- Google traffic decreases month by month
- Google traffic is stagnating despite your efforts
- you think you’ve had a Google penalty and your SEO seems stuck
- you are looking for new ideas
Here are the 5 steps to follow, in order:
- Audit technique SEO
- Keyword Strategy
- Content optimization
- Optimizing the user experience
- Work on the reputation of the site
You’ll see, there’s work! But at least you have a way to go, with specific steps and lots of tips and links …
Note: with all the files on WebRankInfo and this tutorial in particular, you should get by on your own (with the help of the suggested tools).
How would you like to increase your Google traffic if SEO fundamentals are not met?
As you probably know, I propose on My Ranking Metrics platform (of which I am co-founder) a tool dedicated to this: RM Tech . It allows in a few clicks to perform a technical audit at a lower cost. You should launch one immediately in free version , only to see if it finds problems:
- if he finds nothing or not much important, go to step 2
- otherwise, correct the problems by following the detailed explanations provided in the full report (for a fee)
Here is the kind of summary table you can get (including in the free version):
As long as you have red circles, you should not go to step 2: you must first correct the problems.
I think we should also treat the cases of yellow circles, but it’s up to you to see …
Note: It is also important to create a Search Console account and to periodically check for any errors or warnings reported by Google.
You’ve probably already built a list of keywords , which is a list of queries you think your site should be 1st in Google.
I suggest you leave a blank page , with a look as new as possible! Many reasons :
- your list may be out of date, too old: it should be updated because users have evolved, just like your offer
- your list may have been provided by a SEO: it is not impossible that it is not adapted enough to your site, or quite complete
- perhaps your site contains too many generic keyphrases: as a great SEO beginner, you thought at the time that that was what you had to aim for, but today you understand … Understand that to target queries far too competitive is useless (except to lose energy), that putting keywords that do not transform because too vague is useless or almost
Without going so far as to describe the method in details ( I do it in formation ), follow these steps:
- Make sure that for you, the precise objectives of the site are very clear (this is not always the case when starting a new project). Is it online sales? From the recovery of leads (contacts)? Advertising revenue? Anything else or a mixture of all this?
- Make a list of the persona , these ” typical customers” that you want to bring to your home. Do you target teens as well as seniors? Fans as specialists? Individuals as professionals?
- Make a list of your main offers (content, products, services, etc.). Later you will make a complete list.
- For each offer, try to put yourself in the shoes of each persona and ask yourself what this person is really looking for in this offer. Then imagine the queries she could make on Google. Apart from a brain storming , use tools. To name a few, try
- Google Suggest (either directly on Google or via tools like keyword.io or mine)
- the associated searches indicated by Google at the bottom of the results page, or those associated with each result
- Google Trends
- tools to find other ideas of keywords like SEMRush or possibly more specific tools like 1.fr , Visiblis , YourText.guru , SEOQuantum or others (attention, they are not always exploitable in any case … ). Be careful not to stuff your pages with these keywords …
- possibly the AdWords Campaign Planner (to find new keyword ideas or try to sort them by importance, even if you have to be very wary of the monthly search volumes indicated by this tool)
- Write down all these queries in a table , one per line, indicating in a column the relevant offer.
- Normally, it should not be a problem for you to indicate for each line of this table the URL of your site of the most appropriate page for the keyword concerned.
Well, you did a great job! Depending on the results of step 6, for some keywords you can find yourself in these situations:
- no page exists on the site: the ideal would be to create it, and at least to complete a page that is close to it
- or conversely, you have plenty of pages for the same keyword: it’s a structural problem, you probably need to create a “mother” page
There are many other subtleties but in this tutorial I remain as concise as possible (if we can say!).
The pages associated with the keywords of the list resulting from step 2 are the first pages to work, those which must have an irreproachable content. It will not surprise you if I say that each page must have:
- a descriptive title , with keywords but also very catchy
- a meta description tag written by hand, also descriptive of the content and incentive to click. The user who sees its wording in the search results (snippet) must die of desire to know more. Read these tips to increase the clickthrough rate in the SERP , the CTR is a major element that you should not ignore.
- no problem of duplicate contents (I have a checklist here , or a folder there )
- and above all a lot of added value ! In general it requires a certain size (number of words) but other elements come into play.
As you notice, I insist that the title (title tag) and the extract in the SERP (often derived from the meta description) must be “catchy”. The idea is that the click rate (in the results pages) on your pages should be very good. If you do not know how to identify the pages to work on this level, contact me : I have a proposal to make you about it 😉
The text of each strategic page must include the terms identified in step 2 in the summary table. Do not “stick” to words, Google understands the meaning better and better . If you do not know it yet, Google has gone from a “keywords” vision to the meaning behind them, the specific themes ( from strings to things ).
OK but is it so profitable to invest in web writing?
In March 2018, I did a major SEO study to answer this question among others. The answer, based on the analysis of 42 million pages and 1.2 billion visits is as follows:
Pages with sufficient text content (main area) generate 4.5 times more SEO visits than missing onesCLICK TO TWEETHere is an excerpt from the results of the My Ranking Metrics study :
If you think you do not have the time to create and optimize the editorial content, the biggest mistake would be to say “I’ll do it later, when I have time”. Frankly, it would be a major mistake in your SEO strategy.
