SEO, which means Search Engine Optimization, is defined as the technique to acquire targeted web traffic to its website from Google, Bing, Yahoo, Baidu, Yandex or any other search engine (which is increasingly similar to a response engine). All this, by improving the visibility of the site pages in organic results.
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Plan de l'article
- ✅ Why SEO is important?
- SEO and SEA
- ⚙️ How does a search engine work?
- Consumers and keywords
- ✨ How to optimize your content for SEO?
- Example of quality content
- The basics of on-page SEO
- Introduction to Technical SEO
- Check your site with the Google Search Console
- Use good URL structures
- Measure and optimize the speed of your pages
- Switch to HTTPS
- Site Architecture and Internal Mesh
- Mobile as a priority
- Measure your results with Analytics
- The Link Building
- Research Intentions
- Other SEO factors to take into account urgently
✅ Why SEO is important?
In short, SEO is a huge source of traffic for a website that can have a beneficial effect on its reputation and revenue generated.
Below is the distribution of sites being the largest sources of Internet traffic (September 2018 figures provided by Sparktoro).
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It can be seen that almost 60% of all traffic on the internet starts with a Google search. If we add to Google the Other major players like Youtube, Yahoo and Bing we reach almost 71% of the total web traffic that comes directly from search engines.
The need for SEO
Consider that you are a company specializing in garden equipment. According to Google, 1,600 people search “rental garden equipment” every month in Google France.
Consider that the number 1 result in Google receives 20% of all clicks, this represents 320 visitors to your website each month if you are positioned first in SERP.
Now let’s quantify that. What is the value of these visitors?
As part of an SEM strategy, if you would operate SEA campaigns on Google Ads, the average cost per click (CPC) of this keyword would be 1 euro. That means attracting 320 visitors via advertising campaigns on Google Ads would cost you 320 euros per month.
And this corresponds to only one query. If your site is SEO optimized, then you can position yourself on hundreds (sometimes thousands) of different keywords.
In other industries such as real estate or insurance, the value of traffic coming from search engines is significantly higher.
For example, marketers pay an average of 11 euros per click for the search term “auto insurance quote”.
SEO and SEA
The results displayed by the main engines are divided into two specific categories: on the one hand organic results (SEO), and on the other, paid results (SEA) also known as sponsored ads.
Results of organic research
When we talk about organic results, which also refer to SEO results, correspond to results whose display is 100% based on relevance and quality.
It is impossible to pay anything to Google or any other search engine in order to appear higher of the organic results.
Google’s search engine classifies its organic results according to 200 different positioning factors. These results are perceived by the search engine as the web pages that it will consider relevant, qualitative and authoritative on the topic.
More details are provided later in this article regarding the operation of the search engine algorithm. But for now, the important thing to keep in mind is that when we talk about SEO, it’s about positioning the pages of a site higher in organic results.
Paid results are advertisements (for which you pay) that appear at the top or bottom of natural/organic results.
It is important to remember that paid results are completely independent of organic results. Ads in the paid part of the results are displayed relative to the cost you will be willing to allocate for each click generated by a visitor.
⚙️ How does a search engine work?
When you’re looking for something on Google, Bing, Yahoo or Qwant, an algorithm works continuously to offer you what the engine will consider to be the most relevant result. Google analyzes its index consisting of several billion results and web pages in order to find a set of results that will provide the best information compared to the type search.
How does Google identify and choose the most relevant result?
Although Google does not make public the precise workings and operation of its crawl robot and the algorithm used, the information officially communicated by the Mountain View firm and the strategies applied by SEO specialists for years can identify the main factors of positioning on which the engine is based to classify its results.
When writing in the Google search bar “recipe for lemon pie”, you are not looking to see anything other than culinary information.
This is why Google first searches for web pages that really correlate with your query.
However, Google does not only display the pages it considers to be the most informative and relevant at the top of its results. That’s why millions, and sometimes billions of quality pages deemed relevant, are generated for each search expression.
That’s why the phrase “lemon pie recipe” generates 15,000,000 results in Google.
To classify all these results and display the best at the top of the first page, the algorithm uses three other elements.
Authority (or popularity)
In SEO, the term “authority” speaks for itself: it is the way Google uses to identify whether your web content published on a page is popular, verified, and acclaimed by trusted sites.
However, how does Google consider a web page to be authoritative on the web?
Google analyzes the number of pages on the web that incorporate a link to this page, as well as their quality.
Links from other pages are also called Backlinks .
In the majority of cases, the more quality links your web page receives and the more visible it will be in organic results.
Moreover, the fact that Google measures the popularity of a page based on the links received is a parameter that differentiates it from other engines including Yahoo, which appeared before the firm of Mountain View.
Web content can be considered popular, trustworthy and relevant. However, if content is useless for the user, Google will not consider it appropriate to position it in the first results of its index.
In fact, Google has publicly announced that it makes a clear difference between “qualitative content” and content “useful”.
