If you want your site to achieve high rankings on the search engines, you must stay current with the latest SEO techniques. By properly optimizing your website you can push your site up in the search engine’s page rankings which will ensure that your site is seen by more people.

Regardless of whether your site promotes face cream, replacement windows or the Intertops Casino Red gambling site, you must put a lot of effort and attention into how you build and maintain your site so that you can draw in more people.

Google, the search engine that’s most widely used worldwide, changes their algorithms regularly. Those algorithms are used to determine in which order sites are listed based on the keyword searched. For instance, if someone searches “goat’s cheese” and your site is properly optimized for that search term, your site will be listed further up the list. That makes it likely that more people who are searching for goat’s cheese will click on your site, enter and hopefully buy some goat’s cheese.

The problem with the search engine algorithms is that some of the SEO techniques that could have moved your site up the list even a few months ago are no longer relevant while new algorithms have emerged which necessitate using new techniques.

Things that you might have done to promote your site just a short while ago may not work now – in fact, some of those techniques may now be viewed in Google’s eyes as “hacks” and you can be penalized for including those techniques in your site.

What can you do to better promote your website in 2020

User Experience

Google expects that website builders will create a website that makes the user experience easy, efficient and effective. If a user searches for “earthenware dishes” and the website, which is optimized for earthenware dishes, doesn’t give the searcher a user experience with easy navigation and clear information, Google won’t leave that site at the top of the list for earthenware dishes for very long.

One way that Google determines whether the site provides the user with the information that s/he needs is by reviewing the amount of time that users spend on the page.  If the bounce rate – the number of seconds and minutes that users stay on the site – is consistently high, that means that users are leaving the site within a few seconds because they aren’t engaged.

Google wants to deliver the best possible results to searchers so it promotes sites with strong engagement by pushing those sites up higher on the search engine results page.

If your bounce rate is high, it’s not a simple matter to get it down. But it can be done. You have to format your content so that your content is optimized for readability. Some of the ways that you can do this include

  • In general, keep sentences short but here and there, mix them up with longer sentences
  • Keep paragraphs short.  Three to four sentences per paragraph is a good length for internet readers
  • Use sub-headers and bullet points to make the piece more readable. The sub-headers guide the reader down the page so you retain his/her interest and keep him/her on the site for longer. The bullet points break up the content which makes it easier to read.
  • Mix up text with images, white space, infographs, videos and other visual imagery that prevents the site visitor from being overwhelmed with text
  • Make sure that the content on your page is relevant to your site. If Google sees that your site has content that is not appropriate to the focus of the site, or includes too much content that doesn’t relate to the site’s keywords, they’ll penalize the site by pushing it back down the page ranking.
  • Pique interest to keep readers scrolling down. End sentences with a teaser plus a colon that will make them want to read on – “You might be wondering:”, “it gets better,”, Here’s the Deal,” ”The answer is:”, etc.

To establish your site’s authority, create outward-bound links (links to other sites, especially authoritative sites such as .org, .info and .gov) and internal links that link your website’s pages internally. For instance, if you’re writing about your company’s expertise in grinding the best gourmet coffee you could write about the locale from where your coffee comes and then link to an authoritative site about that country’s region.

Further on, when you describe the different types of coffee that your company sells, you should have separate links to different webpages within your site, one separate page for each of the coffee brands that you’re selling.

You should also solicit inward-bound links from other websites, especially from websites that are somehow connected to what you’re selling. Ask a tea website whether they’d be willing to link to you from their site in exchange for you linking to their website. Each of you could write, on your websites, “for more hot drink ideas…..” and then add the other link. That way, neither site would be adding a link that isn’t connected in some way to its own site.

Video Content

It’s more important than ever in 2020 to add video content to your site. Numerous studies have shown that web sites that contain videos are more successful at keeping people on the pages for longer periods of time. Google notices if there are videos and that indicates to Google that the content on the site is accurate, valid and helpful to the searcher.

Many sites create how-to videos to help their customers. All it takes to make a YouTube is a cell phone camera and a nice manner. For your coffee website, you might want to demonstrate different kinds of brewing techniques or show some satisfied customers giving testimonials about how much they like your coffee. If you’re selling electronics, add some tutorials to give customers information about how easy it is to use the product, clean it, fold it and store it, etc.

Keep in mind that one goal of your video is to get the video shared. The most widely shared videos are those that educate, provide solutions and entertain. You don’t have to do a song and a dance but remember that the more engaging the video, the more likely you are to retain your site visitors and even have them share your video to others.

Some important steps to take as you are adding video content to your site:

  • Make sure that your goals for creating the video content are clear. Look at your competition and think about how you will get your video content noticed, both on your own site and through other channels that will redirect people back to your site
  • Be clear about what you want to accomplish. Do you want to entertain? Inform? Assist? Your video should reflect your goals
  • Make sure that your video is optimized for mobile. Most web surfers use mobile today, at least part of the time. Be sure that your content can be viewed well on mobile.
  • Add your meta title, meta description and meta keywords to your video so that people can find it in a search
  • Share the video whenever and wherever possible. Try to get people to like and comment on the video which will go a long way to keeping it in the public eye.

SEO is more important in 2020 than ever. There are many SEO techniques. Start with these three basic techniques to give your site a good start in the push for a high spot in the search engine results.

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