What Matters in SEO?
Many of us seem to get lost in the mounds of updates that Google produces every year. We practically have to be zoo keepers to keep track of all the updates such as Penguin, hummingbird and Panda. In essence SEO now is very similar to back in the day, just with a few extra tweaks here and there. This article would be a great read for someone that has a light grasp of what SEO is and perhaps just wants to reconfirm what matters in SEO now days.
Before we start our dessert lets finish our greens and do a quick recap on methods that helped us rank back in the day. You could basically conjure up any little site with a few words of brief description and get it to rank with a few authority backlinks from a dodgy network. Fill your site with keywords and as long as your site stayed online you could rank. Oh how the times have changed. Google has been wise to stay to its purpose which is to give its visitors great content that actually applies to what they are searching for.
Here is what matters in SEO now
The loading speed of your site.
Google has always said that they favor sites with fast loading speeds and has actually incorporated this ranking factor into their algorithm. This helps keep visitors happy by not having them wait for ages as your over sized images are busy loading. You can take advantage and make your site load faster by using certain plugins that you can install via your cms. You can host your site at a web host that has fast servers or dedicated servers.
Backlinks still matter
Many big tech companies have found through their research that building backlinks is still the number one ranking factor for Google Organic rankings. It is very important to gather your backlinks from many different urls or domains as collecting backlinks from one domain will not help your rankings. Rather find backlinks that point to your site from many different domains. These domains need to have authority and use your keyword or page domain in the context thus giving you the best link juice possible. This is really what matters in SEO.
Bounce rates affect your ranking
Have you ever gone through your Google analytics account to check how many visitors you had yesterday and find that you have a bounce rate indicator that was perhaps a high percentage? This percentage effects your organic ranking. For Google if they see that visitors are reaching your site and leaving quickly its perhaps a clear indication that you are not what they looking for or you have irrelevant content thus you get ranked a bit lower. This is easy to fix. Make sure your content is of a high quality and that your first few sentences draw visitors in this will keep them for longer periods of time on your site and reduce your bounce rate.
Long-Form Content works!
Its frustrating landing up on a page that has such little content on it that it really serves no purpose at all. Visitors will read interesting content no matter how long it is. Most pages that rank well have at least 1800 words of content on their relevant page. So don’t be scared to post a nice lengthy article about your chosen topic, it helps rank your website better.
In depth and focused content. Perhaps you have a site that covers a topic that you are a genius at and you know everything there is to know about that specific topic. Go ahead and write as much as you can. Leave nothing behind as you spread all your knowledge over the net on your webpage. Google loves it. The more you can focus on and write more in depth about your service, product or topic offering the better. Keep your content topically relevant though, don’t meander on about other topics, stay focused. So if your site is all about karate and you focusing on the history of karate then write on about the history and nothing else. It helps your rankings.
As a quick re-cap put out great content that is relevant, collect authority and relevant backlinks, speed up your site and write focused content. Follow the above mentioned points about what matters in SEO and you will soon be on your way to new ranking heights.