Quality content is not necessarily useful for the reader.
Let’s take an example. If you type “paleo diet” in Google.
You click the result that appears first (Result A) that is written by the most reputable expert on the Paleo diet. And because this page incorporates qualitative content, many people have pointed a link (backlink) to it.
On the other hand, in this example the content is completely disorganized and contains a lot of incomprehensible jargon for lambda people.
This is where the contrast comes with our other result (Result B).
This content is written by a new and perhaps novice person in the Paleo regime sector. Also, its website does not receive many incoming links.
However, this content is structured and well organized into parts that can be easily distinguished through paragraphs and bulleted lists. This content is also written in a way that all Internet users can easily understand.
The page corresponding to Result B will be better positioned in Google results than Result A. Although it does not receive as many quality links, its usefulness is considered a more important element by Google’s algorithm that will display it at the top of its organic results.
Google measures the usefulness of a page based on user experience (UX) signals.
In other words, how Internet users will interact on the organic results proposed by the engines. Do you say that if Google detects that people particularly appreciate a result offered to it by the search engine, it will receive a boost of significant positioning.
Our tip for positioning higher
We advise you to create a site designed and designed for Internet users. Make people like your site! The main response engines were initially designed to analyze multiple signals across the web so that they can detect the sites that Internet users prefer. So facilitate the task of search engines and put the consumer at the center of your site design .
Consumers and keywords
Before you dive into the heart of the topic with optimizing the titles of your pages and their HTML tags, it’s important not to skip an important step: defining your consumer target and defining your keywords.
It is at this point that you learn what your consumers are looking for, as well as the exact queries and sentences they are used to typing in a search engine. By targeting these habits, you will be able to position your site on searches typed daily by your potential audience.
Here is precisely how to proceed.
If you already run a business on the net, you probably already have a good idea of what your target audience looks like, also known as Persona Marketing or Buyer Persona.
Here is an example.
This type of research aimed at identifying your buyer personas is not just useful for creating products that people need. It is also a very important part of SEO and Content Marketing .
Here are some additional explanations .
To succeed in SEO, you need to create content around topics your customers are looking for.
And unless you already know who your consumers are, it is very difficult to identify the types of information they are looking for.
The best way to build your buyer persona is to use Hubspot’s free tool called Make My Persona .
This tool allows you to step by step create your persona marketing. At the end of the process, you get a detailed record of your persona, accompanied by his avatar.
Search for keywords
Now that you have your persona marketing, it’s time to move on to the next step: searching for keywords.
This is where you look at the search expressions users type in the search engine bar.
In general, keywords are divided into two major groups:
- People who will easily find products you sell via their search for keywords: product keywords .
- The other group is about your audience that is not looking for what you sell: informational keywords .
|billing software||how to make an invoice|
|cheap accountant||template invoice|
|accounting calculator||mandatory information on invoice|
An example, does that tell you?
Let’s say you are at the head of an e-commerce site specializing in the sale of sneakers tennis.
Your group of product keywords would look like this:
- cheap tennis shoes
- Nike Tennis Shoe
- tennis shoe for flat feet
At the same time, informational keywords relate to things that interest your audience without necessarily looking for tennis shoes:
- tips for serving well
- how to make a lapel with one hand?
- make a good second service
- average speed of a first service
To succeed in SEO, you will need to optimize the pages of your website around these two types of keywords.
In this way, when a user arrives on your site without having the purchase of a product or service in mind (via an informational search therefore), you will have the opportunity to expose your products to him and perhaps convert it into a new customer.
Tips for your keyword search
Here are some tips on how to do your keyword search.
First, use Google’s autocompletion.
You probably already know this feature.
Every time you start typing a query in the Google search engine bar, you get a list of suggestions.
We advise you to take a look at these suggestions and take these keywords into consideration for your SEO strategy.
Second, perform a search in the Answer The Public tool.
Answer The Public is a free online tool that allows you to get very interesting data about what Internet users are looking for in engines.
Let’s take up our previous example: if you are holding a blog dedicated to Paleo diet and as you type “paleo diet” in Answer The Public, you will see all the questions asked by Internet users on this topic.
Among these data, the goal will be to identify interesting questions that you can deal with through a blog post for example, such as “paleo diet what breakfast”.
Next step: Complete your search for keywords.
Keyword tools can help you determine how many people are searching for each keyword and how difficult it will be to position on the first page of Google for this query.
In other words, these tools can help you choose the best expressions according to the theme you are interested in.
Here are the most popular keyword search tools:
- SEM Rush
These tools are paid for.
But the best of the tools to find your keywords is not included in this list since it is a free tool provided by Google: the Keyword Planner .
Even though the Keyword Planner, or keyword planning tool in French, was designed to drive your Google Ads campaigns , it turns out to be a powerful tool to select your keywords for SEO.
All you have to do is enter a transactional (product) or informational keyword into the tool, as below.
Then you get a whole bunch of relevant data about your query, such as a list of relative expressions with their monthly search volume.
