The main stages of SEO-promotion
It’s been a long time since we wrote big step-by-step guides. Today we decided to tell you in detail about the difficult stage of search engine optimization and website promotion. Get ready, it will be long:)
The basic principles of SEO
To begin with, we want to talk about the basic principles of SEO in 2020:
Original content is the basis for promotion in search engine rankings. If there were no this criterion, search engines would simply line up pages by the appearance of quality, but not unique content.
The presence of internal links to pages on the site. This makes it easier for search robots (crawlers) to bypass the site and facilitate indexing.
CNC (human-intelligible urls). Addresses of web pages should be understandable to people, so they even before entering the site to understand the approximate content. Judge for yourself, if you open the page site/page-123 or site/etapy-seo-prodvigenia
Develop a personal brand for the company. For example, Google today responds very well to what a company says about itself online (including on its website).
Focus on local SEO. Search engines try to form the results of user queries based on their location. It is enough to know only the city, and it can be determined on the basis of the IP – address.
Let’s talk more about these and other important aspects of promotion.
Relevance is the extent to which the content of the page corresponds to the user’s search query. Simply put, as far as coincides with the meaning of what was required to find something that is presented on the page. And we are talking about the meaning, not just the content.
To understand the details, consider the factors that affect relevance. They are divided into internal and external. Internal include:
- Frequency of keyword usage. If before you had to stuff the text with keys to get to the top, today they must be mentioned “in place.
- Mentioning them in the right place is not enough. It is important to place them as close to the beginning of the text as possible.
- Include keys in your headlines, snippet, and page title.
There aren’t many opportunities to influence external factors. Here you should simply build up your link mass. It’s better to do this naturally, through social networks or by placing calls to share your content on your pages.
Compiling a semantic core, collecting statistics
The first stages of search engine optimization involves very hard work on the semantic core of your site. Indeed, promotion is impossible without understanding by what queries you’re going to move.
To collect a basic semantic kernel, you need:
- Open wordstat service.
- Enter into it your main key query (eg, repair apartments).
- In the column on the left side you will see the results of your query with all the word forms. On the right side will show queries that are similar to yours.
We recommend installing the Wordstat helper extension for convenient further work.
If you installed the extension, just click on the desired queries, and they will automatically appear in your list.
Note that the queries will be divided into categories. For example, some will explicitly express the intention to buy (repair apartments price), and some will be of a reference nature (how to make repairs).
Most likely you will want to remove the various reference queries and leave only the one with the words “buy”, “price” and “take my money” 🙂
We assure you that you should not do that. For now, just read on.
Once you have your keyword list, you need to sort them. This process is called clustering.
Before you do this, it’s not unreasonable to check your keyword list for “junk” queries. For example, if you do expensive designer renovations, then exclude the words “cheap”, “budget,” etc. Do the same with those keys that do not correspond to your activity.
Now you can begin clustering. Its essence is to similar keys into groups. For example, you get a group of keys, which contain requests for:
- Renovation of studios;
- Design renovation of houses;
- Finishing offices.
Congratulations, your site must necessarily have these pages. In fact, properly filtered and clustered kernel represent the structure of your site.
Internal optimization: title, description, URL
Well, let’s talk about internal optimization factors. Title, description and URL were not randomly chosen, because they have the greatest impact on the relevance and attractiveness of your site in search results. As a consequence, and on SEO.
- Title – the title of the page. On the page itself, it is not displayed, but written in the meta tags page. Title must contain the main keyword for this page and be no longer than 70-80 characters. There is a little trick, if someone has already used the desired inclusion in the Tytl request, it can be unique simply by adding the name of the site at the end. Most CMS can do this.
- description – although it is not directly affected by SEO, but can significantly help search engine intelligence to understand what your page is about. In addition, it visually improves the attractiveness of your page in extradition.
In fact, it is a description of your page and its content. The more attractive it is, the better. By including keywords in a modified or original form you will give the most complete answer to the user’s query.
