Because search engine optimization isn’t just a good idea — it’s a necessity.

When Google first launched in 1998, users made about 500,000 searches per day. Now, users across the globe make more than 2.3 million Google searches every minute!

These days, consumers rely on the internet to discover their go-to brands. So if you’re not prioritizing a solid SEO strategy, you’re missing out on thousands of brand-boosting opportunities on a daily basis. Here are 7 easy steps you can take to make sure you’re putting your best pages forward:

1. Identifying Search Terms

If you want to up your content rankings, consider this: what question are people asking that this post (or your product) is going to answer?

Simply integrating basic keywords into your content probably won’t make that much of a difference, but taking the time to identify and include key search phrases will certainly bump your page rankings up to the next level. For SEO beginners, keyword search tools (like those in the Google AdWords toolset) or brand marketing agencies can help you figure out which phrases to focus on.

2. Keeping it Relevant

Although building out a few beautifully designed landing pages can help up your site traffic, size matters when it comes to search rankings. In other words, the more content you have on your site, the more likely potential clients are to find their way to you.
That doesn’t mean, of course, that your website (and brand publication, as the case may be) should try to publish everything but the kitchen sink. Instead, focus on content that potential clients might be interested in — particularly as it pertains to your field. By staying on brand, you’ll ensure that the traffic you’re driving to your site is actually improving your ROI.

3. Updating Site Structure

You might be surprised to learn that information architecture (i.e. the layout of your site) is an essential part of search engine optimization. That’s because the farther away a page is from your homepage, the lower its rank will be.

So if you’re relying on a post or page to drive traffic to your site, make sure it’s only 2-3 clicks away from your landing page. If you’re not sure how to do that, website testing services like PowerMapper are a great place to start.

4. Linking it Up

Google ranks every page on the internet in terms of its influence — so the more often people link to your pages, the higher your rank will be.

Of course, linking to your own content won’t have quite the same effect. Even still, reusing and revitalizing your old content is an easy and cost-effective way to keep it relevant and easily searchable.

5. Site Speed

Did you know that a 1-second delay in page response can result in a whopping 7% reduction in conversions? The reason is this: if a page hasn’t loaded within a few seconds, most people will hit the back button and choose the next best search result.

Unfortunately for those with slower servers, Google tracks loading speed, and tends to downrank pages that people bail on before they load. So do yourself a favor, and make sure your site is loading quickly and correctly at all times.

6. Optimizing for All Devices

This one is pretty simple. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile, Google’s going to downrank your page on Google Search — no exceptions. No matter how good your content is, if your site doesn’t have a fully functional mobile version, you’re not going to get the kind of traffic you want (or deserve!).

7. Universal Rankings

In an attempt to blend results from vertical search engines like Google Images into its web search listings, Google created a universal search that takes results from multiple verticals and combines them into a single SERP (search engine results page).

With that in mind, it’s not enough just to optimize your text-based content — you should be optimizing your videos, images, social posts, and other content as well! That way, each one of your beautifully-written, search engine-optimized pages will earn the search ranking it deserves.

Longneck and Thunderfoot offer search engine optimization and analytics services to help businesses transform their websites into visible sources of knowledge online and answer the questions that matter most to your prospects. Learn more about SEO and analytics here.