Of course, being initially a tool dedicated to sponsored campaigns, the Keyword Planner also provides you with results and budget forecasts if you decide to invest money in a Google Ads strategy.
You can also use a third-party tool (such as Ahrefs, SEMrush, etc.) that sometimes has more accurate information about the volume of keywords search.
In general, you will need to focus on keywords with a high volume of search since this means that this query is typed by a large number of people and can therefore potentially bring you back traffic.
However, that says high-volume search keyword says keyword with increased competition.
If you are new to SEO, we recommend that you base part of your strategy with long drag keywords (also called long tail).
Because long drag search expressions are less Competitive.
When you have solid foundations in place with your site, you’ll be able to start attacking top tail queries with a large volume of search.
But if you’re just starting out in SEO, we advise you to be pragmatic and start optimizing your content on long tail queries where there will be less competition than top tail expressions to be visible, while converting better.
✨ How to optimize your content for SEO?
It’s no secret that SEO and content are closely linked. The more useful the content you deliver to the reader, the higher your ranking in SERP will be. It’s obviously not that simple, but it’s a good empirical rule to follow when writing content for SEO.
Here are some tips for create quality content for SEO.
Create content for products and services
If you have a website dedicated to commercial purposes, the content of the product and service pages should always be of high quality. But that’s not why you must necessarily “spread” your text pages at the risk of hindering the user experience.
In fact, the main goal of your product pages should be to convert visitors into prospects and customers . That’s why it’s important that your product pages focus on the features and benefits it offers.
For example, if you look at the home page of Intent Technologies , a Lille company that has developed a platform dedicated to real estate managers, we see that the content is of quality.
Even if this is not a blog post, this home page contains useful content presenting the benefits offered by this platform.
So someone looking for a keyword like “property management software” would certainly find their account on this page thanks to the information provided… even if the main purpose of the page is to have you tested a demo of the software.
The main thing is to make the content of your page dedicated to your product or service as useful as possible. But remember that conversions should be your number 1 goal.
Create high-quality blog content
When people say content is king, they mainly talk about content posted on blogs. Indeed, a blog is the ideal space on your site to write articles of information aimed at positioning you on hundreds or even thousands of keywords in search engines.
HubSpot has found that companies that regularly publish content receive 350% more traffic than those that do not spend so much effort on their content marketing.
The site of our agency is the vivid proof of this approach.
Through a regular publication of blog posts aimed at providing useful information to our readers, we doubled the organic traffic of the site in the space of 2 months (between August and October).
And we would not get as much traffic if we simply overload our services pages in content hoping to be first on requests like “agency seo”, “agency sea”, “agency web paris”, “agency seo lille” or “agency seo paris”.
That’s how SEO works today.
To succeed in an SEO action plan, your site needs to publish real added value for the reader by focusing on the useful information you will bring to it, without highlighting your services or products. This is called Content Marketing.
The latest WordPress statistics reveal that 70 million blog posts are published every month .
And this concerns only WordPress. People also publish millions of articles on Medium, Shopify and other platforms.
The main thing? For your content to stand out (and position itself in SEO) nowadays, it must be exceptional . Otherwise, it will be drowned among the millions of other content published every day.
Example of quality content
We would now like to give you some examples of the types of Super qualitative content that works great for SEO.
Articles in the form of lists include complete lists of tips, tips, techniques, recipes… or just about everything you can think of.
They are very impactful because the lists use information from different sources across the web or elsewhere. So instead of having for example an article devoted to 20 tips for creating your CV and another with 15 things not to do in your CV, your content in the form of a list allows you to group everything is to offer all the information in one page.
This is what Olivier Duffez did from Web Rank Info, who gathered all the tips to improve his SEO through a list of 77 concrete ideas to improve your SEO .
The Detailed step-by-step guides are as old as the internet itself. And they are always as effective.
To illustrate as an example, the article written by our experts about how to optimize a product sheet for SEO , perfectly illustrates how to build and optimize the product sheets of your e-commerce site by proceeding in stages.
To do this, we strongly advise you to use a table of contents to show the details of your steps.
Content with data
BuzzSumo reviewed 100 million blog articles as part of its “Content Trends Report” study.
The study found that it is more difficult than ever to get people to share and link to content . Why? The amount of content that has been published since 2015 has exploded, making it more difficult to stand out.
On the other hand, they found that content that incorporates encrypted data is often authoritative and works better than others.
For example, the e-commerce figures published by Fevad regularly circulate everywhere on the web as in this article of the Journal du Net .
The complete guides
The complete guides are similar to the lists we discussed earlier.
The big difference is that with a comprehensive guide you don’t just give an exhaustive list of tips or examples. Instead, you cover all aspects of a given subject.
The main goal is to give someone everything they need to know about a topic in one page.
This is what we have done through our Amazon SEO guide that covers everything that is needed to set up to optimize your product sheets to the maximum for a good SEO on the world’s first e-commerce.
