SEO 101 – How to beat your competitors to the top spot in Google

SEO 101 – How to beat your competitors to the top spot in Google

Every business and website owner hopes to rank on the top spot on Google for obvious reasons, which include increased traffic, visibility, leads generation, and boost in sales.

 

Sadly, achieving the top spot on Google does not happen by chance and is even a struggle for many knowledgeable and skilled marketers. So, how can this feat be achieved by a regular business owner?

There is no procedure that absolutely guarantees high rankings, however, some strategies, if implemented, can increase your chances of getting to the top spot.

Focus on a niche

To succeed at SEO you must understand the competitive landscape. Competing with large organisations with access to an unlimited marketing budget is the last thing you want to do as a small business owner. You are more likely to waste your time and money than outranking them, even though there’s a chance you can outrank them.

 

This makes focusing on a niche important. This means that, rather than going against big companies for popular and oftentimes general keywords, become a big fish in a small pond by drilling down and focusing on long tail keywords with lower competition and higher buying intent.

 

Bear in mind that this process may require your business to alternatively focus on specific products and services than general ones. For example, if you are in the business of exclusively offering home renovation services, you can niche down to custom kitchen makeovers or one-day bathroom renovations. The likelihood of ranking for this more specific keyword phrases is higher and you can start to rank faster.

Target the right keywords

Targeting the right keywords can put anyone at the top spot on Google. If, for instance, a page is optimised for ‘Red nubby wubbie musketeer,’ It can perhaps reach the top spot in a few days. However, would my business actually want to be on the top spot for this phrase? Of course not, thinking of the fact that this phrase doesn’t exist as a real product or service.

 

The point here is that keywords obscure enough are easy to rank for and we certainly don’t want to rank for obscure keywords, rather we want to rank for keywords and phrases potential buyers use to search for our products and services in Google.

 

Tools like keywordtool.io or keyword planner by Google will help you discover relevant keywords with little competition but a decent number of searches. You can always move on to more competitive keywords as your website starts to rank for less competitive keywords and gradually gains more authority.

Optimise Content for Keywords

After drilling down a niche and focusing on less competitive and easier keywords, it’s time to optimise the relevant pages by adding those keywords in strategic places on your website. As much as you would want to avoid keyword stuffing, you should use your keywords dynamically within your page and content.

Core areas you should focus on using them are;

  • The URL.
  • Headings such as  H1, H2 e.t.c.
  • Title tag.
  • Image Alt tag and captions.
  • Throughout the content.

 

Bear in mind that comprehensive content that covers the topic at hand adequately is preferred by your readers and subsequently Google. Hence using your keywords in specific areas in your content is good but will not replace writing longer content that adequately covers the topic.

Create valuable content

88% of b2b companies employ content marketing as a part of their general marketing strategy, according to the content marketing institute.This involves a wide variety of content types being used, such as infographics, videos, blog posts, webinars, newsletters,  etc to engage potential buyers.

 

Consistently adding new content to your site is not negotiable if you want to rank top in Google. But don’t just do this for the sake of adding content; add high-quality useful content that really gives value to your prospects and customers.

 

By doing this you will witness a boost in your rankings in two major ways. First, by having more content, your site is recognised by Google to be dense with keywords, therefore, your site is more likely to be returned to the search results by Google.

Second, having more content will help you gain more links overall and get visitors to spend more time on your site.

Get Links from high authority sites

Links are a critical part of SEO. According to a search engine report by MOZ, Inbound links are very important in achieving high rankings.

 

Some link acquisition strategies you can implement on your site are:

  • Guest posting on sites in your niche with high authority.
  • Submitting your site to review sites and local business directories such as Google My business Yelp and TripAdvisor.
  • Searching for broken links in your industry and requesting that they are replaced with links to your site.
  • Adding evergreen content that will naturally attract links from journalists and bloggers such as tutorials, how-to-posts,  guides etc.

Conclusion

There isn’t a surefire way to get to the top spot on Google. However, your chances can be significantly increased by targeting the right audience and keywords, followed by the creation of tons of valuable content on your site. You can achieve the top spot on Google search sooner than you think.

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