: The MAP Pack

Have you ever heard about the MAP pack? Now you have.

I will take you through the MAP pack strategy in this chapter.

You will learn the following:

  • How the MAP pack works for local SEO
  • Tracking your MAP pack rankings
  • Important tools for MAP pack ranking
  • Ranking in Google organic for the local keywords

Let’s get into details.

The MAP Pack

The MAP Pack is also referred to as the Local Pack.

It is a set of 3 local business results that come with a map on their SERP.

The map is usually pulled from the Google Maps.

Here is a good example of the MAP Pack search results for New York Barbers.

While the map search results appear at the top of the SERPs. The normal searches will appear right at the bottom of the MAP Pack.

While we will talk about the MAP Pack in details, I want you to remember that the MAP Pack comes with its own algorithm and set of rules.

Nonetheless, having some sets of backlinks can also help you in ranking for local and also traditional organic results.

However, other tricks such as the NAP will only play a crucial role for ranking within the MAP Pack.

The one thing that I should point out though is this:

Google won’t only show the local results for your keywords when they contain the specific city or even state. However, they will show more, depending on what they think you need. In that case, Google will leave you with a set of local results that they feel you need.

This is done irrespective of whether the keyword is obviously local or not. Let me show you an example of where that applies in the Map Pack.

NOTE:

This is extremely important to remember when doing keyword research for any local business. Why so? Because you intend to optimize for both the “store + city” in your keywords.

In most cases, using the generic “store” in the keyword without the location will garner more search volume than when you use the “store + city” in your keyword version.

With that said, let’s see how you track local SEO rankings.

Tracking the Map Pack Rankings

The very first steps that you must learn when dealing with any local SEO campaign is this: make sure that you always benchmark where you’re.

More specifically, you’d want to understand where you rank first in your “The Map Pack” then track the Map Pack rankings with time.

The Map Pack tracking is something that every rank tracker has.

{Screenshot of Map Tracker}

TIP: Here is the issue. With the local SEO, the location from which you’re searching from plays a HUGE role.

In fact, if you didn’t know, the Map Pack results that you get can be completely different within every mile. That’s because the search is pinned from your location of search.

Example:

Try searching for “coffee shop” on 72nd st in New York City and 2nd avenue in the New York City – the results will be completely different.

The reason is simple. The results are completely tailored to the location on which you are standing. That’s why when the same search is performed few blocks away it might end up with completely different results on the Map Pack results or simply a different order.

NOTE:

If you choose to only track the local rankings that you get from one location (such as “New York”), you will be seeing only a limited sample of the place that you actually rank compared to the real world.

That’s why, it is important that you get crystal clear with your local rankings. If you do so, you’ll easily see where you are ranking across that entire city or that local area.

One of the best tools that you can use for the same is the Local Falcon. It is highly detailed with the best Map tracking. How does this tool work? Take a look!

  • Make sure you have Google My Business Profile set up.
  • Now choose your business name.
  • Next choose the keyword that you want to view your rankings for.
  • Choose how broad you want your ranking tacking to cover (8km).
  • The tool sets up a 7×7 to 15×15 grid that shows you where you rank within the area.

Now the next thing is to check your exact ranking within these areas.

Once the tool gives you the grid, it’ll also provide you with a visual interface showing you the exact rankings for every geographical position that is reflect in there.

SCREENSHOT

This map includes different spots within the city or municipality.

SCREENSHOT

The ranking will be superior within the city and drop faster as you move out.

NOTE:

When your ranking drops as you go further, it isn’t so much of a problem really. The thing is this. A competitor could be having a location that’s much more centrally located as it further goes on than your business as such, if the person doing the search was moving, Google will consider your competitor the better fit.

If the competitor is ranking first then you’d want to click onto the result and see who the competitor is.

SCREENSHOT

You can as well click on the results to find the exact physical location of the business that’s competing you.

Put the competitor’s location on your ranking map to see why you are second within that location.

SCREENSHOT

Local Organic Ranking

While the MAP Pack is the real deal for a local business, you don’t want to ignore the traditional local results too.

Like I mentioned, they still play a crucial role. That’s why they always appear below the local pack.

Why is the local organic ranking important?

Well, since most local searches here have insanely stronger commercial intent, it is worth it if you rank in local SERPs.

Unlike the Map Pack results, ranking in the local results is basically the same when you want to rank in any Google SERP.

As such, when you want to optimize the business site for your local organic rankings, the best way to do it is to use the keyword that you were searching for in your title tag or the url. More importantly, you should use it in all your traditional on-page SEO stuff.

VIDEO

NOTE:

The one thing that’s unique about local organic rankings is basically how you are tracking them. Keep in mind the “store + city” within the keywords makes up for only a fraction of all the local searches that you will get.

Do a proper keyword research to find the best results for all your intended ranking possibilities on the map pack.

Chapter III: Keyword Research for Local SEO

Now that I have mentioned something about keyword research right above, I intend to give you a comprehensive look on how to find the best keywords for your local SEO.

Thankfully, for local SEO, the keyword research is a “one time” thing.

So unlike the blogs or contents, there will be no need of finding new KWs from time to time.

Mark my words though, I am not saying that keywords aren’t important for the local search, of course they are.

However, in this case, you will be working with low keyword volume as compared to when doing blogs.

Use Yelp Suggest

Yelp Suggest works in the same way that Google Suggest Works.

All you need is to type into the search bar a possible KW that someone may use to find your business…then follow up on the suggested “drop-down” results too.

SCREENSHOT

The cool thing about Yelp Suggest is that they can go an extra mile further to leave you with KWs that you won’t contain any words from the terms that you searched for.

A search for the word “Japanese” leaves you with suggestions of “Asian Fusion Food” too. That’s awesome!

SCREENSHOT

Google Suggest

While it works in the same way as Yelp Suggest, Google Suggest is best suited for local searches only.

However, unlike YELP suggest, what you search on here must be something that’s potentially the one thing that local consumers will search for.

SCREENSHOT

From your root word, you can always add a letter after it to see some other cool KWs that you can use for your local SEO.

SCREENSHOT

Local Voice Searches

My sister loves to use the Google Voice search. Apparently, it is one of the most result-oriented options that you can use for local SEO.

According to the latest data, Google states that 20.1% of searches that are via the mobile platform are now voice activate.

And the figures are bound to rise with time.

Why are the voice searches effective?

Compared to the keyword oriented searches, voice searches tend to be longer and more detailed. They also use natural language.

As such, they are much more effective and will give you a rather “on-point” results for every search that you eventually make.

Example:

Keyword Search: Los Angeles Burger

Voice Search: Los Angeles Burger Shop that’s Open Now

While voice searches are comprehensive – it is unfortunate that there aren’t any tools that you can use to get suggestions for the best voice search keywords to use. Too bad!

Google Keyword Planner

The Google Keyword Planner (GKP) is another great option to look at. GKP will give you the best search volume data for a specific geographic area.

SCREENSHOT

As such, you can create a pool of keywords and then use the Google Keyword Planner to choose the very best.

GKP also comes with a great feature that you can use if you are hunting for new keywords. This is the “start with a website” feature.

SCREENSHOT

 

To use this feature, here is what you can do.

  • Get into one of your competitors website
  • Feed in the url.
  • Google suggest several kws based on the terms that’ll show up on the page.

SCREENSHOT

Chapter IV: Ranking Factors for Local SEO

Naturally, we should see how the local SEO in Google works for sure.

This means that we should look at the vital ranking factors for local SEO.

That’s what I intend to show you guys here…

And additional tips on how you can optimize for the same.

Take a look!

Google My Business Profile

Latest research shows that the #1 ranking factor for local SEO strategy is the Google My Business Profile.

SCREENSHOT

In other words…

The website of your local business is still very important.

The content that you have on your page and also the links that point to your website will also play a key role in the Map Pack rankings.

However, for your business to come in #1 in the rankings for The Map Pack, the GMB profile must stand out.

That’s why in the next chapter, I will look at everything about GMB profile.

NAP Citations

The NAP (Name, Address and Phone number) citations is another important local SEO ranking factor.

Since it is the part where you will list your

  • Name – name of business
  • Address – business address
  • Phone number – contact number

SCREENSHOT

More importantly, it plays a crucial role since Google and any other Search Engine will use the NAP citations to confirm the business info that you set in there is correct.

When Google sees your NAP citations more, it breeds the confidence that your business is actually where you suggest that it exists on.

SCREENSHOT

That’s why it is important that you stick with consistent NAP citations.

Online Reviews

Online reviews also play a crucial role. Citing the same study that we did under the GMB profile, you realize that online reviews also occupy a significant percentage in the chart.

In other words, when you have negative reviews on your Google My Business Profile, it might actually hurt your business beyond any reasonable measures.

This applies across many platforms including YELP, since Google is comprehensive and will look at third party sites too. 

As such, getting positive but genuine reviews can be of great help.

Don’t just focus on getting reviews, also engage your customers by including personal responses to create trust and get better ranking.

Don’t Forget “Normal” SEO

Remember those Googles Traditional Ranking Factors for SEO? They still apply here 100%. No shortcuts whatsoever. In fact, Google confirms the same.

According to Google, “Your position in web results is also a factor, so SEO best practices also apply to local search optimization.”

As such, if you rank on first page of the organic search results, chances are you will rank on the same page when it comes to The Map Pack.

That’s why creating original content, building backlinks, and optimizing your website pages, are very important for the local SEO ranking.

Chapter V: Google MY Business

Like I promised above, I am going to comprehensively look into Google My Business.

I will answer the following questions:

How do you optimize for Google My Profile?

The truth is that claiming your business listing in the Google listing is awesome.

This is true when you intend to rank on the local SEO results.

However, learning how to do it is the most important of all.

Here is a smart guide for the same.

Maintain 100%+ Consistency

With Google My Business Profile, there is no shortcut.  Consistency is no compromise. It is the real deal.

Not only will you enter and match everything in your GMB with that of your website, but you’d require to match all your NAP citations wherever they appear around the web.

SCREENSHOT

This is vital. Such that when Google Scouts your business, they’ll notice that all the info is consistent around every site including the third party sites.

This shows that the business is legitimate and develops some peculiar level of trustworthiness all round.

SCREENSHOT

However, when your business only has a single address that’s listed in your GMB and a different one of the website, the questions begin to rise.

SCREENSHOT

That doesn’t mean that you can’t change your NAP citations, no. In case your business moves or changes address, adjust the same on your GMB ASAP and in all other third party website too.

Also, ensure that the way your business address is written on every online site that it appears is the same.

SCREENSHOT

Google will penalize you if one of your addresses shows Avenue and another one Ave. Choose one option and stick to it.

It might look “OK” to you, but it’s confusing to Google.

Fill Every Possible Data Point

Complete your profile in every possible areas.

Google loves compete business profiles.

100% completion will be the best score for any business. It improves your local search rankings.

SCREENSHOT

An 85% score might seem quite generous. However, my advice to you is to hit the highest possible score that you can – more importantly above 85%.

This is important in case you intend to rank for the most competitive keywords. Make sure that you choose the right category for your business too.

SCREENSHOT

Don’t make up your category. Rather stick to the category that Google provides within their ranking.

In addition to that, you must also make sure to add the “secondary category” of your business. This will directly influence the keywords and the searches that your business will rank for.

SCREENSHOT

More importantly, I also suggest that you fill in the “services” and “products” category places too.

SCREENSHOT

This is a great way to break down to Google what your business is actually all about. As such, it is very important.

Update Crucial Business Data

There are several business data that you need to keep updated. This info should be checked on from time to time.

Some of the info that you want to make sure are accurate include:

  • Holiday opening hours
  • Normal work days operating hours
  • Opening and closing hours
  • Basic business info

All these are important and will impact how your store ranks.

It is these same tips that contributes to very strong and beautiful reviews.

However, if a consumer drives to your store and finds the “closed” sign since you didn’t update, then expect “bad reviews” and a negative “impact” on your ranking.

Get More Genuine Reviews – Reply to Most

Avoid paid up reviews. Stick with natural reviews and reply to most of them if not all of them. It is important.

Remember that reviews like I mentioned before form parts of Google’s top ranking factors for local SEO.

While you need as many positive reviews as you can, don’t choose, rather reply to all type of reviews that you get. Whether positive or negative.

This shows a high level of care and builds trust in your business.

SCREENSHOT

Remember that you can also reply to all the GMB profile reviews on the Google My Business Profile Dashboard.

How Do I Get Reviews

There are two main things to have in mind when it comes to getting the reviews for your business.

  • Ask customers to leave reviews.
  • Make it easy for your customers to leave reviews.

To make it easy, you can always generate a review link for your customers. Take a look at how to prompt the reviews.

Method #1: Click here and enter your business name.

The links provides you with the following:

  • Business ID place
  • Place ID url section

Once you have filled the two, your customers can click on the generated link to leave reviews as.

Method #2: Use the GMB Account

Once you have logged into your GMB account

  • Locate the “get more reviews” card.
  • Click on it.
  • Generate a short url
  • Send the url to customers to leave reviews

Simple and smart!

Chapter VI: On-Site Local SEO Business Strategies

For this chapter, I want us to look at how local businesses can achieve the most out of their on-site SEO efforts.

These tips that I am going to give you are easy to use.

However, first optimized your title tags using traditional SEO tips.

Do the same to your body copy.

With that said, here is what you can do.

Unique Content – Every Location

100% unique content is power when applied to every page. This means that if your business serves a city, you should also write unique content for each location.

However,

One thing that you might not be aware of is this.

So long as you keep of the duplicate content, it is easy for you to create cool landing pages for the cities that you aren’t physically based in.

This may not be helpful for The Map Pack, since to rank here you need a GMB profile for that specific location. However, it can help you to rank in local organic results many other local keywords.

Just make sure that your services also get to the guys around that area.

A good example is a Pizza outlet that offers home-to home delivery services.

While the shop is based within a centralized area, it serves many people including guys that could be over 20 miles away.

The locations along a 20 mile or more road from the physical location of the pizza outlet are potential customer bases.

This means that this business can easily rank in both the local SEO results and also the normal SEO rankings.

Use Schema for Local SEO

When it comes down to local SEO, using schema markup is also a plus.

You can choose from the schema markup category for local businesses.

SCREENSHOT

For instance, you can easily use the schema markup to mark up the following:

  • Phone number
  • Business address

That said.

I also recommend the use of review markup schema for your business.

Having reviews stars like I mentioned before can easily turn a bad results into an awesome ranking result.

Title Tags Cliffhangers

Another technique that you can focus on here is the use of title tags cliffhangers.

It works perfectly well for local businesses.

How it works is simple too. You will start your tittle tag with a really strong statement. The statement is best when benefit-driven.

SCREENSHOT

The statement should also go beyond the title tag limit that Google has set (over 50 characters).

SCREENSHOT

This cutoff will create a much further open loop that can easily lead to additional number of clicks.

Chapter VII: NAP Citations

NAP citations is one of the most complex parts of local SEO. I suggest that you remain very attentive.

One thing that you must know about NAP citations is that they do more or less the same work that backlinks do and operate in almost the same way.

They are pretty hard to build and very integral for general development.

Luckily for you. This chapter is dedicated to building local citations in the right way.

Start With a NAP Audit

The first thing that you must do is to run a NAP audit.

This helps you to ensure that your NAP data is 100% consistent in every place that they will appear including the third party websites and local listings, directories, and GMB profile.

While there are seral citation tools that you can use to do the NAP audit, personally I recommend the use of Loganix and WhiteSpark.

Whichever tool you choose to go with, make sure you have the following.

  • Updated NAP for your business
  • Historic NAP info – for search and update

The tool that you choose should scour the internet and give you specific results on an easy report.

Correct or Update NAP Citations

Now that you have the report of all your NAP Citations. The next thing is to update the citations to suit the current NAP citations. This should eventually create the consistency that you need.

So correct all the citations that you can.

  • Change the citations on GMB, Yelp, and any other platform.
  • Correct citations that someone else has changed.

NOTE: Updating one after the other can be tough. That’s why you should use the following types of tools.

  • Yext
  • Bright Local

However, for the citations that are on other people’s websites – and require manual change, you’d have to reach out to the websites owners on a personal basis. Draft a simple and friendly email and let them update your NAPs for you.

Find NAP Citations and Link Opportunities

Now that you have built your vital NAP Citations – you can do that on

  • Angie’s List
  • Yelp
  • GMB
  • FourSquare

The next thing that you must do is to find your link citations and link to the opportunities. These should provide you with the best MAP Pack rankings which can create a real boost.

In case you want to find the citations and link opportunities, the best thing that you can do is to check out the Link Intersect feature that are provided in Ahrefs.

How to Use Link Intersect

Link intersect is designed for link building. However, it also works for the citations too.

All you need to do is to take two to three competitors and slide them onto the link intersect tool.

You can also do the same with any local business – not necessarily the direct competitors.

The next thing you get a report with listings of the sites that have been linked to the competitors.

Now go through the results to find opportunities that you can use for citations.

Don’t worry about links here. The main thing is to get your NAP on their page. A link is a bonus.

“Steal” Competitor NAPs

Not literally stealing the NAPs – no!

The thing is you can use the same tool that you used for NAP audit to get competitor NAP details.

You can then use the same tool to find places where their NAPs have been mentioned online and in turn squeeze yours in.

This should work far much better than the use of the Link Intersect. A citation tool doesn’t need a link to show up and that’s easy to work with.

Chapter VIII: Local Link Building

There is no difference between local link building and the link building strategy for the non-local websites.

However, this process is better and much more result oriented since local businesses are tied to specific cities and locations.

As such, they enjoy lots of unique backlink opportunities that the non-local businesses aren’t able to suck into.

Let me show you some of the most powerful local link building tips.

Tap into Other Local Businesses

Local businesses know each other. They have personal relationships with each other.

This relationship can form a strong strategy for the most important backlinks that you can start from. So list every niche and respective company that you know locally.

From distributers, wholesalers, supplies, contractors, to general products and services outlets, make sure that you list all of them.

Next.

Scout their pages and identify places where your link would make sense. You can then talk to the business owners to get a link. Credibility is very important at this stage.

Go with Local Chamber of Commerce

One of the easiest links that you’ll ever get is that from your chamber of commerce.

Here is an example of the chamber of commerce link

{SCREENSHOT}

How you get your company listed will depend on the terms and conditions that the chamber sets. Some might require annual fees to get listed.

Other chambers might require you to give a talk about a niche related topic. Nonetheless, such links are pretty important. As such, you must really focus on getting them.

Sponsoring Local Events

This could be part of your corporate social responsibility. Whatever the case sponsoring local events you’ll easily end up with a link on their website.

This is because most local events often have a page that will link to their sponsors or even supporters.

SCREENSHOT

Remember, you don’t have to give a straight support in financial aid, no.

You can offer:

  • Beverages
  • Pizza stands
  • Branded t-shirts
  • Printed flyers

Focus on Local PR

Provide stories and features to local newspapers and other local news sites. You can also call them for coverage during anniversaries and other related events.

Just give them a heads up a few days before the event goes down.

However, if going with local new channels proves difficult, you can source for local stories through these opportunities.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Just run a brief background of what you are doing and allows the interested parties to offer their details a possible coverage/ invite.

Chapter IX: Local SEO: Advanced Tips and Strategies

Finally, I’d love us to finish this ultimate guide with other additional advanced tips for local SEO.

These tactics will give you the best results. They may not replace the NAP building tactics or the GMB optimization but they’ll easily leave you with better ranking.

Here is what they are:

Thumbtack Suggest

This like Yelp Suggest or Google Suggest is a great tool that you can use to get some cool keywords that you can always optimize around.

Once you type a specific root word, the tool gives you plenty of suggestions that you can easily work with.

Embed Google Map

Another thing that you can do is to embed a Google map on your “about” page. This gives better emphasis of your presence on a given location.

  • Just find your business on Google Maps and you will be ready to go.
  • Once you do that, go to the little “drop-down” menu on the top left corner of your screen.
  • Now click the part marked “share” to embed the map.
  • You will receive an embed code that you can use to embed map on your directions page.

Use Location-Focused Keyword

Use this type of keyword above the fold. It is a great way that can often help so much with local organic rankings. You can use the location-focused keyword on your title or page headline. You don’t have to highlight it.

Rather wrap it up with the H1 tag.

Location-focused keyword will allow the website visitor to understand within the shortest time possible that your business serves the area or the location where the visitor is searching from.

Title Tag – Double Dip

This works like a charm. It is an old fashioned approach that enables you to optimize the title tag of your home page around 2 to 3 keywords.