Visual content such as infographics represent the perfect format for obtaining backlinks.
This was the case for us, because two of our infographics on Amazon SEO and the SERP of the future were taken up by the excellent Olivier Andrieu of Abondance.com in this article and this one .
The basics of on-page SEO
On-page SEO optimization aims to ensure that Google finds your web pages so that it can display them in its search results. It also means having relevant, detailed, and useful content for the search expressions you want to appear on.
To summarize, Google scans your page for the purpose of positioning it in its index on a specific keyword or search expression.
And when Google sees the same term over and over again, it says: “This page must talk about this keyword!”. That’s why it’s important to use your target keyword on your page… without going too far (we’ll talk about it later).
For now, let’s see how to optimize SEO via on-page SEO.
If your site is running WordPress, we strongly recommend using the Yoast SEO plugin. Warning, Yoast is not a magic extension that will automatically optimize your site (moreover there is no one).
But Yoast makes it easy to set up your page elements like title and meta description tag.
It also has a ton of other features to help optimize your site as a whole.
Place your main keyword in the title tag
Embedding the keyword on which you want to be visible in the page title tag is the most important rule in SEO on-page, and even in SEO all short.
Why is it important?
When it comes to optimizing the SEO of your page, your title tag is one of the first items that search engine robots will analyze.
Tell yourself that your title tag summarizes the content of your page. And when you use your keyword in your title tag, it tells Google that your page is about that keyword.
Optimize your meta description for more clicks
Your meta description is not as important as your title tag for SEO.
Google even stated in 2009 that it does not consider the keywords contained within the meta description as a positioning factor.
So why should you bother creating and optimizing your meta description?
Because people read your meta description to determine whether or not to click on your result.
analyze together this meta description on an important page of our website that is the page presenting our SEO agency in Paris Let’s .
Through this meta description, we clearly highlight the benefits of collaborating with a SEO agency, which will have the effect of attracting more clicks.
Also be sure to add the main keyword on which you want to position your page, here “SEO agency Paris” because when someone looks for this term, Google will do it stand out in bold as you can see above.
Use keywords in your content
We recommend that you include your main keyword several times in the content of your page.
In this way, Google will be sure that your page actually deals with this topic.
For example, in this article based on the Amazon Seller Central program and its differences with Vendor Central, the keyword “Amazon Seller Central” was placed in the first 150 words of the content .
We have also added this keyword several times in the body text, in various places.
In total, we have used our main keyword 8 times in our content. And since the article is composed of almost 2000 words, it is not a very high density of keywords. But this is enough for Google to understand the bulk of the content.
Be careful not to abuse your keyword in your content by repeating it 100 times. This will be considered a Black Hat SEO strategy called Keyword Stuffing that could claim you a penalty from Google.
Conclusion? Include your main keyword on your page a handful of times. It does not matter if you include it a little too much or not enough. However, do not take the bad habit of repeating it too many times and hindering the proper understanding that a reader might have of your text, or receive a penalty.
Use synonyms and variations
Make sure you use synonyms and variations of your target keyword throughout your content.
This can help your page position itself on dozens of different keywords.
For example, take a look at this article on our website that deals with YouTube SEO .
Since the term “YouTube SEO” has been incorporated into the title and content tag, it is not surprising to see this page position itself on the front page of Google for this query.
But we also have a lot of variations of this keyword. This is called LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords .
LSI keywords are terms that are closely related to our main keyword.
For example, we include LSI keywords like “YouTube SEO” and “make its YouTube channel visible” in the post.
Tip: To easily find LSI keywords related to your main phrase, we advise you to look at the queries proposed by the Google search bar auto-completion, as for the example of the “marketing” query below.
Optimize your images
Unlike a text article, search engines find it difficult to understand what is inside an image.
So they rely on the filename, alternative text, and title of your image to determine what the image is talking about.
If your website focuses on visual through a lot of images, the SEO of your images will be paramount. Otherwise, Google will find it difficult to understand what is on your page.
Here’s how to optimize your images:
First, give your image a descriptive filename. This is what Abondance.com did very well with this article about Google’s BERT algorithm.
The image file name corresponds to “bandeau-google-bert.jpg”. Simple and effective.
Then use the alt text attribute to describe your image and make it visible in visual search engines like Google Images.
With the increase in visual searches due to apps like Google Lens and smart speakers with a screen, always think about optimizing your images so as not to miss out on an additional influx of visitors to your site.
The user experience
You can have a super SEO optimized page, certainly.
But what if she looks like this? What’s the point?
Visitors will quickly flee from it.
Even though the user experience is subjective (making its appreciation difficult for major search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo), it has an indirect impact on your SEO.
After any, if your site is difficult to use, people will not please it. And without links or shares, your chances of being visible in Google are virtually zero.
⚠️ In May 2020, Google hit a big blow by announcing the deployment of the Core Web Vitals program, which introduces the user experience as a positioning factor for SEO. This project is based on loading time, interactivity and visual stability of the page content.
