Best practices for SEO seems like a moving target – but there are a few things that never change! These constants are the reason I don’t EVER worry about Google updates and I want to share them with you today.
You have probably heard the wailing and gnashing of teeth that tends to go on in blogging groups on Facebook about the latest Google changes as they happen.
This is totally normal – you pour your heart and soul into your blog and it straight up sucks when you get hit with a traffic loss.
I completely understand! It hits not only your pocketbook, but your soul too.
So, today I wanted to just talk to you about exactly what you can do all the time, so that you aren’t constantly worried about the latest Google updates.
(A little secret: I never even look at when they update! I hear about it via Facebook usually, but it’s not something I check!)
Best SEO Practices for 2019, and 2020, and 2021, and so on!
Here’s the thing, it’s true that SEO is an ever changing beast. But it’s ALSO true that there are constants in SEO.
There will always be additional ways of working the SEO system, but these fundamentals are constant.
Let me lay it out for you!
1. Write What You Know:
I’m not saying you have to know everything about a subject before you start a blog, however, if you write about (and are ranking for) canning recipes, don’t suddenly start writing about auto-repair.
Google wants to see that the content you are putting out is consistently good in a certain field.
So, be consistent with your content, be an authority on that subject – and don’t stray.
2. Realize the system is rigged:
Google owns the system, and they can set it up anyway they want. So, if you’re trying to rank for health advice without an M.D. after your name, it’s probably not going to happen.
Same goes for any other “controversial” topics.
You can definitely still write about those topics! But you’ll need to use other content to rank with, then once people are on your site they will find your health topics.
For example, you can write about preparedness or self-reliance for ranking, and then link to your DIY cough medicine within those posts.
3. Write Awesome Content:
This is a pretty simple one… You can’t write a 300 word post with 1 old photo and then get frustrated when Google ranks someone higher than you.
Keep your content updated if it’s old, and make sure your new content is on point with great photos and legitimately useful text, not just keyword stuffing.
4. Put the User First:
Going hand in hand with “write awesome content”, you need to put the user’s experience first and foremost in your mind to make sure you are covering all of their needs.
This helps them stay on your page longer instead of bouncing back to Google to try and find a post that answers all their questions.
Having them bounce after 15-30 seconds tells Google that your content is not relevant for that keyword and they will bump you down… Bad times.
5. Use Your Headings Correctly:
So many of the bloggers I know use their H1, H2, and H3 headings incorrectly, or not at all. And most of them just have never know any differently!
But using them correctly is crucial to ranking well.
If you think of your headings as the lines in an outline for a paper, they would go like this:
H1: paper title
H2: main point
H3: sub points
For your post it looks the same:
H1: post title (you don’t manually add ANY H1 tags, the title is automatically an H1)
H2: main keyword of the post, what you will be talking about in general during the post
H3: breaking the main topic into parts
The whole point of the headings is to help google build that outline as it tries to help people find exactly what they are looking for.
Using them in ways that are not intended breaks down that outline building process and results in lower SEO rankings.
When I started using headings correctly, my SEO rankings shot right up!
6. Look at the LONG term view:
Instead of looking day to day, or even month to month, take a longer view of your SEO rankings and traffic.
You can see that in March of 2018 I lost right at 30% of my SEO traffic.
And I was tempted to wring my hands and cry! However, I kept focusing on these items I’ve listed out above… and look at the results!
My SEO traffic is higher than ever before and March ’18 is a blip on the radar!
So whenever you’re looking at your SEO traffic, be sure to look at a long term view, instead of a day by day. Realize that your content is good (or make it that way if it’s not), and just keep working!
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