Getting that Google First Page Rank in 2021 has more layers to it than you thought you would need to peel off and yes, there aren’t any shortcuts. If you thought optimizing your on-page content with targeted keywords should be enough, think again. If you thought creating backlinks should be a solid propeller and you won’t need anything more, think again. Today’s competitive landscape demands we explore all those layers equally, to create a 360 degrees SEO strategy. A solid SEO plan is the backbone of a successful website or online business. Search Engine Optimization has multiple layers.
The higher the rank, the more traffic to your site. The more traffic to your site, the higher the opportunity for generating leads and converting visitors into potential customers. Step No. 12 is a bonus tip. So stay tuned!
After going through in depth research, we have narrowed down a 12 Step Plan to rank on Google’s first page. To outrank your competition and be the favorite website of Google, you need to understand what Google is looking for. Yes! It’s not enough to just understand your customers. However, you can work with a general understanding as well.
How Google ranks your website?
To win the race you need to first understand what parameters you are competing for. Google is constantly searching to provide people with the most efficient piece of information. Its aim is to attract people to spend more time on Google and hence get more eyes and clicks on Google ads. The bulk of Google’s $162 billion revenue in 2019 came from its proprietary advertising service, Google Ads. Jaw-dropping, right?
If you want to get on the radar the way is by helping Google earn money. Google’s algorithm and information gathered by search engine “spiders” create a ranking depending on its SERP. What’s that now? Read on.
SERP simply stands for Search Engine Results Pages. The user enters their search query often using specific terms and phrases. These are known as keywords and you need to research that carefully.
Google ranks websites with content that satisfies those keywords. But that’s not all!
Your website’s authority on that subject is also analyzed by Google. Being the top result communicates the highest authority and “usefulness” of your site’s link in regards to a user’s search.
Let’s understand Keywords!
What are the different levels of keywords?
● Product & Services: These are the short-tail keywords with the most amount of search volume but are also highly competitive. The exact words associated with your product or services comprising only 3 words at max. Although these are highly competitive, the short-tail keyword that consistently appears on your website gives Google a strong signal about your forte. This in turn helps you gain authority over the keywords and make you rank higher.
● The Problems: People are searching for their problems on Google and its job is to provide sustainable solutions. Find out the pain points of your customers and try to provide them with information. The words related to the problems are important keywords.
● The Informational: The information may not directly lead to a sale but will make you a reliable resource. If the reader can get valuable information, they will also look for the solutions you are providing. The readers are your potential customers. It will also make sustainable traffic to your website and that’s what Google is looking for.
● Geo-targeting Keywords: This is especially useful for smaller local businesses. You can target a specific neighborhood, city, state, or even country using a geo-targeting keyword specifying where you want to attract the most relevant customers.
So now that you know what is the criteria to succeed and keywords to target, here is the SEO strategy plan template to follow in 2021.
#Step 1: Create Relevant Content
It’s not enough to create content to satisfy a few keywords. The entire topic of the content should satisfy the reader’s needs. Do thorough research on the topic as well when you are deciding on the target keywords. Go through competitors’ websites, podcasts, videos to see what content has attracted the most shares. That would help you determine what your customers are searching for. Build content depending on the context.
With a clear understanding of the context of desirable web content look for the reader’s intent. Google will now analyze whether the reader is looking for quick info or in-depth information. So you need to also get better with your research and create content according to the context.
If you are targeting multiple keywords and providing multiple solutions, segregate them into two categories. Find out if people are constantly searching for them. You don’t need to make a long content for every keyword. Listen to how your customers speak, then speak their language.
#Step 2: Update your Most Important Content
You don’t need to create new content rapidly. If you have been on the web for some time, chances are that your website already has a lot of content. Especially if you post blogs or articles.
Look for the ones that have the most views and then work on them a little more. Also, look out for the topics that can have a better contextual value to the current readers. To increase the effectiveness of your SEO plan and boost your search engine traffic, just update your old content and give yourself an improved freshness score.
Optimizing and old content with the latest information gathered about the reader’s intent and trending keywords will tell Google your content is new. You’ll get a spike in traffic with a tiny amount of work.
Improve the click-through rate of the content. Fix grammar and spelling mistakes. Let’s face it. No one is perfect! Improve your content’s accuracy according to the latest information you can get.
Often the links of old contents carry broken links. Removing those broken links will show value. Also, link to newer, better resources for that matter. You can also include new multimedia for better rankings.
This effort will show Google that your content is fresh and improve the freshness of your entire site as a result.
#Step 3: Create More Longform Content with Images and Videos
The content of your website needs to fulfill Google’s EAT principle. Content quality is critical for ranking success. Refer to the EAT principle: Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.
Incorporate high-quality images and graphics that efficiently explain the content. Videos are huge at present and the craze will only grow in 2021. Adding a video to the listing you solidify authority on the subject.
These EAT will help Google determine if your web page has useful quality content. Link to reputable sites, such as “.edu” and “.gov” URLs.
