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10 SEO Techniques to Boost Organic Traffic & Keyword Rankings

Updated: May 17


Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a term that small business owners and website owners may have heard before, but might not fully understand. In short, SEO is the process of optimizing your website to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). This can be accomplished through a variety of methods, such as improving your website's content, URL structure, and other on-page factors. While there are many SEO techniques you could use to improve your ranking, today we're going to focus on the 10 most effective tactics.


1. Conduct Keyword Research


SEO can be a complex process, but there’s one task that all SEO specialists agree is essential - keyword research. This should build the foundation for every SEO strategy.


Identifying the important keywords that your customers are using to search for your products, and/or services, will help when it comes to attempting to capture them with content tailored to their needs. The best way of doing this research is to turn to any tool that provides search volume data. These tools enable you to identify what terms people are using and analyze the competition around each of those keywords. With this insight, you can determine which keywords have a sufficient level of search volume and competition to target.


Here are the most popular keyword research tools:


2. Optimize Your Page Titles, Meta Descriptions, and Headings


One very effective SEO technique is to use keyword-rich titles and descriptions when creating content. Incorporating the priority keywords that you have identified into the page titles and meta descriptions of your content will help boost your page’s SEO rankings and increase its visibility in SERPs (search engine results pages). Page Titles are important to SEO rankings as search engines are more likely to direct users towards content with specific keywords throughout that indicate strong alignment with what the user is searching for. Keywords should appear naturally in page titles and meta descriptions, as this makes it easier for search engines to understand your content and drive better SEO results for you.


Example Page Title & Meta Description
Example Page Title & Meta Description

A great rule to remember is that the URL, Page Title, Meta Description, and Heading should all be aligned. Targeting a single priority keyword.


3. Improve Your Image Optimization


Image optimization is often overlooked, and is typically a quick win when dealing with older domains that requires a little extra attention.

Google Image SEO Best Practices
Source: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/appearance/google-images

Image optimization covers the following areas, taken from Google's image SEO best Practices:


  • Use HTML image elements to embed images

  • Use an image sitemap

  • Responsive images

  • Use supported image formats

  • Optimize for speed and quality

  • Use descriptive filenames, titles, and alt text

  • Add structured data


This covers some advanced techniques, but for the typical user we would recommend that you pay close attention to the following, as a starting point:


  1. File Size - consider building responsive web pages that tailors content and images depending on the device. This allows high res images to be utilized where they add value, but limited for mobile devices where load speed is essential. In addition, ensure all images are compressed and use the best image format to help reduce file size.

  2. File Name - review all files and consider renaming file to have a consistent naming convention across the domain.

  3. Alt Attribute & Alt Text - review all images and check that each image on the site has useful and relevant alt text descriptions. The alt text provides additional context for both users and search engines. An example of bad, better, and best are provided below:

Examples of Image Alt Text
Source: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/appearance/google-images

After this has been completed, the next step is to dig a little deeper and determine if there are issues outside of those provided. These can be obtained by running a Lighthouse audit or PageSpeed Insights audit to identify images that require further optimization.


4. Implement Internal Links


Implementing internal links is a great way to improve website navigation and maintain a strong website structure. By linking pages to one another, you can help users navigate your site more easily and keep them engaged with your content. In addition, internal linking can also help search engines index your pages more effectively, which can lead to higher rankings in search results. Try accessing every page on your domain, if you are not able to access every URL then consider how those orphan pages can be added using internal linking. For example, can the main navigation be expanded, is there an opportunity to expand the footer, or what about including relevant links to your blog content to help provide access for users.


5. Optimize your Website for Mobile Devices


SEO is important for any website, but especially if you want to be visible on mobile devices. Optimizing your website for mobile means making sure the search engines can find and index your content, and that your site loads quickly and efficiently on smaller screens. Here are 10 techniques for boosting your website's SEO on mobile:

  1. Make sure your website is responsive, so it can adapt to any screen size.

  2. Use mobile-friendly URLs that are easy to read and include relevant keywords.

  3. Optimize your website's load time, so visitors don't get impatient and leave before they've had a chance to explore your content.

