Several different factors influence how well search engines understand the content of your website and its ability to attract your target audience. This is the reason that search engine optimization is a very important tool for your website.
Here are 4 effective SEO strategies you need to know about how to increase your rankings on search engines.
1. Images and SEO
Images play an important role in your SEO effect. The research found that images appeared in 28% of SERPs in September 2018. Posts and pages with images receive better engagement, shares on social media, and overall improve the ability of the content to engage customers.
Also, customers pay close attention to page load speed. Google has found that when the page load time increases from just 1 second to 3 seconds, your chances of people bouncing increases by 32 percent.
When your page load time increases from 1 second to 5 seconds, that probability increases by 90 percent. Your images play an important role in how quickly pages load.
You have three main image types to choose from: JPEG, GIF, and PNG.
Most of the images you see online are JPEG. Since they are widely used, they are compatible with most device types. They also compress images to help keep the file small. This can sometimes hurt the quality of the image, but it also helps page load time.
GIF images have gained tremendous popularity over the past few years because they allow users to incorporate simple animation as well as having regular art. These images only use 256 colors, so you would not want to use a GIF to upload a photograph.
The limitation also means that the size of the image is small, thus making them a good choice for certain images, such as the company logo, that need to download quickly.
PNG images are the newest, which means that you might find support and compatibility of the images lacking in some sectors. These images can use more colors, but the images do tend to be larger.
To optimize your SEO, consider carefully the role the image will play within a particular piece of content on your site and which file type will have the best impact on the user experience for your audience.
Balance image quality, load speed, and the need for image compatibility and support to create the best image experience.
2. Website Design and SEO
Responsive design has been the chosen solution for many people. This design automatically detects the type of device that displays the site and adjusts accordingly.
Google has stated that they prefer responsive design– although they also say that they do not prioritize one type of design over another in the algorithm as long as the pages are compatible with mobile users.
Responsive design, however, does have a few issues as well. The largest drawback is the need to optimize for both the mobile and the desktop experience simultaneously. This means that if your desktop users prefer the site design but your site performs poorly with mobile users, you have to determine the risk of modifying your site design to please your mobile users and weigh the risks of both audience types.
The adaptive design attempts to correct some of the issues seen in responsive design, as site owners have greater flexibility to create separate journeys for mobile versus desktop users.
It also reduces some of the load speed problems seen with responsive design. On the other hand, this type of design can be complicated and require a lot of resources for many site owners.
You need to consider the type of mobile site that will work best for your needs. Look at the traffic on your site, the behavior of mobile versus desktop customers, and see which type of site will perform best for you and your SEO goals.
3. Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP and SEO
AMP, however, is a tool that has been an around for a few years and allows you to capitalize on website speed on mobile. By creating AMP pages, you can ensure that latest and most relevant of your pages have speed on their side when customers come across them.
Google likes AMP pages because they can be trusted to deliver fast content and optimal user experience.
To create an accelerated site, take advantage of AMP, particularly for any news or similarly targeted articles you create on your website. This will help you get your new releases above the competition and in front of customers, building a strong brand reputation.
4. XML Sitemap for SEO
Creating an XML sitemap can play a strong role in helping Google understand and properly index your page. It provides you with the opportunity to let Google know how your site is organized and where you would like them to prioritize the indexing process.
You can easily generate a sitemap. For example, WordPress allows you to create and update a sitemap with a plugin. You can then take this auto-generated sitemap and submit it directly to Google.
Since the purpose of the site map is to help Google know how to index your page, you should not include pages that you have blocked with robots.txt on your site map. If you have a very large site, you also want to make sure you place an emphasis or weight on pages that have been highly optimized and represent your site best.
Similarly, you only want to include canonical versions of your website on the sitemap.
Once you have submitted your sitemap to Google, go back and review it in Google Search Console. If the search engine has problems indexing certain pages, they will let you know, which can help you quickly fix these potential problems and create a site better prepared for search.
SEO is a challenging area with many various techniques and optimization processes to follow. Use these 4 proven strategies and you will increase your rankings, targeted traffic, and profits online.
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