4 Steps To Improve Old Search Engine Rankings
Ranking in the search engines can be tough, especially when you’re dealing with lots of competition. When you’re running a blog, you have to constantly post new content. Generally, most people will publish a post, build some links, do a little social media and hope for the best.
Maybe the post ends up ranking #12 for a keyword with 4400 searches a month. Then a few days later it’s time to write a new post again. But what happens to the old one that didn’t make page 1? The point is most of your posts aren’t going to rank where you want them to. Not initially anyway. So I wanted to talk about how you can improve your search engine rankings of your EXISTING content.
As literally 90% of webmasters and bloggers are sitting on gold. If you’ve got 200, 100 or even 50 posts/pages published, the chances are you’re sitting on a complete gold mine. How so?
Well I come across blogs all the time with hundreds of posts of amazing content. BUT – they never get much traffic because they don’t do enough SEO. So… by simply identifying posts sending you some traffic, you should easily be able to dramatically improve search engine rankings and therefore traffic.
1. Identify Post
What you need to do first is find posts that are already sending you some traffic, but aren’t ranked at the top of Google for their target keyword. You have to do this one post at a time. This will enable you to see which posts have the highest potential to send you a ton of traffic. You basically need to look for posts that are sending you daily or weekly traffic, but are ranked at the bottom of page 1-2 of Google. Then all we have to do is give them a slight nudge to push them up the rankings.
You do this by using Google Analytics, once logged into Google Analytics you need to click “Content” in the sidebar. Then click “Top Content” and you’ll see a list of your most popular content in terms of traffic. On the top content page, start clicking on all of your most popular pages and you’ll be brought to pages like this:
From there, you’ll get a list of all the keywords people are using to find your post via the search engines. You’ll also get the exact number of visitors you’ve received from each keyword.
2. Identify Best Opportunity
You’ll usually find a load of different keywords being used to find your post. This makes it a little more difficult as you need to decide on 1 keyword. I always check where I’m ranking for the top 5 keywords. There are several tools you can use to check rankings. First you can manually check your rankings, just make sure you check Google US. If you want to invest in a rank tracker, I personally use Rank Tracker and there’s market samurai which is a cheaper option.
Look for keywords where you’re ranking at the bottom of page 1-2 and are still sending you a lot of keywords. Even if you’re ranking 3-5, pushing it to #1 could mean triple the traffic. Just check rankings until you identify the best opportunity.
3. Reverse Engineer Competition
This part is quite fun, reverse engineering your competitors. You should only ever reverse engineer the competitors ranking ahead of you. If you find a keyword you’re ranked #3 for and gets a ton of searches, reverse engineer the top 2 ranking pages. Reverse engineering is basically spying on the competition. Checking out their link profile, you just have to see where their links are coming from. When you analyze their backlinks, you can see why they are ranking where they are and how you can get ahead of them.
This is a list of backlinks from bad to good:
- Blog comments
- Guestbook spam
- Profile links
- Social bookmarks
- Video links
- Web2.0 profiles
- Article directory links
- Press releases
- Blog Networks
- Web2.0 links
- Guest blogging etc (links from authority sites within unique content)
Those are a load of different kinds of backlinks from bad to good. You can check your competitor’s backlinks using a free tool called backlinkwatch. Now just reverse engineer them. Build the links they have that you don’t. If your competitors are ranking ahead of you by having more article directory links, write and submit a few articles. Same goes for every other type of backlink. Doing this may well push you to the top.
4. Improve On-Page SEO & Get More Links
The next step in improving your search engine rankings is improving your on-page SEO. Again pay attention to what the other people are doing. Make sure you have everything they do. Keyword in title, description, header tags and a slightly higher keyword density than your competitors. You can read my on-page SEO checklist here.
Lastly get more links. After you’ve reverse engineered your competitors, you should have more links than them. Saying that, you’ll do a lot better if you build a load more. For that you can read what to do with a low-cost link building budget and checkout the 4 best SEO tools.
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