So last week we challenged you to a new resolution and that was implementing a brilliant SEO strategy meant to improve your visibility & rankings tremendously. How’s the execution stage going? Please keep us updated. If you missed it, all’s forgiven and know that it’s not too late to employ The 10-Step SEO Strategy You Will Not Rank Without in 2019 – Part 1. Before we venture into Part 2, let’s do a high level catch up of what the previous steps were.

  • Step #1 – Establish an “Opportunity Keyword”
  • Step #2 – Analyze Google’s First Page
  • Step #3 – Create Something Different or Better
  • Step #4 – Get backlinks
  • Step #5 – On-Page Optimization

Now that memories are refreshed, have a look at the other steps that may have you ranking above all your competitors this year.

Step #6 – Optimize for User Intent

Google’s main aim is to satisfy users. This simply means that their objective is to give people results that align with their User Intent – something that they are very good at figuring out. Besides Google RankBrain & 2018 Google Quality Rater Guidelines that have an entire section on User Intent, the search engine has started to ask users themselves about their main goals behind their searches.

This is an image of a Google user intent survey.
Source: Backlinko

So now the question begs – How do you optimize for User Intent?

Well, that’s where The Skyscraper Technique 2.0 comes into play. You may be confused because we spoke about the other form of Skyscraper Technique in Part 1 but fret not, here are the differences between the two.

This is an image of the difference between The Skyscraper Technique 1.0 and 2.0.
Source: Backlinko

Skyscraper Technique 1.0 helps you attain the backlinks you need to rank on the first page, while the Skyscraper Technique 2.0 makes certain you stay on page 1. Here are precise steps of the latter:

1. Figure out User Intent

The first way to find out User Intent yourself is to analyze the first page because it gives major insight into what people are looking for. If something ranks on Google’s first page, it definitely satisfies User Intent. So plug in & search your keyword and then scan the results page specifically asking yourself the questions – “What kind of intent do these results satisfy?”. Do people want information? If yes, are they needing basics or advanced strategies? Do they want to buy something? If so, are they ready to buy or are they comparing different products?

This is an image of the types of user intent.

Source: Backlinko

2. Satisfy User Content

After finding out what people’s searching goals are, publish high-quality content to match that User Intent. If you’ve done a case study on a Content Marketing strategy for example, but realize that on the first results page there instead are checklists on how to implement one, shift your content to fit that need. Do your own Content Marketing checklist – whether repurposing current information or coming up with something that’s totally new.

3. Optimize for UX Signal

UX Signals (User Experience Signals) describe the quality of a person’s interaction with a system, product or service. A positive user experience is important in capturing attention and loyalty; ultimately increasing engagement and revenue. You can achieve this through maximum dwell time, organic CTR & minimum bounce rate. These can be carried out by:

  • Embedded videos
  • Short introductions
  • Lots of examples
  • H2 & H3 subheaders
  • Short sentence & paragraphs

Having these under your belt will ensure that your users have a pleasant journey throughout your content pieces and even your website.

Step #7 – Make your Content Look Great

The abovementioned pointers may already assist in making your content look presentable and neat. However, for the most underrated part of Content Marketing which is design, there needs to be a bit more done visually to make your content look appealing. There needs to be a lot invested in terms of time, effort and money into content design. Nevertheless, don’t break a sweat at the mention of money. Here are 4 types of visual content that can be easily pulled off.

  • Graphs and Charts – These make data easy to understand.
  • Screenshots and Pictures – They’re great in guiding people through steps or something that may be too technical.
  • Blog Post Banners – They make content posts more appealing on websites and on social media.
  • Graphics and Visualizations – Amazing at putting concepts into visualizations.

Step #8 – Build Links to your Page

Now that you have created visually appealing, informative content that caters to User Intent, it’s time to actively build links to your content. Let’s explore the 3 link building strategies you can try out.

Broken Link Building

With this process, you find a broken link on someone’s site and offer your own content as a replacement. SEO expert, Brian Dean, offers the below outreach email as a guideline on how you can approach a blogger for example.

Source: Backlinko

Competitor Analysis

What’s happening next door? What are your neighbours doing? Find out. This is a very old school way of building links but it’s a longstanding method that still works. Firstly, find a website that is ranking for a keyword you want to rank for. E.g. when wanting to rank for “white roses for sale”, Google that and then check the first page & who ranks for it at number one.

An image of Google's "white roses for sale" search results.

After finding out your competitor, use Ahrefs to look at their number of backlinks and domains.

An image of Netflorist's backlinks & referring domains on Ahrefs.

The next step is then to see if you can get the same links they have or at least a handful. To do that, go through their backlink profile and find pages where your own link will add value.

Evangelist Method

Unlike the other methods, this strategy is not about links but is about sending your content to the right people. By right people we mean the thought leaders and bloggers who run the content and discussion space in your niche. Again, we’ll use Brian Dean’s template as an example of how yours could also look like.

As influencers with a huge following, reaching the appropriate individuals will lead to a lot of shares and backlinks.

Step #9 – Improve and Update your Content

This is hugely underestimated and understated as a method that influences your rankings. It’s very important to review your content regularly and see where you can improve & update it to suit current trends and needs of your audience. For example,

  • Remove old screenshots and images.
  • Add new strategies & delete the ones that don’t work anymore.
  • Refresh your statistics, etc.

Additionally, there’s a term in SEO called “Orphaned Pages” which simply describes pages existing on your website without any other page linking to them. Users cannot find them through the website journey as there is no single link in the entire website. However, these pages can still be found on search engines. The bad thing with Orphan Pages is that search engines assume that any page that doesn’t get a link within its own website has no importance and this negatively impacts SEO and eventually, rankings as well. As a way to improve & update your content to get rid of Orphan Pages, an SEO process called URL mapping needs to be done in order to identify which pages don’t receive traffic and don’t have backlinks.

Step #10 – Increase your Domain Authority

Domain Authority is a metric that can be used to understand how search engines’ algorithms rank you based on your authority or credibility on the web. With this, you can also see how you compare to your competition and be able to improve your rankings accordingly. When you have high Domain Authority, implementing SEO becomes a lot easier. The several ways you can increase your domain authority are:

  • Optimizing your On-Page content.
  • Creating linkable content.
  • Improving your internal linking structure.
  • Removing bad and toxic links.
  • Having a website that is mobile-friendly.
  • Publishing studies and data.
  • Establishing content partnerships.

And that’s basically it. With all these steps, you’ve got a winning formula on your hands and can carry on to dominate search engines. Sounds like a fair New Year’s resolution, right? We think so too!

If you are needing SEO Services or advice, don’t hesitate to contact us!

References

Dean, B. (2019). The 9-Step SEO Strategy for 2019 [NEW]. [online] Backlinko. Available at: https://backlinko.com/seo-strategy#awesomecontent [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019].

Dean, B. (2018). SEO Case Study: How I Increased My Organic Traffic 652% in 7 Days. [online] Backlinko. Available at: https://backlinko.com/skyscraper-technique-2-0 [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019].

Teh, J. (2018). 9 Simple Steps To Increase Your Domain Authority. [online] SEOPressor Connect – WordPress SEO Plugin. Available at: https://seopressor.com/blog/how-to-increase-domain-authority/ [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019].

Sen, W. (2018). Biggest SEO Mistakes: Orphan Pages and how to avoid | BLUE MEDIA. [online] Blue Media. Available at: https://www.gobluemedia.com/blog/orphan-pages/ [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019].