What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimisation is a move to ‘optimise’ or increase website traffic through search engine rankings. SEO is one of the most important aspects of digital marketing because directly affects the success of your website rankings. The push in the searches so you can get that needed exposure for your business.
In SEO, the changes are always dynamic and in flux, this is due to the consistent code updates that search engines are rolling out with their algorithms.
The major reasons for this is to provide users with an improved search experience, meaning when you search, the results you get should be highly relevant and compatible to your intent. On the flipside, if you own a website, Google wants your website indexed in the right category.
Why hire an Web Design Agency?
SEO requires a lot of technical background. And although there are no rules preventing you from DIY-ing its practices, you have to consider your goals. Do you have the privilege of time, and we are talking weeks to months here, to study and experiment with these practices? If not, consider hiring a web design agency that’s familiar with the intricacies of SEO. You are banking on these web professionals for their months or years of experience building websites and getting traction to grow your business.. They, too, have invested their personal time on careful and intensive analysis and experimenting on what works and doesn’t when it comes to SEO. Having said the above, if you want to have a go – we salute you and have put together a helpful article on the key things to focus your energy on.
Best SEO Practices in 2019
Intensive optimisation of structured data
Now is the time to further optimise your structured data more than ever. Structured data is the way to communicate your content so that search engines will be able to understand your website and categorise it accordingly based on queries.
So why structured data?
Structured data provides the possibility that search engines will show “richer” snippets of your content compared to the usual content preview. Rich snippets provide ratings, opening hours, carousels, and such. Being featured in rich snippets makes your website stands out more than the others. This in turn can result in an increase of traffic on your website.. Make sure to follow the guideline from Google to ensure that your structured data is at least eligible to be featured on rich snippets.
Before coming into 2019, Google announced in December 2018 that over 50% of the pages shown in SERP are based on mobile-first indexing. This means that Google will prioritise the mobile version of your site in terms of ranking and crawling structured data. First step through this is making sure that you have a working mobile version of your site. Use this tool to determine that your mobile-version is up to the standards. It will also show the mobile usability problems that users will likely encounter when accessing your website through a smartphone.
Also, a friendly reminder from Google: “Keep in mind that a functional desktop-oriented site can be better than a broken or incomplete mobile version of the site. It’s better for you to build up your mobile site and launch it when ready.”
Elevating your Expertise, Authority and Trustworthiness - E-A-T
Google already introduced two broad core updates for 2019: the June 2019 Core Update and the March 2019 Core Update. These major updates from Google, however, often do not elaborate the changes they conducted. In fact, for the latest June 2019 Core update, Google even encourages us to do nothing specific towards this update as it does not target any specific websites.
Nonetheless, if you were affected by these updates, it would a high-time for you to re-assess the Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness or E-A-T of your website. Note that you have to consider the purpose of your page in deciding what factors to consider if you are building your E-A-T. In general, the owner of the website, authors of the content, and such should be indicated. Depending on their reputation, whether they have already established authority and expertise on the subject matter, dictates the E-A-T rating of your site. Other factors that could help your E-A-T rating would be improving customer satisfaction and securing site with HTTPS, among others.
Aim for quality, not quantity, in backlinking
In addition to re-assessing your website’s E-A-T, backlinks remains relevant on the March 2019 core update. Several observations within the SEO community have pointed out that having numerous backlinks is not enough in 2019. One of the most practical tips on link building in 2019 is to invest in a quality website. In choosing where to apply backlink techniques, prioritise those who abide by the standards of Google’s search quality guidelines that were mentioned above.
Nothing beats quality content
Despite being in 2019, content is still king, and the best thing is to go for the classic: elevate your content two steps further from your competitors. Do not settle for mere traffic on your site, but consider the actual user’s experience and satisfaction. Make sure that you are able to provide relevant multimedia and content, ensure that user’s navigation is smooth and approachable (no annoying pop-ups, drop-down menus do not hinder viewing, etc.), if big enough consider including customer support and/or chatbots. Remember that the essential goal of search engines is to bridge information and searchers. Websites remain to be the main source of this information.