It used to be possible to write content and then manipulating the search engines to achieve high rankings for that content. This meant that the quality of content wasn’t crucial.
Google has made many adjustments to their algorithm over the last few years to focus on ranking high-quality content. They now have many signals to help them determine high-quality content including how users interact with your site. Google also considers how many websites link to your content to determine the quality of your page. Working with an SEO company can be helpful in building these backlinks.
Since the days of ranking low-quality content are over, you now have to work harder to create high-quality content that ranks well. Take a look at these tips to get a head start in getting your pages ranked high in the search results.
Take what’s working and make it better
After you’ve chosen your target keywords and you know what you want to rank for, the next step is figuring out what type of content is ranking high. This is important because Google ranks different types of content higher depending on the search. A blog post might rank high for one search, but a page with many images might rank high for another search.
A good way to determine what type of content is ranking high is to simply search for the keyword you want to rank for in Google. Look at the top ten results to get an idea of what content is doing well. I like to look at the word count, images, videos, and how the content is written. Google ranks these pages high because they think the content is relevant and will be high-quality, useful content for their users.
Now that you know what ranks well, you can start planning your content. My favorite thing to do is to take what the results on the first page are doing and one-up them. Whether it’s including a few more images or an additional video, this is a great way to be sure your content can rank well. You should be careful not to copy their content, but you can write your own content in a similar way, but better.
Match search intent
Another thing to consider before you even start writing your content is search intent. Understanding the search intent behind your target keywords will help guide you in writing your content. There is nothing more frustrating than getting your content ranked, but have it not perform well since it is not helping users.
To understand search intent you can run another search for your target keyword and look at the title tags of the websites that are currently ranking high. Would you click on those results if you were searching those terms? Out of all the pages on the first page, which results would you be most likely to click on? These are important questions to ask to determine search intent.
You should be writing your content with the goal of answering users’ questions or solving their problem. Learning the search intent behind keywords will tell you exactly what questions you need to answer or which problems you need to solve for your users. If you are able to achieve this, your traffic will be much more valuable and targeted.
Use visuals (images and videos)
When trying to create content that ranks well, it’s always a good idea to include images and videos in your content. Nobody loves to read a big block of text, and Google knows that. It is going to be more helpful for users if you can provide visuals in your content like images and videos. This is especially helpful if you can include infographics in your content. Infographics can help users understand content better without having to re-read blocks of text.
When adding images and videos, there are a few steps you can take to increase your relevancy for a specific keyword. For images, the image name, alt text, and description are all areas that should be optimized. If you include your target keyword naturally in the name, alt text, and description, this is going to help you out. The key to using this strategy is that the keyword needs to be used naturally. If you just label the image, alt text and description with exact match keywords, it can be easy to see that you are keyword stuffing.
Write for users
When trying to improve SEO, it can be easy to write content for search engines instead of users. Don’t get me wrong, you should consider what search engines need to see to rank, but that should be secondary to the users. You should focus on creating high-quality, useful content that will be helpful for users that land on your site.
When writing your content for users first and search engines second, it becomes much easier to naturally use keywords in your content. When writing content for search engines, it usually results in content that isn’t very helpful, with the exact keyword used too many times.
A good thing to keep in mind is that even if you rank for the keyword you are trying to rank for, if your content isn’t helping anyone, then it isn’t going to help you. In this case, users will land on your site and then leave right away to find a site that is going to help them.
Provide a good user experience
It’s important to provide a good user experience for your website visitors. Overall, this will help you rank higher in the search results, and it will also keep users on your website for a longer amount of time.
A big part of providing a good user experience is having a clean web design. If you do not have an appealing web design, I would recommend implementing one. If you fall into this category, you should consider these website redesign tips.
The other part of providing a good user experience goes back to creating high-quality content. If you follow these tips, creating high-quality content that ranks well is achievable and can be done time after time to rank your pages in the search results.