How to Improve Your Google Ranking
How do your customers find you? Chances are you are being discovered online. In the twenty-first century we rely on the internet for all of our wishes, needs and desires. Overall, 73% of Americans say they use the web on a daily basis. It’s clear how heavily society relies on the web, especially Google, for information. As a result, everyone wants more visibility on the web. It is important to remember that ranking higher on Google is more of a marathon than a sprint. It takes time and consistency, but we have the secret on how to start climbing the ranks on Google.
As a business owner you have sacrificed blood, sweat and tears to build your business. If potential customers can’t find you, the sacrifice feels useless. Customers rely on the internet to research and educate themselves about future purchases. In fact, 89% of US internet users search online before they make a purchase, even when the purchase is ultimately made at a local business. Before we tell you how to improve your Google ranking, let’s familiarize ourselves with Google’s algorithm.
Basics of the Algorithm
We could give you a list of SEO actions that will improve your Google ranking, but we want you to understand the way Google’s algorithm works first. Having a deeper understanding of Google will set you up for long term success, so let’s dive in. When someone searches on Google, the algorithm does the work for them by searching out web pages that contain keywords used in the search. The algorithm then assigns a rank to each page based off of a number of factors. One of those factors is how often the keyword phrase is used throughout the page. Google uses all this information as reference when a Google search is made. This may sound like a simple process, but keep in mind Google is processing trillions of searches every year. It is important you are consistent in your efforts to rank at the top because Google is always making changes to its algorithm. Ultimately, if there was a simple way to rank in first position without penalties for shortcuts, everyone would do it. The whole purpose of Google’s algorithm is to show only the best results. Anyone could get to the top with minimal effort if Google didn’t make it a complex system. Luckily for you, we have simple steps that will help you rise in your Google ranking.
Step #1: Evaluate your Current Google Ranking
It is always important to take a look at your current business strategies and rankings before implementing a new plan. It gives you the opportunity to recognize where you are currently ranking. Once you can see where you are ranking, you will be able to evaluate how much work needs to be done.
Step #2: Focus Keywords
The first tip that will get you ranking higher on Google is focusing on your keywords. Using the right keywords is the foundation to ranking for SEO. As far as keywords go, more is not always better. It sounds tempting to cram a bunch of keywords onto your page, but that isn’t the best strategy. You want your keywords to be very intentional. When researching keywords you need to have a good understanding of your audience search intentions. If you need help in finding useful keywords, use websites like Google Keyword Planner or Ubersuggest to see what keywords your audience is using, their search volume, and other related keyword searches. It is always best to think like your audience when creating quality keywords. After you have a solid list of keywords, you can begin optimizing your website and online pages to guarantee you rank high for the chosen keywords.
Step #3: Check Site Safety
Google cares about safety. It is important that customers are visiting a secure site. A key step in securing a website is buying and setting up an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate. It will provide your website with protection from scams, breach of data, and a lot of other threats. Essentially, it builds a secure environment for both site owners and visitors. Not having a SSL certificate may deter people from visiting your website. A warning message may be displayed on your site telling customers your site is not secure, which may result in customers looking elsewhere for services.
Step #4: Improve Site Usability
It is vital you have an appealing, simple and user friendly website. Having good website usability will result in people staying on your site longer. As a result, this tells Google that you are credible. When Google likes your site, they move you up the ranking ladder which pushes towards that #1 spot. Good site usability ensures customers are directed towards the right products and services, which in turn will increase your conversion rates.
Step #5: Improve Site Speed
We live in a fast paced world, which means that your website needs to be speedy. Site speed not only affects your ranking with Google, but your potential profits. You need to ensure your site speeds are fast, so people don’t exit your site prematurely. If you need help in improving your site speed, you can follow these quick tips. You have to have a website that provides a quick, user friendly experience on all browsers to climb the rankings.
Step #6: Blog
Having a blog keeps your website new and current. Google likes to see that you are relevant and will boost your rankings. If you need help getting started, you can read our article, How to Start a Good Blog. As stated previously, having people on your website longer boosts your rankings and a blog will do just that. A blog gives you the opportunity to target more specific keywords. Unique keywords will allow you to rank higher because you have less competition. Online presence is key for your business and a blog will help strengthen it.
Step #7: Serve Quality Content
Quality content is a vital part of any marketing strategy. Having useful and relevant content provides businesses with organic growth, audience retention, and of course increased Google rankings. If the content provided is useful then people will read and interact with it. Quality content proves to customers that you are knowledgeable in your expertise. It is important to remember that you should create content that your customer WANTS to read. Research what people are searching for and turn those questions into blog posts. If you are creating content centered around keywords that are commonly searched on Google, you are setting yourself up for success in moving your way up the rankings.
Step #8: Build Quality Links
Last but not least, backlinks. Backlinks are one of the main ranking factors that Google utilizes. If another trustworthy site links back to yours, it tells the Google algorithm that your site is trustworthy too. As a result, Google will consider this when determining what sites to rank high for a particular query.
The Skyscraper Technique is an effective way of getting quality backlinks. It works like this:
- Look for high-performing articles written by the experts in your niche.
- Ask yourself how you can improve that article. Maybe you can make it longer, turn it into a compelling infographic or find an interesting angle.
- Create the article and publish it on your website.
- Reach out to the webmaster or blogger and let them know that you have a different take on an article they’ve published. Don’t ask for a backlink specifically. If the content is good, they will most likely link back to you.
Rank Higher Now
The key to unlocking a higher Google ranking, without using shortcuts or getting penalties, is being memorable, helpful and consistent. Remember to use keywords intentionally and create quality content with those same keywords. Google rankings are ever evolving and complex, so if you need help from experts, Lift Local can help. We specialize in helping you improve your Google ranking and will do all the heavy lifting. We know search engines can be confusing, but we’re confident our formula increases traffic, visibility and local SEO. If you are interested in improving your online presence, fill out this form