SEO Tips – 65 Actionable SEO Tips to Rank in Google and Bing

by Nitin Malik October 13, 2017
SEO Tips

Around 11 years back in 2006 or so, when I was just starting to learn more about SEO thing, I tried searching the Web for a complete SEO tips checklist that would help me fix all the common as well as not so common SEO mistakes.

What did I get?

I found nothing.

I found lots of spammy stuff on link generation, SEO tips articles full of fluff, some outdated forums and useless bookmarking websites.

But nowhere I saw a COMPLETE SEO TIPS CHECKLIST that could have helped me not only fix my employers’ website issues but also grow as a SEO marketer.SEO Tips

A proper SEO Tips checklist would have made my job much easier then.

And now, after almost 11 years later, i’m here to fill that gap with a REALLY COMPREHENSIVE SEO TIPS CHECKLIST for SEO marketers.

So, without wasting any more time, let’s start with your SEO Checklist for 2017. This SEO checklist will get you up and running while optimizing your website to increase traffic and get better SEO ranking.

Install  Google Analytics

Google Analytics makes it easy to keep track of your customer’s journey by connecting customer behavior, channel performance, and much more across your sites and apps in robust reports and dashboards.

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Google Analytics offers powerful reporting in real time.

Regular reviewing of your Google Analytics Account will give you an insight into which SEO techniques are working and which are not. In other words, it offers an in-depth analytical insight into your website’s traffic and performance.

You can use the Google documentation available on almost every aspect; on both the implementation as well as the configuration aspects. This Google Analytics Tracking code library is a good start.

For advanced analytics users, Google offers the Google Analytics API.

The best thing is – It is completely free of charge.

Exclude Internal Traffic From Google Analytics

Your internal traffic can skew the web traffic numbers to great extent.

To avoid this problem, you should exclude internal traffic to get an accurate data of your site’s performance.

Filter out traffic to your website from people on your corporate network.

How to exclude a single IP address in Google Analytics

  1. Log in to your Google Analytics account and click on the ‘Admin‘ link shown at the top of the page.
  2. Click on Filters shown in the right column.
  3. Click the red +NEW FILTER button.
  4. Give the filter a name, for example the office location.
  5. From the dropdown lists select [Exclude] and [traffic from the IP addresses] and [that are equal to].
  6. Enter your IP address in the IP address box displayed below. Your IP address should be four numbers separated by three decimals points.
  7. Click the blue Save button.
  8. It’s DONE.

You can follow these instructions here: exclude Internal IP addresses from Google Analytics.

Install  Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a free service offered by Google that helps you monitor and maintain your site’s presence in Google Search results.

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You don’t have to sign up for Search Console for your site to be included in Google’s search results, but doing so can help you understand how Google views your site and optimize its performance in search results.

Why Use Google Search Console?

Monitor your site’s performance in Google Search results:

  • Make sure that Google can access your content
  • Submit new content for crawling and remove content you don’t want shown in search results
  • Create and monitor content that delivers visually engaging search results
  • Maintain your site with minimal disruption to search performance
  • Monitor and resolve malware or spam issues so your site stays clean

Discover how Google Search—and the world—sees your site:

  • Which queries caused your site to appear in search results?
  • Did some queries result in more traffic to your site than others?
  • Are your product prices, company contact info, or events highlighted in rich search results?
  • Which sites are linking to your website?
  • Is your mobile site performing well for visitors searching on mobile?

Source: Google

Use Google Keyword Planner To Find Untapped Keywords

Keyword Planner Tool is primarily a Google AdWords tool.

However, it can help you with relevant keywords in your industry.

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It provides you with all the necessary information needed to conduct keyword research. Keyword Planner works to find the keywords that are most relevant to your business which you can then choose to add to your plan.

You can search words or phrases related to your products or services.

Want traffic from US/Europe? Install Bing Webmaster Tools

Most people are aware of Google Search Console, but many of them ignore Bing Webmaster Tool knowingly or unknowingly.

Markiting with webmaster

Just like Google Search Console, Bing’s Webmaster Tools provides some great data for webmasters to use and address potential SEO issues, and serves as the primary mechanism for Bing to communicate those issues to site owners.

While Google may be your primary source of your organic traffic, Bing is almost certainly your second-highest source. Even if Bing accounts for only 20 percent to 30 percent of your monthly organic traffic, would you be willing to lose that traffic, which may be generating leads or revenue? My guess is probably not.
-Tony Edward, Search Engine Land

Bing Webmaster Tools enables a user-friendly interface to maintain multiple websites from a single account.

To sign up to Bing Webmaster Tools, go to www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster and create an account.

If you are new to Bing Webmaster Tools, this checklist can help get you started.

Using WordPress? Install the free version of  Yoast SEO

Yoast SEO is the most comprehensive WordPress SEO plugin with many built-in tools and features.

