SEO and Analytics

13 Ways to Improve Your Website’s Page Ranking

December 6, 2016
By Forge and Smith

A good page ranking means your content is more discoverable, and more likely to earn clicks. Everyone dreams of landing that first position in the search results, but how do you get there? Google has over 200 ranking signals, and breaking out a few SEO quick-wins can improve your website’s page ranking.

Publish relevant content

When putting a new page or post out into the world, make sure your content serves a purpose. Quality content — be it resources, tips, or product information — is the number one driver of better search engine rankings. To improve your site’s authority and relevance for your target keywords, consistently post fresh, shareable content tailored to your audience’s needs.

Make it readable

From awkward phrasing to complex wording, it’s better to keep your content writing too simple than to leave visitors unable to figure it out. In other words, content has to be readable. Use concise language, avoid jargon, and incorporate styling that facilitates easy online reading (make it scannable). The longer a visitor spends reading your content, the better the user experience in Google’s eyes.

Utilize headings

Breaking up content into sections has two key benefits:

  • It makes it easier to read (see above)
  • It provides keyword opportunities for SEO

Your heading should explain what the reader will find in that section of the page, so they can quickly scan and find the information most useful to them. Bonus points if your headings can include long-tail keywords, like popular search questions relating to your product or service.

Be smart with keywords

Research keywords, and build out your content around the ones you want rank for (or improve your existing ranking). Avoid keyword stuffing (overusing keywords to try to trick search engines, which creates its own readability problems), and instead focus on using natural phrasing that your own customers would use.

Update your meta descriptions

Your meta description appears under the page title in the search results, and is your prime opportunity to convince someone to click. It should match your content, tap your keywords, and have a clear call to action. Read up on how to write a meta description, and use the Yoast WordPress plugin to preview and tweak it to perfection.

Make it mobile-friendly

Does your site deliver an equally great user experience on any device? If the answer is no, you could be in trouble. Google prioritizes sites that are mobile-friendly. Your copy, images, site styling, and navigation all need to respond to phones and tablets. Learn more about mobile web design, and why it’s so important your website’s page ranking.

Check your page speeds

Every second counts when it comes to website experiences. With hundreds of thousands of options in the search results, nobody is going to wait around for ten seconds for your site to load. Check your Google Analytics data, or run your site through Google’s PageSpeed Insights to see how it performs. If pages are loading slowly, they can rank lower — and impact the ranking of your overall site. There are lots of ways to improve page load times, like optimizing images, updating the code, and more.

Add outbound links

Despite how it often seems, people don’t believe everything they read on the Internet. To increase the usefulness of your content, link out to other trusted sites to expand on information or give your readers alternative resources for deeper reading. Linking to authoritative sites will both increase the relevancy of your content and improve your SEO ranking.

Add in internal links

Internal linking has lots of great SEO benefits to improve your website’s page ranking. Offering related content helps the visitor along a natural path, which improves the user experience and your related Analytics data — time on site, dwell time per page, and pages per session. Internal links strengthen your keywords, and help search engine spiders better crawl your site.

Add media

Images, videos, and infographics can enhance the user experience by adding a more stimulating layer to your content. This improves your readability, provides new opportunities for keyword usage (image titles and ALT text), and keeps your content from looking like a textbook.

Improve your navigation

Your site should solve more problems than it creates. When visitors can’t immediately find what they need on a website, they’ll leave to try a competitor’s site. This contributes to a high bounce rate and low number of pages viewed — plus it drives away business. Clear website navigation will boost your page ranking through helping content get discovered, increasing engagement, and driving conversions.

Encourage social sharing

Sharing content on social media can help boost pageviews, as well as drive reach and brand awareness. As long as people are taking the time to read that content, this is a good thing as far as Google is concerned. Provide sharing links on your site content, and encourage your audience to share it with people who will find it useful.

Update your contact page

A custom contact form is great for user experience. It can also help generate new business, improve customer service, build trust, increase engagement, and capture new leads. On the flip side, a form with too many fields, confusing options, or one that’s buried too deep in the site, are all barriers between potential customers and your business. Plus, search engines scrape details about your business from your contact page, footer, social media, and other business profiles. Keeping this up-to-date is crucial for local SEO.


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Forge and Smith

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