Google is king, and everyone wants to land on page one of the search results. Landing one of those first few coveted spots almost guarantees unbeatable organic traffic. Land on page two, and you're toast. In fact, according to Backlinko, a mere 0.78% of Google users click on something from the second page. Ouch.
So, the question on everyone's mind is this: How can you get better Google rankings?
Let's jump right in.
7 Tips for Getting Better Google Rankings
1. Include Your Keyword in the Meta-Title and H1
Google is looking for "hints." It wants to know what your content is about so that it can figure out how to rank you. A simple way to give it a hint is to make sure you include your keyword in both your meta-title and your H1, which is typically the main title of the page.
Pro tip: You should only ever have one H1! Google treats this as the main topic of the page.
A word to the wise, though: Don't have the same exact meta-title and H1. Google views this as over-optimizing. Make these two pieces unique and at least a little varied.
Check out these meta-titles — they make it pretty evident what the topic of the content is.
2. Follow SEO Best Practices
No, this isn't enough in and of itself to make you rank high. Yes, it's still important!
You'll want to do things like:
- Sprinkle your keyword throughout the page.
- Use the keyword in headings, when appropriate.
- Include high-quality images.
- Incorporate your keyword in an image alt text, as long as it makes sense.
- Use relevant, high-quality internal and external links.
Here's one example of a keyword in an H2.
Your internal linking strategy is important. This will help to keep people on your website longer, thus tremendously improving your bounce rate. Plus, you're directing your readers to more information that they probably care about. It's a win-win.
3. Have Clear and Actionable CTAs (Especially on Mobile!)
CTAs (call-to-action) get your page visitors to do something while they're still on your site, as opposed to just leaving. Whether you want them to shop your products, sign up for your mailing list, or fill out a form, make the CTA clear and easy to click on.
This is especially important for mobile, where everything is a fraction of the size. More on this in a little bit.
When you ace the CTA, you increase the average number of pages that your visitors will view. Score!
Pro tip: Google Search Console can point out when buttons might be too close together and not optimized for mobile.
4. Improve Your Website's Loading Speed
Some estimates say that a two-second delay (two seconds!) in load time can lead to a page abandonment rate of up to 87%.
A website that is slow to load is bad all around. Google doesn't like it. Users don't like it. And because users don't like it, Google doesn't like it even more.
You can use Google's PageSpeed Insights to see how you're performing on this front.
5. Provide a Good Experience on Mobile
You already know by now that CTAs should be easily clickable on mobile. You also know that your site should load quickly on these devices. What else?
Importantly, be sure that the web design automatically adjusts to fit the size of the screen (read: responsive web design). Visitors should never have to scroll from side to side to read the text. If you want to land on page 500 of Google, that's a good way to get there.
Generally, you want to check that both the text and images aren't skewed or distorted in any way. Check all of the buttons to make sure they work properly.
Another thing to consider is what some developers call the "thumb zone." This is the area of the screen that the thumb — the finger that people generally use the most on mobile — can touch. Guess where you should put the most important things in the mobile version of your site?
The thumb zone. Check out where the CTAs are on our mobile site.
Mobile experience has always been crucial, and you can expect it to play an even bigger factor in 2021.
6. Secure Strong Backlinks From Credible Sources
When you link to yourself (internal linking), Google gives you bonus points. When other people link to you, Google stops dead in its tracks and is all, "Hold up... what?"
This is because when other pages link to you, it tells the search engine that you're a credible, authoritative, trustworthy source. You can bet this is going to help you get better Google rankings.
Creating awesome content that people will want to link to is the first step. But if you want to take a more proactive approach, then you can reach out to other businesses you're interested in collaborating with and see if they're open to some sort of partnership.
7. Put the Keyword Toward the Front
As long as it sounds natural, aim to put your keyword toward the front of the title (and as a byproduct, the URL), meta-title, and headings. While we don't know for sure, much research has suggested that the closer it is to the front, the more important it is, in Google's eyes. This will help, though, in focusing a person's attention on that keyword more quickly.
However, we want to reiterate a thought we've already shared: Keep. It. Natural. When it comes to keywords, if you have to force them into your content, then it's not going to sound natural to the reader. Google will see right through it. Keyword stuffing your blog and landing pages is a huge no-no.
A Final Note
Before we end this, we want to remind you that Google customizes your search engine results page (SERP) based on your location and search history. What you see when you search for a keyword could be different from what someone else sees when they search for the same keyword.
If you need a little extra help improving your keyword rankings and organic traffic, contact Adlava today.