Yoast SEO

 

It handles th technical optimization of your site & assists with optimizing your content.

If you are new to Yoast SEO Plugin, this installation guide can help get you started.

Google Analytics plugin for WordPress

Are you using WordPress?

You can install a WordPress Google Analytics plugin.

Google Analytics plugin from is the best way to add GA tracking code to your website without modifying any files.

Just log in with Google right from your WP admin dashboard and choose which website you want to link.

Then you can disable GA tracking of specific users, so that when you are browsing your own site it won’t affect your analytics.

Also, you will be able to see Google Analytics reports in the same interface you already use every day to write and manage your posts – in your WordPress dashboard.

Now you can stay informed on how your website is doing without having to log into a separate tool.

Domain Age Matters

Matt Cutts, Google Engineer admits that this is true to a certain extent.

An established (older) Domain earns a significant level of trust from Google than a newer domain.

However, it’s not extremely essential for better ranking on search engines.

Therefore, having a new domain is not such a major concern, as at some point it will become more established and older.

There are more important factors that can affect your site’s ranking in Google:

  • Unique, high quality content
  • The quantity of content
  • External back-links to your content

Having a long established domain name is mainly beneficial in getting backlinks. You can read more on domain age here.

Fix Search Console Errors

Always make it a point to check Google’s Search Console for crawl errors, duplicate content errors, missing titles and other technical errors.

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Fix one day every fortnight to check your all search console errors.

Download that report and fix the relevant ones and mark ‘fixed’ irrelevant ones.

This will ensure that you are not dealing with outdated errors and fixing the latest errors highlighted by Google bots.

Check for Broken Links

Admit it – Error 404 pages are bad for business and your online reputation.

Broken links can damage your website’s rankings and user experience. After a point, even search engines stop crawling your website if they find too many broken links on it.

So make it a practice to check for broken links on your website and fix them on priority.

This is one part of your link building strategy.

You can also search for broken links on relevant websites from where you would like to get a back link to your website. Use great tools like Screaming Frog to find out any broken link and then tell the website owner about that broken link.

Then, you can ask the website owner if they want to replace the broken link with a link to your related article, so you can get a quality back link. You can read more about how to generate high-quality backlinks here.

Seek out Broken Link Building Opportunities

You should start looking for authority sites which can give you quality back links to your website. I love using this useful tool – Similar Site Search.

It’s very easy to use.

Just type in your site URL and hit the “Search” button.

You will see a list of sites related to the keywords you typed in. You can identify the relevant sites and also find out their DA and PA using Moz Bar tool.

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Once you have identified the right sites, you can reach out to those websites to request for a back link – a fresh link or by replacing a broken link.

For example, you can search for broken links on the relevant Wikipedia pages and replace them with yours. Getting a backlink from Wikipedia is very good for improving your website’s search engine visibility.

Place Your Site’s Content Above The Fold

Always keep landing page content above the page’s fold.

Content layout and its positioning will determine whether your main content is visible or not when a page loads.

It is the prime real estate that you shouldn’t waste as most of users will see this area most of the time they visit your website.

When determining an average fold placement, most web designers agree that the fold line is at approximately 1,000 pixels wide and 600 pixels tall.

Google has recently decided to make some changes in its algorithm, indicating that the content showcased above the fold will get more eyeballs and importance.

Maintain Keyword Consistency and Placement

Keyword Placement Matters, Not Frequency.

Many people increase the keyword frequency and think that would help them improve their website ranking.

However, fact is that today frequency of keywords doesn’t matter much. What makes difference is it’s placement in the content.

The point is – write content that is relevant, contextual and keyword shouldn’t look forced.

Spy on Competitors’ Back-links

Have you looked at competitor link profiles?

You can build high authority back links by using competitor back links intelligence.

Idea is simple – find out from where your compositors are getting their back links and start submitting your website URLs to same websites.

Start your link building with the pages that have high page authority and link to two or more of your competitors because they will bring the most value.

Do a competitive research about what kind of content gets the most back links for your competitors. Now, start creating similar kind of content to get more natural back links.

Here are some tools that can be used for spying on your competitors’ back links.

AhrefsSemrushWebCEOMozLinkDiagnosis

Set-up An RSS Feed For Your Blog

RSS makes it easier for other people to subscribe to your content. Whenever you start publishing posts, your latest posts will be updated in the RSS feed.

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary however it is often referred to as the feed or news feed.

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The easiest way to receive latest posts from your favorite blogs is to subscribe to RSS using feed readers such as Google Reader, Bloglines, NetVibes.

Using an RSS feed, your readers can receive updates from your blog or website directly in their web browsers feed readers, desktop applications, and many other devices and services.

You can view Source option of the browser and searching for RSS.

If you are using Firefox and the page has a RSS Feed, you will see an RSS icon in the address bar. If you click on the icon, you will be redirected to the RSS Feed URL.