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This is smart since most local businesses will often get few links to internal pages. As such you will realize that the backlinks of most local sites often point to their home page.

This means then that you have to try and get as much as you can from your home page. By optimizing the page around many related keywords.

Optimize Meta Descriptions

At this point you should optimize your meta descriptions for the local searchers. By doing this, you will easily boost your organic click-through-rate.

NOTE: You can use Google ads to get some of the most compelling description copy. It is simple and easy.

Let’s Hear From You

Now let’s hear from you.

Let me know what I have left out.

Which is the best strategy that you intend to focus on?

Why do you want to use the same strategy that you have chosen?

What else do you suggest that can be of help?

Let’s share the ideas and work together.

It is easy when you leave a comment with our comment section.

Otherwise good luck and share it with your loved ones too.

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Google’s 200 Plus Ranking Tricks The Complete Guide for 2020

Google’s 200 Plus Ranking Tricks The Complete Guide for 2020

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

Any SEO expert who is tuned to their job understands that Google uses very many ranking tricks that keeps their algorithm going. Which tricks are these?

If you’ve been asking yourself this question, it’s your lucky day. Today, I’ve decided to put together a longer list of the major aspects that Google uses to rank different online websites.

While most of them are agreeable, some are still generating some controversies around many platforms. Some are even speculations, but nonetheless, that’s your choice to make once you try them out.

So don’t worry, just get down to this list and work your way through our comprehensive post with the 2020 raking tricks from Google.

Let’s dig right in!

To give you a better understanding of how this works, we have divided these factors in several groups, namely:

Table of Contents

Let’s use the break down to get a better understanding of how this works. It is simpler to do it that way.

Domain Based Factors

There are several factors that are domain-based which Google uses to rank websites. They include the following:

Age of the Domain: Google uses the age of your domain to rank your website. Even so, deeper research has revealed that there is no major difference between a domain that’s six months and one that’s a year old. This means that domain age is not entirely important though.

Keyword as First Part of the Domain Name: This is still relevant. Using a KW at the start of your domain name gives you an edge of websites that don’t do the same or the ones that have no clue. It is a huge plus for high-level websites.

Keyword in Domain Name: Initially if you had a KW included in the name of your domain, you would rank better. Today that’s not the case. However, this trick will still work well for a relevancy signal.

Expiry Time of Domain Registration: This one is a big issue. Here is what Google states in regards to this factor.

“Valuable (legitimate) domains are often paid for several years in advance, while doorway (illegitimate) domains rarely are used for more than a year. Therefore, the date when a domain expires in the future can be used as a factor in predicting the legitimacy of a domain.”

Keyword Appearing in the Subdomain: Other experts and test alike also agree that if a KW appears in your sub domain, then it will easily boost your rankings too.

Exact Match Domain: Let me start by saying this. In case your Exact Match Domain is a Low Quality Site, it’ll be vulnerable to the Exact Match Domain Update, so much so that you won’t have the ranking that you need.

If not, then having an EMD will give you a slight edge above some of the websites that you are in competition with.

“The Exact Matching Keyword Domain are domain names that will exactly match the keywords that a website intends to compete with. So if your website intends to rank for – outdoor jogging – then the EMD would be {outdoorjogging.com}.” This is how most websites that had the clue about it made headways.

Country TLD Extensions: A website with a top level domain country code within its region for instance .cn, .pt, and .ca will boost your ranking within the locality of your county. That’s a huge boost if the visitors were searching locally.

History of the Domain: If a website has so many drops or say a volatile ownership, will give Google a clear indication to that it needs to “reset” the history of the website. In doing so, it will negate any links that will point to the domain.

This means that if a domain it penalized, it might easily carry the penalty through the different owners.

The WhoIs Status: Is the WhoIs status set at public or private? If it is set at Private then Google assumes that the owner has something to hide as this is often considered unusual. As such, it could easily lead to a penalty.

According to Google, there is nothing really bad about working with a public WhoIs. So hiding your status could be pointing to a very different webmaster.

Penalized WhoIs: If your WhoIs is red-flagged, it would only mean one thing, you are a spammer. Consequently, Google will scrutinize the other websites that you own and de-rank them too.

Page Level Factors

Next we have the page-level factors. These are also vital when in need of the best website ranking from Google.

Keyword in the Title Tag: This was one of the best ranking tricks that have since lost its glory. Even so, the title tag still retains its importance in ranking. Without a proper title tag you won’t rank at best.

Keywords at the Start of a Title Tag: Moz says that any title tag with a KW at the very beginning will rank better compared to the KWs that sit towards the end of a title tag.

Description Tag with Keyword: Meta descriptions aren’t used by Google as direct ranking trick. Nonetheless, the meta description tag can easily influence the click-through-rate (CTR) of the website and in turn boost the rankings.

Table of Contents: The inclusion of the “table of contents” in your website post allows you to get a better relevancy. Google crawlers will easily understand your website and in so doing get you the best ranking.

H1 Tag with a Keyword: If the keyword appears in your H1 tag and your title tag, the H1 tag is used by Google as a secondary signal for relevancy. This means that the H1 tag with the KW will easily rank better.

TF-IDF: So “how often is a particular word seen in your post?” This is the TF-IDF. The more a particular word appears in your post, the more chances that the main post is about that words. In short, Google can use this signal to rank you. However, they use a much more complicated model. Take a look.

Keyword Density: Today KW density is no longer as vital as it used to be. Nonetheless, Google still uses it to understand what your post is all about. As such, it might still help you to rank. Do not over optimize your website though.

Length of Your Content: If your content is wide or long, chances are you will cover more grounds. This is more preferable by Google compared to short contents. In some sections, experts have even found out that the length actually corresponds to the rankings.

LSI Keywords: These are known as the Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords. When such KWs are used in your content, LSI Keywords will help the search engines to easily extract meaning from words that carry more than a single meaning.

A good example is differentiating between the Dell the Gadget Company and Dell the glade or hollow. In short, having or not having an LSI keyword might also signal the quality of your content.

Loading Speed of a Page: The major search engines will consider the loading speed of the page when ranking your website. Depending on the HTML code, the speed crawlers will estimate the exact page speed. This has been a vital ranking tip for a very long time. Slow pages rank the worst.

LSI Keywords in the Title and Description Tags: In the saw way that KW placing affects the ranking of the webpage content, the presence of the LSI keyword in the title or the description tag will also help to indicate the relevancy of the website.

In-Depth Topic Coverage: The relation between the how well a topic has been covered and the ranking is there to stay. As such, contents that cover every angle to their topic will rank better than their shallow counterparts.

Chrome and Page Loading Speed: Google also bases its rankings upon a website depending on how it loads through Chrome. This helps them to get the exact speed of the page as it loads through.

Entity Search Match: If your content matches the entity that a website visitor is searching for then you will rank first or better than other contents that Google has to crawl through and determine what they are about.

Google Hummingbird: Initially, Google only concentrated on the website keywords and the length of the content. Today, the hummingbird has opened a whole new aspect to Google ranking signals that makes ranking much more effective.

Presence of AMP: AMP is hardly used by Google when ranking the normal page contents. However for the mobile friendly contents, it will play a crucial role. So it is vital when optimizing for mobile phone platform.

Duplication of Content: If your content is spun, modified, or duplicated from another content, it will affect your rankings negatively.

Image Optimization: Images are one of the best ways to get the top rated relevancy signals but only if they are optimized through their names, file names, descriptions, titles, and image captions.

Rel-Cononical: It took me time to understand what it is. Finally I did. It is a tag that when used properly, will prevent search engines (Google) from penalizing your website for duplicate content.

Magnitude Updates on Content: Significant edits and changes to your website contents breathes a new life to them. The best way to do it is to remove an entire section rather than to switch the paragraphs.

Recent vs. Older Contents: How recent your content is will easily favor the rankings. New contents are considered up to date and much more relevant with new information. That’s why Google shows the last update date for any content on a website.

Update History: How often has your website page been updated? Is it weekly, monthly, bi annually, or annually? This goes hand in hand with the point above and determines the freshness of the content that you are working with.

Prominence of the Keyword: How prominent is your keyword? If the keyword appears within the first 100 words in your content, it is believed to influence the rankings of your web page to first page.

Outbound Link Theme: Google is said to use the pages that you are linking to for ranking your website. If you are linking to authority websites then you will rank better. It will also derive the meaning of your content from what you link to.

Quality of Outbound Link: Like I mentioned above, if you link to websites that have better authority, then you will get better rankings. Allow for natural backlink development. It is what Google looks for.

H2 and H3 with Keyword: It might not be the strongest relevancy signals. However, it still serves some purpose when it comes to creating a better ranking boost to your website’s content.

Grammar and Spellings: One of the quality relevancy signals is the use of proper spellings and grammar. It might not have the exact influence as updates and how recent your content is though.

Mobile-Friendly Update: This is an update that will reward the pages that are properly optimized for the mobile phone platform.

Mobile Friendly Use: Is your website usable through mobile phone platform? Does the pages load fast and the images even faster? Easy mobile usability gives you an edge when it comes to Mobile friendly indexing by Google.

Originality of Content: If you don’t have an original content or if the content you have is in other words syndicated (copied from a page that had been indexed) it might never rank at all.

Hidden Mobile Content: If you have mobile content that’s hidden, you might never get the indexing that you need. This is unlike the fully visible content. However, there are some changes that could state otherwise.

Vital Supplementary Content:TheGoogle Rater Guidelines Document, states that supplementary content that’s critical is a good indicator of the website page quality. It is, therefore, very ideal for Google ranking,

There are several realistic examples such as currency converters and the loan interest calculators among others.

Hidden Content Behind Tabs: If users have to click on the tab before some content in your bage revealed, then this content won’t be indexed so much to your loss.

Use of Multimedia: Using images, videos plus the other multimedia elements will give you better indicators to the quality of your content. In so doing it will boost your rankings by the search engines too.

Number of the Outbound Links: If you use too many “dofollow OBLs” you can easily hurt your  page rank as the ranks become unrealistic.

Quality of Internal Links: If the links that are pointing to your page come from authoritative pages then they will provide stronger effects when compared to the pages without or with little PageRank.

The Level of Reading: Google will estimate the level of page visits and read through that you get and in turn use it to rank your page by determining the reader engagement level. Initially, Google used to even provide the reading level stats.

Affiliate Links: Affiliate links alone will never hurt your page rankings. But if they are so many then the Google’s algorithm scrutinizes your website more to make sure that you’re not a fake or in other words a “thin affiliate site“.

Broken Links: Broken links are a turn off. Too many of them on your page is a sign that your website is neglected or even abandoned. So don’t expect any form of ranking as the assessment will reveal a low quality website.

HTML Errors: Too many HTML errors may mean sloppy coding which is a sign of poor quality website. This might mean that you will lose your ranking.

Page Rank of a Page: The pages with so much authority will tend to outrank the remaining pages. This means that they won’t have so much link authority in return.

Domain Authority: If say everything on a page gives you an authoritative domain then the page will even rank higher than a domain with a lesser authority.

Length of the URL: If your URL is too long, it may hurt the visibility of the page when looked through the search engine. This means that shorter URLs will work better and as such provide you with better Google’s search results.

Presence of Human Editors: This is not yet confirmed. However, Google filed a patent which will allow the use of human editors to also influence the SERPs.

Ranking Page Category: The category of the page that appears on the SERPs is also a great relevancy signal. If the page is from a closely related subcategory it might also get a relevancy boost when compared to the page that’s filed without a category.

URL Path: If a page appears closer a homepage it might get some slight authority boost in comparison to the pages that lie buried deep down within the website.

WordPress Tags: According to Yoast.com, the best way to create a reliable relevancy signal is to relate one content to another one and more importantly a group of posts should be related to each other.

Using KW in the URL: This is a very small factors when compared to most other options that we have seen. Nonetheless, it’s still a ranking factor.

Category in URL String: The category in the string of URLs are often read by Google. In short, it provides a thematic signal that could boost your ranking from time to time.

Bullets and Numbered Listing: Bullets and numbered is a great way to break up every content for your readers. This also provides an easy to read through user friendly platform. In turn, you will get better reading level and better SERP ranking.

Priority of Page as Given in the Sitemap: How you prioritize your pages in the sitemap.xml file can also influence how the pages are ranked.

References and Sources: If you create content and cite references and sources, it will point to a well-researched content with higher quality. This is highlighted in the Google Quality Guidelines especially when looking at certain types of pages:

UX Signals that Come from the Other Keywords that the Page Ranks For: If your page ranks for many other keywords, it will signal strength in quality. This means that you will rank better and enjoy top indexing.

Several Outbound Links: When you have too many outbound link, it is suggested that you will easily obscure your page and in so doing distract the main theme of the content. In turn, you’ll get a poor search engine page ranking.

Age of the Page: Google prefers your page to have fresh content. This can be done by updating the content on an older page such that when Google compares the age of the updated pages, the one that has stood the test of time will rank better. This is also tied to many other factors as seen here.

Parked Domains: The ranking of parked domains was reduced by aGoogle update in the December of the year 2011. So you don’t want to park your domain.

Useful Content: There is quality content and there is useful content. Google can easily differentiate between the two and rank you in the same relevance.

User Friendly Layout: If the page layout that you have on your highest quality content page is user friendly, it will make the content on your main pages equally visible.

Site Level Factors

After page level factor we have the site level factors which are equally important when it comes to Google page ranking.

Domain Trust Rank: “TrustRank” is believed to have a massive impact on the ranking factor of any website. This is backed up by one of the many Google Patents.

Content Provides Value: If your content provides unique insights and value Google will be more than happy to rank you. However, the sites that don’t bring anything to the table are often penalized such as the thin affiliate sites.

Contact Us Page: The Google Quality Document shows that Google prefers websites with “appropriate amounts of contact information”. The contact information should also match your WhoIs info.

Site Architecture: If your website is properly put-together for instance if you use the sile site architecture, it will help Google to thematically organize the content for proper indexing purposes. In addition it also helps the Googlebotcrawlers to easily access the pages in your website.

Presence of a Sitemap: A sitemap like we mentioned before helps you to get better ranks. The same applies if you include your sitemap for proper search engines indexing on your pages since it will easily improve the visibility. However, it has been previously stated by Google that HTML sitemaps are not in any way useful for the purposes of SEO.

Website Updates: Many SEO experts share in the belief that the website updates especially when you are adding new content freshens up the content and in turn enables you to rank better and higher.

SSL Certificate: SSL certificate shows authenticity. It confirms that you are trustable. Most recently, Google has even confirmed the use of HTTPS as one of its ranking signal.

Terms and Conditions of Service and Privacy Pages: These two when combined also helps to tell that a website is indeed a trustworthy one. They can also boost your website’sE-A-T.

Site Uptime: If you have so much downtime sue to website maintenance or with the server issues then this can also hurt the ranking of your website. Worst case scenario, it can easily lead to deindexing of the website in case you don’t correct it.

Duplicate Meta Information: If there is a duplicate meta information in your site, it can easily bring down the visibility of your pages.

Breadcrumb Navigation: This is a navigation style that offers a user-friendly website-architecture which helps the search engines and the users to easily find their footing in your website without losing a touch. Amazon uses it frequently.

Here is what Google States, “Google Search uses the breadcrumb markup in a web page to easily categorize the info in your page on the search results.”

YouTube: YouTube videos are usually given preferential treatment when comes to SERPs ranking. It is a great way to increase ranking if you include some video links on your website pages.

Mobile Optimized Technology: Over 60% of online searches are done from the mobile devices. Mobile optimization is therefore a powerful too. So Google wants you to optimize for mobile users. As such, websites that aren’t optimized for mobile platforms will be penalized.

Use of Google Analytics: If you have this program installed then you can easily improve your website page indexing. Thedirectly influences the rankings by also giving Google additional data that it can work with.

Google Search Console: This program also applies in the same way that the Google Analytics tool/program works. Both tools will guarantee an accurate bounce rate and also influence whether you will get referral traffic in your backlinks etc. However Google says otherwise.

Site Usability: A website design that’s difficult navigate or to use will also hurt your rankings indirectly. It will reduce the time that website visitors will spend on your website or the number of pages that they will view. This means higher bounce rates and lower ranking.

User Reviews and Overall Site Reputation: A site’s reputation as it appears on relevant sites such as Yelp.com will probably play an additional role in the Google’s algorithm. Google values such online reviews in their quest to provide the best ranking.

Backlink Related Factors

Onto the backlink related factors. Now let us see what backlink related factors will affect your rankings.

Age of Linking Domain: Backlink that come from older domains are often considered much more powerful than those from newer domains. They are considered more when it comes to ranking.

Number of the Linking Root Domains: The number of domains that you get your references from also plays a key role when it comes down to ranking your website. It determines the recognition that you enjoy and applies the same.

Number of Linking pages: The total number of pages that are linked also gives you more credibility and in turn earns you better ranking.

Number of Links Related to Separate C-Class IPs: You can also get links from the separate class-C IP addresses. These links suggest that you have wider linking platform which in turn helps you to rank better.

Anchoring Text for Backlink: Right now, anchor text are less important. However, they still provide better content descriptions that the texts themselves. Use anchor text s that are keyword-rich to determine a strong relevancy and better ranking.

Links from .edu or .gov Domains: Google says that it “ignores” a lot of Edu links. However, most people still think that these links have a special place in the Google algorithm that gives them better placements.

Authority of Linking Page: The page ranking authority of the referring page is very important when it comes to ranking. If the authority is good, Google agrees that you will get better ranking.

Alt Tag on Image Links: Alt text will act as anchor texts for the images. They play a vital role in the optimization and ranking of multimedia.

Linking Domain’s Authority: The authority of the linking domain will sometime play an independent role in the ranking of your sites.

Links from “Expected” Websites: These are speculative links. However, some SEOs also believe that when it comes to building trust around your website, these links play a key role which allows Google to rank you better.

Links From Your Competitors: Links from the other pages that are ranking for the same SERP category will be much more valuable to the ranking of your page for that same particular keyword.

Availability of Guest Posts: Guest posts links will still pass value. However, they don’t beat the value of true editorial links. Large-scale guest posting will possibly also lead your site into some trouble.

Bad Neighbor Links: If you experience some links from the “bad neighbors” it will have a negative impact on your ranking.

Links From Ads: According to Google the links that come from ads must be nofollow links. It is, therefore easy for Google to identify and also filter out all the followed links that come from ads.

Nofollow Links: Google doesn’t follow the Nofollow links except for some special occasions. They have made it clear in their rule book. The topic remains one of the many controversial ones in SEO. Having some %age of the nofollow links can also indicate natural vs. unnatural profile in links.

Homepage Authority: If you have links that are referring to a page’s homepage, they could play special role during the evaluation of the site’s and as such will add so much weight.

Diversification of Links: If you have a suspicious amount of links that come from one source such us from a forum profiles or even a blog comments, it could be a clear indication of a webspam. This will impact your ranking negatively.

Going by links that come from many different or diverse sources is often a sign of some natural linking profile.

Contextual Links: These are links that are embedded within the content of a page. They are often considered powerful than any other links that are found elsewhere on that page. As such, they play a crucial role in ranking.

Internal Link Anchor Text: This is also a powerful relevancy signal. However, they play a smaller role compared to the anchor text links that will come from the external sources or websites.

Country TLD for the Referring Domain: If you can get links from a top level domain extension of any given country such as (.de, .cn, .co.uk) can help you to even rank better in your country and also that country.

Attribution of the Link Title: The link title is the text which will appear when you take the mouse and hover it over a link. This text is also a relevancy signal though on the weaker side.

Excessive 301 Redirects: Backlinks that come from 301 redirects will dilute some is not most of your PageRank. This is especially true when the links are in excess.

Link Position along the Content: Links will have different impact on your ranking depending on their position within the content. The links that are found in the beginning of a content may have more weight compared to the links that appear at the end of the content.

Relevancy of the Linking Domain: A link that comes from a website that’s from a similar niche is much more powerful compared to a link that comes from awebsite that’s completely unrelated.

Relevancy of Link in Page-Level: A link can also pass more value if it comes from within one of the pages that is relevant to its content.

How Link Is Located on Page: Where the link appears when used on a page is also important. Generally, if the link is embedded in the content of the page then it holds much more power than a links left on the footer or even the sidebar area. In short, it creates more relevancy.

Positive Link Velocity: When a website has positive link velocity then it will automatically get a quick SERP boost. This is because it is a clear indicator that the website is fast increasing in its popularity.

Keyword Within the Title: Links that come from the pages that contain the keyword of your page in their title will get better crawling and eventual ranking.

