When it comes to SEO, a strong foundation in positive SEO practices is a must for a successful online business. While there are many different tactics out there, the core concepts that make up a strong SEO foundation have endured the ever-changing online landscape over the years, and it is these tactics you’ll want to be sure you’re implementing to make sure your SEO stands the test of time.
Here are some of the top time-tested SEO practices you should be adopting to build a sturdy SEO foundation.
Your Key to Relevant Traffic: Keyword Research
The basics of search make up the basics of SEO. When a user types a phrase or question into Google’s search box, a search query is born, made up of a string of keywords. By conducting keyword research and then building the network of search terms your site’s pages rank for, you set the groundwork for what type of traffic reaches your site. Wise keyword research is one of the most crucial fundamental actions you need to shape the success of your SEO performance.
Search behavior is constantly evolving, and is slowly moving away from a solely keyword-centric type of thinking and more towards conversational search. This shift is only going to make tracking keyword performance and conducting intelligent keyword research an even more vital process to SEO.
Consider Long-Tail Keywords
Long-tail keywords are essentially longer and more specific keyword phrases. Though these phrases make up a smaller percentage of total queries, users who search long-tail keywords are typically much closer to actually making a purchase, rather than just seeking information.
By targeting these long-tail searchers who are further along the path to purchase, you can tap into an audience with a higher conversion rate. It’s important to understand that your SEO efforts shouldn’t just be focused on ranking for a couple of targeted keywords, but really on expanding your keyword profile to a full picture that naturally reflects the relevance of your site.
Quality over Quantity
At the end of the day, SEO really comes down to common sense. Take quality over quantity, for an example. Google has a reputation for being the best search engine because they focus on quality by encouraging websites to provide the best user-experience possible, while penalizing sites that don’t offer this. Many webmasters fall into the trap of obsessing over only accruing backlinks in order to rank higher, without realizing that what Google actually cares about is user experience. A backlink’s quality is more important than the quantity of backlinks you collect.
Quality Content is Gold
Quality content is a must-have for climbing the SEO ranks. Search engines have the ability to distinguish between well-written relevant content and content that is riddled with poor grammar or overstuffed with keywords. After the Hummingbird update in 2013, the role of keywords in content has changed considerably. Google rewards sites that consistently produce top-notch content with more traffic, which ultimately leads to more business and more revenue!
Reduce Load Time
Google spends millions of dollars to create faster load times for its search results. If the big G is taking load times so seriously, why shouldn’t we? Reducing load time by even just a few seconds has a huge impact on a site’s popularity from both the search engines’ and users’ point of view.
While mobile has been a buzzword for a couple of years now, it is becoming increasingly important for SEO. In order to compete in the highly-competitive online market, a mobile marketing plan and a site optimized for use on mobile devices is absolutely essential.
When it comes to evaluating your site’s SEO, keep these time-tested methods at the forefront of your efforts and you can be confident that you’re reinforcing the foundation of your site’s online success.