You can use this URL as the RSS Feed URL.

Use Google’s Disavow Tool To Improve Ranking

If you think your website’s ranking is being impacted negatively by low-quality links, and those links are out of your control, you can ask Google not to take them into account when assessing your site.”

Yes.

Google’s Disavow Tool helps you to remove spammy & unnatural links from your site, thereby improving your site’s ranking on search engine.

Digital marketing Goals

But using Google’s Disavow Tool can do you harm if used incorrectly.

So be careful when and how to use it.

If by mistake you disallowed right links, that will affect your website ranking in Google search engine. To avoid any such issue, you should first analyse your all back links and then segment them based on their quantity.

Implement LSI keywords To Boost SEO Traffic

LSI is an acronym for Latent Semantic Indexing.

To make it simple for you, Google and other search engines use LSI keywords to look for relationships between various terms and concepts.

For example, when you Google a term, “catering” as an example, Google will return relevant results for that keyword or phrase. However, it will also return pages that are relevant to words similar to that term.

These relevant, related words are known as LSI keywords.

Content MarketingImplementing LSI keywords helps you to optimize your article’s keyword density.

You can use some other good tools to find your LSI keywords: Uber Suggest & LSI Graph.

Internal Contextual Linking On Long Tail Keywords

A contextual link is the clickable text (usually the keywords) found within the written content of your webpage.

Contextual links are links deep from the content of your webpage and that content is the core part which decides the uniqueness of a webpage.

When you link internally, you are sending link juice to another page. Over the time, this builds authority for your website and makes your link building efforts more effective.

You can promote older content & it improves your site’s ranking for specific keywords.

Choose Country TLD Extension

A TLD (top-level domain), or domain name extension, is basically the letters that appear after the main part of the domain name.

Some examples include .co.uk (United Kingdom), .ca (Canada) and .com.au (Australia).

TLD is directly related with your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) value. You should use a TLD to get country-based search results. Country TLD extension (.in, co.uk), is useful if you want to rank higher in a specific country, as it helps you to boost your local search ranking, but it limits the global ranking of your site.

A search engines return different results, including many local ones, depending on the IP address of the person doing the search.

This means that if someone in India does a search for Led TVs India, your India-based TV shop website can appear higher in the search rankings than if you didn’t have the .in or .co.in.

Use CDN To Enhance Page Load Time

CDN ( Content Delivery Network ) can serve static content on webpage from a cookie-less domain to improve the page load speed.

SEO Marketing TipsContent delivery network (CDN) not only improves your site’s page speed, but also helps you to enhance your user’s experience, by reducing the response time, thereby improving your site’s ranking.

You can go for Max CDN or CloudFare. If you are using Total Cache Plugin for WordPress, it has an option to setup CDN.

Submit to Google Local Listing

YOu can use Google’s free listing ‘Google My Business (GMB)’ to manage your company’s information across Google Search and Google Maps.

It’s advised to keep your business’ info — specifically your Name, Address and Phone Number (NAP) — accurate and up-to-date on Google My Business Listing as many potential customers may find your company on Google search engine.

Google Local Listing

Your listing appears right when people are searching for your business or businesses like yours on Google Search or Maps. Google My Business makes it easy to create and update your listing—so you can stand out, and bring customers in.

Submit your site’s local listing on Google My Business, to boost your local SEO and improve your site’s visibility.

 

WWW or NON-WWW Domain – Choose One and Stick with it.

Consistency matters.

And when it comes to consistency, search engines are no exceptions.

They too want you to be consistent in terms of your site URL.

Before you submit your site on Google Search console, choose your preferred domain URL – either with WWW or without WWW.

To be frank, there are absolutely no SEO benefits of choosing one over another.

However, whatever URL format you choose, stay consistent with the one and DO NOT CHANGE your site URL to add or remove www from it.

When you add www to your site URL, it acts as a host name which can help with flexibility with DNS, ability to restrict cookies when using multiple sub-domains, and more.

Whereas non-WWW domains also referred as naked domains do not have a technical advantage.

Simply, pick you pick www or non www version and 301 redirect the other one.

How to Do It?

All you have to do is login to your Google Webmaster Tools account and click on your site.

If you have not added your site to Google Webmaster tools, then follow our guide on how to add your WordPress site to Google Webmaster Tools.

Next click on the Gear icon towards the top right corner of your screen and select Site Settings.

On the Site Settings screen, simply choose the preferred domain.

Test with W3C Validator

World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) allows internet users to check HTML and XHTML documents for well-formatted markup.

The Markup Validation Service is a validator by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) that allows Internet users to check HTML and XHTML documents for well-formed markup.

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Markup validation is an important step towards ensuring the technical quality of web pages. If you fail to validate the pages of your website based on W3C standards, your website will most likely suffer from errors or poor traffic owing to poor formatting and readability.

