SEO has become a basic and crucial part of web learning at present. You should not be confused and worried by searching the top SEO tips on the internet. Because you will find so many SEO tips scattered all over the internet now.
We won’t follow that approach. Rather, we will share our top SEO tips by gathering all the best SEO practices you should follow in 2021 in one place in an organized manner.
We have also covered some relevant and useful topics that you need to know to apply the SEO tips – like how SEO works, the bad SEO practices you should avoid, and the top SEO tools to use.
How Does SEO Work?
Search Engine Optimization, in short SEO, is a technique or set of practices that help rank your content or website higher in web search results. It’s the most useful and effective way to make your website visible to people and gain more organic (non-paid) web traffic.
Search engines, like Google, Bing or DuckDuckGo, use SEO as a basis to rank content or websites. The search engines use an algorithm to index or store data of all the available web resources. They do it to display the search results as quickly as possible.
The fundamentals of all the algorithms are almost the same and they focus on certain areas while indexing. SEO lets you maintain those areas and demonstrate your content as the best at hand. Doing SEO for your content means, making it search engine friendly.
Top SEO Tips You Should Follow in 2021:
We have ranked our top SEO Tips based on your necessity, the steps you should follow in chronological order. It is not based on importance or priority. Let’s check them out:
- Do extensive research before producing any content
- Prepare an effective content outline
- Write quality and useful content
- Use adequate visuals – images, infographics & videos
- Write a powerful and effective meta description
- Use a universal URL, proper image tags
- Do sufficient keyword research, use less competitive keywords
- Include enough links, try to get a backlink from others
- Never forget to promote & share on social media
- Make your website mobile friendly
- Ensure that your site is fast and responsive
Our top tips sound useful and interesting, don’t they? Now, we are going to explain each of them individually. We are suggesting you follow through as you will find more interesting tips and suggestions in every section ahead.
1. Do Extensive Research
It is the first and foremost thing to consider for any content. If you want to apply good SEO practices to your content, you should have in-depth knowledge on the topic.
That’s why, you will have to do a lot of research on the topic before starting to produce the content. Without adequate knowledge on the topic, you even won’t be able to produce good content let alone apply SEO techniques.
We will suggest you follow the steps below while researching:
Choose a Specific and Interesting Topic:
First, you should decide on which topic you want to produce your content. You should choose something interesting, and you must have a clear idea about it.
Select Your Target Audience:
Second, you will have to determine that for whom you are going to write. It will help you select the tone and the set of information you want to use.
Set Your Goal/Expectation:
Third, find and select what do you want from your content, and what should be its outcome. You, obviously, have some, don’t you?
Read Everything Related to Your Topic:
Finally, it is time to concentrate on reading. The more time you would spend on reading the better your research will be. So, read as much as possible whatever related to your topic – blogs, articles, research data or tutorials.
2. Prepare Effective Content Outline
You might be wondering why did we include content outlining in the list of top SEO tips. Because a strong and well-written content outline is a key to generating good content as well as doing SEO properly. If you do adequate research first, this part will be easier for you.
Things to consider to prepare good content outline:
- Think what would you want to read or see if you were the audience
- Note down all the points (main or additional) you want write
- Finalize your key points, and organize them and the others accordingly
- Keep a section for headline, main keywords and sub keywords (we’ll talk about these later)
- Use a table or chart to prepare the outline. It’ll make them easy to organize.
3. Write Quality & Useful Content
As I always say, writing is easy and fun if you have a passion for it and can express yourself in words. Web writing is somewhat different from the other forms of writing, but it is not rocket science.
If you can generate quality content that is useful to the audience, you will obviously get sufficient user attention. Hence, the popularity of your website will significantly.
Quality and useful content always get a higher rank in search results as the search engines nowadays give the highest priority on it.
So, you should follow the tips below to maintain the most important part of SEO:
Use Simple Words and Sentences
If you want to communicate with your audiences properly you should write like you’re talking to them. Therefore, you should avoid using uncommon and difficult words. And, try not to use complex sentences and passive voices as much as possible.
Write an Attractive Headline
The headline is the most important part of your content. Visitors usually decide whether they will enter any website or not by reading the headline. That’s why, it is mandatory to make your headlines attractive and informative at the same time.
Try to write the headlines within 6 to 14 words.
Construct an Engaging Intro
Introduction, in short intro, is the second most important part of your content. It lets your readers decide whether they will scroll down or not. So, you should write an engaging intro and grab the readers’ attention in the first place.
