I am sometimes asked what it takes for a website to be No. 1 on Google’s first page of its SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). More often, you hear the question, “Why am I not ranking No. 1 for the search term I want?” For this discussion, I am going to focus on Google as our search engine.
For starters, unless you are only one of 10 websites that fit a unique search, you won’t be No. 1. A person needs to keep in mind that the broader a search becomes the less likely you are to appear in the SERPs. The real question is, “How can I get increase my odds of getting to No. 1?” Everyone wants to get found online. They want to attract visitors to their websites and convert these visitor to customers.
Let’s focus on off site SEO. This type of SEO involves the elements not showing up on the website itself.
Even if you have a good website loaded with a good quantity of unique content and strong keyword usage, there are still additional elements to consider off site.
Search engines employ secret algorithms for ranking search results. Although content is king, other elements are involved.
Some of these off site elements are:
- Incoming links – Think of an incoming link as a vote of confidence from another website. Some of the referring website’s strength is transferred to you. The more links (votes) you have, the better you will do. Of course, if these links are suspect and black hat links, you could go the other way as well. Remember, these are incoming links. Outgoing links is you voting for someone else.
- Geographical Area – Where you are located in relationship of the search being done. This can be improved my making sure you are listed properly on Google maps and places. This includes not only your information, but your profile, including industry type and links to your website. A verified account will carry much more weight.
- Directory listings – Many of these listings are free and require email verification. Not only do they help to drive traffic to your website organically, they bring in additional outside links.
- Social media listings – These will drive organic traffic, as well as bring additional incoming links.
- You Tube Videos – You Tube videos, if done properly, are searchable on the Internet and appear in the SERPs, giving additional exposure. They bring in additional organic traffic. They give additional incoming links to your site, if set up correctly. We’d be happy to show you how!
- Content writing – Unique articles, either on your blog or guest writing, also bring relevance for organic traffic, as well as an opportunity to bring more additional incoming links.
- Paid ad click advertising – Yeah, so this one isn’t free. But the point is, there are a number of options.
Building a website, then simply expecting visitors to come to the site, is not always realistic. Often times, websites will rank great depending upon their on-site SEO and quality of unique content. But if you want to be No. 1, chances are you will need to do off-site SEO as well.