Ranking for a Keyword: 10 Steps That You Should Take
Setting up a website for your business is only half the battle. It also needs to rank high on search engines, like Google, for people to see that it exists. After all, a website is only as good as the traffic it gets.
It’s important that you understand the importance of keywords—and how to maximise their use. Now, you may ask, "how to rank for a keyword?"
We're not going to lie, ranking for a keyword in organic search won't be easy—unless you're The New York Times or Wikipedia. Nonetheless, it's not impossible. You just need to follow a tried-and-tested process.
You should manage your expectations, as you won't always get the results you want all the time—especially if you have a new website trying to rank for a popular keyword. If you really want your website to rank on Google's elusive first page for a given keyphrase, you need to take search engine optimisation (SEO) and content marketing seriously.
How to rank for a keyword?
Here are ten steps on how to rank for a keyword on Google.
Ensure your website is working, and you have a network to share your content.
A strong website means that it has accrued authority and backlinks over the years. It's also important that it follows the best practices in SEO. To see quick results for a certain keyword, you also need to have a built-in network where you can share new content. This can include a blog following, such as email contacts, and an audience on various social networks, such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Choose your keyword and do some research.
Before finalising your choice of keyword, make sure to do some in-depth research first. You can use different keyword tools to gather vital information about your target keywords, such as the search volume and competition.
Ahrefs is currently the best in the market.
A good keyword has a healthy search volume but relatively low competition. Most importantly, it has to be relevant to your business.
Know what your competitors are doing.
After settling on a keyword, take the time to search for it on Google to see what your competitors are up to. Pay close attention to the domains and URLs, titles, and types of content that ranks high, as well as how much authority the sites have. All this information will help you differentiate yourself from the pack.
Determine the user intent behind the target keyword.
Search marketing defines "intent" as your best guess at what the user really wants when using the search query.
For instance, do searchers simply want information about juicing or are they looking to buy the best juicer in the market?
There are several types of user intent:
Informational: When someone is searching for information about a certain thing, like “how many calories in an apple”.
Navigational: People type this in to get to a website or a certain area of a website a keyword like this can be like “Linkedin Login”.
Commercial: Users search for commercial keywords, when they know they want to buy something, but can’t decide what exact product to buy yet. Like searching for “best drone cameras”.
Transactional: These are the best type of keywords, but the hardest to rank for. When people search for these keywords, they know what they want to buy, and they are ready to pay. Keywords like this are like “Buy groceries online”.
Choose the right type of content to use with your keyword.
However, do take note that creating the content can take some time and effort on your part if you choose to do everything in-house.
Execute your content plan.
At this point, you are ready to execute your plan. Don't rush into anything, however. Most search engines these days are looking for high-quality content that has relevance to the searcher. So, avoid spamming your page with too many keywords or ads that only benefit you and not potential leads.
Implement on-page optimisation.
This is the part where you use the list of keywords you've come up with and optimize the On-Page factors on your page.
Insert your keywords a few times in your content as naturally as possible. You can also add them in image Alt Tags. The users won't see them unless they are specifically looking for them, but it's another good way to increase your keyword ranking.
Publish your content.
This is why it is important to have a content plan for your blog.
The only time you don't need to worry about timely publishing is when you create evergreen content, the kind that will remain perfect to read at any given time and even many years after it was first published.
All you need is to update it when needed to give it a fresh spin.
Promote your content.
This is the next vital step after an article is published. This is particularly true for types of content that are tied to the news or current events.
Once you publish your content, be ready to share it on your business social media accounts. You can also add social media widgets or buttons on your page to encourage users to share your content.
Do some analysis to determine how you're performing with your keyword.
If you think that your work is done after publishing your content, think again. You still need to check your page from time to time to see how it is doing and if you are ranking for the right keywords. You can use your analytics tool to do this. If you are not ranking for the keywords you are targeting, then it’s back to the drawing board.
However, keep in mind, that ranking for a keyword takes time, so don’t expect ranking on the first page of Google in a matter of days.
In reality, if you do everything correct this can take anywhere from a month up to 6 months, depending on the competition.
If you find it hard to rank for the keyword you are targeting, it may be because it's too competitive. If that's the case, then you need to scale back a bit on your ambition. Until you have built up more authority, you may want to target less-competitive keywords first.
Get started with the help of Ardor SEO
We have a team of professionals who are experts in search engine optimisation. We can assist you with keyword research and strategy implementation to rank for your target keywords.
Schedule a call with us right now to get started!