Your intro should not be longer than 200 words.
Write Small Sentences and Paragraphs
You will have to give your readers some time to breathe to enhance readability. Writing small sentences and paragraphs would help you remarkably in this regard. Because it is hard for everyone to hold concentration while reading large sentences and paragraphs.
Try to finish your sentences within 20 words, write 2-3 sentences in a paragraph (60 words max).
Use Sufficient Subheadline, Points & Lists
Don’t put so much information in one place. You would rather break them into different segments by using relevant subheadlines. You will also have to use bullet points and lists to display your key information.
People like to scan than reading while browsing. As bullets and lists serve this purpose very well, try to use them sufficiently.
Avoid Vagueness, Ambiguity, Jargon & Repetition
Let me ask you a question. Do you usually read or watch any content that you don’t understand? The obvious answer is “no”. Therefore, your content should be free of vagueness and ambiguity.
Jargon is another culprit that reduces understandability, while repetition hinders readability notably. So, you should avoid them both.
Make Your Content Informative and Detailed
If you don’t put enough information into your content, it won’t benefit the audience. The search engine algorithms can also understand it. The more you make your content detailed and informative the higher chance the search engines consider it well-written and useful. Hence, you will get a higher rank.
Then, what should be the length of your content? Well, it depends on the topic. But we would still suggest you write more than 800 words and finish within 3,000 words.
4. Use Adequate Visuals
It is said “a picture is worth a thousand words”, and it’s very true. Using enough visuals – photos, infographics, videos and illustrations – can convey your messages easily, make your content compelling and look aesthetically pleasing.
Best SEO practices to use visuals:
- Use sufficient images and screenshots relevant to the topic
- Try to use original images or those belong to you
- If you need to use others’ images, take permission or at least give them a credit
- Never and ever violate copyrights
- Display data and stats using infographics
- Must use videos for tutorial content, try to use one to others
- Use the visuals between every 200-250 words
- Avoid using unnecessary and low-quality images
5. Write Powerful Meta Description
Have you ever noticed that what do you see when a search result appears? It is the meta description.
People first see the meta description of your content, not the content itself. They decide whether a content is useful or not by reading the metadata. If you can draw their attention with an attractive meta description, it will definitely lead them to your website.
[I have searched “how to write good meta description on Google”, and the result appeared like the image below. The texts highlighted with red boxes are the meta description]
You might have realized the significance of meta description in SEO. In the following list, we are going to share some top SEO tips on how to write a good and powerful meta description:
Top SEO tips to write good and powerful meta descriptions:
- Keep it simple and informative
- Put your best and the most relevant information here
- Keep it within 100 to 160 characters
- Use simple words, sentences and active voice
- Try to make it unique and attractive
- Don’t forget to include your main keyword
6. Use Universal URL, Proper Image Tags
URL is the area where people make mistakes the most and don’t give as much attention as it deserves. And it is commonly known that image tags are one of the most neglected areas of a content.
But they both play a significant role in SEO. Did you know?
URL Should be Universal:
URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. To me, it is “Universal” Resource Locator. Because once you set an URL for your content, it cannot be changed. And it holds the address of your content across the internet for good.
Things to follow to write SEO-friendly URL:
- Must write a readable URL
- Use your focus/main keywords in the URLs
- Don’t use variable information – e.g. year, number or location.
- Keep it short and simple
- Use hyphens to separate words, not underscores
- Try to use HTTPS protocol for security
Now, let me give you a quiz. I am going to write 4 URLs below. You will have to identify which one is the most suitable for this article. Let me know the answer in the comment section.
Concentrate on Image Tags:
Search engines, especially the big one – Google – give a huge emphasis on image search. Because, after searching for something on Google, people very often click on the nearby “Images” button to do an image search.
It means, you should use proper image tags and give proper concentration in this part if you want to rank higher. Although image tags play a significant role in SEO, many people surprisingly take this part lightly.
Top SEO tips to do proper image tag SEO:
- Must use relevant and self-explanatory image titles
- Write useful and relevant Alt Text to your images
- Don’t forget to write the image captions
- Try to write image descriptions
7. Do Sufficient Keyword Research
You might be wondering why did I put this crucial part of SEO so late! Yes, keyword research is the most common and oldest SEO practice that people have been following for years.