W3C validation helps you to get better rankings in search engines. Errors in your code can affect your sites performance and also make a big impact on you sites SEO, search engines check the HTML or XHTML code of your website when searching.

To validate your website test it on W3C Markup Validator.

Use Hyphens To Differentiate Words In URL

The structure of a URL matters.

There are doubts on what to use in an URL – a hyphen (these-are-hyphens) or an underscore (these_are_underscores) to separate the URL words.

My answer is – Use a hyphen for your URLs.

‘Why?,’ you may ask!

Because Google treats a hyphen as a word separator, and treat an underscore as a word joiner.

According to Google:
Digital-marketing-agency = Digital Marketing Agency
Digital_marketing_agency = DigitalMarketingAgency

So, URLs should use hyphens to separate words.

Avoid using underscores or spaces. Keep them short and separate the words with hyphens.

 

Use 301 Redirects Effectively

“Redirect” definition from the web: to direct (someone or something) to a different place or by a different route.

Marketing BlogWhy would you redirect a visitor to another page?

This may happen for the following reasons:

  • if the URL is broken
  • If the webpage is no longer active
  • If you have a new webpage/site in place of old one to show to the world
  • If you’re working on a webpage and want to send visitors to another page for time being

There are three types of redirects:

  • 301, or “moved permanently”
  • 302, or “moved temporarily”
  • 307, 302’s successor, also a “moved temporarily” redirect

301 redirect – This happens when your web page is no longer here, and has permanently moved to a new page.

301 Redirect helps you to preserve the SEO value of a web page, by transferring page rank, domain authority, etc, to a new page, thereby preserving your ranking in SERPs.

302 / 307 redirect – This type of redirect will point the crawler to the new URL location, but it won’t treat it as a permanent change. As a result, it won’t transfer any of the SEO authority that original URL has gained over the course of its lifetime.

Note: Remove the old URL from your index and index and crawl the new page.

Canonical – I have multiple versions of this page (or content), please only index this version. I’ll keep the others available for people to see, but don’t include them in your index and please pass credit to my preferred page.

When to use Canonical
  • When 301s can’t be implemented, or take too much time
  • Duplicate content but you want to keep both pages live
  • Dynamic pages with multiple URLs of a single page (from sorting features, tracking options, etc.)
  • Site-wide considerations like (domain/page/index.html vs. domain/page/ for the same page) can be easier with canonicals
  • Cross-domain considerations where both sites are similar, but need to remain live

Use Short And Descriptive URL Permalink

Do not use the default settings. 

The default permalink structure is not user-friendly.

It is better to refer a visitor to a URL such as

http://www.yourwebsite.com/latest-news/

than

http://www.yourwebsite.com/?page_id=6458902.

 

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Keep the URLs short yet descriptive with right keywords.

 

Use Rel Canonical Tag To Improve Ranking

In simple words, the rel=canonical tag tells Google that while searching, one URL is equivalent to another URL.

If you have several similar versions of the same content, you pick one “canonical” version and point the search engines at that. This will solve your problem of duplicate content / URLs.

You can use Yoast plugin to enable or disable this for your website.

 

Optimize Social Share Image Settings With Yoast SEO

You can use Yoast SEO Plugin to enhance your site’s organic search ranking by optimizing your social share images.

It’s very simple.

Digital marketing blog

 

Use Optimized Robots.txt

Robots.txt is a text file webmasters create to instruct web robots (typically search engine robots) how to crawl pages on their website.

Robots.txt files inform search engine spiders how to interact with indexing your content. If you do not have a robots.txt file, your server logs will return 404 errors whenever a bot tries to access your robots.txt file.

Basic format:
User-agent: [user-agent name]
Disallow: [URL string not to be crawled]

Together, these two lines are considered a complete robots.txt file — though one robots file can contain multiple lines of user agents and directives (i.e., disallows, allows, crawl-delays, etc.).

The /robots.txt file is a publicly available: just add /robots.txt to the end of any root domain to see that website’s directives (if that site has a robots.txt file!).

Simply, create a Robots.txt file in root, to prevent search engine robots from crawling and indexing specific areas of your website.

Here is a snapshot of Evercoast’s robots.txt file.

 

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You should put your robots.txt file in your website’s top-level directory.

Remember that Robots.txt is case sensitive: the file must be named “robots.txt” (not Robots.txt, robots.TXT, or otherwise).

 

Leverage Semantic Mark-up To Improve Ranking

Semantic mark-up is a HTML tags to tell search engines exactly what a specific piece of content is, thereby making it easier for them to index it, which results in improved search engine ranking.

Adding semantic mark-up to your HTML will allow you to better convey meaning and structure of your web pages.

Semantic mark-up exists to identify your website’s content for:

  •     Articles
  •     Local businesses
  •     Restaurants
  •     TV episodes and ratings
  •     Book Reviews
  •     Movies
  •     Software Applications
  •     Events
  •    Products
The goal is not to get just the highest ranking but also enhance the visibility. Semantic mark-up is does the same – makes your website to be visible on search engines.

