What I’ve Learnt About Good SEO And Best Practices To Boost Rankings
What is good SEO? Why is it so important to write good and relevant content? Why is there so much emphasis?
That’s because you need good page ranking on Google to ensure that your brand is heard. When people search for a topic and find your site relevant and useful, their visits will boost your credibility.
Google’s search algorithms are always changing and refining.
This is to generate the best and most relevant search results.
Google’s top three ranking factors are links, content and RankBrain. We know good links and relevant content are very important, but what is the third most important ranking factor RankBrain?
Simply put, RankBrain is a machine learning tool that helps Google sort their search results based on user interaction.
What You Should Know
Google’s number one job is to show you the best results. RankBrain’s job is to measure how users interact with their search results and rank them accordingly.
There are two factors RankBrain focuses on:
- Dwell Time – how long someone spends on your page
- Click Through Rate (CTR) – the percentage of people clicking on your result
If people like what they read on your page, they stay longer. The Dwell Time increases.
If more people click on your page, CTR increases.
They go hand in hand. If a page is fully optimised, with title tags, meta descriptions, images and more, but it provides horrible content, the bounce rate will be high as visitors realise they won’t find what they need on your page.
In contrast, visitors who like your content will stay longer on your page. It tells Google your page is relevant, then Google will up-rank your content to make it easier to find.
If no one clicks on your result, why should Google keep it on the first page? If your site has many clicks, why would Google bury it in the lower ranks?
Best Practices for Writing Good SEO
The next question is, how do you write good SEO? Don’t panic. Here, I will share some of the best practices I’ve learnt from experts and used to boost SEO rankings.
- Write good content
- Use LSI keywords in your content
- Linkless mentions
- Create attractive visuals
Write Good Content
The best pages cover a topic in-depth. Remember to write content that benefits your readers. Who are you targeting? Why do you want them to visit your page? How does your page help them? What can they get out of it?
According to Hubspot, the new sweet spot for a blog post is 2,250 – 2,500 words. Search engines favour long posts and your visitors will spend more time on your website. This increases the Dwell Time and CTR and ranks your page better.
Use LSI Keywords In Your Content
Gone are the days of keyword stuffing, where you use the same keywords repeatedly and excessively within your web pages. Google is much smarter now. Instead of only measuring content (how many times you use a specific keyword), they focus on context.
In comes latent semantic indexing (LSI) keywords.
LSI keywords are related keywords or synonyms. They give relevant context to your primary keywords.
For example, you have a page about “3D printing”. Your LSI keywords would be terms like “3D printing service”, “3D printing costs”, “3D printing companies”, or even “additive manufacturing”. Even if you use any of these phrases, Google will know they’re related so you don’t even need to stuff your content with the same keywords.
Linkless mentions refer to mentions of your brand or business across the internet, without a hyperlink. This includes mentioning a brand in a news story, social network, reviews, forums, blog comments or video.
Bear in mind that spam mentions will hurt your linkless mentions. No brand is perfect, so having a good reputation is important as it outweighs the negative mentions you might get occasionally. Be proactive in monitoring the tone of conversation around your brand. Follow up on positive mentions, respond to negative ones, build support from your customers and industry influencers. Actively promote your brand online so that the positive mentions drown out any negative mentions.
This isn’t saying you should forgo external links. They are still useful, especially if you’re not a renowned brand, and you need them to generate backlinks and build site credibility.
Create Attractive Visuals
Words are important, and so are your visuals. Videos and images often capture attention more than words, and thanks to sites like Pinterest and Instagram, we see a continuous growth in visual content.
Take advantage of this trend. Create infographics to summarise your content and share them on Pinterest and social media. Create video tutorials to share one of your projects. Make use of micro-content.
You don’t have to be an expert, but with lots of practice and constant refining to check what works for you, you’ll master SEO writing in no time.
Kris is Ginkgo3D’s head content producer, avid fan of J-pop and devourer of iced lemon tea and potato chips. She talks code and strings words together to share useful content.