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Top SEO Trends You Should Know

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Tips to Create SEO-Friendly Blog Posts

Every year online businesses wait for major updates and SEO(Search Engine Optimization) trends to make the necessary adjustments to their website. Experts in search engine optimization state there are some strategies and tactics you should incorporate this year to make major changes to your site. Like every year, this year will be a significant year for SEO trends and experts in the matter state you should keep in mind the following Top SEO Trends

  1. BERT and the emphasis on content that is focused on the user- Google’s new algorithm BERT was launched in 2019, and it received a lot of attention. This resulted in several top SEO professionals focusing on how to optimize their sites as per the new algorithm. Experts say that businesses and professionals dealing with search engine optimization need to focus on specific user access points for searches and aligning their content to them. They need to focus on content delivery and clean architecture. The content should be written to meet and match the intent of the user over strings that users might search for.

 

  1. Optimized and top-quality content- Note that content affects search engine optimization in a big way. Some professionals believe that search engine optimization is influenced by content in every way right from the strategy you use for internal linking to the kinds of links that are used. To succeed in search engine optimization, one needs to create content that is relevant and offers value to the user. The objective of the content should be to focus on the topic more and make it a valuable piece of information on the Internet today. Some tips for you to create user-focused content are-

 

  • Understand who your targeted audience is and what they expect from you
  • Understand their intent behind questions and the problems that they wish to solve
  • Please provide them with solutions or answers to questions they seek through authoritative sites or on-the-point content
  • Similarly, follow the above points repeatedly on every stage of their journey so that a satisfactory topical user experience caters to the needs of the user again and again
  • Always believe that though you have created informative content once, this does not mean that you will do so again.

 

  1. Technical SEO and UX- The most important trend for 2020 is to focus on SEO and UX user technology. This improves the overall user experience right from the first interaction in SERPs to the overall experience of the landing page. Besides this, they also leave a positive impact after users have left your website. To achieve a good user experience and keep on attracting targeted traffic to come back to your site again, you should consider personalization, drip campaigns, and remarketing strategies for your business. Technical SEO is an integral part of UX. Websites should make technical corrections like rectifying canonical mistakesand more. It is prudent for search engine optimization experts to beef up their technical foundations. Here, you should ensure that the best technical practices are incorporated. This is an excellent way to boost the speed of your website.

 

  1. Mobile SEO- Experts from NYC SEO services state mobile SEO is a significant trend this year. Businesses should focus on building their websites for mobiles first and later focusing on them for sites. In this way, you can save time and effort when it comes to optimizing your website for mobiles. Make sure all of the online reporting that you resort to focuses on mobile phone performance. In 2020, you need to visualize what someone is on their mobile phones when it comes to surfing your business website over their desktops. However, mobile SEO does not stop here. You need to check mobile phone SERPs in real to get an idea about mobile SEO better and how you can improve your site’s efforts with them.

 

  1. Structured data- Though top- quality content will grab the attention for 2020, search engine algorithms still are unable to understand context completely. It is here; you should give them hints so that algorithms understand your content better, and you can perform better with search engine results. Business owners need to structure data in such a way that they can be understood well. Instances of structured data sites are Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook, and others. If you can structure data correctly, your website becomes a layer for marketing information. You can effectively use structured data to improve analytics and influence your content strategy, as well.

 

  1. Optimization of Knowledge Graph and Entity– Google is searching for ways to include information of the entity in their search engine results via augmentation queries. For instance, local search engine optimization has been based on the entity for a very long time. Businesses have been able to rank their sites well even without a website. Google has started to track real-world visits, and it is taking these quality visits as a signal for high ranks.

 

  1. Brand and link building- In 2020, link building has evolved into a consumer approach and is no longer staying in the dark. Businesses need to focus on the given 3 types of journalistic writing-

 

  • Planned editorial- This content is planned for a particular day like Black Friday, Mother’s Day, etc
  • Planned reactive editorial- These are topics associated with seasonal events or a theme that is covered by a time frame. Here, one does not know what the story is until the story is published.
  • Reactive editorial-Here, the topics are written as per news stories or current affairs.