 

Submit a XML Sitemap To Speed Up Indexing

A sitemap is an XML file that contains all URLs of your website or blog. You need to submit this file to search engines to let them crawl and index all of the URLs of your blog.

Once submitted, search engine bots follow sitemap files to crawl and index your website.

A sitemap submission helps in faster site indexing and informing search engines about the updated content on your site.

So, ensure to create an xml sitemap and submit its URL to your Google Search Console.

You can create the sitemap with the help of Yoast SEO Plugin for WordPress.

This wiki article on sitemaps will give you more information on sitemap submission.

You can submit your sitemap directly to Google via Google Search Console (Formerly Google Webmaster) – a free tools.

This makes it easier for Google to crawl and categorize your website.

To submit your sitemap:

1.  Select your site on your Google Search Console home page.

2.  Click Crawl.

3.  Click Sitemaps.

4.  Click ADD/TEST SITEMAP.

5.  Type sitemap.xml.

6.  Click Submit Sitemap.

 

Create an HTML Sitemap

An HTML sitemap allows site visitors to easily navigate a website. It is a bulleted outline text version of the site navigation.

Site visitors can go to the Sitemap to locate a page or topic they are unable to find by searching the site or navigating through the site menus.

Sitemaps are helpful if a site has dynamic content, is new and does not have many links to it, or contains a lot of archived content that is not well-linked.

 

No-index or Remove Thin Pages

If your website has certain pages with useless content that don’t offer much value to your readers and your business, then it’s better to get rid of them ASAP.

Thin (very less content) or low-quality pages add little or no value to your site.

To Google, ‘thin’ and ‘low quality’ are synonymous.

By implementing a no-index tag on these pages, you tell search engine robots not to index them.

A great way to improve freshness and uniqueness of your site’s content is by having an active blog (if you don’t have one, get one!).

 

Keyword at the Beginning of URL

An SEO optimized URL is a really important part of a good SEO ranking.

I recommend you to placing your keyword or key phrase at the beginning of your URL of your page.

 

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Putting them at the end of the URL (especially past the fifth word) will reduce your chance of getting good ranking from that URL.

Putting a keyword in the beginning of the URL will also describe what a particular URL is about.

 

Redirect Attachment URLs To Parent Post

Every time you insert some media (an image for example) into a post, WordPress creates an entirely new web page/post containing nothing more than that single piece of media (plus the usual header, sidebar and footer, etc) – this new page is commonly referred to as an ‘Attachment URL’.

To redirect attachment pages to the parent post URL, there are at least 5 different ways to choose from:

  1. Write a custom function with conditional tag using both the wp_redirect function and template_redirect function.
  2. Add 1 line of redirect code directly to your themes attachment or image.php file.
  3. Use the settings in the WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin.
  4. Install the Attachment Page Redirect plugin or similar.
  5. Create a new attachment.php or image.php file which includes the redirect to post parent URL code and upload it to your child themes root directory.

It’s worth noting that Attachment URLs are not, as some people seem to think, referring to simply the location of the image itself.

 

Use SSL Certificate To Boost Ranking

Security is a top priority for Google.

Google had officially announced that going HTTPS — adding a SSL 2048-bit key certificate on your site — will give you a minor ranking boost.

 

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That’s why Google prefers websites that use SSL Certificate to secure their sites.

And Google confirms this by boosting their rank on search engine.

Google has also updated Google Webmaster Tools to better handle HTTPS sites and the reporting on them.

 

Unblock JavaScript and CSS from Robots.txt File

According to the new Google update, disallowing search engine robots from accessing and indexing your JavaScript and CSS folders can affect your site’s ranking.

So I recommend you not to block CSS and JS files because that way, you’re preventing Google to check if your website works properly.

If you block CSS and JS files in yourrobots.txt file, Google can’t render your website like intended.

This, in return, makes that Google won’t understand your website to the fullest and might even result in lower rankings.

If your CSS and JavaScript files are blocked by mistake, simply add the following to your robots.txt and it will allow Google bot to crawl all the CSS and JavaScript files on your site.

User-Agent: Googlebot
Allow: .js
Allow: .css

Also remember that Google does not index .css and .js in their search results, so you do not need to worry about these files causing any unnecessary SEO issues.

For more information, check out this article by Moz on why unblocking JavaScript and CSS folders is necessary.

 

Make Your Website Responsive

Since more and more people are using their smartphones and tablets to access the internet, Google also start preferring responsive websites!

Website Responsive

To get advantage in SEO, you should design your website in a way to make it compatible with Desktops, mobiles & tabs.

Plus, a responsive website will load faster, make it easier to read and improve the bounce rate.

 

Google recently announced they are moving to a mobile-first index, making mobile even more important than ever. 