The user experience is therefore taken into account to calculate the organic visibility of your web pages.
Introduction to Technical SEO
Technical SEO is a very broad topic. The main goal of technical SEO is to ensure that search engines can easily find and browse all pages of your website. But in recent years, SEO has expanded to include topics like site loading speed, mobile optimization and more.
To be honest, most site owners don’t need to worry so much about technical SEO (especially if your site is running WordPress).
But that doesn’t mean that you should completely ignore this aspect of SEO. Only one fake move and your entire site could be deindexed.
That being said, here’s how to optimize the technical performance of your site without any coding knowledge.
Check your site with the Google Search Console
The Search Console is a dashboard of the health and performance of your site in Google.
For info: Bing has its own version of this tool called Bing Webmaster Tools.
To use CSG, you will need to verify that you are the owner of your site (Google calls the sites “Properties”).
When this is done, you will have access to a very handy tool that will show you how many people see and click on the pages of your site in the Google search results.
But this is just a sample of what the Search Console can provide you with.
The Search Console is packed with useful features that let you submit your Sitemap directly to Google, see how many pages are indexed, and much more.
Use good URL structures
Most people don’t give much importance to their URLs, which leads to not very readable URLs like this:
It turns out that your URLs are a key element in the SEO of your site .
Make sure that:
- Your URL structure is consistent. In this way, Google knows which category your pages are in. For example, if you have a category URL like siteweb.co.uk/t-shirts, make sure that all pages related to the T-shirts fall into this category: siteweb.fr/t-shirts/short-sleeved. If you do not use categories, you can have all your URLs at the root of the site: siteweb.com/page.
- Use keywords in your URLs without doing Keyword Stuffing. Just make sure that your target keyword appears once in your URL. For example: siteweb.fr/your-keyword.
- Avoid too long and unreadable URLs. Shorter URLs tend to be best positioned in Google.
The question you should Lay is as follows:
Should you go back and change your existing URLs?
It is obviously up to you to decide. But we usually recommend that people leave their URLs in place so as not to lose the SEO authority they have accumulated. Instead, focus on creating simple, readable and optimized URLs for your users about your future pages.
However, if you decide to optimize your old URLs, make sure to redirect old pages to new URLs via 301 redirects. And if this new structure results in multiple pages with similar content, implement canonical tags.
Measure and optimize the speed of your pages
A website with pages that load slowly is not ideal for the comfort of visitors and for your SEO.
In 2018, Google announced a new “Speed Update”: updated algorithm indicating that mobile page loading speed was a positioning factor considered for site referencing.
Fortunately, Google does not leave you in the unknown when analyzing your load time, as the Californian company has launched a mobile and desktop load time measurement tool called PageSpeed Insights .
The tool allows you to enter the address of your page in order to provide you with a performance score out of 100 of your load time.
As well as a series of measures that you can put in place to improve your loading time.
As you can see, we have some optimizations to put in place 🙂
It should also be noted that the speed analysis of your pages on computer and mobile can also be accessed directly in the Search Console in the “Improvements” section.
Tip: Systematically reduce the weight of your images.
Before uploading an image on your web page, please optimize it by reducing its weight. To do this:
- Put it in JPEG or WebP format.
- Use online image optimizers like Compressor.io and TinyPNG
- Set up the Lazy Loading on your site.
Switch to HTTPS
Google gives a slight advantage in search results for websites that are secure in HTTPS.
According to Moz , 93.6% of the results on the first page are secured by HTTPS encryption.
And the Google Chrome browser displays a warning for all pages still served by the HTTP protocol.
Google also announced that its browser now blocks pages with mixed content , in other words resources on a single page served in HTTPS and others in HTTP.
Therefore, if your site is not secure, we recommend that you configure it to HTTPS as soon as possible.
The only problem with switching to HTTPS is that your pages suddenly have different URLs. So it’s REALLY important that your pages are all redirected to the same URL via 301 redirects.
Site Architecture and Internal Mesh
When your site is very recent and has only 5 pages, the architecture of the site doesn’t matter so much.
But when your site has hundreds or even thousands of pages, how the architecture of your site is configured can make a great difference.
First of all, you should create a structure organized into hierarchies that organizes your pages into categories.
Next, we recommend that you set up internal links to your priority site pages .
That’s pretty much it. The only other thing to keep in mind is that your internal links need to have an optimized link anchor .
So if you link to a page on your e-commerce site that offers hoodies, don’t use anchor text like “click here”. Instead, make sure that your text anchor contains the keyword “hoodie”.
Tip: think about semantic cocoon
To go further in the internal mesh strategy of your site, we advise you to deepen your knowledge of semantic cocoon, a concept imagined by Laurent Bourrelly in the 2000s. This technique mixing Content Marketing, internal mesh and link building is a time-consuming strategy, but recognized as effective by many SEO consultants, for sites wanting to become number 1 on Google in their niche of activity.
