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6 SEO tactics you should focus on in 2020

2020 is almost upon us. Have you prepared a list of what you are going to do better next year in terms of search engine optimisation?

As we move forward, SEO professionals and webmasters will continue to face new and exciting challenges. In a dynamic SEO world, you need to be fully prepared.

To help you do that, here are 5 SEO tactics that we believe could play an important role in 2020.

 

1. Create excellent content

There really is no alternative to great content, and that will also be the case next year. If you want to rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs), keep creating high-quality, informative, and useful content for your readers.

Here are a few tips you should remember when approaching content creation:

  • Put your readers at the center of every content piece. Write for human readers — not for search engines.
  • Make sure your content is accurate and trustworthy (more on this in the next point)
  • Include exclusive and helpful information that they aren’t likely to find anywhere else on the web.
  • Make sure that the tone and style of your writing resonate with your readers.

 

2. Focus on E-A-T

Google’s E-A-T has been in the spotlight ever since its August 2018 update. E-A-T stands for expertise, authority, and trustworthiness, and it helps Google penalise websites with inaccurate content.

The August 2018 “medic update” penalised a lot of websites offering health and medical advice. But that crackdown wasn’t limited to just health-related websites. Google also penalised several other websites with inaccurate content and information.

The idea is that Google doesn’t only want relevant content to rank higher in the SERPs. The search engine also wants that content to have accurate information. This trend is only just getting started and will become a major deciding factor in the coming years, with 2020 expected to be a pivotal point in this next SEO evolution.

Therefore, if your content is well-optimised and has loads of links, that’s not enough. Your site’s content also needs to have 100% accurate and credible information — especially if you are in the medical, health, finance, safety, and similar niches.

 

3. Provide a great user experience

User experience continues to gain an important position in the overall SEO. Engagement metrics — which are often directly impacted by the user experience — help Google determine which pages should rank higher.

Engagement metrics, such as bounce rate, dwell time, and organic click-through rate are becoming more and more crucial.

In 2020, make sure that you continue to focus on these engagement metrics and the overall user experience. Otherwise, no matter how awesome your content is, you will have a tougher time ranking your web pages on top if they do not offer a great user experience and/or have poor engagement metrics.

 

4. Experiment with content clusters

Content clusters or topic clusters is fast becoming a popular SEO strategy. And in 2020, it is expected to play an even bigger role.

As per this strategy, you create “pillar content” on the basis of broad topics. Then you create smaller, narrower web pages that focus on long-tail keywords and sub-topics around that pillar content. In the end, you interlink the smaller cluster pages with the pillar content.

HubSpot recently shifted to the topic cluster strategy and experienced significantly better results in terms of rankings. This is how HubSpot’s content map used to look before implementing the topic cluster strategy:

 

5 SEO tactics you should focus on in 2020 hubspot before

 

And this is how it looks after they started using the content cluster SEO strategy:

 

5 SEO tactics you should focus on in 2020 hubspot after

 

As you can see, HubSpot’s website now tackles different topics as different clusters. They create a pillar content for each main topic and then build several smaller web pages for each sub-topic. In the end, all web pages covering sub-topics are interlinked with the main pillar content.

HubSpot found that “that the more interlinking they did, the better the placement in search engine results pages (SERPs). Impressions (or views) also increased with the number of links they created.”

 

5. Speed up your website

As more and more SEO professionals continue using best SEO practices recommended by Google, the differences between websites and their SEO prowess continue to diminish.

More webmasters and content marketers are now creating useful content than they were 15 years ago. Therefore, metrics such as faster loading speed of web pages will continue to become more important.

Every second counts, and it has a negative impact on conversions, traffic, search engine rankings, your website’s credibility, and overall user experience.

In 2020, make sure your website loads as soon as possible — ideally within a second.

 

6. High Quality Backlinks

Link Building has been called “dead” for years. The rules of 2003 certainly changed, and those who could not learn and adapt to the ever-changing rules and increased requirements on skills, tools, details then, of course, had to give up on their “link building tricks.”

Google confirmed that links are the #1 ranking factor and said: “Ranking without links is really really hard.”

The Google Core Algorithm is based on links, and that hasn’t changed since the inception of Google.

If you want your website to rank well and stay penalty-free, building new links is not enough. You need to take care of your backlink profile and disavow all the spammy links. You can choose our High Domain Authority Links.

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sozadmn 19 January 2020 1 Comment

What is a Backlink? How to Get More Backlinks

Backlinks are links from a page on one website to another. If someone links to your site, then you have a backlink from them. If you link to another website, then they have a backlink from you.