URLs – in this point we again want to emphasize the importance of CNCs in SEO. CNCs are necessary so that users can understand what is waiting for them on the page before they even enter it. Use Latin characters to write URLs. I.e. carry out transliteration of your Cyrillic titles.
Internal optimization: images, headers, loading speed.
Let’s talk about another set of factors that can affect the promotion of the site.
Images – as yet, search engines have not learned to recognize exactly what is shown in the picture. However, they are happy to use them to form their own opinion about the pages of the site.
There are a few key points for optimizing images on the site:
- Optimal image size. Sometimes high-quality photos can weigh several megabytes (more than the code of a typical landing page). Then the download speed will drop and you can forget about promotion. Use special services to compress images to a certain level without loss of quality.
- Alternative text. In the case where the user has a bad Internet, or he (she) uses the function of voiceover content of the page, the attribute “AlT” will be dubbed and the user will understand the meaning of the image. For search engines, this attribute is also a determinant of the picture.
- Headings – for the convenience of reading the text, it should be divided into sections and subsections. To do this, hypertext markup introduced the concept of headings h1-h6. Remember the main rules:
- Follow a strict hierarchy. You can not have in the text of the title H3, which includes H2.
- Title H1 can only be one on the page and it should not duplicate the Title.
- Include keywords in the headlines in a straightforward or modified form.
- Site loading speed. This is a really important optimization point for users and search engines. And here’s why:
If it takes more than 3 seconds to load, 40% of users are ready to leave.
Yandex and Google are interested in promoting fast sites.
What should you do to make your site load faster? Turn to the pagespeed insights tool. Just type in the URL of your site and run the test. The service will give you a numerical result and a list of recommendations. Remember the main thing – your goal is not to get the cherished 100 points, but to fulfill the recommendations made by the service. And yes, even if you do them all, then 100 points is not guaranteed.
Internal optimization: robots.txt, sitemap, nofollow
It’s time for system files and settings.
robots.txt is a special file that contains instructions for indexing your site by search robots. We recommend that you close from indexing the cart, categories, filters, admin panel and other technical pages. They should not clog up the results. In addition, robots.txt will prevent leakage of personal user data.
There are many resources on the Internet to help you form the file correctly.
sitemap – site map. This file helps search engine robots to correctly index all pages of the site. In fact, this file is a workaround scheme. Some CMS have special settings to automatically generate a map or you can use special services.
The “nofollow” attribute is precisely responsible for ensuring that the page you are linking to does not increase its link weight due to this link. The main reasons why you should use nofollow links on your site:
- to avoid link weight gain by authors (if the site is allowed to publish their own content) – even if the entry is promotional, there will be no SEO benefits to the source site if nofollow is put in place;
- to reduce the amount of spam in comments (from spammers who want to promote their resource in this way);
- to mark links with potentially dangerous content (if you are not sure about the quality of the material you are linking to and do not want to give it referential weight); roughly speaking, in order to avoid associations with the site you are linking to for some reason, because links to questionable sites have a negative impact on the reputation of your site.
Internal optimization: canonical, pagination
If the site has a page accessible by several addresses, as well as pages with the same or similar content, the Yandex robot may consider them duplicates. Then he will combine the pages in a group of doubles and choose to show in search results only one of them – the most informative and relevant to search queries. Such a page is called canonical.
To set the canonical page address use rel=”canonical” attribute.
Pagination – a method of forming a news or product output, when the page shows a certain number of products, and to see the next portion, you must go to another page.
Links to the following pages are marked with rel=prev/next tags. And they are no longer of any help in SEO after the update of the basic Yandex and Google algorithms.
What to do now? What to use instead of pagination when there are a lot of records or products, and uploading them to a page all at once will not be smart, to put it mildly?
According to Google’s research, users like those interfaces in which the content is placed on one page. Such pages are called single-page content.
Such information is valuable because it can improve behavioral factors affecting a site’s ranking in search results.
There are several options on how to implement single-page content:
- Endless scrolling – products or entries are loaded as you get closer to the end of the sample.
- Button loading is another kind of lazy loading. Saves traffic and doesn’t increase loading speed.
