Beating Competition With SEO in 2020 Your Strategy Guide
Beating competition with SEO in 2020 isn’t getting any easier, check out this SEO strategy Guide to outpace your competition online this year.
A quick overview on what it takes to BEAT Your Competition with SEO:
1. Plan to Win – That’s Where Strategy Comes in
Ultimately, your goal is to rank for the most competitive keywords in your niche.
To do that — you’ve got to have a strategy to win.
2. Become THE Authority
You’ve heard it a million times — Google loves authority sites. When sites like Mashable, Search Engine Journal or Forbes put up a new article, it has SEO strength immediately. Why? Because they have a website with REAL authority.
If you really want to beat your competition with SEO, make more content and better content than any of your competitors!
3. Make High Volume Keywords a Priority from the Start
Keyword volume and keyword difficulty are the two primary reference points with any SEO strategy.
These two values tell you a lot about a keyword, but not everything. 99% of the time an SEO agency will opt for low hanging fruit or less competitive keywords because they appear easier. Yes, often times they are easier to rank for, but sometimes high power keywords don’t take much more effort.
Building content that makes sense for your business and your audience is a guaranteed way to make sure you start building rankings for high volume keywords right from the start.
4. Is Your Site Really Better than Your Competitors?
Is your site truly delivering? Does it look the part? Is it offering something more? What would make your audience choose your site over your competitors?
Really look at the bigger picture ie: web design, user experience, loading time, and of course quality of content.
According to https://www.entrepreneur.com, monitoring all the important SEO changes is extremely important.
When it comes to beating competition with SEO in 2020, focusing on THREE important things from the overview above are really going to help:
- Amazing content
- A great plan for the distribution of content
- Perfect site optimization
If you’re ready to start beating the competition in SEO this year — follow this Guide:
1. Amazing Content is Search Intent Oriented Content
You have one MASSIVE problem with your content and that is; there is already a LOT of competition for it.
No matter what you’re searching on Google, you’re going to see thousands of results any given day. An even bigger problem… all the results you’re seeing on the first page are pretty darn good.
Google digs through more than 8000 results and displays only a few that deserve to be on the first page. This is done by Google within a few seconds.
Search Intent is a big part of how Google ranks this content. For example, Google ranks all kinds of pages like; product pages, long guides, short blog posts, reviews, tools, videos, etc…
To make sure that you’re beating your competition with SEO, you’ll need to understand the type of content that Google is ranking currently and outshine it if you want to compete for that keyword.
One leading New York SEO said that understanding what your competitors are ranking for and the search intent behind those rankings is THE only first step in keyword research for content.
a) Competitor Research:
How can you measure the success of your site?
This can be done by judging the ranking, conversions, revenue, and the traffic that the site is receiving.
The best place to start in order to achieve this — your competitors’ sites.
The right competitor research will help you find keywords that your competitors are ranking for that your website does not. (The “gaps” in your content!)
This analysis can help you in multiple ways to help you find:
- Content that you’re missing in your customer journey
- Content that your competitors have that you do not
- Topics that your competitors are covering for that you’re not
- or what I like to refer to as your new search intent oriented content
Keywords that your competitors rank for that you do not are big opportunities for you in terms of content!
Look for keywords or topics that make sense in your customer journey and then prioritize them accordingly. You may want to consider the search volume and the keyword difficulty when selecting your targets. For example, and this is just a first pass using Pixel’s Domain:
b) Deeper Keyword Research Plus Content Optimization:
The process of identifying what your competitors rank for is important, but it’s also just a start. You need to carefully pick and choose based on what is actually relevant to your site and your customer. From that point you need to break down your keywords based on content that will provide multiple ranking levels ie: long tail and shorter tail.
It is important that you filter your keywords by country, industry or even by City so that you may focus on the best keywords for your account.
Most keywords – fall under one of two different categories: short-tail or long-tail.
Short-tail keywords typically consist of either one or two words, whereas long-tail keywords are longer, often consisting of 3 or more words.
While short-tail keywords yield more traffic, they have a few major disadvantages.
For starters, short-tail keywords are highly competitive, meaning you’ll have a difficult time ranking your e-commerce site for them. Furthermore, short-tail keywords are less relevant than their long-tail counterpart, resulting in fewer sales/conversions.
And according to the folks at SEOMoz, long-tail keywords make up over 70% of all online searches.
Targeted SEO keywords will typically be the long-tail search terms that reach out to customers farther along in the buying cycle.
The Keyword Data you Act on should give you structured and actionable information, ie: the data which is ready to use in search marketing campaigns.
For a more detailed walk through on proper keywords research, click here.
If you’re looking for tools will make it easy to find relevant keywords, there are plenty out there:
Some of the keyword research tools are free for use, like Soovle or Google Keyword Planner, while others like Jaaxy require payment. The difference is in the set of additional features and automation level provided with each tool.
Aside from doing the proper keyword research, beating your competition in SEO will mean technically formatted content to perform well in search.
