Recently, Search Engine Land released its Periodic Table Of SEO Success Factors. This table consists of 37 factors that you need to create the ultimate SEO cocktail in 2015. Here's a look at the table, then I'll jump into each element and what it means.
Breaking Down the Elements of Fantastic SEO
Here the 37 elements of great SEO. I'm going to break each one down and tell you why they matter to your site.
SEO Elements in Content
To start off with, you always want to use great content. I'm a content specialist. Trust me on this one.
Here are the elements of great content.
- Quality: Provide well-written, interesting text that doesn't include errors. Also, make sure your content gives readers what they want.
- Research: Make sure to research keywords for your content. Use Google Adwords Keyword Planner for
- Words: Include those words and search phrases that you researched into your content.
- Fresh: Use fresh content that people are looking for.
- Vertical: Add images, video and other vertical content to your text.
- Answers: Always answer the question that the person is searching for.
- Thin: Avoid "thin" content. This is content that doesn't fully answer a question. Google also considers content under 200 words to be "thin."
Architecture and SEO
Architecture is the effect that your site has on your SEO. You can create great content, but if your site lacks proper SEO, then you'll fail. Here are the elements of good site architecture.
- Crawl: Make sure that search engine bots can easily crawl your site and find what you want them to find. You can do this by adding page, media and post meta, fixing re-directs and broken links, etc.
- Duplicate: Putting duplicate content on your site is a big no-no. Having one page that says the same thing as another on your site tells search engines that your site is crap.
- Mobile: This is a new requirement and it's BIG! Make sure that your site is optimized for mobile devices. If you have a WordPress site, this can be as easy as using the Jetpack feature "Mobile Theme."
- Speed: Your site should load in a couple of seconds. Do a site speed test and then optimize for faster loading times. One good way to speed up your site is to reduce the size of your images.
- URLs: Don't let your URLs be a string of numbers and call it a day. All of your URLs should include keywords or phrases. Click around my site to get an idea of what your URLs should look like.
- HTTPs: Provide a secure site connection for your visitors. It's that simple.
- Cloaking: Don't try to trick search engines. It's just a bad idea.
Your SEO Depends on HTML
Search engine optimization includes how your site is coded. I know, I know. You picked a template for your site because you didn't want to learn coding. Don't worry, this is pretty simple.
- Titles: Your title HTML tags should include keywords. Hint- Use a plugin that can help.
- Description: Add meta descriptions to your pages, media and posts. You can do this will a simple plugin like Yoast.
- Structure: Use a page structure that is helpful and makes sense. Adding bulleted or numbered lists really helps.
- Headers: Use headers with HTML tags and keywords. This isn't hard. Write a keyword rich title or sub-title, and then click the H1, H2, H3 or H4 button in your post or page editor. It will add the code you need.
- Stuffing: Stop keyword stuffing!
- Hidden: Make sure that your design doesn't hide words you want search engines to find. For example, if your page background is gray, don't use a gray font. Duh!
Off-the-Page SEO Factors
There are some SEO factors that are called off-page. Here is what they are and why they are important.
- Authority: Authority makes your site look like the hip, cool, influencer on the block. How many shares your content gets is a big part of this.
- Engage: If your site has a high bounce rate then a search engine will see it as a crappy site that doesn't interest the people who go there.
- History: Search engines check to see how long a site has been up. The longer, the better.
- Identity: Have you taken steps to verify your site and its users? You might want to.
- Piracy: If your site has been flagged for piracy, it may drop off of search results all-together. Let this be a lesson to never steal content, folks.
- Ads: Search engines hate sites that have tons of ads, especially above the fold. Google likes sites that have no more than three ads per page.
Linking for SEO
Links are a huge factor when it comes to good SEO. Forget these elements and you can kiss your rank goodbye.
- Quality: Search engines like it if you only link to other high-quality sites. If a site has a good reputation, you can be pretty sure that search engines will like the link.
- Text: The pages you link to should contain keywords you want your page to rank for. Your link text should also contain keywords.
- Number: You want other sites to link to your page by the dozens. A lot of links make your site look like a content boss.
- Paid: Let's get one thing straight. Paying for links to your site isn't doing you any favors. Search engines are wise to these tricks.
- Spam: There's nothing search engines hate more than spam. Stop spamming your links in forums, blog comments and the like. That little scheme was nixed from SEO tactics years ago. It's like wearing a polyester suit. It was popular once, but now it just makes you look tacky.
Personal Information can Affect SEO
Search engines also look at the personal information of people who have visited your site before. They look at:
- What country a person is located in.
- What city they're located in.
- If a person regularly visited your site and/or shared it.
- Has a person favorite your site? Has their friends?
Social Media and How it Affects SEO
There are two final factors that search engines consider when ranking your site. First, they look to see if experts or trusted social media accounts have shared your site or content. Getting the right people to share your content is key to search engine marketing (SEM). Second, search engines check to see how many people share your content. The more shares, the better.
All of these elements come together to produce your ranking for certain keywords and phrases. Getting your SEO on point is the best way to raise your ranking. Need help? Get a 1-on-1 consultation.