Another year's passed, and it's time to sign in on the latest SEO pointers and tricks.
The factor we write this guide every year may not be obvious to the typical business owner. If you're just getting started with SEO Johannesburg, it's worth noting that due to Google's consistent algorithm modifications, strategies, ideas and techniques all need to develop over time.
The majority of what worked simply 5-6 years earlier, isn't at all practical in 2019.
Believe it or not, keyword stuffing was indeed a genuine thing. There was a personal blog site network trend. And let's not forget exact-match domains.
While last year was certainly an eventful year for the search engine optimization market, the majority of SEO strategies that worked will (fortunately) continue to be effective in 2019.
With countless customers subscribed to our services, we get to see a lot of interesting search engine data. That implies, a birds-eye view on what works to earn higher rankings, and what doesn't.
Let's get down to brass tacks. Here's our list of the 5 essential SEO ideas and tricks to think about in 2019.
1. Target Smart Keywords
If you read our 2018 edition of this post, this one will look familiar. And with excellent reason.
The keyword research study is one SEO tactic that (thankfully) hasn't altered much throughout the years, and will likely continue to be one of the most important to solve.
It's an essential prerequisite for success in link building, on-page SEO, and content marketing. Honestly, if you're going to be doing any organisation online, you'll require to consist of keyword research in some capacity.
Remember, keywords figure out the niche significance and presence of your website for particular search terms.
Understanding how to pick the best keywords does take a little bit of effort and practice. Do not worry, it's not rocket science.
We'll cover the fundamentals below. We've crafted one for you here if you desire a complete guide.
Keyword Research Basics
Start by developing a short list of topics, services, or items associated with your business. Compose them all down in a spreadsheet.
Next, we recommend using the totally free keyword research tool UberSuggest. It will give you a bunch of beneficial data, and alternative keyword versions to consider.
So begin by getting in a keyword into the tool.
You can review the data that it returns to discover more about the keyword. Next, be sure to click "View All Keyword Ideas".
Now comes the enjoyable part.
Make your way down this list, and remove nonviable options. Some will be too competitive, and some will have too little volume.
The trick to success, is finding the balance in between competitiveness and need.
Most of the time, high-demand keywords will be harder to rank for. So unless you've got a huge hunger and even deeper pockets, prevent the most competitive expressions.
Don't worry. Frequently, vague and/or broad keywords will get lots of monthly searches however bad quality traffic.
Be on the lookout for medium-volume keywords that have a low competitive index. These will have low "SD" ratings, and good search volume (a couple of hundred benefits niche terms).
If you have trouble finding keywords that match these conditions, try modifying your target search terms as follows:
Prompt action-- To target potential clients, include action-oriented expressions like "for sale" or "for rent".
Include your area-- If suitable, include place modifiers to target regional consumers and leads.
Be more particular-- Add descriptors on long-tail SEO keywords that ensure more targeted traffic.
Speaking of inciting action, keep in mind to consider searcher intent.
Individuals type all examples into Google. Sometimes, they're looking to browse to a website. Other times they might just be looking for images, or a fast answer to a concern.
You'll likely want to target keywords that show the searcher is looking to purchase an item or service. Significance, when somebody searches among your target keywords, they ought to have "purchaser intent".
2. Follow Best Practices for On-Page SEO
You've done your keyword research study and know what search terms you want to go after.
Excellent! The next SEO tip is another oldie-but-goodie.
Attempted and real, on-page SEO is still an important action to earning greater rankings.
Cut corners on this one at your own peril. You'll find making greater rankings remarkably tough if you have not optimized your landing page material for specific search terms.
For starters, we recommend that you discuss a keyword 2-4 times on it's assigned landing page.
Don't get carried away however. "Keyword packing" will not help you in 2019. A long time ago, this may have worked.
Nowadays, Google is concentrated on ensuring that top-level material serves the user first. It shouldn't come as a surprise that duplicating a keyword over and over once again doesn't assist users. It's simply irritating.
So simply focus on a natural writing style that incorporates your targeted keywords where suitable. If you have problem with this, attempt reading your writing back to yourself, aloud.
You might get some sideways glances if you're at a coffee shop, but hey, nobody stated this was going to be easy.
Next, make certain that your keyword appears in a couple key locations.
Page meta description
H1 or H2
A couple of these are accepted as ranking factors in Google's algorithm, and a few of them are useful for improving CTR
The easiest way to modify meta descriptions and page titles is through Yoast SEO (they have a totally free version) if you use WordPress. It offers a visual editor for your page's bit.
Think it or not, that need to suffice!
Naturally there's plenty more you can do with on-page optimization to get the best outcomes. If you wish to go deeper, you can read our guide (that consists of a totally free list to follow).
3. Improve Your Site Speed
Here's one SEO trick that many know about, however haven't handled.
Improving site load times, can be a major hassle. But it's definitely worth the time and energy.
Not only can it improve your site's search presence, but it will enhance your user-experience and reduce bounce-rates.
We'll cover a few essentials here, however if you want to truly advance, we recommend taking a look at our site speed optimization guide. You can also see a case-study we partnered with GTmetrix to publish last year.
Start by heading over to GTmetrix and running a report on your website, and bookmark the URL for the report it generates. You'll use this as a criteria for your improvements.