These were some of the top SEO trends that experts are following. Finally, if you want your search engine optimization efforts to bring high ranks to your website, the business should focus on a brand that consumers can trust. Their website plays a vital role when it comes to attracting a targeted audience and boosting search engine ranks. Today, customers are becoming smarter, and they only look for trustworthy websites. The onus for all businesses in 2020 is to build links and drive traffic to your site better than others in the market!

 

 

Raunak is the Founder of Times of Startups. He is passionate about Startups and Online Ecosystem in general. You can reach out to him at editor@timesofstartups.com

Content Marketing

10 Tips To Write SEO-Optimized Content

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SEO-Optimized Content

Thinking about the user and Google both at the same time is a difficult task. If you are planning to write SEO content that can attract your user along with Google bots, believe me, you have to really work hard.

Gone are the days when you could easily put up some keywords in the content, and Google will rank your content. Now, the competition is really high, and you have to really rock it on when it comes to SEO content writing.

No doubt, it takes time and effort to write SEO-optimized content, but it will surely pay you if you do it the right way. Often people think that SEO-optimized content is not user-friendly. However, in my personal opinion, this is just a misconception. If you are able to plan and structure your content well, you will not only optimize it for the search engines, but it will be really engaging for the readers as well. Let’s look at some of the crucial tips while writing SEO-optimized content.

Keyword Research Goes First

However, it’s not a writing tip but the most integral part before you plan to write SEO-optimized content. There are so many tools for conducting in-depth keyword research, but my personal favorite is SEMRush. Its features and keyword magic tools allow you to search more relevant LSI keywords around your focused keyword.

But, still, you have to rely on Google Keyword Planner when it comes to checking monthly searches and average CPC. For instance, if you are planning a blog of 1500 words, make sure that you have a focused long-tail keyword and 8 to 10 relevant keywords to support it.

Once you have selected the keywords, you are all set to write.

1.   Structure Your Content

The first step would be to plan your complete content from the start till the end. You must know what you are going to write in the whole content. Moreover, plan the total number of words required to completely cover your topic. This step may also include researching the competitors and top-ranked web pages for your focused keyword.

As you are done analyzing the competitors, create an outline with headings and subheadings so that you have a complete structure of your content.

2.   Plan Your Keywords

Often, it is observed that if you do not plan your keywords from the beginning, you end up messing with the keywords and placing them in irrelevant positions. Keeping in mind the density of your focused keyword and LSI keywords, plan them in the whole content.

For instance, if you have a long-tail focused keyword consisting of 4 words, then for 1500 words of content, you should include your focused keyword 4 to 5 times maximum. Include it in the H1, in your first paragraph, in the middle of the content, at the end and one time in the subheading as well. Spread the LSI keywords in the whole content where they set the best, making sure that they are not inserted together.

3.   Create An Engaging Title

The next step is to create an engaging title for your content. You can include your focused keyword or a long-tail variation of your focused keyword in the title. If your focused keyword is buy assignment help, a long-tail variation would be, buy assignment help online.

You can also include a number to make it more engaging. Try to add catchy words and keep it under 50 to 55 characters with spaces.

4.   Do Not Neglect Meta Description

Meta descriptions are a summary of your content which Google often uses to show under the title of your content as it appears on the search engine. It should be engaging and informative so that it encourages the user to click your webpage link.

The ideal length for a meta description is 141 to 148 characters. You can include your focused keyword along with a supporting keyword in your meta title. Keep it to 2-3 sentences making sure that you are delivering what your audience can expect in the content. Use an attractive tone to grab your readers’ attention.

5.   Start It With A Boom

Now, this is the perfect moment to start with your content since you have planned it completely. The first sentence should be really engaging and thoughtful, which should give your readers a path to go through your whole content. Moreover, you need to use the focused keyword keeping the tone of the sentence natural. Ensure that readers may not think that the keyword is added unnaturally without any flow.

Moreover, do not beat about the bush, and start directly to the point. Adding some stats and graphs will also make your initial paragraphs more engaging. You can look for relevant stats on the internet but make sure to add the sources.

6.   Use Headings & Paragraphs

It is very important that you should utilize multiple headers in your content. After the first H1, you may go with multiple H2s and H3s. You can also use H4s if required in your content. This gives your reader an idea of what you are up to discussing. Moreover, it is also an SEO practice since Google focuses more on content which is well-structured according to the needs of the readers. Moreover, use small sentences and paragraphs to improve the readability of the content. You can utilize online tools like Yoast for readability.

