If you go onto Google and search the term SEO – short for “search engine optimization” – you will get more than half a billion results. This meta-exercise perfectly illustrates why SEO is so important. In order to appear within the first dozen of those 600+ million entries, and get a critical spot on the first search engine results page (SERP), you need to make sure your page is optimized to perform well in the search algorithm. And this algorithm changes all the time – including a big one in the months to come, which now prioritizes the user experience most of all.
The Role Of SEO On Your Page
If you aren’t in the marketing business and have never had a big focus on your online presence, you may be new to the concept and impact of SEO. Or maybe you did a few simple recommendations a decade ago, and haven’t updated since. Either way, it’s time to get (re)acquainted with what strong optimization can do for your marketing efforts.
Optimizing your content for search engine performance is crucial to climbing those results pages and actually getting your brand and messaging in front of the curious eyes of your next customer. While you can shortcut the system with the right use of search engine marketing (SEM), there’s no substitute for a long, well-planned optimization strategy. It’s the only way to ensure you’ll consistently be at the forefront of potential new audiences, without constantly spending money on digital advertising.
What Affects SEO
Since the creation of the first algorithms, many different factors have affected the way they rank a site’s online presence and reputation. Initially, it came down to simple things like use of keywords, indexed files, and meta tags, but the process soon expanded to include relevance of content, page loading times, good practices (like avoiding keyword stuffing), and other, more user-friendly considerations. The upcoming changes are just the latest in a long line of updates.
The route to getting the best results is long, with many small factors adding up to a big impact down the road. We could go on and on, but some of the best evergreen advice for improving your placement on search engine results pages would be:
- Use correct title tags (H1, H2, H3, etc., as well as the right backend meta tags).
- Ensure your content is relevant and not misleading.
- Use compressed media to get better loading times and visual stability.
- Get the right safety certificates and authentications.
There are many more, but these are some basics that carry through all of the other changes – like the upcoming Page Experience update.
Google’s Page Experience Changes
In an effort to make searches and results more useful for users, Google’s spring update will be optimizing for factors that create an excellent experience for people across all browsers, platforms, and devices. This will make sure that a smooth appearance, safety, a strong user interface, and easy functionality is prioritized.
In other words: a user-friendly site is critical to future success.
When you have similar content to a huge amount of other pages – i.e. the sites of your competitors – factors such as the ones above will be the deciding differentiator in the ultimate ranking. If your competitors have prepared their content better through loading optimizations, security protocols, a great interactive experience, and excellent mobile displays, their site will be above yours in a search result.
In Google’s own words, they intend to use “visual indicators” on results pages to highlight the results that have met all of the criteria in the above experience metrics, collectively known as Core Web Vitals. At a glance, searchers will be able to tell if you’re likely to meet their needs in an effective way, or if they can expect a less-than-stellar page experience. Basically, when all taken together, this means that if you want a solid place on the first results page, and you want your listing to invite potential clicks, your usual SEO practices (title tags, proper descriptions, etc.) and all of these factors will need to come together to create a friendly end-user experience.
William Joseph Can Boost Your SEO Ranking
If you’re ready to get a head start on this new update, we’re here to help you get the most out of your site and SEO. From checking on all your core vital signs to fixing up some of the most common backend issues, our digital team can help you rise through the ranks and see increased web traffic over time. All you have to do to get started is reach out and let us know!