The organic positioning of a website is influenced by many factors, which continue to evolve over time, along with the advances of search engines. This article will highlight and elaborate on the 10 best-recommended SEO Techniques for both on-page and off-page SEO.
On-page and Off-page SEO Techniques
1. Work on the keyword strategy
Any natural positioning strategy should start with a good keyword analysis, which takes into account aspects such as the volume of searches, keyword difficulty, the level of competition, seasonality, and the relevance of the term for the brand.
2. Optimize URLs
The URL should be short, easy to read, and understandable by search engines. Try to keep them as simple as possible. Also, they should contain the main keyword of the page they refer to. This last point is an essential part of web positioning. If the keyword is not included, Google will not index the content correctly.
3. Structure the pages with headings
The header tags (H1, H2, H3 …) are essential to organize the information within each text, both for search engines and users.
4. Watch your loading times
Google penalizes pages with very prolonged times, generating a high bounce rate and worsening the user experience. According to Google, slow-loading pages will have a harder time with prominence in search engine results.
Therefore, you should carry out a full technical audit to optimize all the factors influencing the loading speed. To facilitate this SEO positioning work, one of the most used tools to evaluate the loading speed of a page is PageSpeed Insights.
5. Create quality content
In the end, both Google and users value well-structured content that provides in-depth information. Learn how you can develop a successful content strategy that helps you position your site at the top.
6. Get quality inbound links
Link building is a key factor in SEO positioning, but not everything goes. Always bet on natural techniques to generate quality links.
7. Do video marketing
Quality videos generate many links to your site, and if you hang them on YouTube, Google search results will display them.
8. Guest blogging
Guest blogging is another very effective technique to generate inbound links to your website and position yourself as an industry expert.
9. Create infographics and other graphic elements
The richer your content, the easier it will be to generate inbound links organically. Infographics are one of the most popular formats, especially if based on own studies.
10. Bet on networking
In the end, what works best to improve the reputation of your website is to connect with other people in your sector and seek opportunities to collaborate with each other. Everyone will win!
Main SEO strategies
As positioning evolves, so do the SEO strategies that are applied. These are the main trends in SEO strategies that you should take into account for your website:
- The voice searches. According to estimation, 50% of searches in 2020 will be made through voice, with technologies such as smart speakers or Google Assistant. This implies an important change in the way in which positioning is approached since voice searches tend to be the longer, longer tail and expressed more naturally.
- The intentionality. Artificial intelligence increasingly plays a more prominent role in positioning. Therefore, instead of blindly searching for keywords, search engines can detect a user’s intention even if they express their search differently. Thus, the focus should always be on the usefulness of the user and quality content.
- Google’s zero position. Increasingly, Google searches incorporate a result in “position zero,” which shows part of a page’s content as a direct answer to the user’s question. In order to appear here, it is essential to include rich data on your website.
- Mobile prioritization. It is a fact that for years Google has decided on the ranking of the web based on its version for mobile phones, not that of computers. Therefore, there is no excuse for not having a perfectly optimized mobile website, either through a responsive design or AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages).
- Brand awareness as an SEO factor. As Google’s algorithms get smarter, it seems factors like unlinking brand mentions could start to play a role. In the end, brand awareness and positioning are two mutually beneficial elements, so you have to work both well.
Black hat SEO vs. White hat SEO
In the world of SEO, we can distinguish different “schools” since there are many possible techniques to improve a website’s positioning. But the most important distinction is that of black hat SEO versus white hat SEO.
Black hat SEO
We call black hat SEO the use of unethical positioning techniques or even explicitly prohibited by search engines. In the short term, it is possible to improve the ranking of a website with this type of practice. But in the long run, it is never worth it since these practices end up being detected and severely penalized.
Among the most common black hat SEO techniques we have:
- Cloaking: create a website aimed at search engines (but unreadable for humans) and “cover it” with another website aimed at users but is not traceable. Google’s standards include that content aimed at search engines and users must always be the same.
- Keyword stuffing: repeating a keyword over and over again so that Google can position you for it, negatively affecting the quality of the content and the user experience.
- Hidden text: another practice that violates the rule of showing the same content to search engines and users and, in this case, hiding texts with the same color as the background or small font sizes.
- Spinning: automatic creation of content optimized for search engines but of low quality.
- Link Buying: It would always be best to source inbound links organically.
White hat SEO
On the other side of the coin, we have the white hat SEO. This type uses only ethical positioning techniques and that has the blessing of search engines. We must always bet on white hat SEO and bear in mind that it will provide us with solid and permanent results in the medium/long term.
The white hat SEO techniques are the on-page and off-page SEO practices that we have discussed previously: optimizing the URL structure and loading times, adding headers, incorporating multimedia elements, guest posting, etc.
The importance of mobile-first indexing and best practices
Today, traffic from mobile devices exceeds that of computers. And since Google is well aware of this, it has incorporated mobile-first indexing into its algorithm.
The mobile-first indexing is when the Google algorithm takes into account the first mobile version of a site to determine its position. For webmasters, this means that you should consider the mobile web the major version. So it should be perfectly optimized.
For this, it is recommended to either create a single version of the web with responsive design or use the Google Accelerated Mobile Pages tool, used to design websites focused on optimization and loading speed.
Also, it is always a good idea to put these Google recommendations on mobile-first indexing into practice:
- Ensure that Google crawlers can access all the resources and content on your website and render them. To do this, use the same robot’s meta tags on both the mobile and desktop versions, don’t let important content load lazy (for example, when a user clicks somewhere on the page), and let Google track all your means.
- Check that your mobile website includes the same content as the desktop site and uses the same headings in both.
- Check your structured data (rich snippets): make sure the mobile site includes the same as the computer version, check that the URLs of the mobile site’s structured data are mobile, and, if you use the Data Highlighter, enter it with the site Web.
- Use the same metadata on both versions of the site.
- Follow the Better Ads standard for displaying ads on mobile devices.
Ensure your website’s visual content (images and videos) follows best practices. You improve on this by providing high-quality images, using supported formats, and placing videos where mobile users can easily find them.