Search engine optimization (SEO) is not a science. Rather, it is a collective of understandings of different rules and upgrades to those rules that search engines like Google have made overtime. Because of this, it is incredibly difficult to create an SEO strategy that works. Rather, you need to create something that s fluid, and that can change as other changes come in as well. That said, there are 10 key elements that an SEO strategy in 2017 absolutely has to have.
10 Elements to a Good SEO Strategy
- Your website must be mobile optimized. In November 2016, Google launched the first mobile-first index after it appeared that at least 50% of users preferred browsing on their mobile phones. An extra tip is that Google likes to see Structured Data in mobile sites.
- Use Google featured snippets. These were first developed in 2015 and many marketers still don’t get t hem. Google always puts them first before organic results and it means that, if you optimize properly, you will have two listings on one page. Google likes to see snippets in the right format, giving them greater precedence.
- Optimize your website so that it can include voice search. While still not huge, Siri, Cortana, Alexa, and other such voice search apps are becoming more popular. This is particularly true for people who want to use their phones while driving, which they often do.
- Your website should be optimized for local search. This has been the case for some time now, and it is clear that local optimization isn’t going anywhere. Make sure, therefore, that you join Google My Business as well, which is one of the biggest and most influential businesses around. Do make sure that you use structured markup as well, which only around 31% of websites do. Structured markup makes it far easier for spiders to find you and index you properly.
- Link building is still key. In fact, link building has been key since Google first launched. The difference between 2017 and the very first webpages, however, is that today it isn’t quantity that matters, but rather quality.
- Content is king. While keywords don’t weight as heavily anymore as what they used to, having quality content that is relevant and interesting in place continues to be vital.
- Focus on the user experience when building your website. Focus on small file sizes, minify the JS and CSS files, regularly measure round trip time, avoid redirects, and minimize the time it takes your server to respond.
- Start focusing on a video marketing strategy. People love video and since YouTube is owned by Google, you will instantly rank higher.
- Focus on cross-channel marketing. This means using all the different marketing tools that are out there, and linking them to each other.
- Always focus on user intent – why is your visitor on your website and are you giving them what they are looking for?