7.   Optimize The Length

Always keep in mind how long should a blog post be. You are going to write each subheading according to it. For instance, if you have planned for ten sub-headers in 1500-word content, you may keep 200 words for H1, 150 words for the conclusion, and the remaining shall be covered under the subheadings.

8.   Go For Internal Linking

Another important part of writing SEO content is internal linking. These are the links that are directed towards other pages of the website your article is being published. For instance, if you are writing for your own website, then you should link back to some other pages of your website in your content.

Make sure that internal links are relevant and are not in competition with your current page. Moreover, it is essential that they are placed on the correct keyword.

9.   Never Forget External Links

Often SEOs and content writers ignore external links, thinking that they are not necessary for SEO-optimized content. However, this is not the case. According to experienced experts, authoritative external links relevant to your content brings value to your content. You should always link back to the stats and resources you have taken data from.

10.                  Add Images & Alt Tags

Some writers do not add images to the content, and sometimes they forget to add alt tags to it. Since bots are unable to see your images, they read alt tags to understand them. So, your visual image is for the readers, and the alt tag goes for the bot.

While Summing It Up…

Optimizing content for SEO starts with keyword research and goes on till adding the visuals in it. Planning and placing your keywords in the content is the most crucial step for writing SEO-optimized content. Never forget to create catchy titles, meta descriptions, images and alt tags.

I wish you the best of luck with your SEO content and hope that this content will help you by providing essential tips for writing SEO-optimized content.

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SEO in 2022: How Long Should a Blog Post Be

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How Long Should a Blog Post Be

It’s no secret that SEO is constantly changing. What works today may not work tomorrow, and what worked yesterday may now be considered obsolete. So it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in SEO, in order to ensure that your website remains competitive.

One of the most important aspects of SEO is the length of your blog posts. In general, longer posts tend to rank better than shorter posts. But how long should a blog post be? And what are the latest trends in SEO when it comes to blog post length?

In this article, we’ll explore the latest trends in SEO when it comes to blog post length, and we’ll provide you with some tips on how to write longer posts that will rank well in Google search results.

Trend 1: Longer blog posts are better for SEO

A recent study by Backlinko analyzed 1 million Google search results and found that the average word count of a first-page result was 1,890 words. This is a significant increase from previous years; in 2014, the average word count of a first-page result was only 935 words.

This trend is likely due to the fact that Google’s algorithm has become better at understanding the meaning of content, rather than just matching keywords. As a result, longer posts that contain more information are more likely to rank well in Google search results.

Trend 2: Blog posts with an “inverted pyramid” structure tend to rank better

An “inverted pyramid” is a term used to describe the structure of a blog post, where the most important information is at the beginning of the post, and the less important information is at the end.

This structure is effective for SEO because it allows Google to quickly understand what your post is about, and it also allows readers to quickly find the information they’re looking for.

Trend 3: Lists and “how-to” posts tend to perform well in Google search results

Lists and “how-to” posts are popular because they’re easy to read and they offer readers a lot of value. And as it turns out, these types of posts also tend to perform well in Google search results.

A recent study by BuzzSumo analyzed the most popular types of content on the web, and they found that lists and “how-to” posts were among the most popular types of content.

So if you want your blog post to perform well in Google search results, consider structure it as a list or a “how-to” post.

Trend 4: The ideal blog post length is 1,890 words

As we mentioned earlier, the average word count of a first-page result is 1,890 words. So if you want your blog post to have a chance of ranking on the first page of Google, aim for a word count of at least 1,890 words.

Of course, this is just an average, and there are always exceptions. For example, if you’re writing a list post, you may be able to get away with a shorter word count. But in general, longer posts tend to perform better in Google search results.

Trend 5: Blog posts with images tend to rank better

In addition to length, another important factor for SEO is the use of images. Google’s algorithm favors blog posts that contain images because they tend to be more visually appealing and easier to read.

So if you want your blog post to rank well in Google search results, be sure to include at least one image.

