Here’s how to get to number 1 / position on Google using SEO
1. Check the competitiveness of the keyword…
Using Allintitle, I can see that there are only 9 websites on Google with “SEO Canary Wharf” as a phrase in the title, indexed on Google at present: Google Results. I updated this two days ago, we were already 2nd, we stayed in 2nd. Prior to this point, the title mentioned both SEO and Canary Wharf, just not at the beginning. This may have resulted in an increase in other situations and may have contributed in this case, but not quite sufficient to increase position.
Next, using AllinURL, I can see that there are only 5 websites with the phrase used in the URL: Google Results, so I’ve proceeded to change the URL from /London-seo to /SEO-canary-wharf.
I choose to do so because of the following…
By selecting the page filter and choosing the London-seo page and then clicking on queries, I can see that during the last 3 months there have been very few other queries contributing significant search traffic to the page.
I’m making a judgement call here to replace the current URL with the new URL on the basis that we aren’t generating anything related to SEO-London or related search queries to this page. For any London-related search queries, we are currently ranking rather low (around position 50 or so) and thus keeping this as is certainly isn’t going to be resulting in any increases any time soon.
As you can see below, during the past 3 months, we’ve not really performed well for anything other than the Canary Wharf search terms. My aim, therefore, is to unoptimise the page for anything not related to Canary Wharf as the poor CTR is possibly dragging down the page performance.
Here’s the example of the London-related search queries:
Rankings – What matters most in SEO?
2. Understand the metrics
It is better to move from 2nd to 1st for a search term than it is to move from 60 to 50th.
With a higher ranking comes a high CTR on average, but in truth, it is CTR that influences ranking more so than the other way around. Let me explain.
CTR is a massive influencer in the success of SEO. If you getting a higher CTR for the less competitive search queries, then Google will likely deem your website relevant and increase your position in the search results for the more competitive search queries when it sees your website performing better.
If you are in position 7 and getting a higher CTR than the competitor in 6th, why should you be kept in position 7 when you are clearly more relevant to the searcher? Makes sense right?
Algorithms and Metrics – How to beat Google?
With Google, your website is being compared to and benchmarked against every other website. With this in mind, start with easy wins! Get there for less competitive search queries that have sufficient volume to warrant going for.
It’s all about ratios, if you manage to find a high search volume keyword with low competition metrics then it’s going to be worthwhile going for it.
Let’s say you found a keyword with 1000 searches per month and 9 allintitle instances. All things being equal and let’s just say there was one metric in the google algorithm, this being Allintitle. If there were 9 other websites and your website was brand new, then surely you’d position in number 10 at the minimum. This is an easy concept to understand. In another example, let’s say that the AllinURL metric was the only metric in the Google Algorithm and there were 5 websites with the search query in the URL, then you’d position 6th at the minimum.
Then let’s say both metrics had equal weighting in the algorithm, 50% for allintitle and 50% for allinurl, therefore you would be safe to say you’d position somewhere between 6th and 10th, let’s say 8th.
This gets you some way to understanding how the Google algorithm works. In truth, it is much more complex than this, but all-in-all it’s simply a lot of box-ticking. There’s on-page SEO, off-site SEO and the user experience part which I’ll get to.
If you need an example of ratios here’s a video explaining the Golden Keyword Ratio: Google Results
Here are the TDLR takeaways from the video:
– AIT is the number of websites indexed on google with the search query in the title.
– We target high volume with low competition search queries.
– Ideally, the keyword is one at the purchase phase, otherwise, you are just chasing the search volume and not sales.
– AIT is only one metric of thousands but it is a simple and easy measure of how competitive a search term is.
– We then create content targeted to this search query with this search query in the Title, Meta, Header and URL.
– We do so to ensure that the page shows higher on Google more quickly without the need for other SEO activities. This ONLY works if the ratio is exceptional, otherwise, you are just creating content for the sake of it.
Personally, rather than capping at 250, I’d opt for over 1000 search queries per month and aiming to get under 50 allintitle. I say this as most of the websites that we work with already have a strong presence. It is only when working from a starting start that I would recommend looking at less than 20 and between 250 to 1000.
Keyword volume – How to do Keyword research for SEO?
3. Check the keyword volume
Let’s look at the volume…
As you can see, it’s not great! With this said, I’m not simply after the aforementioned search traffic, I’m after this search traffic as well:
You should always be chasing the search terms that are going up on Google trends, rather than those that are going down:
4. Ensure that you’ve done your On-Site SEO
Back to the page itself. I’ve corrected all of the Yoast issues, excluding the fact that there is no image. I weighed up the negative of having a slow-loading image vs the absence of an ALT tag and deemed it worthwhile.
I fixed this by…
- Putting full-stops at the end of titles and headings.
- Shortening and separating sentences.
- Following the instructions! (insert facepalm emoji)
How to get Links for SEO?
5. Make sure that you obtain Good Quality Links to the page in question.
Next, on to links, we should be winning on this front based on these scores, so what I’m going to do is to find some further links and get the page indexed ASAP now that I’ve made the changes.
Now using Altavista, the world’s leading search engine (no wait… sorry, that’s ask Jeeves), I’m going to search for a free backlink checker.
My Bing result came back with this option: NeilPatel.com
As you can see there are many links from newspapers, these are generally created using centralindex.com (is my understanding). Choosing just two of the links as follows (IT Training Tips) and Local Standard, I can see that the first link is from a blog comment and the second is a directory listing.
Let’s just quickly check the DA on these links. I can see that these are great links!
So I proceeded to create links from both websites (the first didn’t work due to a broken web form, which is a real shame), however, the latter should provide more than one link, so certainly worth the few minutes to get it up and running.
Lastly, in an effort to get the page indexed promptly and to show Google that it has relevance with regards to the website and customer journey, I’ve added a link to the page from our homepage:
In closing, I wouldn’t normally go for a search term with such little search volume, however, this worked well as an example hence why I’ve used it.