What do SEO best practices look like in 2022? If you are reading this chances are you already know what SEO is. For the layman, it is Search Engine Optimization – or the process of getting your website found in Google organic search. Organic search is a much more valuable source of traffic for a brand than paid search. Not only do people trust it more, it’s a safe bet it’s your largest share of traffic. (According to BrightEdge 53.3% on average)
The challenge with SEO best practices is that the game is always changing. Google is always updating it’s algorithm to stop people from gaming the system. Google’s ultimate goal is a good user experience for searchers – so logic would tell you that creating a website and pages with a good user experience is the key. Keeping that theme in mind, here is a list of SEO best practices for 2022.
On page SEO is related to things you can control within your website. You will want to have a solid keyword strategy, create metadata with your keywords and of course create high quality content for users. Page speed is another aspect of SEO that is forgotten by most. If your pages load slow this creates a poor user experience and makes it more difficult for crawlers to index your pages. On-Page SEO seems like a no brainer but it is one of the most overlooked SEO best practices.
Off-page SEO is a bit more complicated. It involves creating high quality back links to your content. This can come from bloggers or other websites linking to your content. In 2022, a very large portion of it is going to be Social Media traffic. Social is one of the fastest growing traffic channels for any website. Having a coherent social media strategy is mandatory. Paid search is another great way to generate valuable traffic to help aid in on-page SEO efforst but it can be expensive so proceed with caution.
Featured Snippets are another overlooked channel for off-page SEO. These are short snippets of text that appear at the top of Google’s search results as a direct answer a searcher’s query. Data shows that featured snippets can get as much as 8.6% of all search clicks. So make sure you optimize for this traffic.
Internal Linking Structure
Having a well conceived sitemap and internal linking structure will help Google to better understand your website. A good internal linking strategy includes where you link to a page, what anchor text you use and how often you link a page. These factors allow Google to understand each page’s priority when it’s crawling and indexing them. Internal linking can be crucial for large sites with a lot of content.
Some aspects of technical SEO were touched on earlier but we cannot stress the importance of this enough. Having a secure domain, making sure your URL’s are structured properly, having a valid Google Maps listing for your location. These are tiny factors that combined can create a lot of value for you in organic search. Google will show preference to a business with a verified location and map listing over a business that does not have these assets so plan accordingly.
Well Written Content
Last but not least – write good content. There is a lot of “farmed” content out there written by people who don’t speak English for pennies on the dollar. This won’t work. Google’s algorithm’s have evolved to favor content that was written by humans for humans. Just having pages with copy that sounds like a human wrote it is a huge asset.
This also speaks to user experience. Overall Google is looking to create a good user experience. Content that helps make a user’s experience good will be elevated. It’s that simple.
So those are some SEO best practices for 2022. While a lot has changed, a lot has stayed the same. Having a good keyword strategy and backlinks will help but if your content is useless not so much. Create something of value and follow Google’s guidelines and you can gain ground in organic search.
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