Google has explained the pros and cons of each design choice in their Mobile SEO Guide’s Responsive Web DesignDynamic Serving and Separate URL sections.

To test how mobile-friendly your site is, you could use either of these tools – Google mobile-friendly test or TestmySite Tool.

Use Quality Page Meta Title & Descriptions

You can improve the click-through rates and the keyword ranking of your website with optimized title tags and meta descriptions.

Title tags are used to tell search engines and visitors what any given page on your site is about in the most concise and accurate way possible.

This title will then appear in various places around the web, including the tab in your web browser.

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The meta description is the short paragraph of text placed in the HTML of a webpage that describes its content.

The meta description will then appear under your page’s URL in the search results. This is also known as a snippet.

The title tag and Meta description are two most important and most obvious elements in a search result. Users will read both of them and make a decision whether to click on a URL or not.

Here is a Google Help page that explains how to create good titles and snippets in Search Results.

 

Use Meta Keywords To Rank Well On All Search Engines

The ‘meta keywords’ element is invisible to visitors but visible to search engines.

Though, not of great importance in 2017, still it’s advised to use them smartly without stuffing your back-end with meta keywords.

Meta keywords were devalued by Google because they were being abused by site owners and marketers. However, they still hold good value for other search engines like Yahoo, Bing, etc. So, to rank well on all search engines, it is essential to use meta keywords.

Hence, use Meta keywords smartly but don’t use more than about 10 meta keywords for a single page.

 

  Use Heading Tags (H Tags) To Get More Traffic

Heading Tags or H tags, help search engine robots to establish the relevancy of your content.

The six heading elements, H1 through H6, denote section headings. It is not necessary that you use all the six elements to structure the page.

Keep the header tags relevant to the content on the page to maximize the content’s visibility on search engines.

It is strongly recommended to use only one H1 element on the page.

 

Tip:

Google loves short yet appealing headings. Try to keep the H1 Tag different from the page title.

I am sharing an example to show the order in which Header tags should be used:

<h1> Digital Marketing Agency in Delhi NCR <h1>

<h2> We Provide Digital Marketing Services </h2>

<h3> Our Work <h3>

<h4> Customer Testimonials <h4>

<h5> Subscribe for Evercoast Newsletter </h5>

<h6> Talk to Evercoast Team </h6>

While <H1> should preferably be used only once, H2, H3, H4, H5, and H6 elements can be used any number of times.

Make sure to only use one H1 tag, and make sure it shows up in the document before H2, H3 etc.

 

Keywords Optimization

Add your keyword to your title tag, meta description, meta keywords and heading tags..

Is your title tag using right keyword?

Is your meta description using main keyword?

Is your heading tags using main keyword?

If not, fix it now to get better SEO ranking.

 

Use Alt Tags To Optimize Images

Search engine robots can’t identify images, hence they can’t index them.

That’s where ‘Alt Tag’ can help you leverage your images on website to get indexed by search engines.

The term “ALT tag” is a common shorthand term used to refer to the ALT attribute within in the IMG tag.

Any time you use an image, be sure to include an ALT tag or ALT text within the IMG tag. The alt attribute provides descriptive information for an image if a user for some reason cannot view it.

 

Add Modifiers to Title

Modifiers are words that people add on to a base keyword when trying to find more relevant search results in a search engine.

These can be adjectives, slang, speaking terms, verbs, questions and anything else that would bring back a more relevant result.

You can use a single modifiers for more general queries or combine them to make long tail keyword phrases.

Here is a good article to 50+ Modifiers to Boost Your SEO & Drive Sales.

 

Add crawl-able text to your page

SEO is about being found.

If your content or URLs are not optimized for that, then your all SEO efforts are total waste.

To avoid such situations, make sure to have at least 100 words on each URL (minimum – the more the better).

 

Create Long Form Content

Long-form content can be your best friend for getting great SEO rankings.

Check this blog article to understand how long form content can help you get better website traffic and generate more leads for your business.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you would have come across it on many occasions in articles like this one (2,100 words), this one (2,561 words) and the one you are reading is (3,000+ words).

Moz and BuzzSumo analyzed over one million articles (in 2015) and found that content over 1,000 words consistently receives more shares and links than shorter-form content.

Back in 2012, SerpIQ conducted a study around more than 20,000 keywords. (Look at the screenshot below.)

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The results showed that the average content length of each of the top 10 results was more than 2,000 words.

The average number of words for the content in the #1 spot was 2,416.

For the #10 spot, the average number of words was 2,032.

So the conclusion is – write long form content and it should be rich with information and data insights.

 

Write Catchy & Captivating Headlines

Catchy headlines can make or break your content.

It’s your headline that will be read first by all your readers.

So make sure that your headline is powerful enough to captivate your audience.

 

On the average, 5 times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent 80 cents out of your dollar.
– David Ogilvy

Try to transform the key benefit into a headline.