Tips for writing longer blog posts that will rank well in Google

Now that you know the latest trends in SEO when it comes to blog post length, here are some tips for writing longer blog posts that will rank well in Google search results:

1. Plan your post before you start writing

Trying to write a long post without first planning it out is a recipe for disaster. You’ll likely end up going off on tangents, and your post will lose focus.

Instead, take some time to plan your post before you start writing. Outline the main points you want to cover and make sure each point ties back into your overall theme.

2. Write in a clear, concise style

Just because your post is long doesn’t mean it has to be complicated. In fact, longer posts tend to perform better when they’re written in a clear, concise style. So don’t try to impress readers with big words and complicated sentence structures; just focus on communicating your ideas clearly.

3. Use subheadings to break up your text

Breaking up your text with subheadings makes it easier for readers to skim your content and find the information they’re looking for. Not to mention, it also makes your post look less daunting.

4. Use images and videos to break up your text

In addition to using subheadings, you can also use images and videos to break up your text and make your post more visually appealing. Just make sure you’re using high-quality images and videos that are relevant to your content.

5. Conduct research and cite your sources

When you’re writing a long post, it’s important to back up your claims with research. So conduct some research on your topic and be sure to cite your sources. This will not only add credibility to your post, but it will also give you more content to work with.

6. Edit your post before you publish it

Once you’ve written your post, take some time to edit it before you hit the “publish” button. This will help ensure that your post is free of errors and easy to read.

7. Promote your post once it’s published

Just because your post is live on your blog doesn’t mean people will automatically see it. You need to promote your post if you want it to get traffic.

So once you’ve published your post, be sure to share it on social media and other online platforms. You can also reach out to influencers in your niche and ask them to share your content with their followers.

With these tips, you can write longer blog posts that will perform well in Google search results. So if you want your blog to succeed in 2022, make sure you’re paying attention to the latest trends in SEO.

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SEO for early-stage startups: 6 steps to grow on a budget

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SEO for early-stage startups

If you’re just launching your startup, you’ll have a lot on your plate, including determining market fit, researching your target audience, developing feasible marketing strategies, etc. However, everything begins with building a website, as no one will find you if you are not visible. When it comes to establishing an online presence, we eventually consider SEO.

Despite the fact that search engine optimization is a lengthy process, you should get started from day one if you want to reap the benefits of free traffic and almost automatic growth in the future.

If you’re running an early-stage startup on a shoestring budget, it’s definitely worth investing in Google-friendly website optimization. To avoid blowing your budget, it’s important to develop a strategy based on industry best practices and constantly improve your SEO score.

Fortunately, you aren’t alone. There are a lot of free resources available to help you get started in the right direction. One of them is this article.

Continue reading to discover the top 6 steps for SEO for startups, based on expert advice and best practices.

Why should early-stage startups invest in SEO?

People are constantly looking for the best products or services online. SEO can assist them in locating your services. Even the representatives of Good say – “People look for a product first, not for you.” Before your brand is recognized, people will need to search for [your brand name] and find you through general search queries. 

Let’s enumerate the main benefits of investing in search engine optimization for early-stage startups.

Free traffic

Startup owners are always on the lookout for the cheapest ways to promote their products, but at the same time, they need results. What about obtaining qualified leads for free? Yes, that’s what every business needs and SEO is a good way to build a lead generation channel.

SEO is not free, as time and resources must be invested in creating optimized content and outbound promotion. However, once the flow starts, you will not have to pay for every impression, click, or lead, as with paid advertising campaigns.

Influence over a large number of marketing funnels

The hidden power of search engine optimization lies in its ability to boost other marketing efforts and influence different stages of your integrated marketing funnels.

For instance, creating great educational content that is search engine optimized is essential to your inbound marketing strategy. Your audience needs your help to learn your product or service better and faster, obtain advice related to your niche, etc. Internal linking within your blog allows you to recommend useful resources to your readers and build loyalty.

Working on SEO for your startup’s website will impact every phase of your marketing funnel.

Brand awareness and credibility

Before ordering a specific product or service in today’s digital world, everyone relies on online proofs. A great website and blog are essential for growing your startup credibility and being recognized as a leader in your niche.

For example, if you respond to users’ queries via blog content in an expert and comprehensive way, they will begin to recognize your brand and consider your startup a great solution for specific needs.

