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11 September 2014
Our tips on what is necessary to create a SEO-friendly page.
There have been many changes in the SEO world in recent times, affecting the way we create and optimise content. Traditionally, a website could rank top on the SERP implementing only certain technical aspects, such as meta tags or the optimum keywords density; but today it takes much more.
Search Metrics just released their 2014 SEO ranking factors, so using this data we will try to determine the ideal "anatomy" of a page to rank higher on search engines. What is necessary to create a SEO-friendly page?
But not of any kind: it must be interesting and quality content. The essential feature that search engines use to rank the content is relevance. And how do they know what is relevant?
Search engines use several factors to determine the relevance of a page. For example, although it may seem obvious, having more traffic and a high CTR and low bounce rate indicates to search engines that the content is good and, therefore, relevant. Hence, it is important to provide an attractive page that enhances user experience.
Social interactions (likes, tweets and, for Google, most especially, +1s) are also signals for search engines for what quality content is, as well as backlinks. In this case, priority is given to quality over quantity.
So stop asking yourself what your copy should be for the search engines to like it. You no longer write for the search engines (or at least not primarily) but for people, who will click, read, share, link, comment and vote your content. It is then that the search engines decide that your page deserves the top spot of the SERP.
Good site architecture and a thorough internal linking profile are also essential. Remember to organise the content using H1 and H2 headings and other html tags such as bold, italic, etc. This will indicate search engines which content is most important within the page and it will also facilitate easier reading to users.
Checking some technical aspects will also help you to improve your page rank, such as better load times and site speed and making it mobile friendly.
Relevant keyword phrases are still very important, particularly if outlined in html tags, headings and anchor texts. Include them throughout the text, but without going overboard. Abuse of keywords is known as keyword stuffing and is penalised. You will get the right balance if you write naturally and with common sense.
Include the keywords on the URL and the meta tags too, that is, the meta title and the meta description. Meta keyword tags have already been depreciated since search engines consider it irrelevant.
Do not focus on working only one of the factors above mentioned, because you will get no results. Instead, work consistently and constantly on all the factors that influence page rank and your site will be rewarded by the search engines.