Seeing the biggest competitor on Google above your own company hurts. Because everyone knows that in this digitally-driven era, customers inform themselves independently on the web. And naturally, the company with the better ranking, attracts more potential customers to its website. In addition, it benefits from an image gain, because potential customers classify the companies on the best Google places as more relevant. No wonder search engine optimization (SEO) is an important marketing discipline today.
Below you will find simple tips on how to bring your site to the front in the Google ranking. If all these tips are implemented properly on your site, your site is in a very good state. If not, you will know right away where you need to pull the lever.
1. Find keywords
Keyword definition is the basis of your SEO activities. Therefore, it is worth investing enough time here.
Start with a brainstorming session. Try to put yourself in the position of a potential customer. What search terms would you type in then? Go through each of your listings to gather keyword ideas.
In the next step, check how many users are searching for the keywords you’ve collected. Of course, it makes more sense to choose keywords that are often searched for. However, in addition to the search volume, other factors are crucial:
- Competition: it is of no use to optimize for a keyword that is occupied by much stronger sites, which makes a top 10 ranking impossible.
- Relevance: Let the following question guide your relevance assessment: What might be the purchase interest of a user who lands on your site via a particular keyword? Choose only keywords that indicate a medium to high level of buying interest.
- Proximity to the offer: The better a keyword matches your offer, the higher your chances of good rankings.
2. Page Title
Write an individual Page Title (Title Tag) for each individual page. Do not use automatically generated page titles. The keyword must be included in the Page Title, preferably the title starts with the targeted search term. Remember that the Page Title serves as the headline for your search entry on Google hit pages. In order for it to be displayed in full length, it should not exceed 60 characters.
3. Page Description
The page description has no direct influence on the ranking of your pages. Nevertheless, we recommend that you write an individual description for each page. This is because, like the page title, the description is also displayed on Google hit pages. It shows users what they can expect on the page. An attractively worded summary of the page content leads to a better click-through rate and thus to more visitors to your website.
The URL should also contain the keyword you want your page to be found by. However, Google only considers the first four to five words that follow your domain. Therefore, keep the URLs short and concise and exactly matching the content of your page.
5. H1 and H2 titles
The H1 and H2 tags are title formats that you can give to a heading in the HTML code of the page. You should format the main title of the page with the H1 tag, and subtitles with H2. You can see if the titles are formatted correctly when you go to the source code of your page. You can do this in most browsers by right-clicking on the page.
6. Text quality
Google now also takes into account the quality of text on websites. But much more important than correct spelling is how users react to the content on your site. If you offer exciting and relevant content, users will stay longer on the page. Google evaluates this as a quality feature and ranks the page accordingly higher. For pages with only little text, it is correspondingly more difficult to achieve good rankings.
External factors are also important for a good ranking; in this context, we speak of off-page search engine optimization. The main point here is to collect as many inbound links as possible from external sites. When other pages link to you, Google interprets this as an indication that there is relevant content on your page.
The important thing here is that the links are set editorially and are meant to be taken seriously. Google takes into account the industry affiliation of the linking page and values the link higher if it matches the industry of the linked page. You should avoid paid links from so-called link farms, because they can be harmful for your ranking.
SEO is mainly about a targeted placement of the right keywords in the right places on your website. Always remember that all content must be right for users first and optimized for search engines second. Only if your site is attractive for the users, you have chances for a top ranking.