It was a challenge to talk in the afternoon specially after a sumptuous buffet lunch in a 1st class resort . I had to literally gulp 2 cups of coffee and pump up the adrenaline to keep myself awake. I guess the bigger challenge for me that afternoon was to discuss the topic of SEO in non technical manner but at the same time not to bore those who are quite familiar with SEO with a lot of newbie stuff.
And since my topic for the summit was “How Influencers and Brand Advocates are Shaping Search Engine Results”, I thought of coming up with my own “Top 10 Ways to Hit Page 1”.
So here you go:
1. Start Blogging – Blogging allows you to regularly and consistently provide fresh content that is relevant to your industry and niche. Google gives you points for this and gives you the extra nudge to rise in the rankings.
2. Use WordPress – This is a personal preference. ☺ I’m not just talking about using WordPress for your blog, but also as a content management system for your website. WordPress is search engine friendly and easily allows you to install SEO plugins to make it extremely easy optimize your on-page SEO factors. Based on experience, Google indexes WordPress posts real fast and most often ranks them higher than other posts or websites built on other platforms.
3. Drop all “un-natural” link building strategies – Those who have taken a hit on the Google Panda and Penguin updates can attest to this. It no longer works! And not only that… there’s a big possibility also that you’re site or blog will be penalized by the big “G” when you employ such black hat strategies.
4. Take ownership of your content: Be “AuthorRank”-ready – This is probably one of the next big updates in the Google Algorithm after Panda and Penguin. Author Rank is essentially Google’s way of ranking online Authors and Publishers according to the quality and relevance of content that they publish and the size and amount of engagement and influence that they build. The first step to make your site or blog AuthorRank-ready is to claim authorship of your published content by linking it to your Google+ profile. Here’s a great article with full details about Google AuthorRank and how to prepare for this soon to be rolled out update.
5. Use Google+ – Google+ may be far behind in terms of usage compared to Facebook. But it’s definitely worth your while to start using it by increasing your circles or network on Google+ and share content that creates engagement.
6. Build Social Signals – Make sure that you have links of your website and blog on your social media accounts going back to your website. You can also share your blog posts as status updates. These backlinks on your social media places sends “social signals” that is also a ranking criteria used by Google.
7. Use Videos – I don’t know with you, but I’d rather watch a short 2 minute video than read a long 1,000 word article! Video is by far the most highly engaging type of content in the Web. And with videos, people tend to stay longer on your website which is a factor that Google uses to find out if you are sharing high value content on your website. This is one reason why pages and blog posts with videos (Specially if they are hosted on YouTube) rank higher in the Search Engine Results.
8. Engage Other Bloggers – Find other influencers that also blog about your industry. Provide value to them by posting insightful comments on their blog posts. Acknowledge the value that you got from their posts. Connect with them in Facebook and Twitter and share their blog posts if you feel other people will benefit from it as you did. Sooner or later, the Law of Reciprocity will come in to play and provide you with an even bigger social media boost and eventually better rankings in the search engines.
9. Be generously consistent in sharing content – Google loves consistency! So be vigilant in the volume and frequency of the content that you publish in your blog and website. Be GENEROUS to your readers and Google with be GENEROUS to you.
10. Be REMARKABLE – Relevance(Keywords) and Authority(backlinks) are the two essential ranking criteria used by search engines. Anyone I believe can easily make their blog posts relevant to their niche with the right use of keywords and earn authority points by getting backlinks from other sites, but very few are capable producing REMARKABLE content that makes you stand out from the rest of the competition. Produce remarkable content that delivers remarkable value, then people and Google would soon consider you as credible source of information and rank you higher than your competition.
If you have questions about my Top 10, just post a comment below and I’d be glad to answer them!
Have a REMARKABLE day, everyone! ☺
I’ll be speaking again at the Digital Influencer Marketing Summit on February 2 at the Thunderbird Resort – Rizal, where I will be talking about “Bloggers as Influencers and Brand Advocates.” You still have time to sign up. I hope to see you there!