Here are some good ways to write a catchy headline:

Keep it simple and direct
  • The Ultimate Guide to Catchy Headlines
Ask a provocative question
  • Do you want to know the top 5 mistakes most bloggers make?
Tell your reader what to do
  • Stop wasting money on web design. Create your Website in minutes.
Offer useful information
  • The best-kept secrets of cooking
Simply state what’s the big benefit
  • Make Your Own Creative E-cards in Minutes
Announce exciting news
  • At Last, The New iPhone 7 Is In the Stores!
Appeal to you reader’s “how-to” instinct in the headline
  • How to Profit from the 3 Best Service Businesses of the Decade!

 

Write Benefit-Focused Content

An effective web copy is one that is benefit-focused. Does your article include something different, which as of yet is not shared by another writer? What benefit does your article offer to the reader? You can read more about some valuable SEO techniques and how to write benefit-focused content from Brian Dean.

 

Use Engaging Images & Videos

Today’s world is all about showing, not just telling.

Therefore, you too stop telling and start showing to engage your customers

Read this article to know modern tools you can use to create engaging images and multimedia to improve audience engagement.

 

Reduce Pop-Ups or Distracting Ads

Pop-ups and side bar ads are big distraction for your website.

A user lands on your site and within 5 seconds he is faced with huge pop up on the screen.

This literally spoils the fun for the user.

If information in that pop up is so important, then why you haven’t put on the homepage banner instead of a pop-up?

The point is – avoid using irrelevant pop-ups and ads as they drive away the users, increase the bounce rate, and decrease the traffic.

 

Frequently Update Content/Blogs

This is a no-brainer.

Keep updating your site’s content and blogs as often as possible.

This will maintain the freshness of your site or blog and also get your brand more online visibility.

The outcome: higher SEO rankings, more traffic, more leads and better chance of conversion.

 

Use Social Bookmarking To Boost Page Rank

Quality backlinks are instrumental in getting more targeted traffic to your site.

And social bookmarking helps you do the same.

The web pages bookmarked at social bookmarking sites are considered as a quality backlink by search engines.

Being listed on a social bookmarking site can drive quality traffic.

Websites like Digg and Del.icio.us represent the opportunity to get a lot of new traffic to your website.

However, some of the social bookmarking sites will mark links out to other sites as “nofollow”.

This tells search engines not to follow the link, and so you won’t reap any benefit from additional links!

 

Use Link Baiting To Get More Inbound Links

Link bait is content on your website that other sites link to because they want to, not because you ask them to.

Remember, high quality content always serves as link bait.

Link baiting is all about encouraging people to link to your site by producing quality, useful & informative content.

You should market your content smartly to reach out to more and more people for link baiting.

Here is an article from Moz outlining key methods to create link baiting opportunities.

Use Google Business Reviews

Customer reviews matter to your local rankings.

Not having any review can be a big drawback.

Especially when your customers are searching for you on Google, then Google reviews matter even more than reviews on other sites (like Yelp).

Google reviews come along with Google search.

So start asking your customers to rate your service and write a review for your brand on Google Business Reviews.

 

Use Social Sharing Buttons

Do you have social share buttons on your website or blog?

If not, add them now.

Encouraging and making it easy for readers to share website content drives relevant traffic to the website.

So using social sharing button is a strong on-page optimization tool you shouldn’t miss.

You can optimize them using the Add To Any Share Buttons WordPress plugin.

 

Add Noodp (No Open Directory Project) & Noydir (No Yahoo Directory)

Noodp= No Open Directory Project

Noydir= No Yahoo Directory

These are used if your website is listed in one of these directories with information you do not want used in the results pages.

This might be the case if you have old, outdated listings that no longer apply. They tell robots not to use information from these sources, and they are optional.

Included in Yoast WordPress Plugin, the Noodp & Noydir tags help you tell search engine robots, not to use information from these sources while displaying your site’s information on the search engine results.

 

Use synonyms in your copy

Synonyms of your main keywords can play a big role in improving your SEO ranking.

They look natural usage of same keyword as well as take care of user intent too that he may use while typing a keyword in a search engine.

So make a healthy list of right synonyms of your all important keywords and start using them smartly.

 

Start Blog Title With Keyword

As explained earlier, headline is most important part of any web page or article.

So make the most of it by using main keyword in the title / headline.

This will set the boll rolling with main keyword used in the URL, sub-heading, and body text.

 

Get Rid of Duplicate Content

Duplicate content means that similar content is being shown on multiple URLs on the website.

Duplicate content can happen because of several reasons – most of them are technical. It’s highly unlikely that someone will put same content twice on two different pages.

So to avoid any content duplication issue, start using 301 redirects, canonical tags or log in to your Google Search Console to fix any duplicate content that might be indexing and penalizing your site.

 

Use GTMetrix & Pingdom To Optimize Website Speed

Let’s admit – No ones like a slow website!

