Over 5 million searches happen on Google every minute. With so much valuable potential site traffic to capture, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the best ways to organically grow your brand exposure. Even if your site content is desirable and relevant, if content editors don’t consider key SEO tactics, your site could go unnoticed. Want to avoid being overlooked by Google’s search engine? Consider these 8 key elements of SEO structure to ensure that your content can be easily found by users in search of your solutions and expertise.
Customizing Title Tags
Title tags are brief, informative lines of copy that describe the page content of the URL shown in search engine results, social media posts, and browser tabs. Titles should include unique information about the page, targeted to one specific keyword (more than one keyword can make the title confusing for end users and can negatively impact search rankings).
How long should the page title be?
The title tag should be between 50-60 characters to avoid getting cut off when displaying in search results. If you’re struggling to fit your titles within this character count limit, try to avoid using uppercase letters (which take up extra space), consider removing your brand name from the title, or use symbols wherever possible to save space (i.e., “&” instead of “and”).
Have more questions about SEO Optimization? See our blog here – SEO Breakdown: How Exactly Does It Work?
Adding Keywords to Secondary Headings
While the highest heading on the page (H1) is most important to SEO crawlers, the secondary page headings can greatly improve SEO rankings if they are also optimized to include targeted keywords. H2s and H3s often get overlooked in optimizing SEO for pages, so they provide a great opportunity for your site to stand out to crawlers.
How many keywords can you optimize for on a single page?
When pages focus on a single topic instead of many, they’re more likely to get higher rankings for that topic. With this in mind, a page should have two or three primary keywords that are variations of the main topic for that page. Four or more keywords will be too many to succinctly fit into the title and headings on the page.
Crafting Rich Content
SEO-optimized content should be oriented toward answering the questions that users are posing to search engines. This content should include terms that are meaningfully related to the main topic of the page, and the copy should have an easy level of readability for accessibility and improved user experience.
What reading level should I write my site content for?
To ensure readability, if you write content in Microsoft Word, you can use the spelling and grammar check tool to access Flesch tests. Your site content should ideally score a 7.0-8.0 on the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level scale, or between a 60-70 on the Flesch Reading Ease scale.
Specifying Internal Links with Anchor Text
When linking to other content on your site, ensure that the link text for CTAs is clear and incorporates target keywords or semantic terms, not just generic phrases like “Click Here” or “Learn More.” It is best practice to use verbs to indicate exactly what the user should expect to do when clicking the link.
Is it possible to have too many links leading to other pages on the site?
Having too many links could potentially make your page seem like spam, which can negatively affect rankings. From a user perspective, the journey and desired action on the page should be clear and not overwhelmed with choices. From an SEO perspective, links from authoritative sites (such as government sites, education sites, news sites, etc.) can help SEO rankings, but links from spammy sites can hurt rankings.
Validating E-A-T Standards
E-A-T, which stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness, is part of Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines. Some ways to signal that your site has these qualities (to improve your SEO rankings) include showing more about the authors of your content, citing your materials by linking out to high-quality sources, and updating your content regularly.
How often should I be updating my site content?
At least once a month, content editors should review past content to look for opportunities to improve SEO or remove outdated information. Monthly check-ins should suffice to ensure that previous content still aligns with current business goals and SEO targets. For new content, it’s best to aim to add blogs or thought leadership pieces on a weekly basis to show that your business stays relevant in your industry.
Describing Imagery with Alt Image Text
Meaningful imagery can often provide some of the most important information on web pages. Whether the page features infographics, graphs, or impactful visuals, this information isn’t accessible to SEO or visually impaired users unless content editors are diligent about adding alt text to imagery.
Are there character limits to the length of alt text?
While there are not hard character limits to alt text, it is generally recommended not to exceed 100 characters. If the meaning of the image cannot be conveyed within that limit, then the description should be spelled out in on-page content or image captions for the best user experience.
Answering “People Also Ask” Questions and FAQs
Great content will need to anticipate the next questions that a user might ask after their initial query. For the keywords that you’re targeting, be sure to take a look at the SERPs to get an understanding of what related questions people are asking. To address these FAQs, you can add the question itself directly as a heading in your page content and answer the question clearly with a dedicated paragraph or bulleted list below the heading.
Can I use other types of content to answer the FAQs or PAA questions?
Most often, PAA results are text-based, like you would see in a standard WYSIWYG component. However, they can also include tables, graphics, or videos if that content could prove useful to the Google searcher. As long as your content is clearly and concisely answering the question posed, it’s worth including on the page.
Implementing Valid Schema Markups
Schema Markups are code snippets placed on a web page that allow Google search engines to serve items like rich cards, rich snippets, and the knowledge panel on SERPs. While there’s no proven correlation to SEO ranking improvement, including schema markup elements will allow searchers to find relevant information from your site more quickly and in a more stylized format, compared to the basic title tag and meta description displayed in listings.
Are most of my competitors using Schema Markups?
About a third of Google’s search results use rich snippets, while less than a third of websites use schema markup. This means that there’s ample opportunity to get your site’s content to display in the user-centric stylized formatting on SERPs to earn more site traffic.
SEO strategy can take time to strategically plan and develop relevant content, but a digital agency like Bluetext that specializes in SEO can provide the guidance you need to improve your page rankings. Contact us to learn more about how we can take your SEO practices to the next level.