Everyone wants a cheat sheet to improve search engine optimization (SEO). For some website and blog owners, SEO ranking can seem like an elusive game with no clear rules for winning. But SEO is not as intimidating as it seems, and if you’re producing great content you’re probably on your way to improving your SEO rankings organically. What SEO factors will make the biggest difference in 2018? Here are the top 3 SEO ranking factors you should prioritize in the New Year:
1. Content is more important than ever
As search engines become more sophisticated at analyzing content, the quality of your content is what matters most of all. Gone are the days of filling up posts with keywords. Your SEO strategy should include writing meaningful, well-researched articles that provide value to your audience. If your content is just fluff, most search engines can see through that. So how can you increase your content quality? Become an expert or hire an expert in your field to write content, cite reputable sources, and get in-depth with your articles. Search engines are shifting their preference to long-form content, meaning the more information you provide the higher your ranking may be. Think about your audience and what they need from your page or post, and then provide that information in the most detailed, user-friendly way possible.
2. Add voice activation to your website or block
The future of the Internet seems to be headed toward voice activation. From your television to your smart home devices, many of us enjoy being able to search and command our technology without lifting a finger or pushing a button. If you want to be a part of this wave of the future, you can get started by adding artificial intelligence capabilities to your website or blog. Companies like Dialogflow allow you to easily integrate voice technology on existing pages. The simplest way to do this is by enabling a voice activated search function on your website or blog. This way, those who prefer using voice technology can easily access the content you already have. You can also add a chat bot if you think that would be helpful to your audience. Anything that keeps your audience on your website for a longer period of time will increase your SEO ranking.
3. Engaging your readers on your page
Beyond writing interesting content, you’ll want to engage your readers to take action on your website or blog. If they’re reading for a while or writing a comment on your page, that type of activity will increase your SEO ranking. This is because an engaged reader is seen as someone who finds value and validity in your content. Therefore, your page is given authority on the web. For example, the average “”dwell time”” for pages that are ranked in the top 10 Google results is over 3 minutes. You can engage your readers in several ways. Here are a few ideas that are easy to implement:
- Write long-form content that provides great information and takes time to read
- Have interactive content in the form of doing an activity, playing a game, or leaving a comment on your website or blog
- Embed videos on your pages or posts
The bottom line is that to increase your SEO ranking, you must product authentic, quality content. It’s no use trying to trick a search engine into thinking your content is great. If the real life human being behind the screen does not find value in your content, then it doesn’t matter what your SEO ranking is. Connect with your audience to drive results.