So to fix your website slow speed issues, run a free website speed test from around the globe using real browsers at normal connection speeds with detailed optimization recommendations.

GTmetrix is a free tool that analyzes your page’s speed performance. Using PageSpeed and YSlow, GTmetrix generates scores for your pages.

Some other popular tools are:

Pingdom KeyCDN | PageSpeed

 

Use Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

An Accelerated Mobile Page (or AMP, for short) is a project from Google and Twitter designed to make really fast mobile pages.

Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is an open-source coding standard for publishers.  AMP feeds your content through an existing page network that is meant to increase speed and reduce loading time on mobile devices.

Amp offers mobile friendliness and visibility that in turn will reduce bounce rate and improve the overall user experience.

By using AMP for your content, you are able to enhance mobile browsing experience for users. Since Google prefers AMP pages, it can help your website in SEO ranking.

 

Keep Outbound Links To Minimum

Outbound links are links that take your users elsewhere.

There are two (2) kinds of outbound links.

There is the nofollow link and the dofollow link.

The dofollow link is the normal link.

Just make a link and it’s automatically a dofollow link.

A dofollow link is what every link should be like. It passes on Google PageRank juice from your webpage to the targeted webpage.

A nofollow link is the abnormal link.

It does not pass on any Google PageRank juice to the targeted webpage but instead, it blocks off the Google PageRank flow.

A nofollow link has a rel=”nofollow” tag inside the code. This tag says to the Google spider ‘not to follow’ the link.

Most webmasters do this when they do not want to give out Google PageRank juice to the targeted webpage.

Outbound links on your site are important but keep their quantity minimum and quality very high. Add the nofollow attribute when necessary and add meaningful anchor text for them.

And remember, when it comes to the outbound links, it’s the quality that matters, not the quantity.

 

Claim Your Brand Name Online

Having a consistent brand naming across all digital properties is very important.

Not just website but across all social media channels, your brand name should be ONE.

Namechk is a great resource to see if your name is taken on most major networks. Use this tool to find out the availability of your brand name.

 

Make Your Presence Felt on Quora

Quora is a cool place where anyone can ask a question about any topic and anyone else can answer that question.

Quora has become a major source of user-generated content. And all this user-generated content gets indexed by Google.

Therefore, if you answer people’s questions in your industry, you can generate lots of organic traffic for your website.

Use your answers on Quora to create links back to your website or blog articles.

 

Optimize Your ‘Contact Us’ Page

Your ‘Contact Us’ page is visitors’ gateway to reach out to you.

So make the most of it by optimizing your ‘Contact Us‘ page fully.

Not just SEO-optimized but make it intuitive, user-friendly and easy to navigate.

Read this blog article to understand how to optimize your contact us page to capture more business leads.

 

Do an SEO Audit of Your Website

Don’t forget that things change very quickly in the SEO industry thanks to Google’s Search Algorithm updates.

Plus, what is working today may not work in 4-6 months from now.

Digital Marketing Delhi NCR

Therefore, you should perform a search engine optimization audit (SEO Audit) of your website at regular interval.

An SEO audit is a process for evaluating the search engine friendliness of a website in a number of areas. You can audit your website with some free tools available online. Here is a quick list of few of them:

SEO Optimizer | Woorank | Semrush | Raven

Wrapping Up

Phew!

This was a pretty LONG SEO Tips Checklist to write about.

But, you don’t get overwhelmed with this comprehensive SEO Tips checklist.

I have explained all key SEO tactics in this SEO tips checklist that will help you upscale your SEO marketing efforts efficiently.

If you can implement the SEO tips shared in this complete SEO tips checklist, you can easily get to the first page of popular search engines for multiple keywords.

Start using these SEO tips shared in this complete SEO tips checklist for 2017 for your day to day SEO efforts.

Are you now ready to implement this SEO Tips checklist?

Share your experience after trying this SEO Checklist and how did it improve your search engine optimization (SEO) performance.

Let me know in the comments section below or tweet me

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Nitin Malik

Nitin Malik – Director Marketing @ Evercoast Communications – is a digital marketing consultant and Digital Marketing Trainer. Being a full-stack digital marketer and Guest Faculty / Speaker, Nitin works with Fortune 500 companies and start-ups. A digital marketer by the day and a blogger by the night, Nitin is passionate about helping individuals and brands transform their digital presence. He has led 70+ SEO and PPC seminars and webinars.

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  • Blossom Smith

    My site has been good traffic when it hosted on under 210MS load speed server. fo a reason i change this hosting company that there speed is average 902 mili seconds , Now my site traffic dropped and can’t rank new post. that Good Web hosting is major fact ?

    Reply
    • Server speed can’t increase or decrease the web traffic directly. It only affects the speed. A site can be slow for several reasons and server speed is one of the critical reasons. You should run a website audit.

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