The ongoing pandemic has shed light on some important aspects of businesses. Websites, big or small, can still increase reach with SEO —
But how does that change during a worldwide crisis?
Search engines use algorithms to rank the websites they find. Achieving a better rank means a website will show higher on the results page. A lower rank and they may be placed lower on the page or the next one.
But how? Well, it’s a long story. Here are some of the ways to improve your website’s SEO performance.
10 Ways to Improve Search Engine Rankings
In this time of crisis, it would be prudent to invest in SEO. The best thing about it is it doesn’t have to be expensive. Sometimes, it just takes some good ol’ elbow grease.
Below are 10 working ways to improve your rankings. Let’s dive into each.
1. Improve your User Experience
Your website users should be your priority. Remember, these are your potential leads. If they won’t enjoy spending time on your site then you may have a hard time with conversion.
It’s in the simple things. Keep your layout clean. Have a sitemap handy so users won’t get lost going through your website. Just make sure that your page is easy to understand.
Keeping your page interesting isn’t that hard either. Make the most of the available multimedia. These days, there’s no limit to what kind of rich media you can include on your page.
You can use infographics, videos, and presentations instead of pure text. There are lots of free PowerPoint templates available for presentations. For graphical content, Canva is free and easy to use.
These assets also play well with your social media marketing strategy.
2. Vlogs and Webinars
Notice how webinars seem to be popping up more often? That’s because they’re a great way to keep in touch with your audience. Informative webinars have the added benefit of increasing trust in your brand.
Vlogs are another option as well. The advantage of vlogs is that you can make these ahead of time. Just don’t forget to publish them consistently. The trick here is ensuring you have an organized plan.
Strategize what topics to talk about in each vlog. This way, you’ll be able to make sure that your audience knows what to expect in each video.
Either way, these two options are a great way to raise brand awareness through digital marketing. Just because people aren’t going out doesn’t mean your brand should be losing touch.
If done right, you can find vast improvements with your business’ reach.
3. Get to know the trends
You can expect trends to be one of the most affected by the pandemic. Trends show you what people are interested in and talking about online.
Getting on top of these trends allows you to target specific audiences.
Google Trends is a free tool that allows you to keep an eye on them. The tool creates graphs for you based on the keyword you search for. Learning how to make the most of this data will give your business a sharper edge.
Here’s how you can effectively maximize Google Trends:
Find Skyrocketing Niches
You can find a new niche by changing the date range, such as ‘2010-present’, to see the increase or decrease in search volume for a particular niche, as well as get a clear-cut shot of seasonal trends.
Find Relevant Product Categories
Using Google Trends, you can create product categories people might be interested in. See ‘Related Topics’ after typing on the search box of Google Trends to find the products related to your niche, allowing you to expand.
Use this tool to know which keywords can be used in naming your product categories and optimizing your posts so more people will see them.
Increase Brand Awareness
Increase your website traffic and ranking by producing fresh content. With Google Trends’ help, you can remove old content, add new details, and then republish fresh web content.
Promote Products Around Seasonal Trends
Peaks and dips impact monthly sales, and Google Trends can help you determine the best products that are in-season and off-season.
4. Define about your brand — and why it matters
Yes, you’re going to have to do some introspection. Why should people care about your brand? How are you relevant?
Answering these questions will help you shape your strategy. Think of the ongoing crisis and how your business can answer questions people may have.
One thing to build on will be your site’s authority. Authoritative sites have strong credibility when it comes to backlinks and information.
An easy way to see it is like how referrals work.
The more referrals you get, the better your chances of getting a job, right? With links, it works similarly. The more links that point to your site, the more authoritative your site looks.
With authority, it would pay to look at link building. Link building is a process wherein a website builds connections. Admittedly, this is one of the harder aspects of SEO but, done right, will yield some of the best results.
Some digital marketing agencies offer professional link building services. One such service is Linkdoctor, who strategizes this component for you.
Don’t forget about good, old fashioned outreach for link building. Facebook Groups are a goldmine for building links! And, for local SEO link building, there’s always the tried-and-true cup of coffee method.
Inbound marketing is also a crucial aspect of defining your brand that attracts your target audience by creating good quality content.
For instance, optimizing your HubSpot web design can boost brand awareness through on-page SEO and workflow through automation, thereby improving inbound marketing results.
5. Utilize the channels available to you
Mobile, Local, and E-commerce. These are just a few of the available channels that you can utilize for your webpage.
You can think about it as having different vehicles for different trips. Here’s a summary of what each of these can do for you;
- Enterprise SEO
- Aimed at enterprises with tons of pages and products.
- Focuses on optimized page structure.