“Hub” Pages: The links that come from “Hub pages” which are considered the pages from the top resources depending on the content that you have will also give you more relevancy and in turn leave you with better ranking.

Linked to Wikipedia Source: These links arenofollow, even so, many people believe that links from Wikipedia will give you an added advantage. Wiki is trusted and is one of the most authoritative sites among the search engines.

Negative Link Velocity: As opposed to the positive link velocity, the negative link evelocity will reduce your rankings. It signals a decreasing popularity and as such deprives you of the ranking juice in the process.

Authority Sites: Any link that comes from a website that’s considered to be an “authority site” such as we have seen with Wikipedia will leave you with more juice than those links that come from some relatively small site.

Link Co-Occurrences: Co-occurrences are words that will tend to easily appear around the backlinks that you get and help in notifying Google what the page is all-about. These one are good at creating relevancy and in so doing give you a better consideration.

Real Sites vs. “Splogs” Links: There has been a proliferation of the blog networks. As such, Google might have decided to weigh in on the links that come from the “real sites” rather than from the fake blogs.

They use the user-interaction signals to easily spot the difference between these two rather confusing links.

The Reciprocal Links: “Scratch my back and I will scratch yours” kind of links tells some type of foul play and unrealism which can negatively impact your ranking. It is often a red-flag when noticed by Google.

Links from 301 Redirects: The 301 redirects by themselves will put you on the bad books. The same applies to the links that come from them as they deprive you of the linking juice as compared to the direct links.

Matt Cuttswhich is the head of Google’s ranking department says that the 301s are also similar to the direct links.

The Age of the Backlink: Following the Google patent, it is clear that older links often get more ranking power compared to the recently minted backlinks.

Natural Link Profile: A “natural” link profile is held in high esteem and will rank highly on the SERPs. They also have a much more durable timeline to updates compared to links that are built using shortcuts.

Content Links Generated by User: Google can easily identify the links that have been generated by the user vs. those that are published by the site owner. The link that comes from an official WordPress.com blog is unique to a domainname.wordpress.com. Do not cheat yourself!

Schema.org Usage: It might not be in the public domain, but the pages which do support the microformats often rank best and above those pages without the same. This is attributed to the fact that the pages that have microformattingwill have higher SERP click-through-rate.

Number of Outbound Links: The number of outbound links that a page has also maters. According to Google, the link that is set on a content page that has so many external links will give lesser PageRank compared to a page that comes with just a few outbound links.

Linking Content’s Word Count: What is the word count of the post that you are linking from or to? Any post with 1000 words or more is often valuable than you may deem a link that’s inside the 25-word snippet.

Sitewide Links: The use of the sitewide links may look cool. However, according to Matt Cutts, sitewide links will be “compressed” so that they count as just one link irrespective of their number.

Link Site’s Trust Rank: Is the linking site trustworthiness? Without trust, it can only mean one thing, the site is a fake, spammer, or a hoax. Thus it might never get past indexing. So make sure that the site you are accepting backlinks from has so much “TrustRank” that you can benefit from.

Links from Forums: Links from forums may just be devalued by Google due to the industrial-level spamming that occurs today.

Quality of the Linking Content: Links that come from poorly written content or even spun content won’t do you much good. They have less value and as such leave you with poor ranking too. That’s why Google experts recommend links from rated contents.

User Interaction Factors

The level of user interaction in your website also determines so much about ranking. An interactive website will get a better rating.

RankBrain: RankBrain is a Google’s AI smart algorithm that’s believed to measure the level of interaction that website visitors often have with their search results. Depending on the score, the website can either rank higher or lower.

Organic Click-Through-Rate for Every Keyword: The organic CTR that a site gets for all the keywords that it ranks for can also determine the level of interaction. This is because it is human-based and as such provide the best interaction signal. A “Quality Score” is derived from the CTR that’s determines the ranking.

Organic Click Through Rate for Specific Keyword: Google attributes that the pages that’ll get the most CTR will get better SERP ranking for their main KW. That’s because they also provide the best interaction.

Direct Traffic: Like we mentioned, Google uses the data that it gets from Google Chrome as a way of determining the number of people that visit a website, how often they visit, and the type of content that they consume.

When this is done, the websites that get the highest levels of direct traffic will easily rank as a high quality website as compared to those that get little or no direct traffic.

Bounce Rate: Not all SEO experts agree that the bounce rate really matters. Even so, Google can use the bounce rate to test if a website has interactive content or not. High bounce rate levels would mean poor content or less interactive website design among other things.

Pogosticking: “Pogosticking” this is another special type of bounce where the website visitor clicks on their search results with the aim of finding an answer to a query.The results that theye end up with could influence how the website pages are ranked.

Repeat Traffic: If you get new website page visitors and they come back repeatedly, it shows Google that there is something that they like. This will influence how Google ranks your website and could provide an even better Google ranking boost.

Blocked Sites: While this feature is already discontinued in Google Chrome, Panda effected this feature as a way to determine the quality signal which eventually determines how a website ranks. It is believed by many SEO experts that Google still uses a new variation of the same.

Number of Comments a Post Receives: Pages with so many comments for a given post will get better ranking since they signal better user-interaction levels and high quality content.

Chrome Bookmarks: Chrome Bookmark is used to collect several date from your browser. The pages that are bookmarked will point to better to better content or user interaction and as such get booster SERP ratings.

Visitor Dwell Time: The dwell time refers to the length of time that website visitors will take in your website page from the moment they click on the link from the SERPs. In this case, we have the “long clicks vs short clicks”. The short clicks will mean lean time and the long clicks longer dwell time. A longer dwell time points to better interaction and offers ranking boosts as opposed to the next.

Special Rules from Google Algorithms

Google has a wide rule book. However, there are special cases that determine how and where a website ranks.

“YMYL” Keywords: For “Your Money or Your Life” keywords Google will definitely rank the KWs higher for quality standards.

Freshness: Google may give the newer pages some boost for some specific searches that they might have.

Diversity of the Domain: This is also called the “Bigfoot Update” and is supposedly added for more domains on each SERP page.

DMCA Complaints: If your website gets a legitimate DMCA complaint Google will “downranks” the page. Avoid any type of DMCA complaint as much as possible. Use Google analytics tool.

Type of Local Searches: For the local search results, Google will often place the local search results on top or above the other “normal” types of organic SERPs irrespective of the type of search.

Diversity: Sometimes, Google will add more diversity to specific SERPs especially where for ambiguous keywords may be involved before they choose to rank.

Transactional Searches: In case of transactional searches such as shopping related searches, Google will sometimes display a wide range of result for every search that you make under the same keyword to give you wider options. A good example if the flight related search.

Visitor Search History: The search chain that a user leaves behind will influence the search results that they will get for later searches. As such, if you type “reviews” in your search bar and then take another search for “vacuum cleaners” Google will likely rank vacuum cleaner review sites at the very top.

Geo Targeting: Google depending on your location will give preference to the websites that use a local server IP address or/ and country-specific domain extension for every search that you make.

Big Brand Preference: Google for some time now gives the big brands some boost for some of their keywords.

Visitor Browsing History: More or less the same as the search history, the browsing history will give the websites visited frequently by you greater SERP boost every time that you make a search.

Top Stories Box: These are boxes that Google displays in their search results to match the latest press-releases, news, stories, and such. If a search result triggers this type of results, the webite that is at the limelight takes the advantage.

Featured Snippets: SEMRush states that Google will choose the Featured Snippets content depending on a combination of the formatting, page authority,content length, and HTTPs usage and then rank them higher.

Google+ Website Circles: Google+ is not as effective as it should be. Nonetheless, Google still ranks higher the authors and the websites sites that you have added to their Google+ Circles.

Safe Search: In case the “safe search” is turned on in your browser, the immediate results that you will get for your page ranking will be devoid of any adult content. This restricts the SERPs that you get.

Easter Egg Results: Have you encountered searches that display as a playable games when you type your search on Google? This is a good example of an Easter Egg result. Such results often rank higher on the SERPs.

Shopping Results: In some occasions, Google will display the Google Shopping results in line with the organic SERPs. The same rule that it uses to rank content in line with organic traffic results.

Payday Loans Update: This is another one of the special algorithms that is designed to quickly clean up the “very spammy queries” and in so doing maintain relevancy when ranking the pages in question.

Image Results: Like the shopping results, the Google images results will also sometimes appear in line with theusual organic results for the search in question.

Single Site Results: Single site results will work more with Brans. They focus on the domain or the brand-oriented KWs that often bring up many different results from a single site.

Brand Signals Factors

Focus on the brand signals is also another cool trick that’ll allow Google to rank your website better.

Brand + Keyword Search: Do website visitors base their search on a specific keyword together with your brand? If so, then you are more likely to get a ranking boost from Google especially for the non-branded search versions.

Branded Anchor Text: The brand name anchor text may look simple. However, it is one of the strongest brand signals and as such will guarantee the best ranking boost.

Branded Type of Searches: When website visitors search only for brand or brand names in Google. It gives your brand the realistic edge and as such gives you a greater ranking boost from all angles.

Twitter Profile with Followers: Giving your website a Twitter profile is an awesome ranking trick, but more importantly, it will work best if the twitter profile has real followers. This signals that the brand is popular and as such should rank better for its interactive side.

Facebook Page and Likes: The same thing that I have mentioned above on the twitter social media account will also apply for a website that has a FB account with likes or followers. It shows the popularity of the brand.

Social Media Accounts Legitimacy: If a social media has an account with over 10,000 followers but only 2 posts then it is probably a fake compared to one that has 10,000-followers and lots of likes and user interactions. Thankfully,Google filed a patentthat enables it to determine whether a social media account is real or fake.

Presence of an Official LinkedIn Company Page: A real business will have a company Linkedin profile. At least most of them do and it’s a great way of showing authority, transparency, and in turn building trust which are all good for better ranking.

Authority Authorship: Google CEO once said that within theSERPs the information that’s tied to any verified authority authors will be ranked higher compared to any other content that lacks such verifications.

Brand Mentions Within Top Stories: Most of the big brands will get mentions on the top stories sites websites most of the time. This is simple but very effective when it comes to getting a higher rank as it depicts much more authority compared to the other websites.

Brick and Mortar Locations: The real businesses should have physical offices. There is a chance that Google fishes for the location-data when ranking so that they can use it to determine the authenticity and the size of the brand.

Non-Hyperlinked Brand Mentions: The brands that get mentioned without having any linked urls will also be looked for by Google and focused on as brand signal during website rankings on searches.

The On-Site Webspam Factors

Links to the Bad Neighborhoods: If you are linking out to the “bad neighborhoods” such as aspammypayday loan website, your visibility and ranking could be easily hurt.

Distracting Ads: A website that has distracting ads such as uncalled for popups will lead to low ranks and poor website.Google Rater Guidelines Documentmakes this very clear.

Panda Penalty: If a site has a low-quality content then it becomes less visible and will consequently rank lower than sites that have high quality contents.

Redirects: Google doesn’t support the presence of any sneaky redirects on your website at all. If found on your website, you will easily get penalized and possibly de-indexed.

Interstitial Popups: This types of popups are as bad as any other type of popup. As such, Google will easily penalize your website for the display of “interstitial” popups especially to the mobile users.

Presence of Gibberish Content: Google Patent Guidelines outline how best Google will identify “gibberish” content, when ranking different websites. This is quite helpful when Google intends to filter out any spun or even auto-generated type of content.

Above the Fold Ads: In the Google “Page Layout Algorithm” Google will penalize the websites that have lots of ads but very limited content above the fold.

Site Over-Optimization: If you over-optimizing your site with so much keyword stuffing or header tag stuffing then Google will penalize you. The same applies to excessive keyword decoration.

Doorway Pages: Google wants that the page shown to its crawlers is the same one that the reader gets when they click on your link. If the page redirects the user to another page once they click on them, then that leads to de-indexing. Doorway Pages are a no, no, no for Google ranking.

Meta Tag Spamming: Keyword stuffing is not good just as we have seen. Even so, it can also easily take place on your meta tags. If Google finds any signs of this happening on the meta tags then it could easily draw a penalty.

Fred: This is a nickname that was given to series of Google updates since 2017. Fred is said to “targets low-value content sites with the intention of cashing in rather than informing their users. Fred will also lead to de-indexing or Google penalty.

Auto-Generated Content Type: Google hates autogenerated content with passion. If you give them any reason to think that your content is computer-generated then they will penalize you without a second thought. The same could lead to de-indexing.

Flagged IP Address: If the server’s IP address to your website has been flagged as spam, it will affect all the sites that are supported by that server.

Hidden Affiliate Link: If you hide the affiliate links then this will draw a drastic penalty or possible de-indexing.

Focusing on Affiliate Sites: Google doesn’t love affiliates websites that much. This is because such sites are often targeted on making profits. As such, they are usually put under extra scrutiny and any small mistake could lead to your site being penalized.

PageRank Sculpting: PageRank sculpting in excess by using by using the nofollowoutbound links only is a spammy sign that will definitely cause penalties.

Off-Site Webspam Factors

The offsite Webspam factors will also determine how your website will or should rank under the SERPs.

Link Profile with Low Quality Links: Many links that are often used by the black hat SEOs such as blog comments could be crafty. These are signs of trying to game the system and will negatively affect your ranking.

Hacked Website: In case your website is hacked its ranking could also be affect. In most cases, the website will be dropped from the impending search results. Take a look at whatSearch Engine Land states.

Unnatural Links Warning: Google has for a long time sent out messages about deleted unnatural links. When this happens, it follows with a ranking drop sometimes.

Penguin Penalty: When Google hits your website with a Penguin penalty it will lead to less visibility in the search results. Even so, right now Penguin focuses on filtering out the bad links vs. the issuance of penalties to an entire website.

Links From Unrelated Sites: If you have very high-percentage backlinks from websites that don’t relate to you in topic then it increases the odds of getting a manual penalty and ending up with poor ranking results.

Unnatural Link Influx: If you get a sudden and unnatural link influx to your website, the links are much likely to be phony links which eventually will interfere and negatively impact your ranking.

Low-Quality Directory Links: Google states that backlinks that come from low-quality directories will lead to penalties.

Links from Same Class C IP: When you get an unnatural link amounts from the websites that use the same server or IP address. It could be a tip of playing the system and Google will have to determine where your links are coming from.

Unnatural Spike in Link: Generally speaking an unnatural spike in links is a bad sign. According to the 2013 Google Patent Google describes how it can easily identify the legitimacy of a surge in the links that you get.

Widget Links: There are those links that will automatically get generated once a user embeds “widgets” on their website.These are not considered valid by Google.

Manual Actions: There are many types of manual actions, however, most of them are often related to the black hat linking technique which Google is greatly against.

Google Sandbox: When a new sites suddenly gets an influx in their links. Google will put them in the Google Sandbox. This action will temporarily limit their search visibility.

Disavow Tool: Incorporating the use of the “Disavow Tool”will sometimes remove manual or even algorithmic penalty in case your websitewas a victim of negative SEO.

Temporary Link Schemes: There are some people that will try to create and quickly remove spammy links with the thought of beating the system. Google applies the temporary link scheme to get hold of such websites and de-index them.

“Poison” Anchor Text: In case you’ve got “poison” anchor texts such as pharmacy related keywords that point to your website is a sign that your site is hacked or spammy and whichever way will hurt the website’s ranking.

Articles and Press Releases Links: For a long time, the links that come from articles directories and also press releases were abused until Google now considers them as “link building scheme” and will affect your ranking negatively.

Selling Links: If you are selling links. You should know that it’s a bad practice that can easily get you in trouble and subsequent bad search visibility.

Google Dance: Google Dance will in the least shake up your rankings. According a specific Google Patent, Google dance is a trick used to determine whether your site could be trying to game Google algorithm or not.

Reconsideration Request: If you make a successful reconsideration request, your penalty can be lifted. Subsequently, you can easily get back to business and restore your ranking credibility among the other things.

Conclusion

You have seen it all. It’s a long list, but it is worth every bit of your time. So to give you but a brief summary, you must always remember the following.

That there are some factors that will greatly influence how you rank, where you rank, and when you will rank.

These factors include; referring domains,domain authority,organic click-through-rate, total number of backlinks, dwell time, mobile usability, on-page seo, and content quality among the others that we have here.

In case there is something that you feel I left out, feel free to comment so that we can learn together. Do leave a comment too if you loved the post all together.

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Ecommerce SEO: The Ultimate Guide

Ecommerce SEO: The Ultimate Guide

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

If you are looking for the smartest Ecommerce SEO tips, this is the ultimate guide.

In this guide, I will show you everything that you need to know about the optimization of an Ecommerce site.

Right from comprehensive keyword research to the technical SEO link building, I’ve got you covered.

That’s just it – a complete guide to getting more traffic and high level conversions.

Let’s hit the road.

Why is SEO Important for Ecommerce Websites?

Before we get down to the juice, let me tell you why SEO is important for an Ecommerce Website.

It is stated that 37.5% of the ecommerce traffic that online websites get come from the search engines.

While 23.6% of online conversions are tied to the traffic that ecommerce websites normally generate.

If that’s the case, one thing is clear. SEO is vital in both the marketing and conversion rates of any ecommerce website. In short, SEO makes it easy to market and to sell and product or service.

Table of Contents

Chapter I: Keyword Research for Ecommerce

There is no doubt. Proper keyword research is the foundation of any SEO campaign including for the ecommerce websites.

If you are asking why, here is the simplest answer.

Keyword research will influence any other SEO-based task that you intend to perform in your website.

Whether you are optimizing your product and category pages, creating a blog, or simply working on optimizing the images that you use on your ecommerce website, keyword research will be at the center of it.

As such, keyword research will influence everything that you are doing including the technical SEO strategy.

So how can you get the best keywords that your prospects use?

Take a look at the next part of this chapter to get the best keywords for your ecommerce websites.

Finding Best Keywords for Ecommerce Category and Product Pages

If you look at the best keyword tutorials, you’ll realize that they focus more on working with informational keywords.

These are keywords that tend to inform the web visitor by answering their questions rather than addressing their concerns.

A good example of such a keyword is “how to feed fish.”

While this type of keyword is important, in this post, I will focus more on keywords that are designed around product searches.

For instance “short floral dresses.”

As such, my keyword research tutorial will focus more on a keyword research strategy that goes with product-focused keywords.

How can you do that?

Take a look at the best options that you’ve got.

Amazon Suggest

Why Amazon suggest, while Amazon is my competitor?

Well, this is all true. However, Amazon is also the biggest ecommerce site. In this case, its product keyword is a treasure.

Here is what you can do to tap into the wealth of keywords that Amazon has.

  • Head up to Amazon
  • Type in a keyword that best describes your products.
  • Amazon will list all the keyword suggestions.
  • Find the keywords suggestions that suits you.

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The keywords that you’ll get from Amazon are often very much targeted.

They are long tail keywords and will, therefore, convert better.

More importantly they are less competitive.

If you are going with the most important products that you’ve got, you can repeat the process over and over again to get the best keywords.

Use Keyword Tool Dominator

For those who don’t know the Keyword Tool Dominator, here is what it is. This is a cool keyword tool that helps you to scrape Amazon’s search suggestions.

It is simple to use and comes with a simple interface.

Simple enter a seed keyword on its search box.

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And it splits several keyword suggestions.

You will see your results firsthand.

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NOTE:

This tool is ideal if you are looking for the long tail keywords from the Amazon suggest. It works faster than typing the keyword directly.

In addition to that, you’ll also be left with a wider range of keywords to go with.

One feature that makes the keyword tool dominator a great option is this. It offers you the chance to save your best keywords to a reference list.

Amazon and Competitor Categories

From my experience working with several ecommerce businesses, I have realized that most ecommerce website owners will optimize their category pages to suit random keywords.

It not bad since they will have to think about what their competitors are doing too. However, it is not the real deal. Actually, it is a big mistake.

While the product categories may not work best for conversions like the product pages will, they will still generate some sales for you.

Remember, you need everything that you can to tap into any potential prospects. As such, it is worthwhile to tap into every potential keywords including those generated by the categories.

What’s the best way to do that?

Here are the best options.

Focus on Amazon and Competitor Categories

You should look at the categories that your competitors are already working with.

Let’s say that your competition is Amazon. What can you do?

It is simple. Just hover over the “departments” tab that’s at the top of Amazon’s homepage.

If you do that, you’ll easily see the main categories that Amazon uses.

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You will realize that there are a dozen more.

You don’t have to focus on all of them. Instead, just click on any that is ideal for your needs.