Internal optimization: internal relinking
Internal re-linking is the placing of links from one page on a site to some other within the same resource. Thus, a kind of link structure is formed, which connects the pages of the site, so that users can easily navigate around it, which has a positive effect on the positions at the top of search engines, increases the depth of view, as well as provides an accelerated indexation of added articles.
Link from the home page to the main service pages. Make the entry page links to the next and previous entry (news). From the services page you can make links to individual products.
Above is the simplest linking model.
Search Console and Yandex – Webmaster
Google Search Console and Yandex Webmaster are free services which help you get information about how your site is presented in Google and Yandex search results, optimize your content, and troubleshoot any issues you might have.
What Search Console tools and reports do:
- Make sure the search engine can find and scan your site;
- identify problems with indexing and request re-indexing of new or updated content;
- evaluate the traffic that comes to your site from search: how often and for which queries links to your pages appear in the results, how often users click on them;
- receive notifications about problems with indexing, spam, and other issues;
- find out which sites are linking to your resource;
- fix problems with AMP-pages (Yandex Turbo Pages), mobile-friendliness, etc.
CTR, Snippet Optimization
A snippet is a block for presenting your site in search results. The clickability of your site in the results depends on how relevant and attractive information will be displayed in it. The following snippet elements are available for editing and, consequently, for optimization:
- Favicon. A small picture of 16 by 16 pixels. Favicon increases recognition of the site, increases clickability, but it can also contribute to the memorability of the resource.
- Title. Most often it is used to form a meta title tag from the page. About the title and its optimization, we told earlier.
- Address of the page. On the presentation of the page address can also be affected. For example, to introduce a micro markup of bread crumbs.
- Snippet description. Introducing micro markup in the snippet can get an attractive description.
- Address. Full contact information may appear if the site is added to services Yandex Directory.
- Online consultant. For sites which use online-consultants, the button opening the chat form directly from the search results is displayed in the Yandex snippet.
- Quick links. Provided that your site is well-defined and clear structure, quick links are generated by search robots automatically from the most popular pages. They appear only in the first three results in search results.
Click-through length is a measure of the time between clicking on a link in search results and the user coming back to the same search results page. In SEO terms, this metric can carry several metrics at once – user engagement, CTR in search results, and session length.
How do you increase click-through length? There are several ways to do this:
- Insert a video into the site. It is best if it is thematic and interesting for visitors to your site.
- Publish a lot of content. It should also be interesting.
- Post links to other interesting pages on your site so the user can explore them.
What are social signals? This is any activity that users do in social networks: sharing a link to the site, clicking on those links, liking, reposting and so on.
Here’s how much profit the site gets from social signals:
- indexing of the site by search engines is accelerated;
- link profile becomes more diverse;
- the total number of links to the site increases;
the site receives additional traffic from social networks, plus your company will only benefit if there will be more mentions of it in social networks.
Repost your content on the company’s social media accounts at first. Later, you can encourage users to share your content by placing “share” buttons on your pages. If the material is interesting, they will share it with pleasure.
The impact of external links in website promotion
Prior to 2014, external links were the only effective way to increase the position of the site in the search for medium and high-frequency queries. With the advent of the new algorithms of Yandex and Google, the total influence of this factor has come to naught.
Today, it is the quality of links rather than their quantity that counts. The most valuable are natural links. Natural links are links which appear when users share an article. This usually happens in social networks, blogs and forums.
Links from resources not created solely for the purpose of monetization by selling links are more valuable.
Classic link building methods
It is possible to create external links to your resource not only with the help of purchases on freelance exchanges. Moreover, such purchases – the path to sanctions from search engines. There are more civilized methods:
- Guest posts – offer a blogger with parallel or related to you topics to write a text for him, and he will place a link to your resource in return.
- Link exchange – you simply exchange links with another website owner.
- Crowd-marketing – this method takes time. Its essence is to actively communicate and help your audience on profile forums and communities. Where you have to on occasion, you can post a link to your site.
In this article we looked at the step by step process of search engine promotion. Applying it in practice you are quite able to bring your site to acceptable positions in search results.