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Must Have SEO Strategies in 2016

It’s a game of cat and mouse – businesses constantly search for SEO strategies which work within the current online environment, only to discover that the rules have changed and an SEO approach which used to be successful no longer yields good results.

This is a perpetual problem for businesses, but it also highlights why a you, the business owner, should always adapt. Your website needs to move forward and change its approach depending on what’s going on in the marketplace at that time, and what changes are being implemented within popular search engines.

The only way to maintain an effective SEO strategy is to continually update it. With that in mind, let’s look at some of the changes expected throughout 2016, and how your business should adapt to them.

Keywords Still Matter

While search engines such as Google continue to refine their technologies so that they can rank more meaningful and useful information, this still involves some aspect of incorporating great keyword implementation. But it has to be built on solid keyword and keyphrase research, and is now only part of the bigger picture.

It’s all about usefulness.

You can cram your website with the most relevant keywords and keyphrases under the sun, but if the content isn’t there to carry those keywords, then a website will be penalised and fall down the search rankings, or be omitted from them entirely.

Marketers and businesses must therefore start with a topic, build useful content around it, and then incorporate natural keywords which refer directly to said content in a meaningful way.

You can do this effectively by:

  1. Using the great keyword researching tools such as Keyword Planner or SEMrush, which will help you analyse and identify the keywords which will produce the greatest number of hits for your given topic/sector. You will also be able to see which keywords are popularly searched, but haven’t been taken advantage of yet.
  2. Researching competitors to see which keywords are working for them. If a company has a better SEO strategy, learn from this and incorporate what works.
  3. Keeping it natural. Keyword stuffing doesn’t work! Look for long-tail keywords which naturally occur in sentences and headings. Make it all flow nicely together so that content is information rich, valuable, and relevant to the keywords you’re using.

Other Important SEO Strategies

Sure, keywords are still important, but not as much as they used to be! Search rankings are weighted differently now, there are several aspects of website content which will increase those rankings without requiring keywords. These include:

  • Mobile Friendly Design: Google now actively penalises sites which are not optimised for mobile devices. Make sure your website functions on all devices to increase your rank.
  • Responsive Loading Times: If your site doesn’t load quickly then visitors will leave. This will also affect your search ranking. Keep your website design simple and responsive.
  • Link Building: Make sure that your content has some links to third party sites with equally useful content. The more visitors who use these sites, the more Google will improve your site’s standing. You also need to use internal links, linking to other parts of your own website.
  • Word Count: Google now prefers longer, information rich content. Word counts of between 1,000 and 1,500 words do best.
  • Guest Blogging: By inviting other bloggers onto your site, you will attract more visitors and also accumulate stronger back links.

These suggestions are just the tip of the iceberg. For more information on how to improve your website and its ranking, contact one of our experts today.

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