Make sure that any “subcategory” that you choose suits your keywords.

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Once you have found the subcategories, you can dig deeper to find the category-focused keywords.

Example:

Let’s say that you are focused on “Pet Supplies” Category.

Click on “Pet Supplies”

Then click on “Cats”

Choose “Toys” on the list

Then you will get on the sidebar a keyword that Amazon uses to describe their cat pet toys.

It is that simple!

It is true that Amazon will give you some of the best category-based keywords. However, it isn’t the only place that you can work with.

Instead, looking at the options that your niche-based competitors work with to describe their categories will be a great option too.

It will help you more. Go with niche-based products to ensure that you get the best out of every category that you choose.

Once you identify a competitor, you can always follow the same process that we did with Amazon above.

Then add the keywords that you’ve gotten to your list.

Wikipedia

This might come as a surprise to most of you out there, well, it did to me. However, it is the truth.

Wikipedia is actually a great place to use when looking for the product and category page keywords.

The reason for this is simple.

Like we saw above with Amazon and the Competitor websites, Wiki also organizes its content based on keywords and categories.

This means that if you are out to get a more targeted keywords, you’ll be better off with Wikipedia.

So how can you use Wikipedia for ecommerce websites?

First enter the keyword that best describes your niche (in terms of category or product).

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Then look through Wikipedia to find words and phrases that relate to the products that you sell.

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Ensure that you take a keen look on the content’s box – you may find excellent product-based keywords.

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List the keywords that you’ve come up with and save.

SEMrush

I know most of you are conversant with SEMrush. Even so, what I’ve already given you should be a great starting point.

But SEMrush comes with a twist. It does not generate your new keyword ideas from the seed keywords.

Rather, it’ll show you the keywords that your competitors are already ranking for. Isn’t that great?

If you are looking at SEMrush as your best option, here is how to go about it.

Open SEMrush and identify the “search” tab

Next enter a competitor’s url on the search bar.

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Then follow that by clicking “organic search” in the sidebar.

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This action will show you every keyword that your competitor ranks for.

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The deal is better if you want to tap into every keyword that your competitor uses.

Simply check on the competitor’s report which SEMrush generates for you.

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More importantly, SEMrush will also show you every site that’s similar to the one you are looking at.

You can therefore repeat the same process by the competitor sites that you’ve just found on SEMrush.

Google Keyword Planner

Finally, the one more tool that we have is the Google Keyword Planner.

This might not be very effective. However, it is not a bad way to start. But don’t expect so many unique keywords when using this tool.

Even so, it is a handy tool when it comes to finding search volume prospects and the commercial intent.

Next, let us find how to choose the right keywords for an ecommerce product and category page.

Choosing the Ideal KWs for the Product and Category Page for Ecommerce

The tips that I gave you above only provide you with lists of potential keywords that you can use for your ecommerce products and categories.

However, they don’t guarantee the keyword that you should choose. So how do you choose the best keyword for your ecommerce product/category?

Here is a 4-step check list that’ll identify the very best keywords for your ecommerce websites.

Step I: Search Volume

This is the most important thing when evaluating the best keyword for your use. In any case, if a keyword is not being sought then it doesn’t really matter.

Depending on your niche, find the right search volume for your keyword.

You will find niches that 100 searches a month is huge and others that 10k searches monthly is nothing at all.

That’s why it is important that you understand the niche that you’re dealing with. This should show you what a “high volume” and “low volume” keyword will be for your industry.

To get the average monthly searches for the keyword that you are looking at, simply use the Google Keyword Planner (GKP).

It has an average monthly search column that you will use to identify the search volume for the keyword.

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You can also see how keyword search fluctuates or changes throughout the year using the KWFinder. This tool shows you a clear chart with a month to month search volume for your KW.

Step II: Product Fit KW

You can find a keyword that enjoys tons of search volume. Well, that’s a god sign. But does it guarantee that the keyword is fit for your product? Not at all.

Is the keyword receives tons of searches but it’s somewhat a stretch with what your website sells, however little, chances are that the people who search for that keyword won’t convert at all.

So it is very important that you ensure that the keyword that you are working with actually fits both your site and product.

In some cases the much targeted keyword might be getting fewer searches than the other keywords.

Well, I recommend that you stick to this keyword rather than going for the long shot. It is better to be safe than sorry.

Now that you’ve got the perfect fit keyword, let’s see how much of commercial intent do they have.

Step III: Commercial Intent

Can the keywords trigger a conversion? Can they make a visitor to get out their credit card and buy?

Here is the thing. Before you get down to using this keyword, you can take a pause and re-think to find out if the people who are focused on this KW buy or simple check and walk away.

How can you do that?

It’s easy. Simply use the Google Keyword Planner and follow these:

Keyword Competition

To determine this you’ll have to start by checking out the “competition rating” of the keyword that you’ve chosen.

Competition: This column reflects on the number of people who are bidding on the keyword in Google Ads. If you get a high number of bidders, it means the keyword is a cash cow.

That’s why when working for ecommerce websites, going with “medium” and “high” competition KWs is the best thing to do.

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Top of Page Bid

You should also take a look at the “Top of Page Bid.”

Top of Page Bid reflects on how much people spend on a single click on the Google Ads.

The higher the bid the better especially if you are trying to gauge the commercial intent.

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Now that you’ve your suggested bid, you should also identify the phrases that often impact the estimated bid.

NOTE: The keywords with higher bids are also very competitive to rank for the Google Search. I will show you more about that soon.

Step IV: Ranking Competition

Finally, you have to see how hard or easy it is for the keyword to crack into Google’s SERPs first page.

How can you check whether your keyword is ideal for competition or not?

Take a look.

SEMrush Keyword Difficulty

First, you can use the SEMrush’s keyword difficulty. It is a great option that shows you how competitive a given KW is to rank for.

The “keyword difficulty” is easy to determine if you use SEMrush.

Simply enter the keyword into the search field.

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Next find the sidebar and click onto the “keyword difficulty.”

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Now look at the “Difficulty %” column.

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The higher the percentage, the harder it is to rank for the keyword on Google search.

Keyword Targeting and Keyword Page Optimization

Now that you have all these down. How do you find out if the page that you’re looking at on the 1st page is optimized around the keyword that you have?

I will show.

But first, you must understand that this is very important and the reason is simple.

If you find out that the page ranking on the top 10 SERPs are only slightly related to the keyword in question, then you can easily outrank the page with a highly targeted page.

This is the trick that’ll work for any new ecommerce website that intends to make it big.

Chapter II: Architecture of an Ecommerce Website

How are the pages on your website arranged and organized? Are they appealing or appalling? This is what ecommerce site architecture means – and it’s an important SEO consideration for any website.

Site architecture is however much more important for the ecommerce websites.

Why?

Well, ecommerce websites often have high number of pages than an average blog or local ice cream shop will have.

As such, it is critical that you arrange the site properly so that you can have a highly presentable website.

This makes it easy for the users and the site engines to find every page that they are looking for.

How do you get the best arrangement for your ecommerce website?

Follow the “Two Golden Rules” of Ecommerce Website Architecture

There are two golden rules that determine how you ecommerce website will appear when setting it up.

These rules are:

  • I: Keep the Things Simple and Scalable
  • II: Keep Every Page Three or Less Clicks from Your Homepage

Now that we have the two golden rules, let’s look at:

How Can the Wrong Site Architecture Hurt You?

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A wrong architecture is not simple. This makes it hard to understand. As such, you won’t understand what should be where and where should what go.

Because it is not simple, it isn’t scalable. This means that every category that’s added must come with a new layer. So, therefore, some pages will be over three clicks away from the home page, which is bad for business.

This dilutes authority, becomes extremely boring, and will chase the visitor off the website before they even click on the first product.

How Can a Good Site Architecture Help Your Ecommerce Site?

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The link authority of this type of site is often concentrated around the site’s product and category pages.

These type of concentrated authority will help the site to rank better in Google. It also makes it easy for Search Engines to find every page in your website and index it.

A simple architecture also makes it easy for your web page visitors to easily find the products that they are looking for and as such will leave them with a great experience.

Chapter III: On-Page SEO Strategy for Ecommerce

With your ecommerce website architecture already set up. The next thing that you’ll need to do is to optimize your website categories and product pages.

Proper optimization of these two pages will easily generate the largest share of the website traffic and sales.

And it makes so much sense if you think of it like this. Someone who’s searching for “medium sized black coat for office” is closer to buying than someone who is searching for “black coat” online.

So how do you keyword-optimize your product and category pages?

EXAMPLE OF A PERFECTLY OPTIMIZED ECOMMERCE PAGE

To get a perfectly optimized keyword-based product and category pages, here is what you have to do.

I: Modify Your Title Tags

Of course you want to use your keyword on the title tag of your page.

This is a great trick. However, it isn’t enough.

Add modifiers to the title tags.

This way, you will show for the long tail keywords too.

Here are examples of the best modifiers that you can go with.

  • Buy
  • Deals
  • Cheap
  • Best
  • Online
  • Reviews
  • Free Shipping

So instead of having a shorter title tag such as “boxers for men” you will have the “best cheap boxers for men” instead.

II: Use Click-Magnet Words on Title Tags

Apart from modifying your title tags with long tail keywords, you can also incorporate click-magnet words.

The good thing about this is that even Google also recognizes click-through-rate as a ranking factor.

So if you get the best CTRs you will easily rank higher. Higher CTR also means more conversion rate or sales.

To boost your click-through-rates, here are some words that you can use.

  • Guarantee
  • __% off
  • Free shipping
  • Lowest price
  • Overnight sale

A good example of how these words can be used to boost your click-through-rates include:

Female Boots: 30% Off with Free Shipping for Every Purchase

When used on your title tags or meta descriptions, such phrases will guarantee more clicks.

III: Modify Description Tags

The description of your website is very important for your click through rate.

Thankfully, the same title tag click magnet words that I used above also apply for the description tag.

The only advantage that the description tag offers is that you’ll get better room to bring in longer phrases.

If you are looking for some phrases that you can use to modify your description tags, here are some.

  • Get the best prices on ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________ today.
  • All our ­­­­­­­­­­­­­____________ are on sale right now.
  • Click here to see all the exclusive deals on ___________
  • Get FREE shipping on _____________ today
  • Save _________% off on __________

A good meta description that’s optimized for better clicks might look like this.

Get the best prices on male shoes today. We offer 30% off on every pair that you purchase. Click here to buy and get Free shipping.

Product and Category Page Content

Next you want to create a great product and category page content. This is often one of the hardest parts for most people.

Luckily for you, I have a few strategies that can be of help. If you want to make a high-quality content here are the best SEO tips that you can work with for your ecommerce website.

Make 1000+ Word Descriptions

Latest studies have found out that longer product descriptions or longer content will rank the best on Google SERPs.

The same findings apply almost everywhere when creating rank-able content.

How so?

Google wants to properly understand what the page you are presenting is all about before they can rank it. As such, the more content you create, the mode detailed you become, and the easier to understand you become too.

In addition to that, creating in-depth content will also help your customers to they are about to buy. This means that you’ll get better user experience benefit too.

In case you find out that creating 1000+ words for your product description is hard, I highly recommend writing, longer, in-depth product descriptions.

Do this while focusing on the top 10 to 50 most important product pages and categories on your website.

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Use Your Keywords Sparingly (3-5X)

Now that you’ve created an in-depth product description, the next thing that you need to ensure is that you have used your keywords in the right way.

Using the keywords sparingly is often advised since it will look natural. The content won’t be easily misleading.

The best way to use the keyword is usually 3 to 5 times in your content. Remember, this has nothing to do with keyword stuffing or density.

Rather, you are only making your content to sound natural and helping Google to easily identify what you are talking about.

It is important that you have the keyword at least 3 times to create the impression that you are into that topic.

Here is an example:

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Put one of the keywords in the first 100 words of your product description.

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Put another keyword in the middle of the content.

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Finish the content by again including the keyword in the conclusion of the content.

LSI Keywords

LSI keywords in other words Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords help to explain your main keyword. They will closely resemble the main keyword.

Here is a good example:

If you are working with “best miter saw” the LSI keywords might include the following:

  • Miter saw
  • Miter saw stand
  • Chop saws
  • Saws
  • Saw
  • Rolling miter saw

Understand how to include the LSI keywords to meet the needs of your ecommerce business. Here are great tips on how to find the best LSI keywords for ecommerce SEO.

Amazon Eyeball Test

This is simple to work with. All you need to do is to open up Amazon and search for your main keyword.

You should then look for words that appear several times on the category page of the products that you are looking at.

These will make the LSI keywords.

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You can do the same for the product page too.

Google Keyword Planner

GKP is also another great tool that you can use to get the best LSI keywords.

Simply enter your target keyword in GKP and look at the suggested keywords.

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Once you have the most suitable LSI keywords, for your product category, the next thing is to sprinkle them in your content. They provide better support to your main keyword.

Short But Keyword-Rich Urls

I have mentioned it before in some of my contents here. Urls have direct co-relation to the ranking that a web page gets.

More specifically, the shorter urls tend to rank on the first page much better than the longer urls. However, since you are working with an ecommerce website, you will probably have longer urls most sites.

Why?

Your urls will contain categories and also sub categories.

Nonetheless, that’s no excuse for your urls to overstretch past 50 characters. Longer urls will confuse Google and possibly dilute the intended keyword impact.

Such as shown here.

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So what can you do?

Make the url shorter and make it a keyword-rich url.

Here is an explanation that makes easy and quite sensible.

Link to High-Priority Pages for Internal Links

Another thing that you’ll love about creating a great ecommerce SEO website is internal link building. It is the easiest to do as it blends in well with great site navigation.

As such, a strategic link building process is very important. You should, therefore, spend quite some time on it.

The best way to do that is to link from the high-authority pages to high authority pages (product and category pages).

Here is an Example:

If you created a high ranking blog post for a specific keyword (X).

Then you have a product or category page that ranks lower for the same keyword (X).

You can add a keyword-rich anchor text right from the high ranking blog post to the product page.

SCREENSHOT

Chapter IV: Ecommerce: Technical SEO Strategy

When you come to ecommerce, you’ll find that nothing is more important that technical SEO.

The reason is simple. Ecommerce websites often have lots of pages.

However, most of these pages don’t usually have many backlinks to them.

As such, technical SEO if often the savior.

For better understanding of how technical SEO works for ecommerce websites, you shouldn’t pass in this chapter.

Running a Technical SEO Audit on an Ecommerce Website

To run the best technical SEO audit on an ecommerce website, you’ll require a tool that’s built for that.

One of the easiest tools to use and which I completely recommend is the Raven Tools. In addition to this tool, here are other SEO tools that you can always go with.

How to use Raven Tools for your technical SEO site audit.

  • First open the “left-hand sidebar”
  • Choose “Site Auditor”
  • Raven analyzes your website for errors
  • Raven provides a report
  • Scan the report for highlighted issues:
  • Duplicate content
  • Thin content
  • Title problems
  • Broken links

You will have all the possible SEO errors that your website might have. Now how do you solve them?

Take a look.

Solving Technical SEO Problems on Ecommerce Websites

I will highlight the problem that the technical SEO audit revealed and show you how to fix it in this section. Let’s dig in.

Too Many Pages

Thousands of pages can be a technical SEO problem. It gives you no chance of creating unique content. Rather, you’ll struggle with duplicate content.

How does it happen?

Most ecommerce websites have lots of products to sell (1000+). They need many pages. In addition to that, one product can have slight variations (colors), but still require unique urls. This can also cause it.

How do you solve it?

  • Identify pages that you can do away with (delete or non-index).
  • Make sure the pages cannot affect the idea that you are selling across.
  • You can also combine the pages that don’t bring in sales on a single page.
  • However, don’t delete them before you confirm that they aren’t generating any traffic.
  • Use the Google Analytics tool to do that.

If the page brings in some money, you can find the best place to combine it.

Duplicate Content

This is dangerous. It can kill your website’s ranking in a whim. The one thing Google Panda determines.

Luckily, if you use advanced SEO techniques you can eliminate any duplicate content. Another tip that you can practice is the use of canonical tags.

How does it happen?

There are several reasons to this.

  • If you have slight variations on the same product (size and color).
  • Your site can create unique urls every product version or page.
  • It can also create a unique url for every selection that a visitor makes.
  • If search engines index these created urls the result is several duplicate contents.

In addition to that:

The use of longer boilerplate content (100+ words) can create an impression of content duplication.

So if you have to use the same boilerplate content for every page, keep it short and way below 100 words.

Finally, the use of copied content or product descriptions can also be set as duplicate. This happens when you are dealing with a similar product but with slight variation.

This happens often on category or product pages. It is not good and will be easily categorized by search engines as duplicate content.

How do you solve it?

  • Non-index the pages that don’t put money in your pocket or bring in traffic.
  • Next tap into the canonical tags (shows that some pages are copies or slight variations of the same page).
  • Create unique content for every page that you don’t non-index (it is tough but without any shortcut if you intend to rank and make money).

NOTE: Canonicalization solves duplicate content. More importantly, makes your backlinks extremely valuable (links that point to many other different urls will route to just one url).

An easy way to create unique content is to have template for your category and product page descriptions.

Thin Content

Shallow or thin content is another huge problem for SEO sites. It is not tied to duplicate content at all and can come with or without duplication of content.

This content is bad and can actually mess up your ecommerce SEO campaign up to a greater margin. So work with rich and longer content.

How does it happen?

So how does ecommerce websites end up with thin content? It is hard to create longer and unique content for similar products. But that’s no excuse really.

For all your important pages (product and category), you should be able to squeeze in 500+ words of unique content.

How do you solve it?

  • Identify pages with thin content.
  • These are short snippets that don’t add any value to your campaign.
  • Use the Raven Tool (above) or go through every page.
  • Bulk up the pages that you find with high-quality content
  • The templates will help in easing up the process
Site Speed

I mentioned in one of my previous contents that site speed is something that Google pays attention to and turns to for ranking.

It is important for ecommerce SEO and also influences the buying patterns of your website visitors.

How does it happen?

  • Some ecommerce sites are slow because of bloated codes.
  • Large image sizes also slow down sites.
  • Slow hosting servers.

How do you solve it?

  • Install a plugin to boost speed
  • Trim down (Compress) the size of images using better codes
  • Change your hosting server

Chapter V: Ecommerce Content Marketing Strategy

Another thing that I wouldn’t wish to leave out is the need for proper content marketing strategy.

While most people might brush it off – I won’t.

Proper content marketing strategy can get you lots of targeted traffic in a SEO campaign.

But how do you use it to get better ranking or more traffic for your ecommerce website?

Take a look at the following smart guide.

Step I: Find Your Target Audience and Where They Converge Online

Look for discussion groups, online communities, and other areas where your prospects hang out.

This platforms offer the best places for tapping into your customer’s thoughts, desires, and dreams. You can easily tap into their true feelings.

A good platform to start from is the Reddit.

SCREENSHOT

Step II: Learn Customer Terminologies

What words or phrases do your customers use? Using the same words allows you to draw to their emotions.

Learn how they articulate their concerns and the words they use to describe them. These words will for your audiences keywords – what they search for over the internet most.

The words also form an awesome basis for your blog content.

Step III: Use the Keywords for Awesome Content

Now that you have your keywords ready, don’t waste any time.

Create a unique piece of content around the keyword.

Once you have this unique piece of content, post it on your website and follow this ultimate guide once again.

With the links, social media shares, traffic, and other SEO tips for ecommerce, you should rank better on SERPs.

Chapter VI: Link Building for Ecommerce

Finally, for this ultimate guide to ecommerce SEO, I am going to include the best link building strategies for ecommerce.

I will show you how you can build links directly to your ecommerce websites without using any content.

Then I will also show you how you can use two major link building strategies to boost your site’s organic traffic.

Moving Man Method

This method is super cool. You can use to tap into the best link building from highly relevant websites. This method provides you with contextual links that you can easily rely on.

How It Works

Step I:

Hunt for expired, moved, or outdated resources (zero in on companies that have closed shop).

  • Their domain names expire.
  • Their sites are replaced with parked pages.

They are ideal since they give you non-competitive link building opportunities that your competitors aren’t aware of.

To get these links, use big domain auction sites such as the GoDaddy Auctions and NameJet since they collect such in one place.

Step II:

Identify a parked domain that falls in the same niche as you. This is where your hard work comes in handy.

Note: These companies are out of businesses. As such they are not (404 links). Their links are still in operation.

Step III:

The next thing is to find the sites that these outdated links or resource links to. This is very important.

