5 HELPFUL RESOURCES & 3 TAKEAWAYS TO AMP UP YOUR ON-PAGE SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a crucial component of your organization’s digital marketing strategy. In fact, it should be a crucial component of your overall growth strategy.
Like anything else in tech and marketing, the world of SEO is fast-paced, with developments, requirements, and things to think about as Google’s algorithm shifts and changes.
If you’re new to on-page SEO and how it works, here are three resources to get you up to speed:1. The Beginner’s Guide to SEO
2. The Ultimate Guide to SEO
3. HubSpot Academy’s Free SEO Certification Course
Now that you’re well on your way to becoming an SEO expert, here are some other resources to kick your game up a notch. Specifically, four blog posts, a webinar, and a podcast.
First up is “12 SEO Techniques to Increase Organic Traffic” from SEMrush. In it, they outline some important techniques to incorporate into your SEO strategy. Each one of these will eventually have a big impact on your SEO, but here are a few takeaways you can apply right away:
- Find your competitor’s best performing pages: Use this to (partially) inform your content strategy by determining which gaps you still need to fill on your website. While your content strategy shouldn’t be 100% based on your competitors (in fact, it should be based on your audience’s needs and desires), this can still be a great way to make sure you have your bases covered so you have a chance to stand out through your content.
- Optimize your organic CTR using PPC testing: This is a quick way to find out whether the keywords you’ve spent so much time researching will actually work. Set up some quick ad variations, and let them run for a couple weeks to get results faster than you would organically.
- Use supporting content to show topical expertise: The topic cluster strategy has been talked about for a few years now—and for good reason. Have a blog post that is doing particularly well? Write a few others surrounding that topic and make sure they all link to each other to increase your reach.
Next is “How to Earn Topical Authority in 2022 and Beyond” from Moz. Achieving topical authority is all about high-quality content that showcases your organization’s expertise. The more of this content you have on your site, the more likely you are to be a trusted source.
Moz’s post does a great job at covering a few simple ways you can build up your brand's authority, beginning with researching your topic. This critical step helps you build out an effective content strategy by helping you identify the common search terms people are typing around your topic in a quest to solve their problems. The blog also talks about the importance of the “People Also Ask” section of Google’S SERP, which can be a surefire way for planning content that answers questions your audience is actually asking.
Speaking of building authority, the third article we recommend is “The Ultimate SEO Guide to Rich Results” from Portent, which dives deep into Google’s various “snippets” incorporated into search results. These snippets (also called “rich results”) vary in form and shape, including cards that encapsulate information from various sites like so…
…to “Featured Snippets” that provide enhanced results, like this example from Portent’s article:
As noted in the Portent piece, structured data is the key to rich results like snippets, which is why it’s recommended that you understand the array of requirements Google has for structuring your data on its Search Gallery.
Rounding out the articles, there’s “Internal Links for SEO: Best Practices for 2022” from LinkAssistant, which boils down the perfect reasons for including internal links throughout your content. These reasons include:
- Building your site’s authority
- Encouraging people to stay longer on your site
- Improving your site’s architecture so search engines can quickly pull from it
Finally, for those who would rather listen than read, check out Search Off the Record, a podcast from members of the Google Search Team that regularly talks about the minutiae of SEO as well search-related projects the company is currently working on.
So, what are the takeaways from all this?
Obviously, there’s a lot to unpack from all the links above. But if we were trying to nutshell our learnings, here are the major takeaways:
1. Building authority is key
Content is the infrastructure of your SEO plan, which means the more informative — and in-depth — the content you produce, the more you’re likely to bolster your org’s position as an authority on your topics. Simply spamming your articles and blog posts with keywords is not enough to improve SEO for your site.
2. Consider humanity
It’s easy to think of Google Search as a sort of robot combing through trillions of bytes of online content. While this is true in many ways, you need to remember that it’s actual human beings that are typing in questions and words in search of an answer. The more you can tailor your content — and your SEO strategy — around incorporating how people are searching for your topics, the more likely they will be to see your content and, if you’ve taken the first takeaway above to heart, return for more of it.
3. SEO is constantly changing
The only thing that has remained unchanged about Google Search since its launch in 1998 is the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button. The aforementioned “snippets” are but the latest change to the site that can be utilized for improved SEO. Make sure to bookmark Google Search Central for the latest changes to the site’s algorithm, features, and SEO best practices.
If you want to learn more about how to generate the right leads, check out this free guide here.
This post was originally written by Ashley Hoffman on December 3, 2020. It was updated by Brad Steinbacher on June 17, 2022.