If you are interested in ranking and getting traffic from one region, you can narrow the keyword search to a particular area. You can also find keywords with the help of Google search console and your competitors.
c) Use Your Target Keywords and Variations of Them in Your Content:
Yes, you have to use your primary keywords and variations throughout your website content, but more importantly you have to use them in way that benefits the reader.
This means focus on rich, meaningful and awesome content that is better than your competitors.
You’re going to want to break up your content so that it is easy to consume, while aiming for a natural flow. Let’s shop for some outdoor furniture to clarify:
You can immediately see just how important keywords and search intent are especially with these 4 areas:
- SEO Title — When someone searches for your content, the search engine will refer to your title/ SEO title to determine the relevancy of your content. You MUST include the keyword here. To make your SEO title more effective, cut it as short as 60 characters (including the keyword). Another best strategy to try is to include the keyword at the beginning of your title. That way, it won’t be cropped off in the SERP.
- Headings and Body — As mentioned before, keyword stuffing can lead to penalization of your blog content. Don’t rush the keyword flow and make sure it is distributed throughout the headings and the body. Focus on what piques your audience’s interest and use it to structure your keyword usage.
- Meta Descriptions — The SERP displays the bit of description, which is kind of an abstract or summary of your blog content. You can use long-tail keywords here to compel your audience. Make sure it’s natural, includes the keyword, simple, and engaging.
- Page URL — The link to your content also comes under the SEO scrutiny. Optimizing your website content means taking into consideration every aspect including your URL. Yes, your keywords should be included in your url – whether long or short.
2. Content Distribution:
Unless your site is already a MOZ or Inc.com, you can’t sit around and wait for your audience to find your content — that just isn’t going to happen. The second hurdle to making your website an authority is figuring out where to distribute your content.
There are plenty of channels out there, for example:
Instagram users publish 46,740 posts per minute.
Twitter users send 456,000 tweets per minute.
Google conducts 3,60,7080 searches per minute.
LinkedIn has more than 100 million users logging in every day.
89% of marketers say awareness is their brands #1 goal
You should, by now, know who your true target audience is and even where they hang out… you want to make sure that your content is reaching them on those channels.
One of the best ways to make sure your content has reach is to find the right influencers on the right channels. BuzzStream recently announced BuzzStream Discovery, a new product that makes finding and researching influencers for your website marketing campaigns a much smoother process. The tool is currently in open beta, and free to use immediately.
SEO link building and content marketing are pretty much the same thing now. Like Neil Patel said, “relationships are the new backlink” In order to get that all-mighty and powerful back link or to establish authority, you have to have the right content, the right website, in short the right influencer.
For the best results, customize your content and involve consumers at different channels by providing video, podcasts, white papers, downloads, etc. Moreover, link your digital platforms with multiple remarketing campaigns and assess which attribution channel generates more leads or sales.
It’s going to take a bit of practice to master the art of distributing content organically through social channels and online groups, but once you’ve got a feel for it you can slowly test the waters of paid distribution via channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google and Amazon for even more reach.
3. Website Optimization & Page Speed
We talked a little bit about on page optimization above with Titles and descriptions, but technical optimization goes a bit further and extends across your entire site. It is also a must to optimize the page speed if you wish to retain your customers.
Why is on-site optimization so important?
Because 77% of websites take more than 10 seconds to load on mobile
77% of websites — that’s a LOT of websites that you could eliminate as competition.
To test the speed of your website, you can use any of these services:
Your hosting can actually affect your SEO and site ranking as well; which is why you will see that many businesses making the switch to better hosting. Sometimes you don’t have a lot of choice like if your using a hosted eCommerce solution like Shopify or BigCommerce. However, premium hosted solutions like those and WP Engine usually include the following performance boosters:
- Host the site on fast servers.
- Use a CDN.
- Use gzip compression.
*The 3 items listed above are all server level (hosting) optimizations.
Beyond hosting there are some key components that are really going to decrease load time and increase user experience:
- Optimize the dimensions of images.
- Compress images.
- Merge elements.
As mentioned before, images are generally the most information heavy item on a page. Resizing images and making sure the images have a low byte size will increase the speed of the page. BigCommerce utilizes Akamai Image manager to help offload some of this work by automatically optimizing images.
For WordPress, there are a LOT of good optimization plugins. A great combo to boost speed and performance is the following:
- Use Cloudflare for your CDN. *Free option should be find, at least start there.
- Buy and Install WP Rocket ! Totally worth the $49.
- Install Imagify for image compression and automatic resizing.
These 3 items all work really well together, are very easy to install and set up, and for a very low fee significantly improve your desktop and mobile load times.
Minimizing and merging elements
Minimizing css, java script, html, and image resources will all help to reduce load time.
Enable Google AMP
Google AMP is an effort by Google to streamline the page loading speed on any device.
Beating the competition with SEO may not be easy, but the SEO strategy Guide specified above is a winning format to engage your audience, make sure your content is shared, earn in bound links and ultimately beat your competition in search. If you feel like you’ve followed these tips and still can’t get your website to perform, reach out — we’re happy to help.