To be on the top of the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs), one has to perform the best SEO practices. If you think SEO and organic ranking were tougher last year, please be wise as it is going to be even harder in 2020 and the upcoming years. With its ever-changing dimensions; SEO is getting remodeled with the major updates across the Search Engines. Many marketers are trying to cope with the algorithms and to stay ahead of the SEO practices. One of the search engine giants, Google performs many major updates every now and then to keep up with its user behavior.
Google updates, known as algorithms, release the updates periodically which will affect the ranking of the websites in the search engine. So, it is necessary to adapt to the best SEO practices in 2020 to stay ahead of the results. Here you certainly need to have a look at the Do’s and Dont’s of SEO of 2020 to execute a well-planned strategy to outperform your competitors in search engines result page.
1. Measure Keyword’s Metrics before writing Content
The important part to write any form of content is that it should either provide a source of knowledge to someone or it should solve someone’s problem. The keyword plays a vital role in getting the attention of the searchers. So, it is crucial to measure and analyze the keyword which you will use for your content writing in your blog or website.
It is highly advisable to analyze your keyword’s metric before writing any form of content if you want your website to attract organic traffics. There are a few basic metrics you should follow to understand whether a particular keyword is a good fit for both the search engine and also the website. I highly recommend using any of the keyword research tools like SEMrush, Ahref, Ubersuggest to determine the keyword metrics.
Few Important Keyword Metrics are:
- Keyword Difficulty
- Keyword Search Volume
- Organic Keywords
- Organic Traffic
- Traffic Value
- Cost Per Click
2. Focus on Long Tail Keyword and Long Form Content
Rand Fishkin of Moz.com stated that the long-tail keywords cover almost 70 percent of all the search queries on Google. According to the research made by Ahrefs, the majority of Google searches have 3+ words in them. It means that long-tail keywords bring more quality traffic to your website when compared to short tail keywords.
Long-tail keywords are keywords that are more specific and longer than the commonly searched keywords. Though Long-tail keywords get less search traffic, the conversion value is very high as it is more specific than the general keyword term. A long-tail keyword must have a minimum of 3 words with it and helps your content to get a unique focus and stand out of the crowd right from the beginning. Have a look at the following image and witness the power of long tail keywords.
serpIQ did a study of the average length of the content in the top ten results of search queries and found that on average they were over 2,000 words. The reason behind the long-form content that performs so well on Google is that people are spending more time on your website. Long-form content is more creative and informative.
Always Remember “If you want to outperform your competition, you must create content of the highest quality“
3. Always use Static URLs
A website’s overall quality depends on the URLs of each of its pages. A Static URL is the one that keeps its content unchanged (ex- www.yourdomain.com/white-cap). A Dynamic URL is the one that is a result of a search within a website, driven by a database (ex- www.yourdomain.com/productcode-449). Search Engine spiders prefer static URLs as it is easy to identify some content from the URL itself.
Some of the reasons that Static URLs perform better than the Dynamic ones are as follows
- User Friendliness
- High keyword relevancy
- High navigation rate in SERP
- High Click-through rate (CTR)
- Many search engines handle static URLs easily to that of dynamic ones
4. Link to Relevant Sites
It is necessary to have links in a blog or website, as it increases the trust and increases the user experience and provides an authority if you link to highly relevant website. But when it comes to linking to a website, you should be careful. Because an irrelevant link on a site might cause readers or visitors to think your site is full of spam.
Make sure that the internal links which you provide in a certain word must link to a relevant blog post and have clear navigability and the external link should redirect to a genuine web page that delivers valid information. I recommend you to focus on highly authoritative webpages related to the niche of your website, as it increases your domain rating and visibility.
5. Image Optimization
It is important to use relevant images for your blog post or website. However, optimizing the image is equally important as it reduces the page size and increases the site speed. Because the site speed determines the user whether to stay or exit the site if it takes too much time which in turn will increase the bounce rate. The following are the tips to be considered while using any images on the websites.