I put it at no. 7 on purpose. Because, if you remain worried about choosing right keywords from the beginning, you won’t be able to produce a quality content. You might have already realized that quality content is arguably the most important part of SEO.
Anyway, we are going to share some useful keyword research tips here.
Best SEO practices for keyword research:
- Find out search volume and keyword difficulty before finalizing the keywords
- Set the words with higher volume but less difficulty as your main keyword
- Try to ensure the difficulty of your main keyword is less than 40
- Select compelling and self-explanatory keywords
- Keep your main keyword within the headline
- Put the main keyword within the first 120 words of your content
- Use the main keyword once more at the main part of the content
- Try to use the main keyword 1-3 times organically at the rest of the content
- Use the words related to the main keyword as the sub-keywords
- Set 3 to 5 sub-keywords, try to include them in your subheadlines
8. Include Enough Links, Try to Get Backlink
Links are considered very much valuable in the current day SEO practices. The search engines not only index your content but also the content you link on your page. We will suggest you follow the points below:
Add 5 to 10 Internal Links:
The links which are generated from your domain called Internal Links. Adding internal links give you a big opportunity to increase visit to your other pages. But don’t do it too much. Keep it within 10.
Use 3 to 5 External Links:
All the links outside your domain are external links. You need to add some (3 to 5) external links in order to increase the authenticity of your content. They also work as a network development tool with other market players.
Try to Get a Backlink:
If someone includes your content or page as an external link to their site will be your backlink. Getting a backlink sometimes feels difficult, but they are worth it at the end of the day. If you can produce good content and approach properly, it won’t be that difficult. Read this article to know more about link-building strategies.
9. Never Forget to Promote
All of your efforts will go in vain if your content doesn’t reach the readers. To get proper exposure, you must carry out some promotions, especially on social media and community forums.
To do so, you will have to prepare an engaging brief of your content by letting people know why is it special and why do they need to check it. Then, you should share the brief along with your feature image/video and the link of your content.
Don’t feel shy. If you don’t promote your content or product, then who else would!
Black Hat SEO or Bad SEO Practices to Avoid
If you truly want to rank your content higher you must not follow the bad SEO practices, commonly known as black hat SEO. So be cautious.
Bad SEO practices you should avoid:
- Never and ever do keyword stuffing
- Must avoid clickbait or using hyperbolic titles
- Don’t copy any text from anyone
- Give reference or use source link if you really need to copy something
- Must not duplicate your own content
- Never use links from infamous websites
- Don’t use hidden links and texts
- Avoid buying links of all kinds
- Don’t use too many adds on you page
Top SEO Tools to Use
I, personally, would not suggest you use any SEO tool in your primary stage. If you want to learn SEO properly and know some tricks, you should do SEO manually for at least 1 to 2 years.
When you gain enough experience, you can start using SEO tools. They will make your tasks easy and quick.
Top SEO tools you might use in 2021:
- Moz: Effective All-in-one SEO Tool
- Google Search Console: Top Overall SEO Tool
- Ahrefs: One of the Top SEO Keyword Tools
- SEMRush: One of the Best Marketing SEO Tools
- Yoast or Rank Math: Powerful SEO Plugins for WordPress
Well, we have tried to let you know all the best SEO practices you should follow in 2021 within this single article. We believe our efforts shall benefit you.
SEO is a vast area and one of the most uttered words on the internet at present. If you don’t keep yourself updated and know the best techniques, you will lag behind. So, we hope you have read this article thoroughly and apply our top SEO tips in real life.
Now, let me summarize the entire article here for you:
SEO is the best way to rank your content or website higher in the search results. If you have a website, manage a website or produce web content you must know and follow the best SEO practices.
- You should do extensive research before producing any content
- Then, prepare an effective content outline
- You must produce good content that your audiences find useful
- Try to use adequate visuals to make your content appealing
- Yor meta description has to be powerful and informative
- Use short and universal URL, shall not take image tags lightly
- Then, start doing keyword research, use the right keywords at right place
- Include enough links (both internal and external), try to get a backlink
- Promote and share your content on social media and community pages
- Build your website compatible to all devices, especially mobile
- Make you site fast and responsive
- Must avoid bad SEO practices, like keyword stuffing, copying and writing hyperbolic titles
- Don’t use SEO tools as long as you lean enough about it.
Nayeem is a Content Writer at weDevs. He has 4+ years of experience in the internet and media industry, specializes in writing, editing, communications, WordPress, SEO, eCommerce, digital marketing, and graphic design.