Everyone knows that you need to produce quality content to drive traffic to your site and, ultimately to your business.
However, if that content is not optimized correctly, it will never rank high enough to be found by your potential customers.
That means you put all that work into creating the ultimate content piece for nothing.
The great news is that you can easily optimize any piece of content you have produced by following this guide.
For many people, having to go back through the content they just wrote and ensure it is optimized is a lot of work.
Even worse is going back through all the old work you have published and trying to ensure it is optimized with the latest techniques.
It is a real challenge.
When you use this simple guideline to optimize your content, it will feel like a breeze.
Having a set standard for how you work will make it much easier.
Learn more about our on-page SEO service.
In the past, all you needed to do to get traffic to your site was to produce fresh content regularly.
Many companies set their goals for a 500-word piece daily, and Google responds by ranking your site higher in search because of all the content you produce.
But those days are long over.
It did not take long for Google to realize that content with little value was flooding the Internet and that many of these pieces being published offered no real value.
The articles were keyword-stuffed and worthless.
For Google to dominate the search engine industry, it realized that it needed to provide relevant, knowledgeable, and trustworthy results.
Google needed to create the ultimate user experience. And that is what they did.
They have continued to upgrade these requirements over the years, and now, if you want to rank in their search engine, you need to provide quality content that offers the end-user the best experience.
That’s where optimization comes in.
Every piece of content you publish needs to be optimized for Google bots.
It is easier than it sounds.
Use the following guide to optimize your content and boost your rankings on Google.
What is even more astounding is that you can use this process on your old content as well, making it fresh and new, and Google will index and rank your latest version.
The easiest way to optimize your content is to have a set process to follow. When you follow each step, you know that every area of your content has been checked and optimized before you publish.
Use this guideline to create your process for optimizing your content.
No matter how many changes there are to the Google ranking algorithms, keywords and how they are used will always be an essential part of your content marketing.
I will assume that you already know the importance of keyword research. Check Google’s Keyword Planner or Moz’s Keyword Explorer to find the keywords that will reach your ideal customers.
Remember to include supporting phrases, and keywords with lower search volume but still add value to the piece. These related keywords and terms will help your content reach more people.
Create a list of your top money phrases and some supporting phrases. (cluster / supporting content)
If your main keyword is Miami Car Accident Lawyer, instead of continuing to use the term Miami Car Accident Lawyer over and over again, you should also use:
Car accident attorney in Miami
Miami auto accident law firm
Miami car crash lawyer
Miami personal injury lawyer
You get the point. Use the main term as your focus but incorporate other similar terms throughout your text to help Google understand your content.
Don’t just shove in the keywords every other sentence.
Write with a purpose – to inform and to entertain.
When creating content, the last thing you are thinking about is the URL. After all, who thinks about a URL other than a search engine bot?
The truth is many people read the URL for a site they are going to click on. It is a habit many people got into when there was an exceptional number of fake sites ranking high in search.
Now, people look at the URL to see where the link will take them. Which URL below are you most likely to click on?
Google best practices state that a URL extension should only have three words. The search engine bots stop “paying attention” after five words.
For the best optimization, keep it short and use your main keyword in the URL.
Optimizing your title tag is a Must-Do for any content creation. You want to draw attention to your content while ensuring the search bots find the title relevant.
What are the tricks to writing the perfect title tag?
1. Make sure that it contains the main keyword
2. Give a quick description of the content
3. Add a date if possible
<title>What You Need To Know After An Accident</title>
A better title would be…
<title>Miami Car Accident Lawyer | Tips For Injury Victims In 2022</title>
In the second example, you have incorporated your main keyword of “Miami Car Accident Lawyer,” given a brief description of what the content will contain – tips, and included a date so that visitors know the information is current.
The second example will have a much better click-through rate (CTR).
You will want to keep your title tag to 60 characters or less.
Even though some titles may be longer, it is essential to remember that the search engine will only see the first 60 characters, including spaces.