- Alt Tag
- Image Relevancy
- Image size
6. Optimize for Mobile Users
Due to the evolution of broader and cheaper internet plans, all the mobile phone users have an access to internet and access many websites via mobile. Mobile optimization is the process of optimizing a website for mobile devices and ensuring that visitors who access your website from mobile devices have a better user experience.
Best Practices for mobile optimization are
- Use Responsive Web design for your website
- Use AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)
- Use Structured Content
- Don’t use flash
- Check Pop-ups before using
- Compress Images and Videos
- Optimise Titles and Meta Descriptions
7. Submit Sitemap
After successful creation and optimization of the website, it is necessary to let Search Engines know about the content. To submit the content to the Search Engine, a sitemap needs to be generated and submitted so that the crawlers or bot can access the content and present it to the users. Create a sitemap that lists every page on your website that makes the process of indexing much simpler for search engines. The sitemap is the one that maintains your website hierarchy in a proper way and navigates the visiting user in the right direction.
8. Become a guest blogger
Being a contributor to popular websites from your niches will help you to reach a new audience and potentially earn new loyal readers. Guest blogging not only increases the chances of visitors but also provides you an authority in your niche. Only write for very reputable websites in your niche and make sure your content is at least as good as the one from your website and provide immense value to the readers.
9. Post fresh contents regularly
New articles will show your readers and search engines that you are still updating your website and it has not been abandoned. It keeps the crawlers and bots engaged with your site.
10. Monitor your backlinks
Keeping track of your website’s backlinks is as important as building them. From an SEO point of view, it is vital in maintaining a clean backlinks profile.
11. Learn from your best competitors
One of the effective ways to learn and grow your SEO practices is to learn from your competitors. Always research your competition and try to learn from their success. Replicate what’s working for them, and try to build the same quality backlinks.
Dont’s in SEO
1. Publishing Duplicate Content
Your website has to have unique content. Copying content from other websites or publishing duplicate content can reduce your user experience.
2. Keyword Stuffing
You should never use too many keywords in your content. To say it in simple terms, you should write for your audience not for the crawlers.
3. Over Optimizing Anchor Texts
Over optimizing the anchor texts of your backlinks will get your site penalized by Google.
4. Avoid irrelevant links
Links from different websites or unrelated niche websites will get your website penalized. It makes no sense to have links from irrelevant sites which is totally different from your niche.
5. Avoid links from blog networks
Blog networks are a spammy way to increase your search engine rankings. It might work for a few weeks, but eventually, you will be penalized.
6. Obsessed with the number of backlinks
The number of backlinks you get is still an obsession for many newbies. The truth is the number of links that your website has is not important.
7. Building backlinks only to homepage
When you build backlinks from other sites, you have to make the whole process look very natural. Building too many links only to your homepage can raise a flag to Google.
8. Avoid Linking to Penalized Websites
Always pay very close attention to the websites that you are linking too. Linking out to bad sites can decrease the value of your site.
9. Guest Posting in insignificant sites
Never waste your time writing for sites that have a bad reputation and domain authority lesser than yours.
10. Never over Submit your site to many sites
You don’t have to submit your site to search engines. Google will crawl it and index your pages naturally, once you get your first links.
11. Never accept Spammy Blog Comments
Nearly 90% of the comments are spam. You have to moderate all comments prior to approval. Remember don’t accept comments without real names.
These 22 best SEO practices of 2020 will make your blog post or website to increase in Search Engine results. The above-mentioned SEO practices – Do’s and Don’ts are something you can not afford to ignore. While you should take special care of the Do’s part, never miss out giving equal intention to the Don’ts part because if Google finds it out then it can penalize the website by banning it forever. Do remember all the SEO practices will take time and cannot fetch you the desired results as soon as you publish the site.
Implement all the best SEO Practices of 2020 and outperform to rank on the search engine result pages. Feel free to share your thoughts in a comment section. If you have any other to add, please do as well.