You don’t have to be an expert to improve the search engine optimization (SEO) of your website. Many SEO agencies make it seem complicated in order to sell you on their services. They want you to think you can’t do it yourself.
In truth, there are simple fixes you can implement today to increase your website’s organic traffic. Whether you’re a small business owner, or running a fast-growth startup, these SEO hacks will work for you.
1. Improve your title tags
As Moz explains, “a title tag is the main text that describes an online document. Title elements have long been considered one of the most important on-page SEO elements (the most important being overall content), and appear in three key places: browsers, search engine results pages, and external websites.”
Many websites are still using the title tags recommended by SEO experts back in 2000. This boring format: “Keyword 1 – Keyword 2 | Brand Name.”
Improving title tags can boost your click through rate by 20% or more. This CTR improvement not only moves the needle on the number of clicks to your website, but it’s a Google ranking factor. As your click through rate increases with a better title tag you’ll see an increase in rankings. It really is a win-win.
If you’re unsure where to start Siege Media has laid out five ways to create attention grabbing title tags. Here’s a brief overview of proven references:
Low Price. If your company offers the lowest price on certain products, let people know in your title tags. For example, if you sell Air Jordan sneakers online your title tag could be “Nike Air Jordans available for $189.99”.
Freshness. People prefer content that is fresh, because it makes it more relevant to their query. Add a date to your new content. For example, if you’re searching for a new computer having a list of top computers from 2013 is useless. Update the list to 2016 and see that CTR skyrocket.
Volume. Demonstrate how impressive your content is by showing the volume in the title tag. For example, if you sell protein powder online your title tag could be “Largest Selection of Protein Powder Online, Over 42 Brands”.
Speed. People like getting stuff done fast, and that can be reflected in your title tags. For example, if you have a fast shipping policy for those Air Jordans your title tag could be “Nike Air Jordans, 2-Day Shipping Free”.
Brand. Many companies miss out by not including their brand name in their title tags. Simply add your brand name at the end of each title to leverage your brand name.
Use one or more of these title tag improvements to see your click through rates jump.
2. Use LSI keywords
LSI, an acronym for Latent Semantic Indexing, is the use of words or phrases which are related to the main keyword and help give context to search engines. They can be synonyms to the primary keyword or relevant alternatives.
Brian Dean shares why LSI is useful in SEO copywriting. For example, if you do a Google search for “cars” how does Google whether you’re searching for:
Cars the vehicle
Cars the movie The 1970s rock band (with awful hair)
The Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs)
If you’re talking about the vehicle, your copy may include keywords like “car repair”, “car dealer”, or “Ford Escape”. If you’re talking about the movie, your copy may include keywords like “Pixar” and “motion picture”.
By using LSI keywords you help search engines distinguish between terms and concepts. Sprinkle LSI keywords throughout your content without keyword stuffing to get the benefits. By using these alternative keywords you also stand a better chance of ranking for a variety of related terms.
3. Decrease page load times
Lowering your website’s page load time can have the largest impact for the least amount of effort. You can use a website speed test to see how long it takes your website to load. Google also introduced its own web-based tool with PageSpeed Insights to help you identify ways to make your site faster and more mobile-friendly.
Not only is page load speed a Google ranking factor, “nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less, and they tend to abandon a site that isn’t loaded within 3 seconds.” So, if it takes more than 3 seconds to load there is room for improvement. Lowering your page load time will increase conversions and revenue for your business.
There are a number of things you can do to lower your page load time including:
Using GZIP compression
Using a CDN service
Limiting redirects on your website
If you use WordPress to run your website, you’re in luck because there are a number of plugins which can help you right away. For example, the team at Portent has put together a thorough guide to optimizing page speed.
Don’t let SEO become overcomplicated; it doesn’t have to be. While there are hundreds of ways to increase your organic traffic it’s best to take it one step at a time. Go one-by-one and use these three SEO hacks to make an immediate impact on any website.
This article has been edited and condensed.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Christian Sculthorp is the Director of Marketing at AgencyAnalytics, an all-in-one marketing tool designed for agencies. He has a six year history of working in SEO and increasing traffic to websites. Heed his advice if you want to make more money online. Connect with @SculthorpSEO on Twitter.
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