Here is how you do that.

  • First, get the url of the outdated source.
  • Enter the url on the Ahrefs domain.
  • Find the “edge design”
  • Find the number of “referring domains”
  • Click on “backlinks” to see all pages that link to this outdated source

Note: The more the referring domains the more the linking opportunities.

Step IV:

Finally, you’ll send emails and ask for opportunities to link for the same outdated sources. Let them know the links are outdated and referring to dead sources. Then ask them offer them the replacement link.

Do not ask for favors. Instead, ensure that you have prepared high-quality content that offers value to the same website that you are asking to link to.

Social Media Group Events

Another trick that you can use is the social media group events. This is easier to follow but with great results.

  • First identify groups from your niche that have put on events
  • Next identify the events which require stuff
  • Find out if the stuff you offer are required
  • Now reach out to the organizers of the event – ask if they’d love to feature your products.
  • If can’t ask you can send them free gift products and hope that they are featured.
  • Send your products and offer to ship back what’s not used on your cost.
  • Stay in the loop and follow the posts that they write over the event.
  • Ask them if they can credit you with a link when the post goes live.
  • Thank them when they do.

The whole process might look tedious. However, it is no different from the above. If you stick to it you can easily get the best out of it.

Let Me Know What You Think:

Do you want to get down to a new ecommerce SEO campaign?

Is there a new strategy that you want to practice?

Do you have anything in mind that I didn’t include here?

Feel free to share. Let us work together to give the best for all SEO lovers out there.

You can leave a comment on the commentary section and I will reply to it right away!

Meta

Are you in need of the best ecommerce SEO strategy? Get the best SEO strategy for Ecommerce. We have the ultimate guide for ecommerce SEO.

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Creating an Effective Search Engine Optimization Strategy (SEO) In 2020

Creating an Effective Search Engine Optimization Strategy (SEO) In 2020

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

I intend to keep this post simple so that everyone can easily understand it. In the post, I will look at how both the new and the seasoned SEO expert can create, develop, and implement an effective SEO strategy in 2020.

I will use a simple, straight, and effective step-by-step guide to give you exactly that. This is an approach that I have used before and which has helped my website to garner over 150,000 organic web visitors monthly.

That’s why if you are looking for the best Google Rankings in 2020, you should seriously consider following this strategy.

Let’s dig in.

SEO Strategy: What Is It?

An SEO strategy (Search Engine Optimization Strategy) is also called an SEO approach. It is the smart process of planning, developing, outlining, and applying, special steps that are designed to boost your rankings in the Search Engine Optimization platform.

In simple terms, Search Engine Optimization Strategy is the process that a SEO expert can follow to generate or attain more traffic to their website. In this case organic traffic.

With that said, here are the smartest step-by-step SEO strategy guide that has helped me to get the best rankings, and which you can also use to boost your organic traffic in 2020.

Table of Contents

Now let’s take a deeper look in each and every step that I have laid down here in order to get a better understanding on how they will impact your SEO strategy.

Step I: Create the List of Best Keywords

There is no doubt that everything you are going to do to impact your SEO will depend on your choice of Keywords.

That’s why, having a deep keyword research is often recommended by the expert as the first step on a legitimate SEO strategy.

One of the best ways to get the KWs that’ll target the searches that your customers make online is by using Google Suggest.

It is also the simplest ways to get the best KWs.

How does Google Suggest Work?

Simple. You just need to start typing a keyword in Google Search Tab and Google will automatically populate several other KWs for you.

This is the best way to determine the most relevant KWs since the suggestion list that you will end up with comes straight from Google itself.

In that regard, you will get a true suggestion that people are actually searching for these KWs that Google had suggested for you.

In addition to that, the suggestions that Google often make for you here are the “long tail keywords” which are usually less competitive compared to the “short tail” keywords.

When going for long tail keywords, you will realize that they have lower search volumes. However, you shouldn’t worry as much since they are the easiest to rank for.

So once you get the keyword root that you intend to use, you can type it on the “Google Search Tab” on a new search window to get a list of other high ranking keywords that you can use.

In case you want to search for the search volumes of the keywords that you have rounded up, you can always choose to go with the following:

  • Keyword Tool
  • SEMrush
  • Ubersuggest

And if you intend to delve deeper into the art of keyword search, you can follow this link for a comprehensive video analysis. Remember, with at least 10 keywords, you can always cross to the next step.

Target High Commercial Intent Keywords

Now you have found a couple of best ranking keywords for your use. What next?

The most sensible thing to do right now is to determine what is already working for the keywords that you have chosen.

To get the clearest picture, I always type one of the keywords that I have jotted down into the Google search bar.

Once I have done that, I will then scan the top 10 results that Google ranks for the same key word that I typed in.

What Does Scanning the Pages Mean?

It means looking through the SERPs to determine some unique patterns that you might notice on the pages that have been ranked.

For example, if your search keyword was “SEO Tips” you will realize that the top ten “SERPs” are filled with a list of SEO Tips.

The titles will have something like this:

  • The top 10 SEO tips…
  • 5 SEO tips…
  • The best SEO tips…
  • Awesome SEO tips…

As such, if your intention was to cover this topic for your website, you’d want to keep in mind that the first page of the results that you get are made of a lists.

So to get into contention for the same first page ranking, the sensible thing to do would be to publish a list too.

That’s just about it. Now onto the next step.

Step III: Create Something Unique or Better

Anyone who has been in SEO understands the need for a unique touch to everything that you create. Originality is key if you want to rank and there is no shortcut to that.

So to get noticed by the search engines, there is no better way to do that than to create some high-quality content.

The content must be original and unique. So how can you achieve that? Simple. You either create something:

  • Different
  • Better

This is the secret of creating the best SEO content at any given time. So take a look at how every one of them applies.

Something Different

Before you create your content you must go through the competitor websites and contents. This allows you to determine what they have and in so doing realize what you can do differently.

This means that instead of focusing on doing something better, you will be opting for something unique and pretty much unattached.

This is because doing this helps your content to simply stand out.

A good example is this: Let’s say that you wanted to write about the “SEO Tips” and you notice that everyone out there was concentrating more on the:

Top ten SEO tips, New SEO tips, and Simple SEO tips, then you can make the change and create something different such as “the definitive guide to SEO strategy no one tells you about.”

In so doing, you would have created something totally different. That’s the way to go if you need an original content.

When you do this with your content, you will get more shares, more comments, and eventually better ranking. But most of all, you will get the best backlinks which is what every SEO expert is looking for if they want to rank.

Something Better

Sometime, you will notice when you go through specific keyword-based contents that they are shallow or that they just don’t click.

Once you notice that, you can always fill up the space by focusing on what was either left out or the catch that was missing.

This how you create something better. However, it is very important to ensure that what you have created is actually many-X better than the original content.

For instance, I have seen people publishing “Google’s ranking tricks” with posts of about 10 to 40 ranking tricks.

To create something better, I decided to come up with Google’s 200 Plus Ranking Tricks: The Complete Guide for 2020.

Now you can see what I mean by something better. It requires putting in a lot of work to get closer to victory.

So if someone thought it would a walk in the park, then you are mistaken. I’ve got news for you. You must work to rank – always focus on being better than the competition.

Step IV: Add the Punch Line

Another thing that you must understand if your intentions is to rank in 2020 or thereafter is this. You will always require the backlinks.

In fact from one of the latest studies (MOZ BLOG) that I have come across, there is still an unbreakable bond between link creation and Google page ranking.

Which means that link creation is still a very important factors when it comes to getting the best position on the SERPs.

But how do you ensure that you don’t miss out on that? Well you’d have to determine why some content in your niche has better links than others and it all boils down to the “punch line” and nothing else.

While some people refer to it as the hook, I call it the punch line.

Here is an example that you can work with. In the previous years (around two years back) I noticed a growing trend on posts that talked more on visual search.

But again, I also noticed something peculiar. I noticed that whenever they talked about visual search, they linked more on the content that featured some data or stats.

So instead of advising new writers to concentrate on visual search based content, I encouraged them to do online-based research on visual search and write on their findings.

This strategy helped one of my readers to get over 800+ backlinks in no time. And when I looked at the analysis of the website, I noticed that close to 90% of the backlinks cited the stats on the post.

So what was the punchline in this post? The Data of course. That’s the hooker. As it stands, data and stats are some of the best punch-lines that you can use.

The other glues that will seal the deal, which I have noticed lately are the following:

  • Ultimate guides
  • Newbies posts
  • Step by step guides

When you use the guide, you realize that it helps other writers who intend to mention a topic to link to your website and provide their readers with a comprehensive outlook on the same.

Step V: Optimize for On-Page SEO

After having your punchline down, your next big task will be to optimize your website for On-Page-SEO.

However, this is a topic that I can go about for hours. So it will be very difficult to comprehensively tackle it in such a limited time frame.

Nonetheless, you are free to check out the comprehensive guide on On-Page-SEO from one of my posts.

With that said, let me give you the top three On-Page-SEO strategies that will work for you anytime and more importantly in 2020.

Short Keyword-Based Urls

After analyzing about 1 million search results from Google, we found out something that came as a huge surprise to many.

When it comes to SEO, the short keyword-based Urls trounced the long keyword-based urls. This was rather new contrary to what we have always thought.

Since then, I have concentrated more on making keyword-based urls or simply adding a single word into my keyword-based url.

Beyond that, I don’t dare to go. Thankfully, both ways have worked marvelously for me and today I have some of the best ranks for most of my SEO based write-ups.

Internal Linking

What’s better than linking onto your pages internally? It is a trick that enables the reader to spend more time on your website and to learn more from your content.

Even so, it is very important that the content that you create is original unique, and better. Nonetheless, it is also important that you do your internal linking in the right way.

One simple tip that will help you is to link from pages with higher authority to the pages that require the same authority.

Another tip is to use keyword-rich anchor texts for your internal linking. In case you have a new post that you want to link internally, find a high ranking page in your website and backlink from that post. Simple!

Sematic SEO

Sematic SEO is one of the simplest tricks that many SEO experts have specialized in. How does Sematic SEO work?

It is simple. You will find words that are pretty much related to your main keyword then use those word in your new content.

You can always rely on “Google Suggest” to get a list of phrases that’ll work for you at any time.

When you have typed the word on Google’s search bar, you can then scroll to the bottom of the page to get other “Searches related to … (your keyword).

You can then use these suggestions on your content so that you get better ranking. It is simple but effective, as years of experience has suggested the same.

Step VI: Optimize for the Search Intent

Sometimes you will create a content and fail to squeeze through to the first page of the Google search results page.

One of the reasons for this might be that the content didn’t satisfy the “search intent” of the keyword that you used.

Let me explain…

You might want to create a content on “SEO tips” and in doing so, give your reader a “hidden” touch to the content.

For instance you might choose such a title: Better Ranks: Use these 10 SEO Tips. However, upon scouting the SERPs you realize that the pages that rank are focused on “straight up listing” such as:

  • 50 SEO tips for the year 2020
  • 27 SEO tips to rank high
  • 15 Easy SEO Tips to rank in 2020

Then this should be a red flag. Your content doesn’t match the search intent of the search engines. As such, you will be safe if you change the content to provide the exact experience that user want.

Changing your title to: 10 Best SEO tips for better ranks will work a miracle. In other words you will have changed your post into a “list” instead of a broad based suggestion.

If you find that the SERPs rank pages that offer non-technical steps, going with the same will provide better page ranking boost.

This is a great way to keep visitors glued to your website. It offers low or zero bounce back rates and will eventually rank you among the best pages.

Step VII: Make Awesome Content

I don’t intend to sugar coat this.

Here is the real deal. You can have the best content.

But if the design is whack, nobody will want to look through it.

That’s why, design, though one of the most underrated part of SEO, still plays a key role on how the visitors react to your content.

For instance, I know that you have seen some of my “definitive guides” pages, right? I take my time to ensure that the design is unique and coded from scratch 100% – no templates.

That’s expensive if you ask me. However, it is worth every dollar that I put in there. So if you didn’t know it, good content will force you to break the bank.

In case you are looking for some could visual content that you can easily pull off, you can always start here.

Screenshots and Pictures

If you have noticed that I use so many screenshots in most of my posts then this is the reason why.

I don’t use the screenshots just for the sake of it. Actually, I use them when they are helpful in the implementation of a specific step.

If they lead you through a step in the simplest way, I will use them. With that said, here is what you should know about screenshots.

They are sensible when you are describing a technical step

However, if you are working on a niche that is non-technical, making use of pictures will have an equivalent impact.

Someone who is in the fitness niche can easily use pictures to demonstrate how specific workouts are done.

Graphics and Visualizations

Another important tip that you can resort to is the use of graphics and visualizations. These will come in form of charts.

However, instead of visualizing stats, they will work to help readers to visualize concepts instead.

And just so you know, these types of graphics and visualizations don’t have to be in any ways fancy.

For instance if you intend to show a reader how different versions of their websites should redirect readers to the same “main” website, you can use graphics and visualizations.

Take a look at how that works.

Blog Posts Banners

While screenshots and graphics will serve a practical purpose, the same cannot be said about banners.

Depending on the posts that you intend to make, banners will simple have a cool effect on your overall web design.

That’s still important especially if your main goal is to draw more readers to your website and keep them glued in.

Banners are easy to play around with and you can either set them on the right side of the post or at the top of the post so long as you achieve the cool effect.

Graphs and Charts

I know that you must be very conversant with the use of graphs and charts. But did you know that they kind of have a great impact on the content that you create? Well, they do.

That’s why if you look closely you’ll realize that I always try to use at least a graph in my contents.

The reason for this is simple.

The use of graphs will make hard to comprehend data easy to read and understand.

This will include stats and data from research and studies.

Graphs and charts will also highlight huge numbers in the simplest ways possible.

So you won’t have to picture how 1billion searches will look – instead you just have to look at the graph.

Again, the use of charts can give you some cool backlinks when people site your stats.

Step VIII: Build Links to the Page

The next integral step and possible the biggest challenge that most site owners have is building links to their websites pages.

As such, I am going to start by looking at top three link building strategies that have taken the SEO world by storm right now.

Broken Link Building

The trick to broken link building is to find a broken link on a website that works on the same niche as you and then offer your link as a viable replacement.

It will take you so much research to be able to find such links. But when you do, it won’t hurt to offer your link.

Remember, you can get to the website owner through an email. In the email, you shouldn’t request to link, that way, you will seem like someone who’s offering substandard goodies.

That’s why you should create great content. With such a content you will have enough confidence to offer your link.

Evangelist Technique

This is a technique that’s less on links but more on getting the content that you’ve created to the right people (people who run same niche blogs).

One trick that I learnt with this method is to create content case study. When you have finally found the data or stats, you can then determine the people who have created content in line with the same study.

You can use a tool like BuzzSumo. Then finally when you have these contents you can email the creators and offer your research.

You don’t have to ask for a “share” instead, I let the people who find it vital for their website to share my findings.

Competitor Analysis

This is an old school strategy.

However, you can still make use of it (remember, old is gold).

To use this strategy, here is what you need to do.

First find a website that ranks for the same keyword that you also want to rank for.

Then look through the top results and determine their backlinks.

Once you determine the domains that the page is linked from.

You can go ahead and try and get some of the links that they have.

To make this work, I will go through their backlinks (one-by-one), find where my link adds value.

That’s just about it!

Step IX: Improve and Update the Content

The final SEO strategy that most websites are using to rank right now is improving and updating their content.

A content that’s improved or updated will have a fresh touch to it. Google loves this fresh touch and will rank old but improved content above new content.

I guess the assumption is that, old contents that are regularly updated are rich in facts and research.

They are, therefore, much more comprehensive and progressive compared to the newly created contents.

Even so, there are tricks to this.

First you don’t want to just post the same old content and call it new – this won’t work.

Secondly, it makes sense to replace old screenshots with new screenshots or even graphs.

Thirdly, you should add new points that you didn’t include in the previous type of content.

Next you can eliminate or delete the tricks, tips, strategies, or methods that no longer work.

The result will be a massive organic boost.

Updating and improving your content requires you to research a lot. You should be ready for this if you want the best ranking on SERPs.

Tell Me What You Think

Do you have anything to add?

Has these strategies worked for you too?

Let’s share to develop each other.

You can leave a comment, reach me through mail, or go through our contact box.

There is never enough information when it comes to developing the best SEO strategies.

The year is 2020 and technology is as dynamic as it comes. So feel free to help us develop by giving us an additional tip.

Meta

Are you working on ranking highest on SERPs? Get the best SEO strategies today. We have the tricks that work!

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Copywriting: The Ultimate Guide

Copywriting: The Ultimate Guide

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

Do you want to learn more about copywriting in 2020? I present to you the absolute guide to copywriting.

So in case you are looking for:

  • Leads
  • Conversions
  • Organic Traffic

Then this is the guide for you. I am sure that you will find everything here fascinating and practical.

Let’s get down to business.

To make your work easy, I have broken down the entire topic in eight simple subtopics. Take a look:

Table of Contents

With that said, it is time to get started on our ultimate guide to copywriting in 2020. Here is what I have lined up for you.

Chapter I: Copywriting Basics

There aren’t many fundamentals to copywriting, however, the few that are there will play a crucial role in setting up the pace for our subsequent titles.

What is Copywriting?

Copywriting is simply the art of shaping up written text to easily inform, inspire, educate, or persuade the mass. In many occasions, this practice is targeted at increasing sales and maximizing the conversion rates too.

Some of the mediums that copywriting is often implemented are blog posts,sales letters, adverts, and currently the social media posts.

What Makes Copywriting Important?

While some people might argue that since we are in the age of video, visuals, and podcasts, copywriting doesn’t matter, the truth is, it still does.

There are lots of benefits that copywriting will give you. The straight up benefits include the following.

  • Higher conversion rate on the main pages
  • Generally improved article structure and flow
  • Better reader engagement level in your posts
  • Getting more share to your post or content
  • Creates a better understanding of the needs of your customer

In simpler terms, with proper copywriting, a website owner can easily improve almost every aspect of their marketing strategy. This is more prominent on sales pages and articles.

Even so, good copywriting strategy will also come in handy when you are creating the following things.

  • Video scripts
  • Facebook posts
  • YouTube video descriptions
  • Webpage meta descriptions
  • Podcast descriptions
  • Blog post headlines
  • Press releases
  • Interview questions
  • Outreach emails
  • About page copy

What is the Work of a Copywriter?

While it is true that a copywriter will spend most of their time writing, one thing is clear, there is so much more to this art than just writing or putting down words.

What do I mean? Seasoned copywriters will spend more time studying their customers rather than just writing.

They also take some time to learn how the products that they are fronting for can or will impact their prospects.

Due to this, they require some time to learn about:

  • What the product is
  • How the product works
  • How the product compares the competing products

This might not be the case if you are promoting a personal product or service. However, it applies if the product or service belongs to someone else.

In short, your work will be to learn more about the target market, their fears, desires, and how they imagine the products.

In so doing, you can then create a copy that directly addresses the needs and wants of the target audience.

How Can You Become a Copywriter?

Don’t be surprised, but the truth is you don’t need any type of formal education to become a copywriter. All you need to do is to improve your skills in the following fields.

  • Customer research
  • Content structure
  • Web copywriting
  • Persuasion
  • Sentence structure
  • Grammar and spelling
  • Online advertising

Learning all these skills will require time. That’s why becoming a great copywriter also takes time. So to become a copywriter, you need to practice more.

Getting such opportunities to practice will mean that you have to sell “yourself” and that’s how you learn the art of marketing.

Thankfully, there are signs that most employers love people with strong writing skills. So if you are a writer already, then you have an advantage.

But if you are just starting out, you can still learn the art of copywriting and use it to boost your sales, grow your business, and market your products.

Chapter II: Customer Centered Copy

I have mentioned the need to understand your product, its impact, and how the prospects perceive the whole idea.

This same line forms the basis of writing a great copy. In other words, if you want a great copy at any time, here is what you must do:

Write like your customers talk

This is the absolute tip to getting the “wow” out of your customers. It is also the same thing that makes the client believe that the product is for them.

So how can you get exactly that?

You can always use any of these top five smart strategies that I am going to show you in this chapter.

Amazon Reviews

Amazon reviews are some of the most genuine reviews that you will get in a long time. The guys down there won’t hold back to give their opinion, share their feelings, or say what they think. And that’s the bomb.

You can therefore mine these reviews for some killer copies. What you need to do is to focus on the product of choice and get some simple and clear cut reviews from them.