Mobile as a priority
Mobile optimization has become a top priority today.
Google’s crawl and indexing system is now Mobile First. This means that the mobile version of your website is the main one that Google sees and will analyze.
So if your site loads quickly on computer but loads slowly on mobile, Google will consider your site slow.
If you use the Search Console, you can see if your site is mobile compatible and does not pose a Google analytics problem.
If this is not the case, invite you to use the online tool provided by Google for Mobile Optimization Test .
If through this test it turns out that your pages are not suitable for mobile support, this will have to be a priority in your SEO action plan.
Tip: Make sure you don’t use pop-ups or interstitial ads on your site that hinder web browsing on mobile and desktop. Google indicated that this kind of practice could lead to a drop in positioning in its index.
Interstitial ad penalized by Google.
Interstitial Pub Tolerated
Measure your results with Analytics
How can you know if all the efforts you put in your SEO strategy are working actually?
To measure your results and performance on the web, the recommended tool is called Google Analytics .
Here’s how Google Analytics can help you better manage your SEO campaigns:
- You can easily track and visualize the evolution of organic traffic over time. If you see a chart curve like this, you’re probably on the right track in terms of SEO strategy.
- You can identify which pages generate the most traffic from search engines. This way, you can analyze and reproduce what works.
- Google Analytics allows you to analyze how visitors interact with your site. Metrics like bounce rate and page views help you understand if your content meets user needs.
You can also configure conversions in GA. This way you can see if the traffic that comes from SEO allows you to convert your visitors into customers or generate sales.
The Link Building
The purpose of the Link Building, or Netlinking, is to get other websites to mention your site and include a hyperlink called backlink to it. This is also known as Off-Page SEO.
Even though backlinks and their acquisition are often controversial, this remains an extremely important element if you want to appear first for queries with a high volume of search.
Not all links are equal.
Links from trusted and authoritative sites will pass more PageRank to your site than a link from a small low profile website.
The authority, or popularity of a page, is measured by the PageRank score that Google assigns to it. This score, calculated on a value of 1 to 10, is assigned based on the quality and quantity of links received.
🥇 What is PageRank?
PageRank is the technology used by Google to evaluate the importance and quality of a web page. This is one of the variables Google uses to determine the place your site will occupy in the search engine results pages (SERP). The PageRank of a website is represented by a number of one to ten. The higher the figure, the more popular the website is.
The exact algorithm that is used to calculate PageRank is kept secret by Google. The algorithm is constantly being improved with new features and content analysis criteria. Until 2016, Google publicly displayed the PageRank score of each web page via the PageRank Toolbar, which is no longer the case.
The PageRank Toolbar that communicated the PageRank score of a web page.
Although PageRank of each page is no longer publicly communicated by Google , it still exists and is updated regularly!
Now there are several unofficial, more or less reliable ways to measure the authority of a domain name and the authority of a web page .
- Moz created two metrics: the Domain Authority , to calculate the authority of the site as a whole and the Page Authority to measure the authority of a specific web page.
- Ahrefs uses Domain Rating and URL Rating.
- Majestic uses Trust Flow, for the trust of the domain and the quality of the links received, the Citation Flow for the quantity of backlinks received, and the Topical Trust Flow . The latter metric measures the confidence of a page or site, relative to a specific theme.
The goal in SEO is to obtain backlinks from highly authoritative sites and pages dealing with a theme related to yours. As you will have understood, the contextuality between two pages that send links is paramount for SEO!
That’s why Majestic and its Topical Trust Flow is certainly the metric that closest to the PageRank calculated by Google.
When you start creating links to your website, keep in mind one fundamental rule: target links from pages dealing with a theme related to the yours .
Thematic links from pages that talk about a topic related to yours will have more weight to your SEO.
In addition, links from relevant and contextual sites show Google that these backlinks are legitimate. After all, it would seem really weird if most of the links pointing to your pastry blog come from video game blogs.
Note : It is quite acceptable to get some links from non-contextual sites. But if these links are the bulk of your backlinks profile, it will be a problem for Google.
Technical SEO Black Hat vs. White Hat
When we started doing SEO in 2010, the majority of SEO techniques were Black Hat. Tactics to gain artificial links via directories, press releases, blog comments, forums or PBN (Private Blog Network) worked wonderfully well.
Today, these kind of obscure linkage techniques no longer work as well as before. Moreover, since the release of the Google Penguin filter in 2012, this type of practice can be worth you a penalty resulting from the complete disappearance of your pages in Google results.
That’s why we do not recommend using Black Hat SEO techniques. This is a risk that is not worth it.
How do I know if a Link Building strategy is Black Hat or White Hat?
- Read Google’s official link system documentation that lists what is considered a bad inbound link on the part of the California firm. This list is regularly updated.
- Did you pay to get this link? Little matter how, if you directly paid money in order to get a backlink, it goes against the rules dictated by Google .