To understand this essential point, watch this short video ( interest of the web writing for SEO ):
I advise you instead to outsource this to web editors (who know SEO). Take a look, for example, at the offers of Eve Demange , Isabelle Canivet + Jean-Marc Hardy or Muriel Vandermeulen and her agency WeAreTheWords . If you only have a very small budget, go through web authoring platforms like TextBroker , GreatContent , Textmaster or Redactiweb .
OK, I have many pages that lack content, how to find the pages of poor quality to treat priority?
Beyond the strategic pages found in step 2, you should make sure that your site does not contain pages of too low quality, or a very small proportion. For that, I recommend you very warmly:
- to read in full my file ” Quality and Google referencing “
- and watch the replay of my webinar on QualityRisk
All this is guaranteed very useful to improve your SEO 🙂
Note: The most important pages on your site are listed in the table in step 2. For each, check the QualityRisk score in the appendices of your RM Tech audit. They must absolutely have a QR score of zero (so do not be listed in the appendix listing the problem pages).
You think maybe I’m wrong tutorial? I assure you, improving the user experience and the satisfaction rate is vital for your SEO (and your business).
If I had to summarize and give you only one tip, it would be this:
Be obsessed with the idea that the surfer who comes from Google (SEO) should not especially go back in the search results, especially if he spent little time on your site. The worst thing would be that a large proportion of Internet users from “organic” traffic have this behavior. Conversely, doing everything so that they do not return to Google will help you out of the clutches of Panda, Phantom and other algos related to quality and user satisfaction.
If this topic interests you, I have a very complete file: how to keep the surfer longer on his site .
I discuss below some tracks …
Do I need to remember that you have no choice? Your site MUST be mobile compatible; the visit of your site on smartphone must be easy, pleasant while ensuring a very good rate of transfo.
If your site is still not mobile friendly , this may be why you see few mobile users in your Analytics stats. It’s not the opposite! In this case, plan as soon as possible a redesign of your site .
Check in Search Console if there are mobile usability issues .
Your site must be ultra fast! The first reason is that it will improve the efficiency of the site (revenue generated, contacts recovered, etc.). The second is that it will improve your SEO.
You already knew that, did not you? OK, but I want to stay very concrete in this tutorial, so here are my tips:
To improve the speed of your site:
- use this very sophisticated diagnostic tool
- go up a gear with a SaaS offer
- read these tips
Have your site tested by people who do not know it yet. If he answers “no” to one or more questions, it is necessary to improve your site!
- Is the economic model of the site included in 1 to 2 seconds maximum, whatever the 1st page consulted?
- Do we quickly find the strategic pages?
- Is there a clear and visible breadcrumb on each page?
- Are the menus easy to understand for those who discover the site?
- Are there on most pages links to related pages (articles or similar products, brand or category, etc.)?
Note: The most important pages on your site are listed in the table in Step 2. For each one, look in the appendices of your RM Tech audit for its depth . They should be Level 1 (accessible in 1 click from then the home page) or at worst level 2.
Optimization of the conversion rate
To bring the world to your site is good, it’s even essential. Ensuring that people meet your goals is just as essential to the success of your online activities! Whether it’s buying online, populating contact forms, making phone calls, signing up for a newsletter, referring to partners, or advertising revenue, you need to measure the conversion rate in order to seek to increase it.
You will need at least a good audience measurement tool (Google Analytics style), but probably also the help of specialists in the “conversion”. Use A / B testing tools to find out how to organize and present your offer in the most efficient way possible.
I do not lie more because it really comes out of the “SEO” framework of this tutorial.
Awareness (backlinks, brand, social networks) still essential
The reputation of the site (as Google can evaluate it) is still a decisive element in the success of your SEO. This will make your traffic take off – provided you have followed the 4 steps above.
Before, we just said “get the most backlinks possible”, these famous links pointing to your site. As long as you do, with your keywords as clickable text.
Before giving you some very concrete ideas to get good links, I would like to point out that there are at least 2 other elements that contribute to increase the notoriety of your site:
- Is a brand (official or similar) associated with your site? Is she strong?
- Does your site have success on social networks ? Are his pages often shared?
It is obvious that Google is trying to determine the brand associated with your site. The more Internet users search for it each month, the more Google considers it important. The top of the top is to have a lot of Internet users doing mixed research “brand + keyword”, which indicates to Google that your site is important for this theme.
Back to backlinks … Apart from searching for “spots” that Google will “never detect” to “ask backlinks”, I propose some simple ideas:
- enjoy your current backlinks that point to 404 error pages ( follow my tutorial here)
- a little in the same kind, monitor your current backlinks to be warned if they disappear : it can sometimes catch up by contacting the site concerned
- contact those who mention your site without making links: see if it is possible to ask them to replace the simple mention by a link
- contact all your real partners and ask them to talk about you on their site (with a link): partners, suppliers, resellers, contacts of all kinds and why not customers
- contact reporters and tell them that you are an expert in such a topic and that you are available to contribute to their next articles
- study the backlinks obtained by your competitors from sites that do not (yet) link to you. Use Ahrefs or Majestic , 2 specialized tools on link analysis. If it’s too much for you to do, I can do it for you .
- the list could be much longer, but this file is already a little long 😉
Clean up your artificial backlinks!
Since algo Penguin, you know well that it requires a profile of incoming links very clean, and that too much dose of artificial links becomes risky. If it’s still possible for you, avoid the Penguin !
And since it is officially integrated into the algo of Google in real time (end of September 2016), I strongly advise you to clean your most “shady” backlinks …
If you prefer me to analyze your backlinks myself , check out my pro offer here .