Trust me, you don’t have to buy the product or even use it. The feelings, experience, and expectations are all in the reviews.

Take a look at some of the amazon reviews that speak to the buyers or prospects out there from different products.

Customer Interviews

If you don’t intend to go with Amazon reviews, you can try out customer interviews. If you didn’t know, real time customer interviews are explicit.

They are also full of information. All you need to do is to get an open ended questions and you’ll get more than you bargained for.

Take for instance this question: Can you please tell us how your experience with product X has been since you bought it?

This single question will easily open up a can of worms – just saying.

Even if you didn’t ask an open ended question, you’ll realize that with a real-time customer interview, you’ll have the chance to ask several follow up questions.

These questions will help you to dig deeper so that you can find the true feeling of the consumer. You will also get to understand the:

  • Challenges
  • Benefits
  • Perception
  • View
  • Possible adjustments
  • Improvements

Here are some questions that will help you to understand why interviews are vital when you intend to write a great copy.

How did you settle for product X?

Well, I looked at the reviews and most people had some good words to put in. Some other even highly recommended the product. And that’s good since it points at a great experience with the product.

Once you get the product, do you test it?

Well, that depends. If the product is a medical product I will get to test it first. Even so, products that fall under kitchen wares such pans and woks will speak for themselves.

What do you do when the experience isn’t what you expected?

I will definitely write the product off. Don’t we all want to get what we pay for? Anything less would mean you’ve been robbed.

NOTE: Follow up questions are a great way to keep the conversation going while at the same time digging out for more information.

Customer Surveys

Another thing that will work almost like an interview is a survey. Customer surveys are very powerful tools.

They are also direct and you can get some cool answers. In case you are rating an experience, you can all also tell what’s on the ground by the type of responses that you get.

Some of the product related questions that you can ask in your survey’s questionnaire can look like this.

  • “Why did you decide to buy product X?”
  • “Which among these products have you used before?”
  • “What was the experience you had with the products you used before?”
  • “What is the first thing that made you to say: Yes, this product is for me?”
  • “In a scale of 1-10 can you describe how suitable this product is for you?”

The responses to these questions aren’t only priceless but they are also reflective of what the client feel.

In short, they will play a key role on product positioning, research, packaging, and development too.

More importantly, they also enable you to come up with a copy that speaks directly to your prospects.

Another great thing about customer surveys is that depending on the type of product that you are working with, you can have tons of question to go with.

For some products, you can also have the chance to ask some questions on the following things:

  • Challenges
  • Struggles
  • Risk assessment
  • Age
  • Demographic info
  • Spending habits

The question that you can go with, therefore, might look like this.

  • What is the physical location of your business?
  • What is the most challenging aspect of the business?
  • How long have you been in this business?
  • Which category best describes your business niche?

One platform that will allow you to write exactly like your customers talk is Reddit. That’s why it is one of the very first places that I will look at when I intend to create a great copy.

If you want the best experience with Reddit, the first thing that you should do is to find the Sub-Reddit where your prospects hang out.

Once you have identified the sub-Reddit, you can look for the most recent threads. For instance if you have just launched “new SEO tools” page, you should search for the same on the search bar.

You can then find the language that the people here are using and apply it to your copy. Use the language and some of the words to express how the feel about new SEO tool or techniques. You can also use the same to describe what they like or don’t like about them.

NOTE: A copy that would work great must identify itself with the prospects. Use their slang, focus on their terminologies, give them the direct relationship, and it will work like a charm.

Social Media

Finally, we have the social media. This is the new kid in the block. It appears almost everywhere and doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.

Whichever social media platform you are using, the first rule is to search for a competing product on the platform.

Then follow this by keeping tabs on the complaints or complements that crop up from the handles.

Once you have the two, you can line out the strengths of your product by emphasizing on them. Tell the prospects that your products have what the other products are missing and show them the proof.

This should help you to stand above the rest.

Ask Product Hunt

Do you know this platform “Ask Product Hunt” – it is a great platform to learn exactly how your prospects describe the products that you sell.

This is because most of the people who post their question here have Googled and came up empty.

So getting down here is like getting firsthand information about the whole thing. So what next when here?

  • Get the answers to the direct question that you have searched for.
  • Follow this by jotting down the words that your prospects use to describe their problem.
  • Then create your posts around the items that your prospects have mentioned.

And with that, you should still hit the jackpot with your copy.

Chapter III: Expert Copywriting Strategies

In this chapter, I am going to give you seven pro techniques that you can use to create a great copy right from scratch.

You can also use the same to improve an already existing copy.

So if you are the newbie who’s looking to make great copies for their development, this is the place to be right now.

Take a look.

Ask Product Hunt

This technique is straightforward. Its main aim is to keep your prospects reading through. They should slide through to the last sentence.

In other words, the first sentence gives you the urge to read the second, and the second, the third, etc.

In short, you are focused on working with something that legendary copywriters call the slippery slide.

The trick is simple

Headline (Builds Urge for Next Line)

Next Line (Builds Urge for Next Line)

Next Line (Builds Urge for Next Line)

Last Section (Triggers the Action)

 

Here is an Example:

You can also use such type of a flow.

Here is the question:

How do you stop people from over eating?

Here are the five tips that work

Finally, you can also focus on “little stories” to help you achieve the slipper slide technique or strategy. If not, make use of “open loops” to keep your readers glued for the next sentence in your copy. Here is an example of a little story and an open loop.

Benefits Vs Features

Focusing on the product features is a cool idea. However, going with the benefits will sell your product.

Our intention is sell while at the same time sounding nice. But not to just sound nice without any imminent action.

Let’s say you are selling a product that’s designed to help people to effectively make use of their time (planning software). Here is how you can easily change the boring features to benefits that sell.

  • Prioritizes Vital Tasks → Focuses on what is important
  • Simple Setup → Helps you to save time
  • Multiple Users Support → Produces more from your team
  • Status Update → Helps you to stay on track

A good site that touches on features but focuses more on the benefits such as CoSchedule on their home page is a good example.

Benefits Vs Features

I must have mentioned about proof above. However not as detailed as I will here. To start us off, here is what you need to realize.

Most people will rely on the social media proof if they aren’t sure of what to do next. As such, social media proof is very vital when a prospect is deciding on whether to buy or your product or not.

That’s why most pro copywriters will focus more on including results, testimonials, and case studies on their copy.

The websites can therefore:

  • Include successful users with their names and details on their sites
  • Share the number of their users and reviews
  • Give real-time reviews with real customer details on their website
How Do You Solve the Social Proof Puzzle?

To sell, you must show some social proof. And to get social proof, you must make some sales.

It is the case of the hen and the egg, which one came first? That’s the paradox – and it’s a big deal.

So how do you solve this social proof puzzle?

Luckily, there is an easy way to escape the puzzle. Take a look.

Work with Your Strongest Proof Yet

It is simple. You have to solve the problem with what you have. Not what you are anticipating or what you don’t have.

A good example is this. If you create a phone app and then develop the “free” and the “paid” version.

You should find the numbers that have subscribed to the free version versus those who have gone for the paid version. Whichever exceeds the next, that’s your strongest proof yet.

So when you will be highlighting the social proof, focus on the same numbers. If the free subscribers exceed the paid ones, cite the number of subscribers to the free app version.

The same applies if you sold your new product to 30 customers and only 5 turned back with amazing results. Focus on the 5 for your main page. They are you strongest proof for now.

Sense of Urgency

Create the sense of urgency, trigger the immediate need for the product.

So how do you make your prospects to buy right NOW?

Here are some tips that you can use to create the sense of urgency.

  • Limited quantities
  • Hurry while stock lasts
  • Doors close on Friday
  • Limited time offer
  • Only 10 left
  • Don’t Miss Out
  • Sale ends by 30th June

NOTE: It is not just about mentioning the phrases – no. These mentions that you take should be backed by real time limitations. If not, your prospects will easily lose trust in you.

The use of a clear deadline will create a super high touch of urgency and that’s just amazing for almost any product.

Implement the “AIDA” Technique

The AIDA formula is simple but smart. It is a powerful copywriting technique that stands for the following:

  • A: Attention
  • I: Interest
  • D: Desire
  • A: Action

In short, you should first capture the attention of a prospective buyer, then trigger their interest, followed by desire, so that they can act (take action).

AIDA is very dynamic and will work quite effectively for very many areas around your website including:

  • Squeeze pages
  • Video scripts
  • Sales pages intros
  • Email newsletters
  • Blog post etc

AIDA is a great technique even for SEO experts who want to create content that generates more leads.

The trick is to first of all grab the attention of your reader with the first part of content (normally the intro). Then drum up some interest with a cool promise before you tap into the desire of the reader.

Eventually, you get down to action: This is the part where you get down to real business and share what you have. You can use phrases such as:

  • Let’s dig in
  • Let’s get started
  • Here is what I have for you
  • Read on

Strong Call-to-Action

Another very important thing that can come in handy is the use of a “strong call-to-action” and a direct one to that effect.

Seriously speaking, here is the reason why you need a strong CTA.

Most of the prospects that you either intend to draw to your product or who you are selling to already have a life.

In short, they might be very busy. As such, they often don’t have the time to read through your content and figure out what you need them to do.

So to save them the trouble – you should tell them exactly what you need.

That’s how a strong CTA comes in.

One of the strongest call-to-actions that I have seen is this, “Enter your name and email address to get monthly subscription”

In real sense this wasn’t meant to call to sign up or register but simply to put in your name and email and you get a monthly subscription – that’s just it!

Clear Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

A USP strives to answer only one question. Why should they buy from me? What makes me different from the other brands of the same niche?

It could be the most affordable prices.

Or you are offering longer warranty.

If not, then your delivery could be faster than the rest.

Or maybe you offer better after-sale-services.

Whatever it is that makes you different from the rest of the pack, that’s what you need your copy to scream.

It will be very unfortunate if you don’t have a USP of your own.

Chapter IV: Tricks to Writing Cool Headlines

It is said that 80% of readers are drawn by the headline while the 20% focus more on the copy. I am not saying that’s true, but what if it were?

Whichever the case, the headline of any copy is very important. Luckily for most website owners, writing the best headlines is the simplest thing yet.

Simply stick with the tips that I am going to give you here.

Clear Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

Another word for being “extremely specific” is being “direct and onto the point” or so to say. So your headline should prospect the exact thing that your reader will get.

A good example is this:

  • Use these 5 tips to lose weight in 2 months
  • Lose 10 pound a week with these three weight loss tips
  • Boost your SEO ranking in 1 Month: Use these 3 tools

The use of a specific time frame will work miracles in giving you a spontaneous headline to work with.

Focus on the Emptions

There is always something unique about emotional headlines. But how can you create the most emotional headlines?

The trick is to focus on finding the most emotionally charged words or phrases. This will give you the best base.

Words such as the ones that I am going to mention next will give you the best emotional draw or trigger.

  • Awesome
  • Now
  • Mistake
  • Fast
  • New
  • Amazing

Do not overuse these words. Rather focus on using one word or two for every single headline that you make. If you use the trick right, you will get a highly compelling headline to work with too.

Just to be sure that you have done the right thing, you can always run your headline through the Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer.

The analyzer will give you a score of between 0% and 100%. The higher the percentage the more emotional the headline is.

Drawing to the emotions shows the prospect that you really understand what it feels like to walk in their shoes.

Answer: What’s In It For Me?

If you answer the WIIFM in your product then you can easily determine the direction to which your copy should take.

It is the same thing that your headline should address. If it does then you will most specifically be addressing the same thing that your customer looks forward to getting from the same product.

A good way to do this is to focus more on the specificity of what you need. This example will show you what you’ll get from your campaign.

Online Sales Tips that’ll Grow your Affiliate Marketing Site

You get exactly tips for growing the affiliate site. So if you intend to grow your affiliate site, with this post you are at the right place.

How Do You Solve the Social Proof Puzzle?

Another thing that you can do is to work with numbers. When you use specific numbers, you will be forced to write extremely specific headlines.

Looking at the top example that I gave in the previous part above, using numbers makes the people involve to understand exactly what they will be getting.

So whether they are boosting their SEO, losing weight, they will understand exactly what they will get and their respective quantities.

This is one trick that works for a great copy. No wonder MOZ found out that headlines with numbers received the most clicks.

Use FOMO

FOMO which stands for the “fear of missing out” can easily make your headline 10X more powerful. You don’t have to use it if you can do without it. However, if you can use it, why not…?

Chapter V: Mastering the Lead

From a personal experience, there is no much difference in the level of importance when it comes to the lead and the headline.

In other words, the lead of a copy is very important too.

The reason is simple. It is your first lines that your prospects will use to choose whether to continue to the next line or not.

And believe it or not, if you lose your prospects on the lead then you will have lost them for good.

The lead is, therefore, what determines the bounce back or lack of it thereof.

With that said, here are some of the smartest strategies that will help you to develop some of the most compelling leads.

Begin with the HOOK

I can’t find a better way of putting it. But just so you know, the first sentence of the lead is a BIG DEAL.

As such, you must ensure that it grabs the attention of your reader from the onset.

Fail to do this and you fail to convert – and that’s where the HOOK comes in.

Here are some HOOKs that you can use to grab the attention of your reader on your copy.

  • Don’t this sound familiar?
  • What next?
  • Now you can …… in ……. Days.
  • New study has shown that (surprising result)
  • For (X years) I struggled with (Y-problems) until one day

These are great ways to get the HOOK on your prospects. Some of them also promise proven results which is a good approach – such as the story telling hook. That’s why this next point rocks.

Mini Stories

You can also use the mini-stories approach.

If you haven’t noticed, telling stories is a great way to get people hooked.

Remember the bedtime stories that you had while growing up? That’s the type of feeling that I am talking about.

With a short and sweet lead, the mini story should get your reader into the rhythm that you need them to be in.

However, when using a mini story for your lead. Here is what you must remember.

  • You won’t have enough room to tell an epic story
  • Condense the story to about 4-5 lines
  • Highlight the problem that you intend to address in the story

NOTE: The proper way is to ensure that you focus more on capturing the attention of your reader to go through the whole copy.

Focus on Complementing the Headline

For the expert copy writers, an easy way to get the lead is to complement the headline.

In short, you create a headline that grabs the attention of the reader and then follow it up with a lead that drums more interest on the headline.

Look at the headlines that have a promise in them, they will work great. For instance this headline:

Top 10 SEO Tricks that Have Worked for me in 2020

With such a headline, the only thing that you need to do is to focus on how to drum up support for the same on your lead – simple!

8 Lines and No More

Whether you are writing a post, blog, or sales page, video script, or any other content for that matter, you should stick to the rule of thumb – 8 lines or less for your lead.

Remember this, a super short lead will easily achieve what you want it to achieve – which is to grab the attention of the reader.

Once it grabs the reader’s attention, it glues them to the content so that they can keep reading. Which is the key to getting them into the main part of your content.

That’s why most of my blog post intros are stuck at 6 lines and that’s how I hook-up my readers.

Chapter VI: Writing a Compelling Copy

Now that we have learned several other tricks to writing a great copy –what next?

In this chapter, I will show you exactly how to write compelling story.

So if your plan is to create better:

  • Blog posts ‘
  • Ad copies
  • Emails
  • Sales letters
  • Video Scripts
  • Social Media Posts

Then this is the chapter that you’ve been waiting for.

Let’s dig in

Use Your Natural Voice

This is the most critical copywriting trick!

Use your natural voice (talk like you speak). Don’t try being fancy. Just pretty natural.

Here is an example from one of my emails:

Hey,

For the last three month I have been compiling the best SEO tools for 2020.

It’s a complete breakdown of what I have tried out.

This post covers lots of tools plus the most recent tools that I told you about.

Take some time to look at it.

Let me know what you think.

Leave a comment.

Bye. 

Here is the trick to get the natural tone: Read your copy out load.

If it feel weird, you can always re-write it.

But if you don’t find any problem with it, you are good to go.

Short and Precise Sentences

The next thing is to keep your copy short and precise.

This means less mistakes and better copy.

Even so, you should include the research that backs it up.

Take a look at this research that was done about long and short sentences over a decade ago.

From the findings of the research, one thing is pretty clear.

The shorter article had a better comprehension percentage than the longer option.

What’s the catch?

Always focus on shorter sentences for a great copy.

Address a Single Person

Yes. Do not address a group of people.

Rather talk to your prospects individually.

As such, you should refrain from using general terms such as:

  • Lots of people
  • Many people
  • They
  • They have
  • Among them

Instead focus on an individual.

Focusing on an individual has an awesome hold.

I know you might not realize it but wait until you read these next example.

Take a look at these two next examples to see what I mean

Example I:

Many people today struggle with lack of sleep. They either have a hard time to sleep, or they simply can’t get back to sleep once they wake at night. They have tried everything else that they know. But they have no success. What next?

 

 

Example II:

If you are struggling with sleep related problems then this post is for you. If you cannot fall asleep at night or simple have a rough night, this is the place to be. You have tried everything else and nothing works, take a look.

See how that simple change has a huge effect on the copy? That’s what I am talking about.

The same applies to anyone who intends to create a great copy for a B2B.

For the B2B copywriters, this is the oil that keeps the wheel rolling.

Here is an example of a B2B copy that rakes number by addressing a single person.

Want to get the best website design?

Then Best Website Design Company is what you need.

We have worked on over 100K successful projects.

Our clients come from all over the world.

Retain the Active Voice

If you are a writer, you know this pretty much like I do.

The active voice sounds better than the passive voice.

It’s that simple.

Luckily, sounding nice is a great trick to getting people right into the middle of your copy.

So don’t shy away.

Here is a simple guide to understanding the difference between active and passive voice.

If the post is hard to grasp, you can use this voice tool checker.

Avoid the Big Words

No one loves the big words.

These are communication-killers and should be treated so.

And if the copy is hard to read = no one will read it.

So avoid any fancy word.

Why?

  • Fancy words could have many meanings
  • Fancy words are hard to understand
  • Fancy word might be mouthful

So the trick is to sound pretty simple.

Stick with words that people use on a daily basis.

And nothing out of the ordinary.

Focus on Skimmers

Yes. That’s what online readers do – they skim.

They won’t read everything – they just pick the points.

So how do you format a copy for the skimmers?

  • Use lots of sub-titles: These break up the content in easy to digest sections.
  • Use takeaway lines: Focus on Features, Benefits, and pricing (example on reviews).
  • Include a Verdict: A small bottom line tool should be good to go. It’s the summary!

Here is the trick. Find a way to get the gist without reading everything.

Chapter VII: Proven Copywriting Methods

The best copywriters don’t work from scratch. No.

They get an idea and develop their copy from it. Simple.

But that’s just one of their many tricks.

So what are the rest?

In this section, I give you the 4 proven copywriting methods.

Check them out.

Newsletters

Let’s start with the newsletters. How do you write a copy that readers would want to open? Take a look.

Keep Subject Line – Short and Sweet

Let the subject line outline the content of the newsletter, but not let them in the meat.

For example. I used a pretty simple subject line “SEO Strategies” in one of my recent posts. And the email got close to 48% open rate. That’s huge!

The method was simple. The subject line informed my readers what the email was about – SEO Strategies.

But the strategies aren’t out yet.

That’s the element of mystery that triggers the urge to open it.

Let the Lead Be – Attention Grabbing

Remember what we said about the lead? It’s the make or break of your copy.

If the visitor stops and walks away – there is no coming back.

So get the flow. Make sure the lead nicks the urge to read through.

Let it be the compelling HOOK that catches the reader right away.

For newsletters and emails, this has to be very good since it also shows before the email is opened.

Here is a good lead: Are you struggling with weight loss?

Body: Lesson as a Story

These are newsletters, nothing formal really.

But not too informal again.

Even so, they should sound as if they are coming from a best pal.

So share your personal lessons and experiences in the body.

Keep it like a short story.

Here is an example.

Maybe I’m the only one who hates heavy workouts,

Maybe not,

But the one thing I can’t stand is endless hours in a gym.

So what if I told you that could be gone in a sec?

And still have your sexy back?

Yap. You can!

Read: 5 Benefits of Using Sliming Belt today

Simple, friendly, witty, and attention grabbing!

And the final part?

That’s what I am talking about next.

Clear CTA

Clear call-to-action is very important.

Let your readers understand EXACTLY what you want them to do.

Come clear and save your reader the stress – it feels good.

Use the P.S.

I love reading a P.S.

I know you do.

Which is why ending your newsletter or email with a P.S. rocks. It sumps up your offer and the CTA in a friendly way.

Here is a P.S that I saw from a SEO website email some time back.

