Search engine optimization (SEO) is an important aspect for any website.
If you use it properly on your site, it greatly affects your ranking and your site can get top rank in Google search result.
Here we have created a complete SEO checklist that will work great for any niche.
So if you want to get a higher rank in Google, follow this SEO tutorial step by step.
The Complete SEO Checklist For 2018
First, you need to do basics SEO techniques for your site. Here will tell you about some tools and plugins that will help to get a good rank in search engines.
Setup Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a powerful tool developed by Google. This tool is specially designed to check out how your site is performing in Google.
It comes with many features to track your site
- Search analytic
- Submit a sitemap
- Fix website errors
- Messages from the Google search team
- Google index
- Many more
Setup Bing Webmaster Tools
Although it’s not as popular as Google. But after Google Bing is the best search engine.
Bing comes with a lot of features that are not available in the Google Search Console like built-in keyword research tool.
Setup Google Analytics
Google Analytics is the best tool to check site stats. This tool helps you to figure out what people are searching on your site and what they like to read.
Apart from this, you can also check the bounce rate of your site.
Setup Yoast SEO (Only for WordPress users)
Yoast SEO is the most robust SEO plugin for WordPress Blog. It comes with some important features like.
- You can change the SEO title and meta description of the post.
- You can add Focus keyword.
- Create XML Sitemaps.
- It also includes the .htaccess and robots.txt editor.
- You can use Title and Meta description for taxonomies (category and tags) and much more.
These were some SEO Basics checklists that apply to every website.
Now let’s go to the main factor of SEO Checklist…
1. Keyword Research
SEO totally depends on keyword research. Simply put Keyword Research is the foundation of SEO. Therefore it is very important that you have the knowledge of choosing the right keywords.
Here we will also show you how to find keywords for SEO,
a. Use Google Suggest
This is the easiest and best way to get the best keywords. Simply search related keywords from your topic in the Google search box, it will start suggesting according to previous searches.
From here, select the appropriate keyword and use the keyword research tool to find out their competition, monthly search, CPC, etc.
These keywords can be great to optimize your site because it comes directly from Google search data.
b. Use Related Google Search
After searching on Google, you will see some related searches bottom of your search result that you can use as a keyword.
c. Using Google Keyword Planner
Google Keyword Planner is the best free keyword research tool developed by Google. You can use it for any niche.
Using it you can also see the keyword competition, monthly searches, CPC and more.
Always choose high searches and low competition keywords for your content.
d. Find Question Keywords
Question keywords make your content more attractive and help to get high CTR.
Such kind of keywords is very useful for blog posts and articles.
But how to find Question Keywords?
And for this, you can use Answer The Public.
This tool is completely free and predicts keyword using Google and Bing Searches.
Its interface is very easy to use that comes with a unique proposition and fantastic visualization.
Here we tell you how to find keywords for your content and we hope you understand better.
2. Include Main Keyword In URL
The URL helps the search engine to understand what your blog post is about and when we add our main keyword to the URL, the search engines can easily find out what the content is about.
That’s why you should add keywords to your URL.
Also, try to keep your URLs SEO friendly, short and meaningful.
3. Start Your Title With Keyword
Adding keywords to the title is very important for on-page optimization.
But how to add it?
To get a good rank in the search engine, add the keyword to the start of your title.
4. Use Main Keyword Once In The First 150 Words
This step makes your content even more targeted and SEO friendly. So make sure to use your keywords once here.
For example, for this post, you can see that I use the keyword “SEO checklist” In first 150 Words.
5. Proper Use of H1, H2 or H3 Tags
H1 tags give a little boost in ranking. But it’s important to keep in mind that does not fill your whole content with the H1 tag.
In fact, Googler John Mueller states about H2, H3 Tags
These heading tags in HTML help us to understand the structure of the page.
It does not belong to the important Google Ranking Factor.
But when it comes to search engine optimization, every little thing helps.
6. Optimize Images
One image equals 1000 words.
And the worst thing is that Google can not read the image. It reads the image based on the alt tag of the image.
That’s why always give the correct name of your images. Apart from this, you should also pay attention to the Alt tag.
Optimized images help you get a good rank in image search.
7. Avoid Keyword Stuffing
In earlier days, keyword Stuffing was used to rank a page. But now Google has become very smart.
If you do keyword stuffing in your content, Google will not rank your content.
For this reason, use synonyms and LSI keywords instead of using the same keyword 1000 times in your content.
You can use LSIGraph.com to find a best LSI Keywords.
8. Use External Links
External links make your content more useful. But one thing to keep in mind, the linking site should be trusted. Otherwise, your site may be penalized.
