10 Highly actionable tactics to building a first page ranking

building a first page ranking

To get your website to a level that produces leads for your business it’s important to cover the basics in building traffic. Whenever you’re beginning a campaign you will need to plan out your strategy for keyword selection and content creation in order to produce top-quality pages that outrank your opponents.

Research your keywords

Choosing a keyword is something that takes a little more planning than running a search phrase through a keyword tool. You will need to survey the SERP (search engine results page) in order to confirm the keyword will actually yield the traffic it promises. You will need to research the terms and get a clear understanding of what a user might be looking for when typing a specific search phrase.

Determine the potential volume of traffic

Searching a keyword is as easy as going to Wordtracker and typing in a phrase that you want your company to be found for. Collect a number of keyword ideas and an estimate on the level of difficulty each keyword represents as well as the traffic it will bring to your site. Choose a target keyword that is realistic in difficulty and has enough volume to satisfy your campaign goal.

The stated value of traffic is not always what will be directed to your site since it depends on quite a few variables. The traffic your site actually receives is dependent on the position your website ranks, the number of Google products occupying top positions and the organic click-through rate of the specified keyword. Each of these issues represents values that can change and create a drastically different result in the volume of traffic available for your site.

Identify Google products that occupy the SERP

The Google products that typically occupy the top positions can be anything from ads, local listings, video carousels, and featured snippets. Each one of these products can significantly change the percentage of clicks that are made on the first page of results. In some cases, it may be better to choose a different keyword. In some cases, it may be advantageous to optimize for those specific products. Local search, video and featured snippets are all separate methods of optimization that can produce significant traffic to your website.

Factor in the organic click-through rate

The organic click-through rate is a value you can use to determine the number of clicks that are made to the organic listings. If you know the organic click-through rate you can get a much more accurate picture of the traffic that is available. Ahrefs Keyword Explorer is one tool that reports the number of clicks that are actually made to the organic listings. When you can estimate the potential traffic that a number one position will drive to your site, you can determine whether that keyword alone will be enough to satisfy your monthly goal for new clients. If the traffic isn’t adequate to give you the conversions you need, you may need to add an additional keyword to your campaign or choose a new search term altogether.

Strategize your content

Once you have decided on your target keyword you will need to strategize your content. Creating a page that ranks sometimes means creating supporting pages on your site as well as content off-site that will be used for linking purposes.

Perform a competitive analysis

Get an idea for what is working to rank on the first page by performing a competitive analysis. You don’t need to copy what the ranking pages are doing but if you see that 7 out of 10 of the ranking pages have a video-it’s probably a form of media you want to include on your page as well. Implement the skyscraper method to not only produce content that meets the quality of your competitors but completely blows them away.

Outline your topics and subtopics

Look for topics, subtopics, media and supporting posts on their site that would contribute to the optimization of your keyword. When you do an outline for your page make sure you include everything directly related to a keyword search for your keyword topic. Internal linking from related articles will affect the way search engines view the page so you may need to consider writing separate articles in greater detail to get every topic and subtopic included in your campaign.

Plan out your link-building strategy

Another large ranking factor that will affect how your competition is ranking is the strength of their backlink profile as well as the domain authority of their site. If the number one website has an extremely high DA they may not need links to their page in order to rank it. If you’re DA is not as strong you will definitely need backlinks to compete.

You can use Ahrefs to generate a backlink report or for a quick reference, you can use an extension such as the Mozbar which will show the sites DA and the backlinks on their page. A backlink report would give you a much clearer idea of links you would need since not all links are created equal. You can also go after the same links your competitors have since the chances they will link to you are higher if they’ve already linked to a competitor with similar content.

Craft an amazing page

Amazing content goes a long way. In order to go above and beyond what is expected on your page dig deep into keyword related social groups. Whether you read the comments and questions in niche-specific forums or go through conversation threads in your social media groups, find out what the most relevant issues are that can be included in your page.

People love reading and sharing solutions that solve the problems they go through on an everyday basis. Tailor your content to directly address these issues and provide an answer within a solution that your readers can apply immediately after reading your content. This is the type of content that gets the most shares, links and converts visitors to clients.

Build quality links

It depends on the results of your competitive analysis as to whether you will need to take the next step in building links to your content. If your competition’s pages have links than there is a good chance you will need some quality backlinks to compete for the top spot on the first page.

Write articles that are related to the content of your page in order to submit them to blogs in your niche that accept guest posts from outside authors. Link back to your page in the author’s bio to get referral traffic to your page but also for the credibility and authority that the link provides. This will boost your page ranking ability and with enough links will be able to surpass your competition.

At the core of every high ranking website is top-tier content. It is the source of trust, authority, and expertise. Connect with your audience through meaningful high-quality content in order to see your traffic build for the long-term and generate more leads for your business.

Christian Carere is a search engine optimization professional and works with SMB’s to improve the quality of traffic to increase leads and the number of new clients a website generates. Christian is the founder of Digital Ducats Inc., a company that specializes in SEO services.

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