PS: I’ll be dropping by from time to time to let you know what I think about the latest SEO traffic generating tools. So comment and let’s share.

Now onto our next template.

Landing Pages

If your intention is to create a high-converting landing pages, you’ll need to focus on many things.

Let’s break them down.

Headline with Clear Benefit

First, your headline should provide a clear benefit to the reader.

Show the reader what he/she will get from using your product or service.

Here is a good example: Choose the Best Home Vacuum for a Dirt Free Home.

Social Proof

You should also put up some form of social proof.

Keep it above the fold for more impact.

You can feature several thing including the following:

  • Customer testimonies
  • Customer names
  • Logos of company you’ve worked with
  • Number of successful projects
  • Number of satisfied clients
  • Real-time customer ratings
Body: PAS Strategy

If you are going to make a content body that converts work with the PAS formula.

P= Problem

A= Agitate

S= Solve

In simple terms you will start with the problem.

Then highlight how much of a bother the problem is.

Finally end with the solution – it can be as suggestion.

Smooth Transition

The PAS formula is good.

But it’s only as effective as you can execute it.

When “transitioning” form agitating the problem to the solution, make it smooth.

The same applies when transitioning from the problem to an offer.

Here is an example.

When I don’t hit the gym I quickly add weight.

My self-esteem goes down.

I hide a lot and I cut off from people.

That’s why I use the “X weight loss diet” and the more reason am excited to introduce our new product.

The “Cholesterol Free Weight-loss Pack”

Call-To Action

You must have noticed.

A great call-to-action is necessary almost everywhere.

Keep the call-to-cation direct and clear.

You can borrow how to make a great CTA from our previous examples.

Blog Posts

When creating blog posts, here is a cool formula that you can use.

Let’s break it down.

Headline = Very Specific

Give your reader the exact thing. Let them know what’s in it for them.

The more specific you are the more clicks through rate you can expect.

Here is an example that I used once: 5 Best SEO Strategies:How I Finally Ranked on First Page.

Intro = Very Short

I will repeat, keep the intro at 8 sentences or less.

Lead: Proof and Preview

Keep the lead interesting

It should add more power to the intro.

More importantly, let it show that you can deliver in the promise on the headline.

It should also preview what your reader’s will learn

Example: Borrowed from the above title

Today you will learn some of the top 5 best SEO strategies.

These are the SEO strategies that I used to rank on first page.

You can do the same if you read through and apply them.

Let’s dig in!

Body: Actionable Content

You will have to pack your content with enough actionable tips, strategies, and techniques that can be instantly useful.

In short, you must avoid being spammy and instead focus on high-level advice with no fluff.

As such, the content should be full of nothing other than actionable or practical stuff.

A step by step guide is a good example of an actionable content.

Several Examples

Use lots of examples.

It helps to drive the point home.

It also brings out the dynamics so that it’s easy to understand.

That’s why I have all these examples flowing through.

Several Examples

Once again a direct and clear CTA is required in the conclusion.

Let your reads know what you want from them.

It is that simple!

Sales Letters

Finally for the sales letters such as supplements, online courses, paid newsletters, and many more, here is the perfect template.

Make a Bold Promise on the Headline

A bold headline will grab the attention of the reader.

Make it even better by citing at least one benefit that the product guarantees.

Here is an example: Get Your Six Pack in 4 Weeks

Lead Should Be Powerful

Follow the headline with a powerful lead.

The lead should create desire to read through the next, and the next, and the next line and so forth and so on.

You can use a story, relate to a situation, or have a research statistics.

Remember AIDA in Body (D&A)

The headline created the attention.

The lead triggered the interest.

Now it is time to create the desire for the product.

And finally push the reader to take the needed action.

Use Bullets

Bulleted lists will break down your content into small and understandable sections.

It is a good way to list the benefits throughout a sales page.

It is also direct, less spammy, and clear.

Social Proof/ Testimonials

Use lots of testimonials and make sure they are authentic.

Hiow do you make them authentic?

  • Use clients real names
  • Put down real statistics.
  • Use company logos

Here is an example:

“I’m James. I have to say that X web designers are awesome. They gave me an explicit template and we had a great time with my design. The delivery was on time. I would love to work with them again.”

James Fredricks

Risk Reversal

  • “Money-Back Guarantee”
  • “No questions asked”
  • “60-Day Guarantee”
  • “Try now. Decide later”

Make sure your sales letter has risk reversals. They make it easy for your prospects to sign up.

Call-t-to-Action

  • CTA plays the final part here. Except that in this place you can use lots of them.

    Some people use them at the top, middle, and bottom of their sales letter.

    Make the right choice that gives you what you need.

Chapter VIII: Advanced Copywriting Techniques

What about what we have seen?

Well, those are the basics.

Now it’s time to focus on the advanced copywriting techniques.

So in this chapter, we will focus on better strategies than what we have seen.

Let’s get started!

Use Crooked Numbers – Don’t Round Off Figures

Crooked numbers like you must know are numbers that aren’t rounded.

For example:

  • 56
  • 87
  • 259
  • 9472
  • 2%
  • 9

You may not realize it. But research has it that crooked numbers are more believable.

That’s why you want to leave your stats as they are.

Here is an example:

Within the last year, my website has received 201,134 visitors on every month.

This is much more credible than if I rounded off the number to “200,000+”

Don’t Talk About Your Product: Sell It

You don’t talk about your product. That’s not selling.

So what should you do?

Tell your prospects what your product can do for them.

Show the buyer how the product works and the result that they can expect.

Make the Button Copy Clear

Few people will even think about their button copy, and that’s their loss.

Why so?

Because the last part of every sales pitch is the conversion.

And conversion starts with clicking the conversion button.

So how do you write a high-converting button copy?

Give a clear outcome.

  • “Click to buy”
  • “Click to see our case study”
  • “Click to get quick help”

The word click gives the button an action oriented and insanely specific call-to-action.

This is unlike phrases that ask a reader to “learn more”

“Learn more” is vague. It’s also one of the reasons that home pages rarely convert.

Don’t Make Them Like You – Make Them Love You

When the clients like you, it’s simple. You entice them.

When they love you, they can’t have enough off you.

Love breeds, obsession, desire, and action. They eat, sleep, and breathe you.

That’s what you should strive to do.

To get any conversions you must make them like you enough to want to buy your product and that’s love.

How do you do that?

Strive to squash all the objections.

These are things such as:

  • I can’t afford it.
  • It is too expensive.
  • I have tried some and they didn’t work.
  • I am not ready to take the switch.

So find a way of addressing them before they come across. Provide offers, show proof, and give manageable breakdowns.

Turn Mental Images into Movies

Static images aren’t as interesting as motion pictures.

So use mental movies instead of images.

You can use short stories, create imaginations, or trigger some form of realism.

The trick is to make your copy more compelling and insanely realistic.

If they can picture it, they can see it,

And if they can see it, they can feel it, and live it!

That’s what you must strive to achieve.

Erase Price Objections

A research on how the addition of price affects conversion rates found this.

The addition of the word “small” before the price could have an adverse impact on the conversion rates.

While many buyers shy away from direct fees, the ones that are convinced that they aren’t straining will buy.

So if you have a copy that you intend to add a price or fee to, use words that make the fee look small.

Words like, small, just, less than, are some of the best options.

Use them and you will easily notice a boost in your conversion rates.

Make 10X More Effective Testimonials

Research has it that customer testimonials can easily boost your conversion rates by up to 62%.

That’s true.

However, you must learn to use the testimonials right.

Unfortunately most people don’t.

So how do you do it?

Don’t be the general guy who compares one product to every other product.

You don’t want to wrap up everything in one pack.

Instead:-
break your testimonials into sections that are easy to understand.

Make sure that the other readers can also relate to it.

So instead of generalizing everything, focus on “before” and “after” and finally give your “verdict.”

Let me give you an example of how to do that.

Example I: The Wrap Up Guy

Last month I bought the X router. And I have to admit it an awesome router. It’s much better than the other routers that I have previously owned. I highly recommend it!

Example II: The Breakdown Guy

Before

Before I bought this router, I struggled with poor internet connection. I looked for online tutorials but nothing worked.

After

That’s when I got X router. Within minutes of installation, every gadget in my home was up and running. It was an awesome feeling.

Verdict

So if you have been frustrated by the other internet routers, try X internet router. I can’t recommend it enough.

In this second testimonial, the customer paints a picture of where they stood before and after. Then they finalize with a recommendation. This makes the second testimonial much more realistic.

I am you too can relate to this testimonial.

 A realistic testimonial should, therefore, have the following.

  • Before: Shows you where the customer was
  • After: Shows where they are now.
  • Verdict: Shows what they think and if they recommend the product

The ‘VERDICT” is basically what the customer would tell someone. In short, it is the part that answers the most fundamental question when it comes to a product review:

What would you tell someone (a new buyer) about this product?

That just about summarizes it everything up! And since it comes from a real customer, it is very easy to relate.

NOTE: You don’t have to break it down like I did. I just did it for the sake of explanation. Even so, you should be able to pick from the testimonial, where the customer was and where they are right now.

Now You Have the Floor

I have wrapped up my ultimate guide to copywriting.

Now it’s my turn to hear from you.

What do you have to say?

Will you remember to keep the CTA clear and direct?

Let me know on the comment section below.

Keep it short and simple – remember?

Meta

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17 Smart Ways to Improve Your 2020 SEO Rankings

17 Smart Ways to Improve Your 2020 SEO Rankings

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

It’s 2020 and the best thing any website owner can learn is how to stay in the competitive edge.

In this post, I am going to show you 17 cool technique to improve your SEO rankings in 2020.

These are techniques that I have used and found them to be super helpful. Indeed, these techniques helped me to grow my website’s organic traffic by 58.92% within the previous year.

So if you are the guy who needs the smartest ways to quickly boost their SEO rankings in 2020 and thereafter, this is the guide for you.

Let’s take a look.

Table of Contents

Boost Your Website’s Loading Speed

This technique is as old as they come. But it’s still as relevant in 2020. Actually, slow internet tops the list of the most annoying tech problems. So you don’t want to be caught in the same maze.

As such, how quickly or slowly your site will load directly affects your rankings. This has also been stressed on by Google Webmaster. In short, there is no escape when it comes to gunning the best loading speeds.

A new study has also shown that the pages that tend to rank on the first page often load faster compared to the ones that load at the bottom of the pack.

As such, it is very clear that if you want to rank better on Google SERPs, your website should lead pretty quickly.

Use the Google analytic tool to find out how fast you’re your website’s page will actually load at any given click.

And if you intend to dig even deeper and sort out the mess, then you can also test your page on the WebPageTest.org.

This way, you can easily boost the speed page/ loading time of your website page easily and in turn have a great about turn on rankings.

Here are some other tips that you can follow to boost the speed or loading time of your website’s page.

  • Compressing Website Images
  • Choose a better website host
  • Reduce the file size of your webpage
  • Delete any unnecessary third party scripts

With that said, let us get to the next SEO strategy that will be of help in 2020 and far much beyond.

Get Your Website on Featured Snippets

Over the past few years, featured snippets have become quite an influential option for those who intend to rank.

They are the new trend and seems like many experts are finally waking up to this new realization for SEO ranks.

To use featured snippets, you can use the “Snippet Bait.”

This is a new strategy that many experts are using to rank.

Here is how the strategy works:

Step I: Find a keyword that you are already ranking for.

This is important in this way. 99.58% of the most featured snippets will come from the first page SERPs.

As such, anyone that appears on the second page have almost zero chance of being featured on any snippet.

So go with a keyword that you have ranked so that you can easily find a featured snippet on the same.

Step II: Now look for the featured snippet in top of SERPs

To do this, you need to start by identifying the type of snippet that you are looking at. This is key.

  • Is it a definition snippet (answers the question of “what”)
  • Is it a listing snippet (lists a number of tools or techniques “top 7 marketing tools”)
  • Is it a table snippet (gives features, or prices)

Now you can add a snippet of content to the website page. Make sure the content is designed to fit perfectly on the intended snippet box.

That’s how the snippet bait works.

Target High Commercial Intent Keywords

Most people, when they start up, they often focus selectively 100% on the keyword search volume.

That it okay, but it is not conclusive. When it comes to keyword research, there are so many things that you should focus on.

One of them is the commercial content. To determine this, ask yourself how much the Google Ads advertisers are spending on the clicks.

You will realize that a keyword may not get many searches. However, when you look at its CPC, you may notice well over $25.00, this is a clear indication that the traffic that this keyword gets is actually made up of legit buyers.

Focusing on the high commercial intent keywords is, therefore, very important. It will also leave you with superior results.

Improve Overall Dwell Time: Use this Simple Step

What makes Dwell Time a vital factor when it comes to Google Ranking?

Here is the thing, if a website visitor quickly bounces off your page and goes back to click a competitors page, it could only mean one thing.

You aren’t offering them what they need – but the competitor is.

In short, Google will take one clear message home. Visitors hate that page. In turn, the page will suffer when it comes to Google ranking on subsequent searches.

Once they down-rank your page, it might take more time that you’d anticipate to put it back on to the map.

So what can you do?

Instead, you should lower your bounce rates.

There are tons of techniques that you can use to minimize your bounce rates as much as you can.

They include the following:

Use Videos

Embedding videos in your page makes the page more interactive.

It helps the visitors to follow your content better and to remain glued for a longer time.

As such, embedding videos in your page will add up for better bounce rates.

EXAMPLE

Apart from that, here are other tips that you can also use to minimize bounce rates and improve your overall ranking of the SERPs.

  • Boost page load time
  • Use images
  • Focus on easy to use interface

Create the Linkable Assets

No one will link to your content.

Every website that’s looking to link will link for great sources.

There are many tips that you can use to achieve high quality sources.

Go with actionable tips

EXAMPLE

Have a customized design

EXAMPLE

Publish studies and research findings

EXAMPLE

Here is the thing. When you have enough sources that people can cite and create greater awareness, you provide them with better resource.

Blogger and other writers will hence find a good pool, reservoir, or sources that they can easily reference.

That way, you would have created an asset rather than just another content for everyone to read through.

In short, back your content with facts. Cite the facts by using hyperlinks among other things that’ll help.

Grab Better SERP Real Estate

If you find a keyword that’s converting very well for you, go for bonus traffic with the same.

A good way to do that is to double up and create an additional YouTube video content.

Use the same keyword on the video.

You need to optimize your video content in the right way so that you get at the top of the bar.

Take a look at how you can optimize your video for a better real estate at the top of the SERPs.

Get Used to Sitelinks

Apart from optimizing your title and also description for better click rates, the other technique that you can use to get better clicks on your result is the use of sitelinks.

What are sitelinks?

Sitelinks appear underneath your results when you search for your brand.

They are “links” that breakdown other pages on your personal website.

They will either show:

  • LogIn
  • Blog
  • About
  • Sign Up
  • Or other content that you have.

A good example is when you search for “Skype”

The best way to make good use of sitelinks is to have them in all sorts of pages.

What are sitelinks?

There are a few techniques that you can use to get better sitelinks to your brand’s website such as these:

  • Table of contents – such as what we have used above

What benefits do sitelinks offer?

Apart from what we have seen, here are some other benefits that you can rake in if you turn to sitelinks.

  • Sitelinks will make your results to stand out among the rest.
  • They will also guarantee the best click-through-rates.
  • They make the website/ content easy to scout.
  • Sitelinks also provides a better content intent

Rank for the “Topic + Statistics” Keywords

I have said this over and over again – for my 2020 SEO strategies that work. If you want to rank go for the topic + statistics keywords.

This is a great secret that most expert websites will use to enjoy lots of backlinks. It is the same trick that you use if you intend to create an asset rather than a plain content.

How can you do that?

  • First you can identify an actionable topic and carry out a research or study.
  • Follow the topics that most bloggers like to write about.
  • Keep in mind that you want to dig out the facts as they are.
  • Create a study (online poll, questionnaire, research)
  • Publish your findings in a content
  • Use the keyword and complement it with your statistics.

You have a great asset that bloggers can easily link to and in turn help you to build an authority around your work.

The next thing you will be at the top of the SERPs.

Take a look at this example that we saw from Ahrefs. This is important in this way. 99.58% of the most featured snippets will come from the first page SERPs.

For better results, you should wrap it up by optimizing you’re title tag, meta description and the page around this keyword.

Remember the keyword that you began with should be one that’s already ranking on the first page of the SERPs.

Why Does this Trick Work so Well?

The trick with using “Topic + Statistics” Keywords is simple.

  • First you are focusing on a keyword that is already ranking on first page.
  • Second you are creating a resource by including stats which writers can tap into.

So once you provide a resource, you are definitely getting ranked for the same.

Simple and smart. No hassle at all.

Repurpose Existing Content to Different Formats

Many bloggers or content creators do this one mistake. Whenever they sit down to write a post or create a new content, they always start from scratch.

In short, they take more than enough days to complete a single post. When I do that, I take close to two weeks to complete a single post.

So what can you do?

Simple, you already have so many existing content.

The content that you ranked for.

The content that people loved.

The content that met the user’s search intent.

Repurpose this content into different formats.

If you have a blog post on how to get more YouTube subscribers, create a Video on the same topic.

If you are writing about SEO strategies, focus your next post in SEO Strategies for first page ranking.

The trick is to develop your existing content into something either much more specific or better than before.

Turning a video that you ranked for into a post and vice versa may be hard. But it won’t be as hard as starting a new content from scratch.

The trick?

You already have an idea that you are improving on.

Go with Content Partnerships

I LOVE content partnerships.

The reason is simple really.

Content partnerships will give your content promo a double power.

It gives you double reach and better results.

Since when you partner with another person, both of you will drive more traffic to your content.

SCREENSHOT

This won’t be the same if you are a single person. In this case your reach is limited to your audience.

SCREENSHOT

At the end of it, two heads will drive in more clicks, views, and social media shares. This will in turn provide you with better reach than one person could possibly have.

If you are looking for tons of traffic to go by, this trick is the simplest that you can opt for any day.

Optimize All Content for the User Intent

I have mentioned so much about matching your content to the search intent before.

The user intent focuses on the main objective that a visitor has in mind when carry out a Google Search.

If this intent is not matched by your content then don’t waste your time, Google won’t rank it.

However, if the page is the answer to what Google users are searching for then, no doubt, you will rank upwards.

It is that simple.

When creating content for user intent, you must make sure of the following.

Your content answers the question that your user is asking (what’s SEO?)

EXAMPLE

The title of your content matches the content and gives them what they want.

EXAMPLE

The content is optimized for the keyword.

EXAMPLE

Notably, combining these aspects will give you a more targeted type of content that your users can easily relate to and get answered.

Eventually, you will create more dwell time, relevancy, happiness, and trust. That’s what makes it this tip the real deal.

Target the Newest Keywords

Looking for the low competition keywords?

That’s cool.

So how do you find them?

Simple.

Target the brand new keywords.

Why?

Most keywords are often competitive because of simple thing, many sites are trying to rank for them.

In short, the newest keywords still have lower competition.

As such, you can easily rocket you way to the top of the SERPs.

When keywords are relatively new, it won’t take you a lot of work to rank.

You have no or few competition to beat and will often come on the first page ranking.

Check Industry Glossaries for New Keyword Ideas

Do you need a simpler way to get new keywords for your content?

Check out industry glossaries.

SCREENSHOT

This is an example of how you get your keywords from the glossaries.

Once you identify the keywords, you can copy and paste the keywords in spreadsheets.

You can also use them as your main keywords and search them on a keyword research tool.

In whichever way you look at it, this tool provides one of the best ways to bag keywords.

A simpler way to work with glossaries is to copy and paste its url in the Google Keyword Planner Tool.

Use the Broken Link Building Strategy

I already gave you a guide to the Broken Link Building. If you haven’t looked at how the process works, you can take a look.

As such, for this post, I’ll only be direct and spontaneous.

I will only show how I have used Broken Link Building technique to achieve the best backlinks.

So what did I do?

  • First, I chose a content that provide to be a great resource for other creators (from my own). “SEO 2020The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have”

SCREENSHOT

  • Next I found a website that created content on Local SEO.

SCREENSHOT

  • I took their home page and popped it into Ahrefs

SCREENSHOT

  • Next I clicked onto the “Outgoing Links” to “Broken Links”

SCREENSHOT

  • I was showed the broken links from all the external links that the site has.

SCREENSHOT

Now that I had broken links that were ideal for my content, I reached out to the site’s owner. I told them about their broken links and in turn offered mine as a replacement.

Now that I gave them a realistic view with the best value addition, they happily linked me.

