There are a variety of strategies and techniques you can follow to rank higher on Google. However, if you don’t handle the basics properly, your chances of getting a rank on Google’s 1st page will be pretty low.
By following best practices and practices for SEO, you will have laid the groundwork for increasing your site’s search visibility. Once you’ve set up the basics, you can move on to more advanced keyword research and link building strategies.
In this guide, I will share 9 SEO practices you should follow to get higher search rankings. You can achieve better results by following these practices.
1. Align Content with Search Intention
Search intent (also known as user intent) is the intention behind every search query. Understanding the search intent and delighting the caller is Google’s ultimate priority. All of the pages on the first page of Google have passed the test on Google’s search intent.
For example, review the search results for “Tahini Cookie with Walnut”.
The best search results are not e-commerce pages selling Walnut Tahini Cookie Recipe, but blog posts or videos. Google understands that the people doing this particular search want to learn instead of buy.
On the other hand, e-commerce pages will be the best search results for a query like “buy cookies”. Because then Google understands that people tend to buy. For this reason, the best results do not include links to cookie recipes.
- Informative – A user has the intention of finding information while searching for certain information. “How is the weather today?” It can be a simple search like. You can get instant results with this query. On the other hand, it can be something complex that requires detailed explanation, such as the best SEO strategies.
- Navigation – In this case, the searcher is looking for a specific site or app. Common examples of navigational searches may include “Facebook login”, “Ayhan Karaman” or “Amazon”.
- Commercial – The purpose behind a search becomes commercial when the user searches for a particular product but has not yet made a final decision. For example, searches like “best SEO tools” and “best DSLR camera” are all commercial searches.
- Transactional – The purpose here is to buy. The researcher has already decided to purchase a particular product. Searches such as “buy Nikon D500”, “buy MacBook Air” or “order food” are ideal examples of transactional searches.
The best practice for SEO is to always keep the search intent in mind when creating content for your site.
Short result: Create content that matches your target audience’s search intent.
2. Write Interesting Title Tag and Meta Description
Your page title and meta description are two of the most important meta tags on your page. You should consider the title tags first.
Title tags are clickable titles that appear in search results and are extremely critical to an SEO.
Headlines are critical to give users a quick idea of why a result is relevant to its content and queries. It is the primary piece of information that is often used to decide which result to come. That’s why it’s important to use high quality headers.
Search engines like Google usually show the first 50-60 characters of a title. Google will show the full title of your page as long as you keep your title tag under 60 characters.
Here are some best practices to keep in mind when creating title tags:
- Add your keywords to the target.
- Write a title that matches your search intention.
- Avoid creating duplicate title tags.
- Avoid keyword stuffing.
- Be descriptive but clear.
- Include interesting texts.
The second most important meta tag on a page is the meta description part. The meta description is displayed under the title tag. Provides a brief summary of a page on the search engine results page.
Meta descriptions do not directly affect search rankings, but can affect click-through rates.
A meta description tag is commonly used to tell users what a particular page is about. This includes brief and relevant summary information. It is like a step that convinces the user that the page is exactly what they are looking for.
Google typically displays meta descriptions as 110-160 characters. That’s why you should try to provide an accurate summary by keeping the meta description content under 160 characters. My suggestion would be to be in the range of 110-130 characters.
Here are the best practices to follow when writing your meta descriptions:
- Write unique meta descriptions for each page.
- Use a text copy for the transaction.
- Add your target keywords.
- Make it match the search intention.
- Provide an accurate summary.
- Offer opportunities and attract attention.
Images play an important role in improving the user experience of your site visitors. It is possible that you will spend a lot of time choosing the right images to improve your blog posts, product pages, and other important pages on your site.
However, are you sure you take enough time to optimize the images on your site? When used properly, images can contribute to your site’s overall SEO and increase organic traffic. Below are four things you can do to optimize your images.
Choose the Right File Format
Site speed is an important ranking signal. Images are often the biggest contributors to overall page size. As a result, you need to optimize images for speed to improve your site’s overall performance. The first step in optimizing images is choosing the best file format.
Commonly used image formats on the web are JPEG and PNG. Both of these formats use different compression techniques. Therefore, file sizes between these two can differ significantly.
Given the difference in file sizes above, it’s easy to declare the JPEG the clear winner. However, it would be a mistake to use JPEG as the actual image format for your site. Because the JPEG image format looks great for photos, PNGs can be used for text, drawings, etc. best suited for images that contain.
WebP is another option Google offers. WebP is a modern image format that provides high-level lossless and lossy compression for images on the web.
- WebP lossless images are 26% smaller than PNG images.
- WebP lossy images are 25-34% smaller than similar JPEG images in the equivalent SSIM quality index.
You can find more information on this topic in Google’s WebP guide .
Please note that the WebP format is not supported in Safari browsers used by the Apple ecosystem. For this reason, you need to set the image formats for MacOS and iOS operating systems in supported formats.DID YOU KNOW THAT?
The larger your image file size, the longer the web page takes to load. For this reason, it is imperative that you compress the images before uploading them to your site. There are several free tools to help you compress images.
- TinyPNG – TinyPNG uses intelligent lossy compression techniques to reduce the file size of your PNG and JPEG files.
- ImageOptim – If you are a Mac user, you can download and use this free tool for all your image compression needs.
- ShortPixel – If you are running your site with WordPress, you can install this plugin to compress images. ShortPixel’s free plan helps you compress 100 images per month.
Add Alt Text to Images
Despite advances in Google’s ability to understand images, adding alt text to images is still a necessary step. Adding alt text to images improves web accessibility and helps browsers better understand the images on your site.
When choosing alternative text, focus on creating information-rich content that uses keywords appropriately and is useful in the context of the content of the page.
Avoid stuffing alt attributes with keywords, as it provides a negative user experience and could make your site appear as spammy. Also, when specifying alternative text for images, be as concise in your description as possible.