SEO can help you grow your business online in 6 simple steps

  1. Focus on the basics

Because early-stage startups usually don’t have a large SEO budget, it’s critical to divide the resources as evenly as possible. Concentrate your efforts on the most important things, such as creating content, ensuring that your website is mobile-friendly, and ensuring no technical SEO issues.

Do you recall the Pareto Principle? It states that 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts. So, the first step in starting your SEO process is defining and focusing on the fundamentals that will lead to that percentage of effective efforts.

You can expand your SEO activities and grow more quickly with a larger budget.

  1. Define goals and craft a feasible strategy

Obviously, the primary goal of search engine optimization is to generate organic traffic from search engines and convert online leads into customers. However, this end goal should be broken down into specific steps to achieve the desired results.

Setting SEO goals entails thinking about what you want to achieve and how to achieve the KPIs. Ahrefs, a well-known SEO tool, suggests envisioning SEO goals as a pyramid.

Source – https://ahrefs.com/blog/seo-goals/ 

Begin with small goals and work your way up

For example, for early-stage startups, you could set the following SEO goals for the first 3-6 months:

Increase organic traffic to 2K+ unique monthly visitors. 

How to reach: fix technical issues, optimize meta descriptions, properly gather semantic data, and create SEO optimized content.

How to measure: data in Google Analytics, Google Search Console, or rank tracking tools, like Semrush or Wincher, can be used.

  1. Find the resources

To make your SEO strategy a reality and begin receiving organic traffic, you need to consider the available resources and allocate a budget for specific actions.

Speaking about resources, there are three elements:

Human resources

According to the goals and tests you set up in the previous paragraph, you should consider dividing responsibilities among your colleagues or hiring freelancers or part-time employees to get the job done.

It’s always a good idea to have an inbound content manager run a blog because this person will be fully devoted to the startup and will understand the product better.

Consider hiring a part-time employee to help with keyword research and off-page SEO. You’ll save money while covering all of the SEO basics.

Budget

Unless your startup has a consistent huge revenue stream, your budget for search engine optimization is limited. Invest 10-20% of your overall budget in SEO. If the KPIs and pull of efforts are chosen correctly, it will eventually pay off and bring you a consistent flow of leads and profit.

SEO tools

I wouldn’t recommend purchasing expensive SEO tools at once for early-stage startups, especially if you can hire a freelancer or part-time employee to handle basic SEO stuff. They usually have their own tools for conducting keyword research or performing SEO audits. 

Google Analytics and Google Search Console are the first platforms you should set up. There is no need to invest money in these Google products because they are free. But they are indispensable if you want to remain aware of your SEO results and measure online performance.

You can also look for a keyword rank tracker. It will give you accurate information about your search engine rankings and content marketing results.

If you want to start SEO at an advanced level, consider buying Semrush or SimilarWeb subscriptions. They will provide you with a huge range of data, needed to analyze your competitors, conduct research, and measure the performance of your website.

Technical SEO

It’s crucial to get your technical SEO in order before you start working hard on outbound promotion for your business and investing in a blog.

Check that Google can find, understand, and index your pages. Otherwise, all of your efforts to rank will be futile.

Conduct keyword research and begin creating content

This is, in my opinion, one of the most important points. Because conducting proper keyword research and selecting the appropriate semantic for your web pages and blog is the foundation of a long “friendship” with Google.

Find the right key phrases you want to rank and optimize each web page to improve your SEO. It is important to investigate how people search for what you do, their intentions, and so on. Here’s a good resource for beginners to learn the basics of keyword research.

Basic link building

Link building is the process of getting links from external sources to your website. It’s important to build your domain authority and amplify all the other SEO efforts. 

I must admit that this part of link building is pretty complicated for beginners. It requires enough knowledge and practical skills. 

Consider free options such as guest posting (contributing to other blogs with your own piece of content) and HARO to start earning backlinks for your website (providing your expert quotes to journalists)

Conclusion

Search Engine Optimization is an investment that will definitely pay off. It won’t happen overnight, but consistent efforts to improve your online visibility will increase brand awareness, free organic traffic, build brand identity, and amplify all your marketing efforts.

If you are on the lookout for a reliable way to scale your early-stage startup, start working on SEO for your business website right away.

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