That’s it! No sweat.

Use Backlinks from the Expert Content Curators

Content curators will curate the best stuff around their niche.

They are better placed to consider your content than most people will.

Content curators will give you backlinks so long as you offer quality content.

It is simpler and less demanding that having to go with your niche.

Use “Link Intersect” to Find Backlink Opportunities

You never know where a site links or why it links where it does.

It could be a mutual relationship between the site owners or the creation of valuable content.

That’s for sure.

So how do you get to link here too?

That’s where you’ll be thankful you’ve got “Link Intersect.”

  • Get down to the Ahrefs then open up their “Link Intersect” tool.
  • Enter the top three domains that you have.
  • You will see every site that links to the top three domains that you chose.
  • Now scout and see if they are producing valuable content or not.
  • If not, there is your chance, offer the site owners some valuable content and ask them if they can link you.

Link Intersect is easy to use. It is reliable and also a clever way to make every moment count. Just pick the top rated websites in your domain.

Meta Descriptions for Each Page

When it comes to visual searches, one thing is very clear, website visitors are now conducting many more visual searches than before. So the trend is definitely on the rise.

According to the latest results, Google lens has now been used over a billion times. That’s huge, really huge for just an upcoming trend.

Gauging by the Pinterest stats alone, they are said to get over half a million searches on a monthly basis. That’s another good indicator that you just can’t wipe out.

While at the same time, another source shows that close to 40% of Americans now prefer the use of visual searches.

If this is the case, then it can only mean one thing. We are looking at a potential SEO tool that will have a huge impact on both ranking and signal relevancy.

So the earlier you join the bandwagon the better it is for you and your company. Compared to most of these visual SEO strategies, this one is simply awesome.

It is a huge plus to SEO industry that visual platforms such as Google Lens is now capable of identifying over a billion objects and the number is climbing steadily every single day.

Start Using Concept Visuals

This is the simplest way to bag links of high-quality.

You don’t have to sweat.

How is that?

Well, you don’t have to send a single email.

How does it work?

  • Create a valuable visual. Let the visual explain a concept clearly.
  • You can use tables, graphs, or charts among others.
  • Now feature the visual in the content that you created.
  • Use keywords when giving the visual a title tag.
  • Once a person who sees it uses it in their site, you get an automatic backlink.

TIP: Focus more on new topics with less competition. This will give your visuals higher demand with better ranks.

Additional Tips

The next two tips might not appear straight up in most lists. However, they are awesome when you are looking for easy ranking.

Use Question Keywords

“Answer the Public” is a great tool to get question-based keywords.

However, there is a better tool – QuestionDB.

Unlike the previous option, this new platform doesn’t come with complex charts and images. Rather, its content is presented in simpler tables.

It focuses on the questions that are asked on Reddit, which means that you can find the keywords and topics that the other tools may miss.

Rank for the Brand Name Terms

Finally, you can rank for the brand name terms.

It might take you as a surprise that the brand will often get more searches than categories.

However using the brand name terms won’t give you a first spot.

But it will give you a better conversion rate.

Now Let’s Hear From You:

We have come to the end of our smart ways to boost SEO rankings in 2020.

What did you find to be so helpful?

Where are you looking at changing?

Do you want to bring in sitelinks or are you targeting the newest keywords?

Let us know by leaving a comment right below.

I will be waiting to add my view too.

No sweat at all!

Meta

Want to get the best SEO rankings in 2020? We offer 19 ways to improve your 2020 SEO rankings.

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Ultimate Guide For SEO Expert

Ultimate Guide For SEO Expert

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SEO 2020: The Ultimate Definitive Guide Every SEO Expert Should Have

From where I sit, this is the ultimate definitive guide to every aspect of search engine optimization for the Year 2020.So there is the one thing that I must let you know first, this is not the average “SEO in Guide” that you will get in 2020.

It is true! From the most vital SEO tips that I will cover, the trends that are developing, and the SEO strategies that are quite dynamic, one thing is clear, a big upset could be coming your way if you don’t prepare.

Keep on the alert for the new strategies which are having many positive impacts today. That’s why if you intend to stay in the game with both feet, you’ll never depart from this simple and smart SEO guide.

Take a look at what I have for you. First, let us break it down for you.

Table of Contents

Chapter I: Domain Authority 2.0

Initially, domain authority was embedded to how best you could create links. But that’s not quite the case right now. Today, Google has improved the ways through which they will determine your website domain authority.

New rules have come in including: expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness, otherwise known as E-A-T and which are among some of the most demanded after.

It is the E-A-T that qualifies to be the domain authority 2.0. Here is what you should know about 2020 and the E-A-T formula.

First, you must understand that E-A-T has been part of the domain authority formula for years. Unlike before when most people hardly paid any attention to E-A-T, now it is very different. E-A-T has now become an integral if not the most important ranking factor.

With last year’s Google Quality Rater Guidelines focusing much more on it, there is no escaping at all. 

Take an example in the new “How Search Works” from Google, the mother search engine lays more emphasis on the need for reliable sources which to our knowledge refers to – trustworthy sources.

In addition to that, they also insist on E-A-T as a key ranking signal. So how do you boost your website’s E-A-T? Take a look.

I: Become an Expert (Or Get an Expert)

You should either become an expert content creator through learning the trade or hire an expert content creator. That’s what Google wants to see when they are crawling your website for ranking. They want to find a legitimate or expert content creator from the respective field/ category.

In fact, Google even specifies that technical write ups and medical content should be written by medical or healthcare professionals only.

While you might take it lightly, you could be in for a rude shocker. In line with what Google says in its guidelines, chances are that they might be using a new formula to determine who’s behind a specific content and if they are indeed experts.

So if you are out to rank better in 2020, stick with content creators who really understand their field.

II: Maintain High Level Transparency

Some SEO experts are for the notion that Google will use off-site signals to determine the E-A-T of your website.

Even so, from my research, I have also determined that the Google rater guidelines focus more on evaluating your site rather than the off-site signals.

From their guidelines, Google clearly states like this “We expect a website to have information about their location, foundation, business, and what individual created the website and some form of contact information among other things”

Looking at this rater guideline, there is nothing much that Google requires from you except for transparency. In short, try as much as you can not to hide any form of information that’s deemed necessary by either you or Google.

Have the following:

  • A comprehensive “about page”
  • Easy “contact page”
  • References and external links to valid sources
  • Privacy policy
  • Terms of service
  • Author bylines

II: Maintain High Level Transparency

It is also true that most of the evaluation that Google takes from your websites E-A-T happens off the site – which is very sensible since any Tom, Dick, and Harry can claim expertise on any field of their choice.

However, pulling other websites to agree with what you say is another thing all-together. That’s when the expertise in you comes out.

Indeed, Google goes ahead to put it like this. That if a website states one thing about itself which external reputable sources disagree with, go with the external sources. It’s that simple.

So How Do You Make this a Possibility?

First, ensure that you create credible content that gets you cited on the most relevant and trusted websites. No need for links, just the mention is enough. This will create some vital visibility that Google looks for from an expert.

Next, keep your website to a given topic or category. This will come more from the off-site mentions that makes you a point of reference for other category related authorities.

For instance, if a reputable site ranks you among the best SEO experts, then you will generate a vital backlink for the Google analysis.

Chapter II: Voice Search Optimization

I have been asked a lot lately if voice search optimization is the next big thing that we are looking at – and my answer is often simple, “you got it right.”

When it comes to voice search optimization, you can never go wrong by alluding to the fact that this is the new SEO kid in the bloc and the facts speak for it.

With that said, it is time you stepped up and stepped into the Voice Search Optimization World. You don’t want to be left behind.

While it might be an upcoming trend right now – and its coming up really fast, it will be the in thing in the near future. So you either ship in or ship out. The choice is yours.

How to Optimize for Voice Search:

Rank in the Top 3 for SERPs

First, you must rank among the top 3 in the SERPs. It is clear that Google source voice search answers only from the contents that will rank in the top three section of the SERPs depending on the Keyword in question.

Introduce a Q&A in Content

Most voice searches are question based. It will do you so much good if you can include some Q&A in your content as they automatically take up this type of format. Focus on the commonly asked questions.

Google loves the Q&A format and will pick your content faster for Voice Searches. You will easily notice this when you finally access the page that Google ranked for your voice search results.

Try Ranking on Featured Snippets

Google algorithm has a convenient snippet. It would be sensible to use the snippet for your voice search results. Featured snippets offer better results and have been found to have the most click through rates.

Getting Your Voice Searches on Featured Snippets

To get your voice searches on the featured snippets, here are a simple guideline that you should follow:

  • First, begin with a keyword search. Look for keywords that have featured snippets and those that you already rank for. It is important to go with KWs that you’ve ranked for as 90%+ of featured snippets come from the content pages that rank on the first page of SERPs.It would be even better if you rank on the first page for the KWs that you are going to work with.

Chapter III: Learn the Art of Search Intent

Search Intent has for quite some time been in the lips of many SEO experts – and for the best reasons.

Here is the thing. Any content that won’t match search intent simply won’t work or rank. And now that Google tries as much to give straight answers to the exact search results as seen above, any slight deviation could be really costly.

By the end of 2020, we could see Google forcing content creators to bring contents that match the search intent results.

Learning the Art of Search Intent

Now that you’ve got no option but to learn the skills of search intent, here are some of the things that’ll come in handy.

Identify the Intent of Every Keyword

What does the keyword intend to achieve? It could help you to look something up, make a quick buy, or even compare product A with product B.

As such, by identifying the intent of the KW, you will easily match your search intent results to the intent and in turn rank easily and higher for the same keyword. So start by the target keyword’s Search Intent.

While most target KWs will contain the answer in them, some might not. A good example is such as keyword (teeth whitener). Anyone that’s searching for this key word wouldn’t be giving up an obvious answer.

They could be looking to buy a teeth whitener or simple might need to learn more about teeth whiteners.

Depending on the top ranking pages from Google SERPs, you should be able to determine what most people look for upon searching for such a keyword and in turn tune up your answer for the same.

Search Intent Matching Content

With that said, you will be a lot safer if you focus on creating content that will match the exact search intent of your readers.

Giving your readers the exact answers to what they are searching for will ensure that you save their time, get an interactive platform, enjoy organic traffic, and find crucial backlinks. The end result will be higher ranking on the SERPs.

Re-Optimize Older Posts for Search Intent

It won’t do you any good if you are stuck with old posts that don’t meet the search intent SEO strategy.

While Google appreciates updated contents due to their fresh touch, you will gain more if the content meets exactly what users are looking for.

This is also a good way to boost your On-Page SEO. Remember Google will easily figure out what people want from their searches.

It is, therefore, very important that you tailor your updated content in line with what Google will indicate to you from its SERPs.

Chapter IV: Sticking with the Video

Believe it or not, the use of online videos has gone through the roof. While you might have survived without them before, they have currently come of age and you can only miss out at your own peril.

Cisco agrees with the same and insinuates that the use of online video will hit 80% of all the traffic that we’ll get online by 2021. As if that’s not enough, Hubspot also suggests that more online demand for videos might never be satiated.

In short, if you aren’t using videos by now, you are definitely missing out on a large chunk of page-rank. Here is how you nail the best SEO results through video.

Featured Video Snippets

A good way is to focus on video featured snippets. The reintroduction of featured snippets by Google gives you the best opportunities to get your videos in the right places. Follow these tips for the featured video snippets.

Organize Content into Clear Sections

Clear cut or discrete organization of content in a video will make your video easy to understand. It makes video clips easy to understand and gives you a quick intent behind the video message too.

Optimize for SEO

Another thing that you have to do is to optimize your video for search engines. This can be done by including titles, tags, and descriptions to your video. As such, Google will find it really easy to figure out what your video is all about.

I would suggest using the keyword that you will be ranking for on in the title of the video or applying any of these tricks that we have mentioned. Keeping your video short, precise, and simple will also go a long way.

Use a Transcript

Finally, you might want to use a transcript over your video. You can use the auto-generated transcripts from YouTube, but sometimes it might miss some words. You will be safe if you uploaded your own transcript.

Featured Video Snippets

Again, you can maximize on the use of YouTube. This is the number one online video site. I guess because it is owned by Google.

YouTube still enjoys the highest organic traffic for online videos. As such, I highly recommend that you go with it if you intend to get more traffic for your 2020 SEO strategy.

While the traffic is high, YouTube content creators are still low. This means that you can easily capitalize on the niche.

And according to tubular insights, at least 55% of Google search results will come with a video. This is a great indicator for better ranking.

Embed Video with Text Based Posts

Don’t just create plain text posts. Now that people are craving for more video, you would be better if you gave it to them. So why not start by embedding a video into your text contents?

It is a great way to enjoy better traffic, higher ranking, and top level click-through-rate among many other things. Remember, it’s now or never!

Chapter V: Combating Decreasing CTRs

I just gave you one way to boost your click-through-rate in the above point. However, that’s not enough. The click through rates are still very low and has been down since 2015 according to one study.

I guess that’s why we see Google introducing snippets, Q&A sections, answer boxes and many other things. So how do you boost the click through rate of your website content?

Embed Video with Text Based Posts

Keyword rich urls have been found to bring in more clicks than plan urls with no keywords at all. This is attributed to the fact that keyword rich urls will match a person’s search,

Draw By Enough Emotion

Draw to the emotions but just enough. Do not overdo it. Titles that contain some sense of emotion have proven to draw people more and to get better click-through-rates. So stick to the most compelling titles that you can get.

Meta Descriptions for Each Page

You should also write meta description for every content that you create. Work with meta tags that are 100% original and focus on the emotions to compel readers to click through.

NOTE: While they might seem petty, these tricks will go along way in giving the best ranking for SERPs. Ignore them at your own peril in 2020.

Chapter VI: Focus on Visual Search

Videos? Yes. And now it is visual search. There is no lie that recent years have witnessed a great rise on visual searches.

While it is not yet much of a SEO changer, we can say it is only a matter of time before it gets there. By the end of 2020, visual search will take off and the trend will be irreversible. That’s what the trends suggest.

Meta Descriptions for Each Page

When it comes to visual searches, one thing is very clear, website visitors are now conducting many more visual searches than before. So the trend is definitely on the rise.

According to the latest results, Google lens has now been used over a billion times. That’s huge, really huge for just an upcoming trend.

Gauging by the Pinterest stats alone, they are said to get over half a million searches on a monthly basis. That’s another good indicator that you just can’t wipe out.

While at the same time, another source shows that close to 40% of Americans now prefer the use of visual searches.

If this is the case, then it can only mean one thing. We are looking at a potential SEO tool that will have a huge impact on both ranking and signal relevancy.

So the earlier you join the bandwagon the better it is for you and your company. Compared to most of these visual SEO strategies, this one is simply awesome.

It is a huge plus to SEO industry that visual platforms such as Google Lens is now capable of identifying over a billion objects and the number is climbing steadily every single day.

What Makes it Rock?

You might have not realized by now, but if you look keenly you will realize that most people today would love to search with images.

If they see something that they like, they would love to just swipe their phone, focus on the object, and bang! The search reveals where they can get it.

That’s exactly how visual searches work. Visual searches save time and you don’t have to try to find the perfect keywords combination for your search.

It boosts the chances of getting an accurate search in less time and also ensures that the experience is totally smooth. Here are the many different ways that visual search images will easily help your out.

  • When Shopping
  • For Directions
  • To Identify landmarks
  • For Local business reviews
  • Get Quick Translations
  • Find Recipes
  • Have Nutrition information

NOTE: This is probably over 50% of what the young uses will probably be looking for at any given time.

Optimizing for Visual Search

Now let me take you through how you can optimize for the best visual search results at any given time.

First you must pay close attention to the search optimization of the images. This means that you’ll have to write alt texts on every image and also use descriptive file names.

In addition to that, watch out for the authority in your page. Make sure that you use credible and proven experts like we mentioned above. This is very important as it improves the E-A-T of the website.

Fresher content is also prioritized by Google. Like you have seen before, if you’ve got fresh content, people are likely to visit your website.

Another thing that you will have to do is to centrally place the image higher up on the page. This is a great way to gain the captivating edge and eventually nail the best results out of your visual searches.

Anyone can go with visual searches on their website. However, the difference is found in focusing more on the laid down rules by Google.

Chapter VII: Optimizing for Featured Snippets

Have you identified any future snippets, do you understand the keywords that they rank for? Now it is time to optimize your content for these featured snippets.

This is the new norm for SEO experts that want to rank high since featured snippets are now getting the highest number of clicks around the internet.

While this is the real deal, few SEO experts might have a clue of how to get their content optimized for the featured snippets.

Don’t worry, I have the best solution for you.

Step I: Find the Appropriate Keyword

Just as most things in the SEO world will work, the first step is to find the right Keyword to rank for.

You can focus on the keywords that you intend to rank for or the ones that are already featured in a snippet.

Why Should You Focus on the KWs That You Rank for?

Like I mentioned before, the keywords that you will find on featured snippets are often from the pages that ranked highest usually the top three pages on SERPs.

What this means is that if you focus on the keywords that you already rank for, chances that your snippets will also rank best is very high.

Step II: Work with Snippet Bait

First you should include a “snippet bait” in your pages. This is usually a 40-60 word block that is specifically designed to feature and rank in the snippet spot that will be featured.

Hub-spot kills it by featuring little boxes that look like featured snippets. This gives them an edge and a great co-relation that Google can spot faster.

Step III: Format Your Search for Featured Snippets

Apart from that, you should also format your search for paragraph snippets (other types of featured snippets). You can also include a H2 and H3 breakdown for every item that you’ll include in the list. In addition to that, create a table that Google can easily relate to such a list of contents.

Chapter VII: Optimizing for Featured Snippets

While they might seem old, the success of SEO in 2020 still lies on backlinks. Without proper link building you’d be dead and out in no time.

Backlinks determines your SERPs ranking, which if you don’t have then every other SEO tips that we’ve look at here will be nothing really.

Google has recently stressed on the same and as such, every SEO expert that expects to see success in 2020 shouldn’t write of link building.

So to make one thing clear, focus on organic, natural link building first before you can optimize your site for the new SEO trends that I just mentioned.

Remember, without proper link building, there won’t be no first page rank for SERPs. Without the first page rank, the rest of the SEO tricks won’t bear any fruits.

Bonus Tips for 2020 SEO

Now that you have the deifintive SEO guide, it is time to take a glimpse on the SEO tips that will give you the boost that you crave for in 2020. Take a look at what I have for you.

Use Podcast to Build Backlinks

The reason why you need to be guru in your industry is because it guarantee so much credibility. As such, you can easily make podcasts which are credible, trustworthy, and have a human face to them.

With podcasts, building backlinks will be no brainer at all. People will trust you more and the interaction will be real. Sooner or later they will look for you for help.

Don’t make your podcast boring. Simply come around, share what you know, and walk out. You should however read through the comments and address the concerns that your viewers have as much as you can.

Once you have a following, you can always schedule a podcast to give you better viewership and to guarantee the best traffic. Take a look at how fast podcasting is growing.

Publishing Research Content

Get the credibility you need by providing data for the bloggers and writers. You can carry out online surveys, industry study, and any other relevant research.

Before you know it, you will be getting credible backlinks that will easily boost your SEO strategies.

The only thing that you must be prepared for is to do more work while researching to get data during the case study. Analyzing the data and also preparing then will also take some toll on you after the data is collected.

Got Zombie Pages, Prune Them

This is trick that works like a charm. It might not be obvious to you that you have zombie pages. However, by using Google analytic tools, you will have the chance to find out.

In case you have identified the zombie pages in your website, do the right thing – prune them. If you don’t, your SEO will be going the drain in no time.

Call for Comments

From my research, on thing is clear, Google ranks high websites with lots but credible comments for their post. Such a page is rated highly and will put you on the top of the SERPs.

So try and encourage your viewers to make comments or share their feeling and thoughts. It will help you so much with your page rankings.

Go for Visual Content

Need I say more really? You have seen it all. The best thing to do is to focus on this “fast growing soon to be the SEO king”. Thankfully, you will form part of the 87% marketers who currently work with visual content.

The one part that I would suggest you focus on more is the creation of concept visuals. They work as good as the infographics and will leave you with awesome organic traffic any day.

Conclusion

Now you have seen how I am getting my SEO strategies in line for the 2020 ultimate show down. So what’s your trick? Feel free to share with us what you have so that we can all enjoy the best time with our SEO in 2020.

Tell us if you are going to create research, publish more, start on visual concepts, or if backlinking is your main thing.

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