Aim to keep your title tag within this range so potential viewers can see the title.
Most people have long forgotten about the meta description because Google stated several years ago it no longer uses this information to help with ranking.
That does not mean that you should just forget about them.
Why? Isn’t that just extra work if it isn’t helping with the ranking?
Not. They play a massive role in increasing your CTR.
An optimized meta description will encourage people to stop and read your content and encourage more people to click on your link.
The meta description is shown right under your title tag.
It gives the reader a chance to see what your content contains, and if you can entice the reader, you have generated a visit to your site.
Of course, more visits to your site not only help your business but also helps your ranking. So, meta descriptions do help your ranking, just in a roundabout way.
Meta descriptions are limited to 160 characters, including spaces, so make sure that you limit your description to this number. Anything longer will be cut off, and you could lose a person’s interest if they can’t finish the sentence.
<meta name=”description” content=”Injured in a car accident? A Miami car accident lawyer shares step-by-step what you need to do to maximize your settlement in 2022.”>
This description tells the readers what the content contains, the authority who created it (your main keyword), and that the information is current.
Take a minute and run a Google search on a topic of your choice. When the search results appear, scan the listings and decide which one you will click on.
Like most people, you’ll choose the first listing or the one with the most recent timestamp.
Why? Because we are all consumers of information, and we want the latest info.
If a listing has no timestamp and the next one has a timestamp with a relatively recent date, most people will automatically click on the one with the date.
Take advantage of this!
If adding something as simple as a timestamp can draw viewers, then it is worth the effort.
In many cases, the content will automatically be given a timestamp when it is published. However, if you use a tool like Wordpress, you can use an add-on, “WP Last Updated Date,” to automatically generate a timestamp for your content.
The only pages you do not want to have timestamped are your contact or about us pages. Having a too-current date on there could make your site look too new for some consumers.
Timestamps do not affect site ranking, but they do have a psychological effect on the searcher. So, take advantage of this need to have the newest information available and date your material.
The most recent data to be released on mobile searches was in 2019, showing that nearly 65 percent of all searches conducted on the Internet now were made from mobile devices. The statistics anticipated this rate to continue to grow.
Google responded to this astonishing number by changing its algorithm to rank sites higher that were mobile-friendly or designed for mobile browsing first. Sites that were not optimized for mobile devices would fall dramatically in rank.
Thankfully, most sites have already converted over to being mobile-friendly. But it doesn’t hurt to take a minute and review your site so that it looks amazing on a mobile device.
What is the right length for a content piece?
In the distant past, it was 1,500 words. Then it was determined that that was too long, and the average post became 400 words.
Google ranks content based on the information it provides and if it meets the visitor’s intent.
You just need to produce and publish better content than your competitors.
To do this, you may have to create a longer piece, 1200 or more words, to address a topic in-depth and provide the viewer with the necessary information.
But, for a News topic or quick announcement, the content may be much shorter and to the point, with 250-300 words.
Instead of worrying about length, you need to worry about quality.
Ensure that the content you produce meets a need, and the length will not matter.
Visual information is a fantastic tool that every Internet marketer must use.
It has been shown that having the right images, infographics, and videos on your site will increase the time a visitor stays on your page.
There is an 80 percent increase in how long someone will stay on your site when they see that a video is available.
Teachers have been saying for years that children learn more when they can visualize the topic.
The same applies to the Internet. If a person can see something in action, they will stay on the site and learn from the images and videos.
And, increased page time will also increase your ranking.
When you use videos and images, make sure that they:
The only other thing to remember is that your images and videos should be relevant to the content.
Use this free image compressor to keep your image files small, so your pages don’t get bogged down.
The first and perhaps most important thing to remember about your targeted keyword is to use it within the first 25 words of your content.
This will help your page rank higher in search because it helps identify the piece’s content and how it will meet the searcher’s intent.
The next thing to remember is that you should use your targeted and other keywords naturally. Don’t stuff them into sentences just to have a lot of your keywords on the page. If you have that targeted keyword in your first 25 words, all the rest is easy.