  4. Include high-quality, keyword-rich content on every page of your website.

  5. Use social media to promote your website and drive traffic back to your site.

  6. Make sure your website is well-linked, both internally and externally.

  7. Use Google AdWords or other advertising platforms to reach potential customers searching for products or services like yours.

  8. Install Google Analytics or a similar tool on your website, so you can track your SEO progress and measure results over time.

  9. Get listed in online directories relevant to your industry or niche market.

  10. Stay up-to-date with the latest SEO trends and changes, so you can keep your website ranking high in the search engine results pages (SERPs).


6. Improve Your Page Speed


To obtain insight into your page speed performance, Google have created the PageSpeed Insights tool. This tool provides URL-level user experience metrics for popular URLs that are known to Google's web crawlers.


You will be served with different types of metrics that will help you focus on where to improve page speed and loading times.


Core Web Vitals
Introducing Core Web Vitals

Our recommendation is to begin in Search Console, to identify if there are any problem pages, or HTML templates, and then move onto the PageSpeed Insights tool.

Core Web Vitals - Process

To learn more, take a look at Google's web.dev online resource, to explore the different metrics and how they impact page speed.


7. Create a Content Strategy


SEO success doesn't happen overnight, but with consistent effort and dedication, it is achievable. One of the surefire ways to improve your organic visibility is to commit to a robust content strategy that is crafted to cover a range of audiences and target keywords.


Here is a guide to all of the different components that can be used to build a long-term content strategy:


  • Client, Competitor, and Search Insights

    • Identify Keyword Ranking Gaps

    • Competitor Analysis

    • Gather Customer Questions + 'People Also Ask' Results

    • Identify Existing Opportunities

    • Complete Keyword Research & Gather Search Volumes

    • Use Google Trends to Evaluate Trends and Seasonal Interest

  • Content Creation and Planning

    • Establish Content Guidelines

    • Determine Content Location (category pages, product pages, blog posts)

    • Determine Frequency of Updates

    • Build Content Strategy and Blog Calendar

    • Create Content Brief(s) Identify Stage of The Marketing Funnel


Writing targeted blog posts and articles can not only increases visibility on the web but also encourages readership and helps your online presence shine. Regularly creating SEO friendly content sets you apart from competitors as a reliable source of meaningful and informative pieces. But do not forget to review your content regularly, to determine if it's providing the best experience for users - if you're unsure, spend a little time reviewing your competitors.


8. Refresh & Update Old Blog Content


Add variety to your content strategy by refreshing old content alongside publishing new content. This is a simple technique to ensure your website is up to date and ensuring the content does not become outdated. Search demand and interest changes over time, so it's always worth reflecting on performance to determine if there is a better angle.


Simply identify posts that have underperformed using Google Analytics, or Search Console, and consider if there is room for improvement through improved keyword targeting, expanding the topic, updating for the current year, revising the headings, or decide if it is worth removing content that has become irrelevant.


9. Measure & Analyze Website Performance


There are many ways to measure organic performance, but there are only a couple that are both free and essential - these are Google Analytics and Google Search Console.


Google Search Console is essential at providing data, such as clicks, impressions, CTR, and avg. ranking. It also provides insight into the crawling and indexing data relating to your domain. Bing also provides a similar tool, called Bing Webmaster Tools.


In addition to tools that provide data relating to organic traffic, there are also tools that provide data on keyword rankings. Here are a few examples:



Ideally, having both sets of data will help provide valuable insights when it comes to planning and analyzing performance over time.


10. Grow Your Backlink Profile


Backlinks remain a major ranking factor and as a result play an important role in improving search visibility and keyword rankings. At CodeMasters, we deploy a mix of long-term and quick win techniques. The long-term approach takes a combination of project-based and content-based strategies.


If you have limited resources, then the quick win tactics provide a proven method of building a backlink profile. We recently created a blog post dedicated to covering Quick Win Link Building Tactics.


The aim is increase the diversity of external links, but keeping within the webmasters guidelines that Google sets out.


Conclusion


There are a lot of different moving parts when it comes to SEO, but if you focus on these 10 proven strategies, you’ll be well on your way to boosting your website’s ranking in search engine results pages. And of course, if you need help implementing any of these strategies or don’t have the time to do it yourself, contact CodeMasters Agency. We’d be happy to help get your website ranking higher than ever before.

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