1. Rankings

Search engines like Google see backlinks as votes of confidence. Generally speaking, the more votes your web pages have, the more likely they are to rank for relevant search queries.

How do we know? We’ve studied link-based ranking factors on a few occasions and always find the same thing: the number of backlinks from unique websites (referring domains) correlates strongly with organic search traffic.

2. Discoverability

Search engines find new content by revisiting pages they already know about to check for new links.

Because search engines revisit popular pages more often than unpopular ones, they may discover your content faster if you get backlinks from popular pages.

3. Referral traffic

Backlinks exist to point people to useful resources. That’s why they’re clickable.

When someone clicks on a link to your website, you get referral traffic.

 

Not all backlinks are created equal. Here are some of the many attributes that contribute to a backlink’s quality and utility.

Relevance

Google places more value on relevant backlinks because people are more likely to click on them. This is something they talk about in their “reasonable surfer” patent.

What does this mean in real terms? If a plumber has backlinks from two pages, one about cats and one about installing boilers, chances are the latter is most valuable.

This idea also plays out at the domain level.

Readers of plumbing.com are more likely to click on a link to a plumber’s website than readers of cats.com.

Authority

Backlinks from strong web pages usually transfer more “authority” than those from weak ones.

Page-level authority is something we’ve studied a few times, and we’ve found a clear relationship between it and organic traffic.

 

SIDENOTE. URL Rating (UR) is Ahrefs’ page-level authority metric. It’s scored on a scale from 0–100.

That said, backlinks from strong pages don’t always transfer more authority.

Google’s original patent states that authority is split equally between all outbound links on a web page. So if you have backlinks from two pages and one has more outbound links than the other, then, all else being equal, the link from the page with fewer outbound links transfers more authority.

Are things that simple these days? Probably not. Google has a fair number of patents describing various methods for assigning value to backlinks.

Furthermore, internal backlinks also contribute to a page’s authority.

Traffic

Backlinks from high-traffic pages will usually send you more referral traffic than those from low-traffic pages. That’s obvious. The real question is whether backlinks from high-traffic pages positively affect rankings more than those from low-traffic pages?

This is a question we recently tried to answer. We took the top-ranking pages for 44,589 non-branded keywords and looked at organic traffic to the pages that link to them.

Here’s what we found:

Long story short, there’s a small but clear correlation between rankings and backlinks from pages with organic search traffic. However, the sheer number of backlinks from unique websites (referring domains) and page-level authority look to be more important.

Placement

Because people are more likely to click prominently-placed links, some links on web pages likely pass more authority than others.

Bill Slawski talks about this in his analysis of Google’s updated “reasonable surfer” patent.

Consider this when pursuing links. If your link will likely end up in the site’s footer, or along with fifty other sites in the sidebar, then put your energy into other opportunities.

Followed vs. nofollowed

Nofollowed backlinks don’t usually influence the linked page’s rankings—although they can.

Because link building takes time and effort, it’s best to prioritize getting followed links. Just don’t kick up a fuss if you get a nofollowed link. It may still have some SEO value.

Anchor text

Anchor text refers to the clickable words that form a backlink.

Google says that anchor text influences rankings in their original patent.

Google employs a number of techniques to improve search quality including page rank, anchor text, and proximity information.

That said, when we studied the relationship between anchor text and rankings across 384,614 pages, the correlations were weak.

So while anchor text does matter, it’s not as important as other things.SIDENOTE. If you’re building backlinks through outreach, you won’t usually have much control over the anchor text used when linking to your site. That’s a good thing. It helps keep things natural and is also a sign that the link you’ve acquired is of a certain quality.

There are three ways to get more backlinks: create them, earn them, or build them.

Earning backlinks

This is when people discover your content via search engines like Google, social media, or word of mouth, and choose to link to your page. In order words, earned backlinks are organic.

You can improve your chances of earning more backlinks by creating truly useful content that people should want to link to.

Creating backlinks

This is when you manually add links to your site from other websites. Examples include submitting to business directories, leaving blog comments, and replying to forum threads.

Building backlinks

This is when you reach out to other site owners, editors, or webmasters and ask them to link to your page. For this to work, you need to have a clear value proposition. That’s where link building tactics come in.

Here are a few tried and tested ones:

  • Guest blogging: Offer to write a one-off post for another website.
  • Broken link building: Find relevant dead links on other sites, then reach out and suggest your working link as the replacement. (You can use our broken link checker to do this.)
  • The Skyscraper Technique: Find relevant content with lots of links, make something better, then ask those linking to the original to link to you instead.
  • Unlinked mentions: Find unlinked mentions of your brand, then ask the author to make the mention clickable.

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sozadmn 3 October 2019 0 Comments