Everyone knows you have to spend money to make money. Investing in pay-per-click ads? Banner ads? Social media campaigns? They can work wonders for just about any brand.
But the problem with ads is they’re a short-term solution to a long-term problem.
Sure, they can help you get more eyes on your latest product launch or fill up seats for your upcoming webinar. But can they also help you build a loyal community? Can they boost your site’s rankings or increase your domain authority in the long term?
The answer is usually no.
The key to experiencing long-term ranking success is to focus on increasing organic traffic and making use of multiple traffic sources. And the way to do that is by mastering organic SEO.
In this article, we’re going to share seven best practices you can start using right away to boost your organic traffic in 2022.
Think of your blog as the foundation of your organic SEO efforts. It’s the place on the web that catalogs your blog posts, houses your keywords, and connects searchers to your brand.
Since your blog is your SEO foundation, mastering content planning is a must.
This means mastering everything from using the right SEO tool for topic planning to hiring the right team to help you produce content.
To master the content planning process, focus on the following:
- Use effective tools like MarketMuse and SEMRush to plan topics and keywords
- Make a list of all of the topics and target keywords you’ll cover on your blog for the next month
- Have your account manager divvy up topics and keywords and assign them to expert SEO writers
- Have your editors look over and copy edit every piece of content your writers turn in
- Ask your quality control specialists to double-check that all content is valuable and engaging
- Post your content or schedule it to post in the future
- Rinse and repeat for the next month
Topic clusters are clusters of content that relate to an overarching theme or topic. With topic clusters, there’s usually the main page called a “parent page” and subpages called “child pages.” The parent page covers overarching themes and links to child pages that have more specific content.
Take a look at this cluster page on French language tutors as a prime example.
The parent page here is “Learn French Online.”
(Image Source: preply.com)
Its linked child pages include French grammar blog posts, tutoring resources, and beginner guides.
(Image Source: preply.com)
Google’s algorithm favors topic clusters because they help searchers go in-depth about a topic they’re interested in. So, if a searcher is dying to learn everything they can about chocolate tortes, Google will happily share your collection of chocolate torte posts.
To make the most out of topic clusters, add topic cluster planning as part of the second step in your content planning process.
You have your list of target keywords and semantic keywords ready to go. Now what?
Here are some quick dos and don’ts to keep in mind when using keywords:
Instead of stuffing sections with countless keywords, focus on embedding keywords so they naturally fit into the body of the text.
Headings and subheadings give content structure, but did you know they also carry a lot of weight with Google?
Google pays attention to the words you use in headings because they’re clues that explain your page’s main topics. By embedding keywords in your headings as a part of your content strategy, Google can better understand what your content is about and pass it along to searchers who need it.
Take a look at this programs review of first time home buyer loan Illinois for inspiration:
(Image Source: thehomeloanexpert.com)
Meta titles, meta descriptions, and alt text are supposed to be concise explanations of your web page’s content.
Embedding keywords into your meta titles, meta descriptions, and alt text is a simple way to show Google what searchers can expect to learn from your content.
Important Note: Most professional web admins use a flowchart checklist to double-check their web content before publishing. This ensures they’ve adhered to the dos and don’ts of keywording. The argument is that it is possible to fall foul of specific keyword rules in your content without even realizing it. But with a flowchart checklist guiding you, you can quickly sense when you’re off track. Make sure you, too, use a flowchart maker to create a relevant keyword checklist for all your web content.
With 15 billion mobile devices operating worldwide, it’s absolutely imperative to design your pages for mobile use, first. Hiring a dedicated mobile app development team that can take over the entire development process and do it all in the most cost-effective way can help you do this.
You can have the fastest, most beautiful, and most optimized website on the planet — but if it’s not designed for mobile, say goodbye to organic traffic.
A simple way to make sure your site is in optimal health for mobile is to run it through a mobile-friendly test.
Similar to topic clusters, internal links help searchers go more in-depth about a topic they’re interested in.
You can take advantage of internal links by embedding them into your content where they naturally make sense.
When embedding internal links, choose anchor text that’s close to the keywords you're targeting for that page. For instance, if you’re targeting “purse collection” and “watch collection,” use variations, such as “collection of purses” and “watch sets.”
We’ve shown you how to increase organic traffic using your own pages, but did you know other sites can boost your rankings, too?
When other sites link to your content or feature you as a guest blogger, they’re creating search-friendly “backlinks” to your website.
The more quality backlinks you have, the more Google thinks you’re an expert. The more expertise Google thinks you have, the higher your pages will rank.
You can even collaborate with other websites in the same niche as yours for exchanging backlinks as well as guest posts. You can find these sites by joining a slack community for link building.
Google uses Featured Snippets to quickly display information searchers are looking for at the top of the search results, like this:
(Image Source: Google)
Aiming for Featured Snippets is an effective way to rank high and improve your site’s domain authority.
Ads are a short-term solution to a long-term problem. They may be able to give you quick results now, but they have no bearing on long-term SEO success.
The key to long-term SEO success is focusing on boosting organic traffic.
To give your pages an SEO boost, use these seven best practices. And for more marketing and SEO juiciness, check out our blog.