- Did you deserve this link? In other words, did anyone link to your site because they thought it was worth linking to it? If that is the case, you are on the right track.
Note: The Black Hat SEO is not just a matter of acquiring links artificially. Many other Black Hat approaches have nothing to do with Link Building, such as Spamdexing, Cloaking, Satellite Pages, Keyword Stuffing etc…
But in most cases, when people talk about SEO Black Hat, they refer to acquiring backlinks artificially.
Let’s analyze several White Hat link acquisition strategies that will allow you to increase the popularity of your website.
This White Hat technique is really effective when you take the time to run it well.
Simply put, the Skyscraper technique consists of finding articles on the web that receive a lot of backlinks and are therefore popular with Internet users.
If these articles receive links, it is because they deal with a topic that arouses interest. The goal is therefore to reproduce content on the same subject, but better : with more information, more texts, more visuals, more videos, more questions/answers… in short, the same article but of better quality.
The next step is to identify through Ahrefs or SEM Rush the sites that link to the article you have found, and then contact them indicating that you have produced better content in order to receive an inbound link. on their part.
The Guest Posting
Guest Posting as a link acquisition strategy is extremely controversial because guest articles published for the purpose of obtaining a backlink can be considered a Black Hat technique.
However, when you prioritize the quality of the information contained in your guest article, Guest Posting becomes a very effective way to acquire inbound links while rapidly increasing the exposure of your site.
Here are some tips to apply when starting your Guest Posting strategy:
- Publish your guest articles on sites dealing with a theme related to yours. Articles published on sites that are radically different to yours will send a warning to Google.
- Avoid applying optimized link anchors with your target keyword. Instead, give preference to your site name or brand.
- Do not rely exclusively on guest items for backlinks. Links from guest articles should represent approximately 5% of your backlinks profile (of your total inbound links).
This is something we’ve dealt with several times in this article, but the best way to get backlinks naturally will be through a Content Marketing strategy.
Write and publish articles specifically for them to get links.
Here are some types of content that will make you acquire links naturally:
- Figured studies on a particular industry
- An article that breaks myths
- A guide with visuals
- A free tool
- A list of tips or resources
- An infographic
🎯 What is a research intent?
Search intent is the main reason why a person does a search on the web. There are four main types of research intentions.
Understanding the search intent of web users is a BIG part of the success of your SEO for years to come.
For example, let’s say you want to go get Thai food for dinner.
You could look for “Thai Restaurant Paris”.
Your intent is transactional . Looking to buy to eat.
But let’s say you want to make a curry chicken. You would rather be looking for something like “Thai Curry Chicken Recipe”.
In this case, your research intent is informational . Looking to get information about how to make this dish yourself.
More you will build your content relative to the search intent, the more you will get a high positioning in Google.
You may be wondering how Google knows if a page matches the user’s intent?
It turns out that Google closely monitors how people interact with their search results.
And if they notice that people are skipping your result to click on another result, Google will see that your content is irrelevant to that search… which could give it a signal that your content is irrelevant.
Moreover MOZ SEO specialist Larry Kim managed to correlate organic click-through rate and positioning in Google .
However, the CTR (Click Rate) is not as important as call the Pogosticking.
💡 What is Pogosticking?
Pogosticking corresponds to the behavior of a user who clicks on a result in the search results and then leaves the page to see another result that he finds more relevant.
And if Google notices that people tend to leave your content to search results, that’s really bad sign.
➡️ How to optimize your site for user signals?
The first step is to ensure that your content matches the search intent of your target keyword. If your content does not match what the user wants, Google will notice it.
Once you have this in place, here are other actions you can apply to make sure Google users like your content.
- Write a clear and accurate introduction. Instead of turning around the pot with introductions like “This topic is important because it is necessary to…”, be more direct with a phrase like “Today we will show you how to get backlinks”.
- Use images and graphics. Images are much more visually appealing than a 100% text article. Also remember that content with images are more likely to get backlinks naturally.
- Add internal and external links to your page. This way, people can learn more about the topics you’re discussing in your article… without having to bounce back to SERPs.
- Improve your charging speed. Pages that load slowly = higher bounce rate. Moreover, the online tool Pingdom has demonstrated through a study a direct relationship between page loading time and bounce rate
- Make sure your content is easily readable. Use large fonts. Embed bullets and numbered lists as well as H2 and H3 title tags to split your content into sharp sections.
- Update your content. An important update of old content translates into a boost of freshness. In addition, users always want to read new things that are relevant when they read them.
Other SEO factors to take into account urgently
Let’s finish this introduction to SEO with an overview of other SEO trends to take into account absolutely your strategy.
However, we recommend that you prioritize the SEO fundamentals detailed throughout the article and then attack the optimizations related to these emerging trends.
Structured Data Schema Tags
A recent study by Moz on search engine ranking factors found no correlation between the use of Schema markup and the positions on the first page.
Some people have interpreted this result as the fact that structured data tags are not useful for SEO. And of course, if you think adding Schema markup to your page will improve your organic positioning, you’ll be disappointed.
