Google made a total of thirteen major changes to their ranking algorithm in 2014, and there are certainly dozens more to come in the foreseeable future. One or more of these small changes could make a huge impact on your SEO strategy, perhaps even derailing a heretofore successful campaign. Simply put. you have to pay special attention to the nuance.
So, what is the best overall strategy for making sure Google and the rest of the search engines rank your website as the finest possible response to a user’s query? Is there anything you can do to make a real difference?
Let’s take a look at five SEO tips to help you kick off 2015:
1. Go Mobile
2014 is the first year in history that saw web traffic on mobile devices exceed that of desktop and laptop computers. As a result, search engines algorithms are now rewarding websites that feature a “responsive” design; presenting consistent displays across multiple device types and screen sizes. If your website is not already mobile-friendly, you’re very late to the party.
2. Optimize for Different Search Engines
This could also be the year that Google gets kicked to the curb by multiple web browsers (other than Chrome, of course). Firefox has already replaced Google with Yahoo as their default search engine and Google’s deal with Apple to be Safari’s default search engine expires in 2015 and both Bing and Yahoo are already vying for the spot. With all this in mind, 2015 will almost certainly be the year to start optimizing your website for search engines other than Google.
3. Re-focus on ROI
Many organizations, some of them led astray by less-than-reputable search engine optimization companies with a big paycheck to justify, mistakenly gauge the success of their efforts by using ranking scores as the sole or key metric. Ask yourself the question: Does it really matter if you’re first on every search page if that never converts into additional revenue? In the year to come, take the time to ensure your website is actually working for you. If it is not creating a strong ROI, it’s probably time to invest less in ranking for obscure keywords and instead focus on quality traffic.
4. Make it Personal
If your company did not fully embrace social media portals in 2014, do not waste another minute. Make sure your brand and company name finds its niche on multiple social networks. Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest all merit your attention, because each is capable of reaching an important segment of your target demographic in different, yet highly-effective, ways. Staying active on social media allows you to interact with your customers on a more personal level and, as a side benefit, search engine algorithms add “points” for sites with a strong pattern of inbound links from social media sites, enabling your website’s content to get picked up faster and rank higher.
5. Target the “Long Tail”
Use 2015 to target your ideal customer base by using long tail keywords in your ad campaigns. Broad keywords are great for generating huge amounts of traffic, but long tail traffic is often where most of a company’s online ROI will be generated. Consideration must be given to the fact that the competition for broad keywords is far greater than it is for long tail keywords, making ranking for long tail keywords more consistent and with a higher ROI.
If you focus on these five things, your website’s ROI should increase over the coming year.