- A properly-organized site will have better chances
- Local SEO
- Emphasizes on the locale of business
- Utilizes tools like Google My Business to reach local queries
- Updated site info will help businesses stay relevant
- E-commerce SEO
- Builds on developing industry
- Large emphasis on buyer-intent keyword research
- Focuses on optimized product pages
- Mobile SEO
- Makes the most of increase in mobile device usage
- Highlights importance of having a mobile version of the site
- Optimized loading speeds can have great benefits
- International SEO
- For businesses that provide services internationally
- Utilizes subdomains per region
- May necessitate multilingual capabilities
The bottom line here is, there’s a lot you can do. Depending on what applies to your business, you can squeeze what you can out of the different channels. The limit here is how much time you want to put into it.
6. Consider a site revamp
Don’t be afraid to do a total overhaul of your site. You’ll want to check in on every little thing. From the tags of each post to the file size of each of your media.
All this is to make sure your site can adapt to the ongoing crisis. Add to that the effect of the May Core update.
Take a good look at the guts of your page. Are the tags you used still relevant? If not, use a keyword tool to help you choose strong ones for your page.
Logically speaking this is the best time for a revamp of your site. With internet usage going up, you’ll want to make sure you stay visible.
7. Aim your content at a specific group
With the internet, you can’t rely on a one-size-fits-all type of content. With such a diverse audience, you’ll need to get creative.
Create content and a content marketing strategy that would target a specific group. Different groups will be using different search terms for similar objects. You’ll want to make sure you show up each time with each different search.
Let’s say someone is looking to buy a laptop. They don’t know what car to buy so they search, “Best laptop 2020”. That kind of search is more of a product search.
Now compare that to “Is the [laptop model] good for what I need?”. This one is more informational. It’s not hard to see the difference between the two, right?
Don’t expect your content to reach everyone. Just because it’s on the internet doesn’t mean it’s going to be found.
Conversely, you don’t want to stuff your content with keywords that don’t relate to it.
8. Publish, publish, publish
The more you have, the more you can promote. That’s basically it.
Don’t get lazy, now is the opportunity. Building a consistent publishing schedule will keep your site fresh and help you rank higher. This is because people can see that your site is constantly updated.
Think about how the crisis is keeping people in their homes. This is also the opening for your creative side.
Publishing high-quality content shows people the kind of thought you put into the process. This, in turn, builds trust. With the May Core update, it would be important to factor in trust to your SEO.
9. Use analytics for strategy
Be prepared to take a couple of notes with this one. Analytics are some of the best ways to read and strategize for your business development.
You can make use of Google Analytics for this. It’s a free tool that tells you what you need to know about the behavior of your site visitors.
With a better understanding, you can develop better insights on how people react to your site. Do they visit every page or do they just leave the minute they enter?
With this, it would help to be familiar with the metric terms such as CTR, Click-Through-Rate, and Bounce Rate. These tell you how people see your site.
With the information you gather here you can develop a better strategy. Now you know which pages are weak or strong. With this, you can allocate the appropriate time for site development.
10. Don’t forget about ads
Ah, yes, advertising. While ads aren’t strictly SEO in nature they can certainly support your SEO venture.
Don’t worry though, ad rates have dropped because of the pandemic. As early as March, businesses have been decreasing spending on advertising. You can see this in practice by “spying” on a Facebook Page’s ads.
This is where you come in.
Paid and Organic search operate so differently from Paid Social marketing that it’s easy to forget they’re related. You can see that in the years-old Facebook Page vs. Profile—Which is better for audience reach? debate.
Another thing to think about is how people have been more dependent on e-commerce. You can imagine how social-distancing played a part in this.
With paid ads, you have a better chance of showing up on search queries with strong buy-intent.
You can see how this can affect your SEO. The more you show up, the more aware people are of your brand. Even if they don’t buy your products then and there.
The fact is, they’ll be able to identify your business and the type of product you sell.
With all this in mind, the best thing to do is to keep an ear to the ground. Stay up to date with the latest trends and news. Knowing what’s happening around you will help you adjust right away.
Remember, Google updates its core algorithm more than once a year. It would help if you keep an eye out for those updates as well.
The bottom line is, you have to do your homework. SEO is a very cost-efficient way to get your brand out there. The twist is, it takes some reading to be good at it. You can learn the ropes while implementing them on your website.
Don’t freak out when you do your first search. You’ll find a bunch of pages saying, “Do this, do that”. Don’t let it get to you. Take note of the important details and see how it can apply to your business.
Lastly, be patient. SEO is a long-term project so the benefits might not be evident at first. The best part is the benefits gained will still be felt long after this pandemic.