One thing to keep in mind is that using Schema tags can increase your organic click-through rate . So even if you don’t get an improvement in your positioning, Schema tags can help you generate more organic traffic.
Integration of some Structured data tags generate the display of micro-data in SERPs, resulting in rich organic results.
If you look in the example above, Cdiscount for the query “Samsung TV 4K” attracts much more eye than its competitors in SERPs thanks to the display of micro rating and price data.
The Quality Raters
Quality Raters are people, human beings like you and me, commissioned by Google to evaluate the quality of the pages displayed in its organic results. Google regularly updates a guide, called the Quality Raters Guidelines , to provide guidance to Quality Raters to assess the quality of web pages.
Among the most important factors that these reviewers will take into account when judging the quality of your web page are
- The subject covered by the page: what is the purpose of the page and its main content?
- E-A-T: the level of expertise, authority and trust of the content, the website and its author.
- The main content of the page: the richness and quality of the written content.
- The degree of information: clear and visible information about the author and the website.
- Reputation: what other sites say about the author and the website.
Note that Quality Raters do not give a rating to the web page , but evaluate it against this value scale below:
Once the page is evaluated, the Quality Rater sends its report to Google which will probably take it into account in its positioning calculation and algorithm.
E-A-T , abbreviation for “Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness”), en French “Expertise, Authority and Trust” is something Google has increasingly focused on in recent years.
It’s very simple: Google wants to be 100% sure that the content of the search results is trustworthy. In order for Google to assign your site a high level of EA-T, it must be considered a trusted authority in your industry.
For example, Wikipedia probably has the highest degree of EA-T of all websites on the planet. The content is written and edited by thousands of people, many of whom are experts in their field.
To improve your E-A-T, there are not really specific rules. If your site publishes generic content written by anonymous independent editors, it will be difficult to measure the degree of trust and determine whether these authors are recognized for their expertise.
But if you publish high-quality content written by respected experts in the field (with their name, photo and description displayed) your E&A level may be valued.
In addition, it is known that even the E-A-T system is strongly influenced by inbound links since Google has confirmed that PageRank plays an important role in setting the E&A level as you can read in the excerpt below.
It’s no secret that the number of people searching with their voices has increased by leaps of giant in recent years.
Google even reported that almost half of American adults use voice search every day .
When we talk about voice search, many people ask us: “What is the point of optimizing my site for voice search? Even though I’m quoted by my Google Home, no one visits my website.”
This is certainly a relevant note, but voice searches are not just for smart speakers, like Google Home or Amazon Echo.
Already in 2016, Google announced that 20% of smartphone searches were voice.
In other words, more and more people are bypassing their keyboards for the benefit of their voices. And this has an impact on mobile searches as well as traditional computer searches.
Voice search is one of the most important trends in the world of SEO and digital marketing. As more and more people start searching with their voices, publishers will need to find ways to create and optimize content specifically for voice searches.
Optimize your videos
YouTube has recently surpassed Facebook to be the second most popular websites in the worldYouTube .
Unlike other social networks like Twitter, YouTube is also a very popular search engine. Which means that optimizing your YouTube SEO is very important for the visibility of your videos .
In addition, according to an analysis of the Sistrix site , YouTube videos are increasingly present in Google’s search results.
Of course, YouTube videos have been in Google’s search results for years. But in recent months, they occupy more and more spaces in the SERP… especially above conventional blue links, and for informational queries .
Which means being present on YouTube is a necessity for a good strategy SEO.
Just as voice search uses voice, visual search uses images. Now you may wonder what is the purpose of looking for images, if we already have both searches where you can type and talk. The answer is quite simple: it makes our life easier. Before the voice search, one could only type on a keyboard. This method of research is not only tedious but can not always give good results and most of the time it is not convenient to type. Then the voice search came up and allowed us to search for things while doing other things.
A picture is worth a thousand words!
Visual research is there not only to make our life easier, but also to improve research. Imagine that you are using a product for a while and its name disappears. If you wanted buy it again, it would be difficult for you to find its name. But using visual search, you could take a picture of it and the visual search engine would display similar results, allowing you to find it easily.
Among the main visual search applications we can mention Google Lens and Pinterest Lens.
In terms of optimizations, this means that you absolutely need to optimize your images:
- Make sure they are in high definition.
- Lighten their weight.
- Fill in a descriptive title for the image file.
- Fill in the alt attribute with keywords.
As you can see, working your SEO is a job that will take you a lot of time and seriousness. But given the benefits that good visibility in search engines can bring you, this work It is well worth it.
We recommend starting with the basics: make sure that search engines can browse your site in depth. Then start creating content optimized by target keywords and themes. Then, make other sites talk about you by sharing real value content in order to get backlinks.
These three steps represent the foundations of SEO.
Once these basics are in place, start starting more advanced work, such as optimizing your visibility on YouTube and your voice search presence.