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Eight Effective SEO Tips for Google's Ever-Changing Algorithm
Updated: August 25, 2022
SEO is like time; always changing and moving forward. Because of its ever-evolving model, it’s hard to know how to make your strategy stay on trend without needing to spend all your time tweaking it.
So what do you need to do?
While Google’s algorithm updates as often as you change clothes, there are some proven SEO tactics that always stand up against the test of time. By implementing these tactics on your site, you’ll dramatically improve your ranking while also making your website future-ready.
There are two ways to benefit from a solid SEO strategy. I’ll walk you through them in this article.
But first, why is having a Google SEO strategy essential?
Studies have shown that Google holds 91.94% of the search engine market. Furthermore, Google has already received 360 billion searches this year. With this data in mind, experts have estimated that a #1 organic position on Google can result in a click through rate (CTR) of 34.2%.
As you can see, having a well-crafted Google SEO strategy is absolutely critical for your business bottom and lead generation.
On-page SEO tips for 2022
If you’re just starting to become familiar with SEO, you’ll need to focus your efforts on building your on-page SEO. Here are some tips to help you prepare an effective strategy.
Table of Contents
1. Develop your long-tail keywords
Long-tail keywords are more specific than the usual target keywords. An example of a long-tail keyword is: “SEO tips and tricks for Google”, as opposed to “SEO tips”.
Though they make up a relatively small percentage of total search volume, research has found that 91.8% of all queries are long-tail keywords.
There are a couple reasons why long-tail keywords can be a powerful ally:
- They tend to have higher search intent. It’s easier for you to narrow down your keywords to the ones that are highly related to the actions you want your target audience to take
- They usually have a higher conversion value
- They allow you to gradually get more traffic to your site
- You can be easily found by new and motivated audiences
- They have lower competition, which makes it easier to rank for
It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t chuck in a whole bunch of different long-tail terms in hopes that it will work. Instead, you need to ensure that these terms are strategically placed.
Here are some quick tips for implementing long-tail keywords into your content:
- Determine which topics you want to cover
- Conduct some research by using a keyword research tool like Moz or Wordstream
- Identify which long-tail keywords are best suited for your topics. Make sure that they have a high search volume, high search intent, and low competition/CPC
- Produce relevant content that answers your target audiences’ queries
2. Add keywords in the alt text section for your images
Alternative text is basically a short description of an image. It’s an important factor that Google uses to rank your website. In fact, nearly 31% of Google SERPS show images and that’s going to keep growing over time. This is a potential significant source of organic traffic for your site.
Alt text is vital in three ways:
- Context: It’s an alternative source of providing context to your users. For example, if an image cannot load on a page, a visitor can simply read the alt text
- Accessibility: Alt text is read aloud to a reader who is visually impaired
- User Experience: This is helpful for users who have low-bandwidth, disabilities, or any other issues
- SEO: Google crawlers use alt text to help it index an image properly
Some image alt text best practices:
- Describe your image and be specific. Use the subject and context as guidance
- Add context that’s relevant to the topic. For example, if the picture features a stock image of a woman typing on a computer, then include a description like this: “Woman learning more about SEO on laptop”
- Keep your alt text to less than 125 characters. Screen-reading tools often stop reading alt text at this point
- Jump right into the image’s description. Avoid starting the alt text with sentences like “picture of…” or “image of…”
- Use your keywords, but do so sparingly. Only include your article’s target keywords if it makes sense for your alt text. NOTE: Don’t cram every keyword into every single image’s alt text
- Ensure that you don’t have any spelling errors. Misspelled words can hurt your user’s experience and confuse search engine crawlers
- For further guidance on when to add alt text, check out this decision tree
3. Use your keywords in titles
By incorporating your keywords in your titles, you’ll enable Google to suggest content that satisfies the search intent of your target audience. However, though 36% of SEO experts believe that titles are important, it doesn’t mean that you’ll need to force keywords in.
Keep your user’s experience and Google recommendations in mind before deciding where your keywords will go. Remember that keyword stuffing should be at ALL costs.
Tips for implementing keywords in titles:
- Select the right target keyword for your title
- Remember to include action words like learn, discover, read, try, buy, download, etc.
- Plug your keyword into a keyword research tool to find other variations. Then drop them and other secondary keywords into your title
- Use these variations as often as you can. The best rule of thumb is to aim for 40% of your titles
4. Craft a great user experience
While having strategically placed keywords and content are critical to your overall Google SEO strategy, you also need to craft a great experience from your users. Consider how you’ll need to lead their journey from the moment they land on your website to the moment they exit their browser.
