If your website didn’t rank as you’d hoped it would in 2017, then it’s time to start increasing your traffic and make 2018 count! How? For starters, you need to realize that the SEO game is always changing. Search engine optimization techniques that worked five years ago aren’t going to work today.
Ultimately, there’s more to improving your website traffic than simply creating better content. There are multiple techniques you can utilize to improve your rankings, and the more methods you use, the greater your chances for success. With that in mind, here are 6 fundamental SEO tips to help your website rank in 2018.
Find out What Your Users Want
Focus on what your target customers want. Once you know this, you can develop content that draws them in. As New York Times best-selling author, successful marketer and entrepreneur, Neil Patel, points out, don’t view Google as an advertising company; it’s a big data company. One of the smart tips from Neil Patel is to think of yourself as a big data company, too. Just as Google collects data from users to build a stronger search engine, you need to gather data from your customers to build a stronger brand that will attract more of them. The opinions of your users count.
Start Title Tag and Your Target Keyword
Your title tag is the most important on-page SEO factor according to Brian Dean, an internationally recognized SEO expert and founder of SEO training and link building strategies blog, Backlinko. Generally speaking, the closer your focus keyword (the keyword you want to rank for) is to the start of the title tag, the more likely the search engines will take notice. While you don’t always need to start your title tag with your targeted keyword, if you are hoping to rank for it, Dean says it’s always a good idea to put it as close to the beginning as possible.
Ensure You Have a Mobile-Friendly Site
With more and more consumers using and relying on mobile with each passing year, it is now more important than ever that you make sure your website not only looks good on mobile devices but performs well on them, too. According to a report from Hitwise, in the U.S. alone, mobile search makes up about 58% of total search query volume. Plus, there are many advantages to having a mobile website beyond SEO ranking, including mobile monetization. Companies like Appnext can help you create mobile website monetization with context to perfectly match content your users are exploring, increasing the quality of content and user engagement.
The Longer the Content the Better
If your written content is only 300 words, Google probably doesn’t know you exist. According to an in-depth analysis conducted by Backlinko, after analyzing 1 million Google search results, they found that the average first page result was just shy of 2,000 words. In fact, the top five search results each had an average content length of over 1,900 words. Hence, longer content can help you rank better for the keyword you’re targeting. Try to make your written content 1000+ words of quality, useful content.
Add Social Sharing Buttons
While this might not play a direct role in your SEO rankings, social sharing buttons can still drive more traffic to your page. The more people see your content, the more likely someone is to link to you. According to a study from BrightEdge, social sharing can be boosted by as much as 700% with prominent social sharing buttons.
Research Your Competitors
Find out what keywords your competitors are using and use these keywords to create better content. Check out their total online presence (e.g. social media, website, mobile website, sign-up for their newsletter) and study their marketing strategy. One of the best ways to rank better than your competitor is adopt their technique and make it better.