# Step 4: Improve your Backlinking
Although the backlinking game has been around for a long time, it will be even more cutthroat in 2021. More valuable backlinks mean more people are talking about your website. If you can create a network of such backlinks it will not only help you rank better on google but also help in your business.
You need to focus on the backlinks that are harder to earn and also those competitive ones. Backlinks can be time-consuming to earn. New sites or those expanding their keyword footprint may find it difficult to know where to start when it comes to link building. So instead of feeling hopeless, try focusing on the competitive backlinks. This SEO plan solidifies your sustainable growth.
Search what backlinks your competitors are using and incorporate only the relevant ones to yours. The higher the quality of your backlinks, the higher your search rankings.
# Step 5: Check your CTR
The Click-through rate or CTR of your website is determined by the ratio of the number of clicks on a specific link or call to action. It tells you what works (and what doesn’t work) when trying to reach your target audience.
How to Improve your CTR?
● Optimize your headline and copy with targeted Keywords that appeals to your audience.
● Include CTAs: Write a direct and compelling call to action or CTA copy.
● Use images: Visual presentation is the prime key to optimizing your website in 2021. Depending on the marketing channel, different types of images may perform better than others. Try multimedia, infographic, or surreal images that suit your niche.
● Put Numbers into Title: Numbers work like magic. When the audience has a clear concept of quantity, they get a clear vision of well-specified content. This leads to better CTR.
# Step 6: Consider the AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)
Accelerated Mobile Page (or AMP) is a project from Google and Twitter designed to make really fast mobile pages. What it means to your website is that now Google will also monitor if your website passes as an AMP for a better user interface.
A huge number of people are only accessing google through their mobile devices. So make sure your website is well optimized to run on mobiles smoothly without any delays and looks stunning. It will help you rank higher on Google.
# Step 7: Go Secure Your HTTPS
HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) protects the integrity and confidentiality of data between the user’s computer and the site. Now in this era of discomfort with privacy invasion, it is only paramount to assure your audience of a secure transaction.
Google will also prefer a website with secure HTTP over an insecure one. You must obtain a security certificate as a part of enabling HTTPS for your site. The certificate is issued by a certificate authority (CA), through step-by-step verifications that your web address belongs to your organization. This will protect your customers from any third party attacks and also help you create a transparent transaction.
# Step 8: Featured Snippets
You must have found featured snippets on top of your searches that outline certain solutions for your concern. These may look small but has major impact when incorporated with your SEO plan. You may also be tempted to dismiss it thinking that your audience will look into the snippet and leave the search engine. However, it’s not the case.
Featured Snippets impact SEO by luring in the audience to your website. They are an opportunity to get more clicks from the organic search results without higher Google rankings. As people see and click your content more often, you will automatically achieve the highest ranking.
Many SEO experts refer to the Featured Snippet box as “Position #0” because it appears above the traditional #1 spot.
# Step 9: Optimize Metadata
Your Metadata includes page titles, URLs, image tags (alt-tags), and meta descriptions. All these have an immense impact on your website SEO. Search engines can crawl a website and guess its general purpose based on these elements. So make sure all your data is in place, well-optimized to get that desired No.1 rank.
Consider optimizing the meta description of each page on your website. This is what the professionals are talking about to perform better on-page SEO.
# Step 10: Use Social Media
Social media is tiring, overwhelming, and often can seem unrelatable to your niche. However, remember the audience you are targeting is potentially searching on google about your company’s reputation. That is why you must have a well-optimized social media page. It is to create a dialogue for your unique brand.
So do not hesitate to spread your wings on social media. It is an important aspect of branding and establishing more trust for potential customers.
# Step 11: Track your Hard Work
It is mandatory to evaluate your hard work regularly. Analyze what tactics have made the most impact on your particular brand and find out where you can improve. Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to be on the toe and check those graphs every day. Fix a schedule weekly or monthly, depending on your niche.
Tracking your progress will inform you about your ongoing SEO strategy and marketing tactics. These metrics, or KPIs, should be based on your specific business goals. This will also encourage you going forward and help understand your target audience.
# Step 12: Bonus SEO Plan- Google Stories
The World is going gaga over stories. After the huge success of stories on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube, Google is also encouraging you to use Google Web Stories. So make the most of that and give your page SEO the extra kick it needs.
With over 5.6 Billion searches per day on Google, you need to stand out from the crowd. So target this yet-unsaturated option. Choose to make Web Stories to stand out in search engine results pages, leading to a higher click-through rate for websites.
To rank on Google’s first page, it takes more effort than SEO. To get a better view on the subject, contact Digital Sprout. Outrank your competition on Google and turn your website into a full-time Business with our SEO and Website Design solutions in Annapolis, MD, and neighborhood areas. Book a free consultation today.
Baltimore, MD | Bethesda, MD | Chevy Chase, MD | Columbia, MD | Davidsonville, MD | Edgewater, MD | Ellicott City, MD | Laurel, MD | Maple Lawn/Fulton, MD | Severna Park, MD | Silver Spring, MD | Washington, D.C. and all surrounding areas.