This technique shows to Google that your content is trustworthy and well-referenced.
9. Use Internal Links
Internal links make your content relevant to both search engines and users.
Internal linking makes your post more informative. Also, visitors spend more time on your site which reduces the bounce rate. Plus Google considers content as quality.
10. Review Crawl Errors
Sometimes it happens that Google does not crawl your page and shows a Crawl error for that page. And your page does not rank in Google.
To find Crawl Errors, go to Google Search Console, then click on Crawl >> Crawl Stats. Here you will be able to see your site’s error URL.
11. Fetch as Google
Many times it happens that Google can not crawl your page completely and as a result, your content cannot rank in Google.
That’s why I recommend Fetch and Render in Google Search Console tool. For this, click on Crawl >> Fetch as Google option.
12. Mobile Friendly
More than half of searches are done by mobile.
That’s why Google introduced mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor to improve the mobile user experience.
If your site is not mobile friendly, then it will not rank well in Google. Google gives more value to mobile-optimized sites.
To determine whether your site is mobile-friendly or not, Google has also developed a mobile-friendly testing tool.
13. Fix Broken Links
Broken links greatly affect user experience and your site ranking. So try to fix them as soon as possible.
And for this, you can use DrLinkCheck.com.
WordPress users can find and fix it using the Broken Link Checker.
14. Move to HTTPS
If you use HTTPS (SSL certificate) on your site, it helps to boost your ranking.
Google announced in August 2014 – HTTPS as a ranking signal.
If you’re running your site on HTTP, then redirect it to HTTPS.
But if you do not redirect properly from HTTP to HTTPS, it can very badly affect your site ranking and traffic.
Even your traffic may be zero in one night.
15. Site Loading Speed
If your site is very fast, it will rank well in Google.
16. Build Powerful Backlinks
Link making process is called backlinks. It is a very old Google ranking factor.
But backlinks should be relevant and from good ranking websites.
If you create bad, low-quality backlinks, it can badly hurt your ranking.
Apart from this, do not buy backlinks for your site, otherwise, you may face Google Penalty because such backlinks contain with low quality and pornographic sites links.
Here we are going to tell how to get high-quality Backlinks for SEO,
a. Write Quality Content
If you write quality and informative content on your blog people will automatically link your article that helps to get backlinks.
b. Guest Blogging
This method is very popular and used very much.
You will have to find some popular blogs that accept Guest Posting but should be related to your blog.
Then write an Informative Post on those blogs. This will give a good backlink. And as well as visitors to that blog will know about your blog.
c. Comment on Other Blogs
Comments are easy and best to get backlinks.
All blogs do not give dofollow Links, and they do not pass link juice. So, we should comment on dofollow Blogs as well as on quality blogs.
d. Submit Site to Web Directories
Submitting your blog or site into web directories is another great way to find quality backlinks.
You should avoid a web directory that asks you to create backlinks for you.
e. Use Discussion Platforms
You can join Quora.com and Yahoo Answers for this.
Answer the questions related to your Niche and leave a link of your website or blog.
If people are satisfied with your answer, they will definitely come to your site.
f. Internal Links
Internal links also work as backlinks on your site.
And already we told you, Internal linking makes your post more informative search engine and user. Also, visitors spend more time on your site which will reduce the bounce rate.
17. Quality content
If you do not write useful and informative blog posts for visitors, then no one will like to visit your site and you are store garbage on your blog, nothing else.
Always try to write unique and quality content.
18. Length of Content
Long content performs better in search engines compared to shorter and thin content.
See this article on Search Engine Land – The SEO And User Science Behind Long-Form Content.
If you write short posts, should be at least 1000 words without nonsense.
19. Meta Description
It plays an important role to increase the Click Through Rate (CTR) on your content.
However, Google usually allows 300 characters to write meta descriptions.
If you are a WordPress user then you can write good meta descriptions using Yoast SEO.
Google states that
Google Search uses breadcrumb markup in the body of a web page to categorize the information from the page in search results.
Also, Breadcrumb helps users to know where they are on your site.
In a previous article, we will share a guide on how to add breadcrumbs in WordPress.
21. Grammar and Spelling
If you focus on grammar and spelling in your content, then it improves your content quality.
Matt Cutts is discussing on Grammar and Spelling in this video.
After publishing the article it is very important to promote it. If you do not do this then you are making a big mistake.
This step belongs to off page SEO.
Simply put, promoting your site is called off-page optimization.
The main reason for doing this is to attract the attention of users and search engines.
Also, you can see an article on Search Engine Journal The Power of Influencer Marketing and the Lessons They’ve Taught Me
If you promote your blog posts after publishing, it will quickly accelerate your blog traffic.
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