You want a page that sounds intelligent, informational, and engaging.
If people continually have to stop when they are reading to try to make sense of the context of the sentence because of the awkward keywords, they will move to another page.
H tags are “header” tags. They’re titles and subtitles of your piece, just like you’d see in a magazine.
Readers scan the article headers to see if the article is worth their time, so it’s essential to get them right, and they’re ultra-powerful Google ranking factors.
Your H1 tag is the main heading in your article and the most influential ranking factor on your page aside from the title.
You should only have one H1 tag per page.
Keep your H tags brief. The highest-ranking pages use the main keyword by itself in the H1 tag.
If you’re using WordPress as your CMS, the “enter title here” field will automatically become your H1 tag on your page, but be sure to check this using the MOZ tool.
If you prefer, you can select to manually add your H1 tags in your content html editor.
<h1>Miami Car Accident Lawyer</h1>
H2 titles are also significant subtitles within your content. The <h2> tag is a little smaller, just like the subtitles in a magazine.
You want to ensure that your main keyword is included in at least one of your H2 tags. Then, try using variations of your keyword in the other H2 tags throughout the content.
Use synonyms and other supporting and related terms that you found in your keyword research.
H3s are smaller than H2 tags and are used for subheadings under the H2 topics.
H tags go all the way to H6, but most articles do not require smaller than H3.
One way of thinking of internal links is like wiring up the electrical outlets of your house. Just like you need power in every room in your house, you need power sent to every page of your website.
Plus, giving your visitor a link to more related information on your website is a great way to enhance their experience and keep them on your website for a longer period.
Not only will having these internal links enhance user experience, but they will also give the search engine bots a way to flow through your information.
Google likes to “see” that there is more information related to your content and that it’s easy to get to.
The internal links will also boost visits to the other pages within the site, raising the overall authority of your website.
In the past, many content creators were reluctant to link out to other sites. It seemed like the outbound links would drive visitors away.
The truth is, outbound links significantly increase your site’s authority because it shows that you’re focused on providing the best experience for your readers – even if it means losing them.
You’ll win some big points for this.
Be smart and back up your content by connecting to another site and providing factual data. This boosts your site’s credibility in Google’s eyes.
If you are writing about car accident statistics on your site for a car accident attorney, linking to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration site to show those statistics proves the authenticity of your information.
Having outbound links can also expand how Google “sees” the intent of your site.
Excellent use of relevant outbound links can show Google that your site is providing more important information than your competition, which will help you in the SERPs.
Remember: visit your outbound links every so often to ensure the links are still good. Broken links in the future can negatively impact your rankings.
Social media share buttons have nothing to do with your search engine rankings. You can have them on your page or not, and Google will not care.
However, if you want to make it easy for people to share your information, having these buttons available is necessary.
People love to share interesting information. Make sure you give them a way to share your content that does not require much effort.
Gone are the days of people copying a link and then writing an email to share that link.
They want to click that share button and move on.
Remember, everything that is done on the Internet is “in the moment,” and you need to make sure that you can meet this need.
Page speed is now a major Google ranking factor. Slow page load times will kill your ranking and conversion.
Google wants to promote websites that provide the best information, FAST.
What does that mean? It means that your page must load in less than 1 second. 700ms is quick and gets the nod from old man Google.
There are too many page load time factors to list here, but in a nutshell: hosting quality, theme code, image file type/size, and speed plugins need to be sorted out.
You use tools, including Google’s PageSpeed insights and GTmetrix, to see your page speed. These tools will show what is causing your site to drag and what needs to be addressed.
example – image
As you can see, optimizing your page is not as difficult as you may have thought.
Following a simple plan to take advantage of these easy optimization tips will help you create the best content.
Once you get your plans in place and start creating content using these steps, make time to go back and optimize your older content.
Then you will end up with a site optimized for success.
Keep reading: 8 Tips For Creating Great Meta Descriptions