Google measures your website’s ranking through many factors; a major one being the time spent on a page. If visitors are bouncing from your page seconds after arriving, then it lets Google know that your content isn’t the one that they’re looking for. This will greatly impact your bounce rate.
One big factor to take into account is also your page load speed. If it’s slower than 3 seconds, the probability of bounce increases by 32%. After analyzing over 5 million desktop and mobile pages, Backlinko discovered that the average time it takes for a web page to fully load was 10.3 seconds on desktop and 27.3 seconds on mobile.
Tips for creating awesome UX:
- Aim to optimize your website’s load speed. One way that you can quickly analyze your website’s performance is by using tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights, Pingdom, or GTMetrix. These tools can help you identify potential issues through thorough metrics like the waterfall chart, web vitals, and more
- A surefire way to improve load time is to reduce image sizes. Try to upload images that are in .webp format
- Install a heatmap tool on your website to see the areas your users are spending time on. This will help you recognize which sections need tweaking and which areas are doing well
- Utilize the inverted triangle method when creating your blog content. This is an efficient method of writing successful on-page SEO
- Ensure that your content is easy to read and navigate, especially if it includes a lot of content. You can break them up by using title hierarchy, graphs, table of contents, or shorter paragraph
- Clean up any additional “fat” like distracting, irrelevant images or inconsistent fonts
5. Don't forget to include backlinking
42% of SEO experts spend equal time building both internal and external links for their blog content. More than 80% of these experts also attest to providing each blog post with at least 2-5 internal links.
It’s no surprise that SEO experts fully support the practice of internal and external links. Internal links help increase the time spent on your site, which, in turn, plays a significant part in improving your SERPs ranking.
Tips for backlinking:
- Link relevant content to the points/topics you’re referring to in your blog
- Use CTAs that sound natural to each users to interact with these links
- Avoid boring or vague CTAs. The more descriptive your anchor texts are, the better it helps Google index your page
- Always ensure that the most important pages on your website are easy to access and will open to a new window
- NOTE: Make sure that your backlinks aren’t bad ones. Google’s latest algorithm update targets and devalues bad backlinks, which can affect your ranking. The best way to avoid this issue is to verify whether these sites are trustworthy and authoritative
6. Concentrate on “Top of the Funnel” keywords
When you leverage keyword phrases that immediately grab the attention of your prospective clients, you’ll enable visitors to engage with your content and site more. Through this tactic, you’ll reach a larger audience and draw in more users on your site/page.
Tips for top of the funnel keywords:
- Create a couple “Top of the Funnel” buyer personas. Then, leverage these personas as a guideline for finding the right query matches.
- Try to look for terms with higher search volume and lower competition
- Craft a well-thought out buyer’s journey to help convert your website traffic into MQLs or SQLs
7. Increase your E.A.T score
E.A.T stands for expertise, authority, and trust. This score plays a big part in helping Google determine your page’s quality. Make sure that your site is reputable, trustworthy, and credible because Google is more likely to evaluate what is being said about you. If your reputation is positive, it’s going to be beneficial for your business, since it’s impacted by the E.A.T score.
Tips to increase your E.A.T score:
- Write content that’s strategically created for thought-leadership
- Speak directly and collaborate with industry leaders and subject matter experts to keep your finger on the pulse
- Look for trends and where the industry might be headed towards in the next 5-10 years
- Identify topics that you have the ability, expertise, and resources to address and solve
- Set up alerts to help you stay up-to-date on the latest news, events, trends, etc. that affect your industry. Be one of the first to address these topics with valuable insights and data
- NOTE: Ensure that your content is correctly backed by data
8. Remember to avoid keyword stuffing
Keyword stuffing is the act of stuffing as many keywords into one content piece as much as possible. Many think that this will ideally help them rank better on SERPs. However, that is not true.
If you keyword stuff your content to the brim, your page will be flagged as spam by Google crawlers. You definitely don’t want that because it will negatively impact your score and ranking. The easiest way to avoid this is to keep your keyword density to 1-2%.
The bottom line
As often as Google’s algorithm and SEO changes, relevant, high-quality content will always be a solid foundation to build on. By implementing my 8 effective SEO tips, you’ll be able to succeed in your Google SEO strategy for 2022.
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