For the final instalment in our ‘YBOL’ blog series, we’re focussing on search engine optimisation (SEO).

SEO refers to the way online searchable content is presented to offer the best results and experience to the user. While it’s transferrable across all search engines, the default for most internet users is Google.

So, how can you work with Google to ensure your website appears at the top of search results?

Google knows best

A website with commendable SEO will appear further towards the top of a Google search than one with poor optimisation. Remember: this is important as barely any users will go further than the second page of search results.

As such, SEO is a critical part of enhancing your business’ online visibility. If you’re looking to generate more leads, drive traffic to your website and, ultimately, increase sales, it’ll be a real challenge without carefully considering SEO.

Like all aspects of the online world, SEO is continually evolving to meet the ever-changing needs of the user, who plays such a central role that it might be useful to instead view SEO as ‘search experience optimisation’. If the content on your website doesn’t answer a user’s question or need, Google is more likely to deem it unimportant and will favour other results.

Behind the scenes

While user intent is the core of a well-oiled SEO strategy, there are other components to consider which tie everything together.

SERP stands for ‘search engine results page’, which is something you will no doubt have encountered thousands of times. Common SERP features include instant answers, reviews, images, local packs and videos. Getting your website to appear within the SERP features also relies on expertise, authority and trustworthiness (the ‘E-A-T’ concept).

Google is careful to ensure it isn’t recommending anything that could put the user’s wellbeing at risk. So, delivering information that is clear, correct and reliable is fundamental to your business’ SEO success. If your content answers the user’s question, is correct and displays a high level of E-A-T, Google is more likely to show it. Links to pages regarding health, financial issues and safety also require an even more advanced level of E-A-T.

As such, your content is integral to any SEO efforts you make. Without knowledgeable and well-written copy on your website and consistency throughout your blogs, SEO will be a struggle.

Top tips from the SEO connoisseurs

SEO is a sea of acronyms and technical terms that can be all too easy to get lost in. The following simple steps are recommended to boost your Google ranking with ease.

1. Keep track.

Google Analytics is a brilliant tool to help you monitor the who, when and where of your site’s visitors so that you can better establish the ‘why’.

2. Refresh your content

Having stagnant copy will do nothing other than drag your website further down the results page. When you tell Google about new content (i.e. when you update your site’s copy), it drives more traffic to your site. Fresh content is critical for obtaining a better Google ranking. People are more likely to click on articles written recently, and Google wants to offer the most up-to-date information available.

Your copy should also take heed of users’ current search habits. If your website intends to give a user their answer to an “I want to know” question, the copy should include the relevant keywords and offer this answer immediately on the landing page.

3. Update your details

Is your business’ name, address and phone number consistent across your website, Google My Business and all directories? Something as simple as mismatched details can harm your SEO efforts substantially.

What’s more, keeping your Google My Business up to date is an absolute must for businesses looking to target and rely on customers in a local area. Local searches often represent higher than average conversion rates, as customers are more likely to seek out a local service and products.

There are dozens of elements to SEO. But getting these primary steps right will help potential customers find (and choose) your business on their first search.

As a digital marketing agency, we’re here to transform your business’ SEO. Get in touch today to find out more about our all-inclusive marketing packages or sign up to our monthly newsletter for regular marketing tips.