In this example, it's pretty clear that this website is not well-optimized for speed. Obviously, you may or may not know that IGN is a media site. So we'll cut them a break.
Either way, you likely do not want your report to look like this.
Scroll down your report and try to find recommendations rated "high" in terms of value.
I understand this will be a lot to take in. You can click any of the products to learn more about what the issue is, and how you (or a designer) could go about making appropriate improvements.
For this SEO ideas and techniques guides, look for the following.
Enhance Images: This one is relatively easy to solve. If you're on WordPress, download an image optimization plugin like EWWW Image Optimizer, or WP Smush. Both have free alternatives, that can quickly enhance the file size of the images on your site.
Utilize Broswer Caching: By leveraging caching, you can considerably improve load times for repeat visitors. To resolve this, attempt a WordPress plugin like W3 Total Cache or WP Rocket. Discovering a pattern here?
As I discussed in the past, there is a lot more to do here. This is a great starting point.
This SEO suggestion is truthfully quite important in the huge plan of things, so if you need assistance getting it done, we suggest hiring a professional to assist you. It's worth it!
4. Mobile Optimization
It's time to inspect the box on this increasingly essential product if your website isn't already mobile-responsive.
Over the previous few years Google has made mobile a top priority and a ranking element. And for great factor I might include.
It's "old news" that internet users are most likely to be on a mobile phone than a desktop/laptop. However here's some recent data to assist visually prove the point.
Offered these patterns, Google has actually currently begun moving to it's mobile-first index.
Lots of themes and site-builders (for WordPress, etc) will come mobile-responsive "out of the box." However it's not a provided. The first step is to discover out if your site is mobile responsive or not.
Google has a free tool for this. Simply click on this link, enter your website, and read the report it generates.
If you're mobile-responsive, excellent. If not, let's speak about what you can do next.
First, this is not something you're going to have the ability to repair without a developer and web designer. You will not have the abilities needed to complete this task if you're a normal little service owner.
You'll have lots of choices.
A. This should land directly in their wheelhouse if you have an internal group or developer currently.
You might work with an web style and/or advancement agency to deal with the job for you. Feel free to drop us a line if you're interested in employing us to assist.
C. You might utilize a freelancer from Upwork (or a comparable platform) to help you on a project-basis. Just try to find somebody who has actually finished comparable "go mobile responsive" projects in the past, and that fits within your price-range.
Regardless of which path you choose to take, be sure to check package on this one. Going forwards, it's only going to get more difficult and more difficult for websites that aren't mobile-friendly to earn higher rankings.
5. Develop Quality Links
Ok, so we covered a couple of quick SEO ideas for on-page optimization, keyword selection, etc. What about off-page SEO?
While there are lots of rankings factors in Google's search algorithm, backlinks have consistently been amongst the most important.
In reality, you might keep in mind a time long ago when backlinks were so singularly important, that spamming low-grade links actually assisted improve rankings!
However those days are long gone. In 2019, your link-building efforts need to be focused on quality over quantity.
Do not buy links from inexpensive resellers. Often, they'll really injure rankings, and can even earn you a slap on the wrist from Google in the type of a manual penalty.
So for 2019 and likely beyond, let's talk about how you can earn quality links.
Recover Lost Links
If you updated a page's URL or eliminated it completely, then you might have a couple of broken or lost links. Tools like Monitor Backlinks and Ahrefs can help you find and recuperate them by getting in touch with the link's source.
Contribute content to appropriate outlets
You might have observed that visitor posting has developed into a little bit of a negative word recently. Mostly due to the fact that numerous writers used up "spinning content" and recycling tired topics simply to land a mention on a range of low-quality outlets.
Do not look at it that method.
Instead, think of these as opportunities to construct brand name awareness, develop your ability to communicate with an audience, and hopefully make a relevant link.
Develop a list of pertinent publications, and connect to partner with editors. Simply focus on supplying worth to readers, and you'll do great!
Partner with other companies
Find other organisations that assist your target market, and attempt to develop a relationship.
You can do so by contributing content to one another's blog site or newsletter. You can also extend special deals to one another's clients.
Either is a fantastic method to broaden your brand's reach, form a long lasting and advantageous partnership, and make a link or 2.
Buy quality content marketing
In order to make links naturally, you'll likely want to invest in material for your site.
The better material you have, and the more you work to make it relevant exposure, the most likely it will be connected to by other websites.
It's an easy formula, and one that really works.
Given the sheer volume of content being released every day, it can be tricky to stand out. You'll wish to get creative, put in the work, and be consistent.
Think about employing outside assistance if you do not have someone in-house to do this. Once again, full disclosure: we've built our own team of US-based professional writers over the previous couple of years, and we do this for customers every day.
SEO tips and techniques are a cent a dozen. You've probably seen (and turned away from) short articles that consist of 100+ pointers for higher rankings.
If you have the time and energy needed to commit months or weeks to SEO, those guides are useful.
Our objective with this guide however, was to help you focus your efforts where they're required most. Of course, that's not to say that the above pointers are easy to employ. They'll still take some time.
We believe they are SEO strategies that are here to remain. So time invested will continue to pay dividends for you, for years to come.
Simply remember, seo and user experience have a lot in common these days. Be contextually pertinent, stay focused on quality, and do not rush things.
Like we always tell customers, SEO is a marathon, not a sprint.