SEO can be an intimidating topic for both newbies and veterans alike. With the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing and the continued proliferation of web content, it’s no surprise that expert SEO can be a tough topic.
Search Engine Optimization constantly changes and you have to keep up with not only what the search engines are telling you to do, but also keeping an eye on your competitors and perhaps replicate what they are doing that works well for them.
The big question is: have the rules of SEO changed for 2018?
The short answer is: somewhat. But the fundamentals have not. There is still no real way to take advantage of the system. If you try to make shortcuts, you’ll pay the price.
If you want to put together an expert SEO strategy in 2018, you’ll need to put in the work. Keep reading for a closer look at some of the top SEO tactics for 2018.
What Expert SEO Needs
While, as we’ll see, SEO can be tweaked and manipulated through some factors, much of SEO boils down to two things:
Populating your website with relevant, useful content and getting high authority sites to link to yours is what it all comes down to.
Doing those two things well and efficiently is, of course, easier said than done.
Content is Still King
You can make all the other changes you like, but the truth is, content is still the most critical factor in SEO.
While once upon a time, any old content would do, that’s not the case in 2018. You have to have useful, well-written content if you want to make a difference.
Good content has become increasingly important in recent years with Google and the other search engines. An investment in good content will pay off big time in the long run.
Check Your Page Speed
Another expert SEO tactic in 2018 is to improve your page speed.
Page speed is now an important factor in SEO. Google and the other search engines all reward pages that load faster.
Check out Google’s Page Speed Insights to determine how fast your pages are loading.
Make Sure it’s Mobile
With a majority of searches now done on mobile devices, it’s more important than ever to optimize your website for smaller screens.
With so many great options out there, it’s hard to justify a website that’s not mobile friendly.
You Need Video and Audio
Google rewards time spent on pages. So the longer users spend on your pages, the better you’ll do in the SERPs.
What better way to get visitors to hang out on your pages than with video or podcasts?
Capturing a visitor’s attention for a few minutes with video is a great way to up your SEO game.
Optimize for User Experience
Creating a user experience that encourages visitors to hang out, read your content and check out other material will vastly improve your average visitors time on site. Time-on-site is key to Google.
Quality Links are Vital
Here’s one that hasn’t changed a whole lot. Relevant, high authority links to your content are still a vital part of SEO.
You don’t necessarily need massive numbers of websites linking to you, but high-quality links are very important.
Guest posting is still one of the most effective ways to begin building links. If you’re not taking advantage of this technique, it’s time to start.
Connect to Useful Content
Outbound links matter too.
Any content you create should have at least two to three outbound links to other useful, authoritative content.
It may sound counterintuitive to send readers to other sources, but it helps build your authority with visitors in addition to making your rapport with the search engines.
Connect With Influencers
Another expert SEO strategy to explore in 2018 is to take advantage of influencers in your space.
Getting an influencer to plug your brand or content through Facebook or Twitter can give your content a big boost, as well as help you reach an entirely new audience.
Leverage Authority Sites
Leveraging high authority and highly trafficked sites like Medium, Quora and LinkedIn are becoming increasingly important.
These sites allow you to reach a broad audience with your content–much wider than you’ll probably reach with your site.
The key here is to include an anchor link back to the content on your site.
Create Massive Resources
Long-form content has become a vital component of any expert SEO strategy, and for several years, it’s been quite clear that Google rewards long, well-crafted content.
The average length of the top 10 results for a given search in Google is over 2000 words. The top results are typically closer to the 3000-word mark.
Creating content of this length makes for very useful resources that not only give your SEO a boost but also gives you content that has a lot of potential for doing well on social media.
Unfortunately, just writing long content is not enough to guarantee high rankings, but it is a really good start.
Leverage the Power of Social Media
While you may not necessarily associate social media with SEO, the two are much more closely connected than you think.
Social media can drive a ton of traffic your way when done well. More traffic is a good indicator to Google that your website is useful.
Take advantage of your social channels to create buzz-worthy content that’s either informative or entertaining.
Putting It All Together
Don’t be intimidated by SEO. It’s not as difficult as you’d think.
But it does take time.
If you start experimenting with some of the points we covered above; you’ll begin to see results. You just have to be consistent. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Your online empire probably won’t be either.
Google rewards fresh, updated content, so you’ve got to keep the updates coming if you want to stay alive in the SEO game.
Do you have any expert SEO tips and tricks that are working for you? Let us know in the comments.