101 Solidus SEO Tips: The Ultimate Guide
Published on 01/25/2020
23 min read
101 Tips to improve SEO featuring Planning, Technical SEO, Content Guidelines and Off-site Promotions.
Table of Contents
Presentation at SolidusConf: Watch on YouTube
Read below for an explanation of all our tips or
Watch the presentation on YouTube
Ok! - We hope you enjoyed the video, now here are the tips:
- Tip #1: Start Early On SEO
SEO Planning should be done from the very beginning of your project
Keywords are Key
Here are some great resources to generate keywords to help you with your keyword research:
AnswerThePublic.com to generate a huge list of awesome keywords and topic ideas- Tip #2: Use
- Tip #3: Use 5MinuteSite.com as a Local Keywords generator tool (good for adding cities, etc)
- Tip #4: KeywordTool.io
- Tip #5: Buzzsumo’s question analyzer
- Tip #6: Ahrefs
- Tip #7: Use LSI Graph for latent semantic keywords
- Tip #8: Search in forums using non-exact match
- Tip #9: Apple Auto-complete
- Tip #10: Amazon Autofill
- Tip #11: Google Auto-complete
- Tip #12: Google’s “Searches Related To” box
- Tip #13: Google’s “People Also Ask”
- Tip #14: Google Ads: Keyword Planner Tool
Voice Search: Why Should You Care?
- 60% of searches from mobile are voice searches
- 52% of global internet traffic comes from mobile devices
- Tip #15: When building keywords for voice search, use Long Tail Keywords, 5+ words (a year ago it was less, but now could be 5-20)
- Tip #16: Use question modifiers like who, what, when, how, etc.
- Tip #17: Use question search engines like Quora, Yahoo Answers or Ask Jeeves for question-based keyword research
- Tip #18: Create a FAQ page so that you can easily target Long Tail Keywords in question formats
- Tip #19: Use local intent keywords including neighborhood, city, state, and regional names
- Tip #20: Use Google Listings to enter in opening times, street names, contact details, etc or keep an up to date, easily accessible web page with useful info
What is EAT?
Eat stands for Expertise, Authoritativenesss and Trust
- Tip #21: Generate well-written content that uses relevant examples, citations, and media
- Tip #22: Keep content up to date by correcting any information or statistics that go stale
- Tip #23: Provide relevant updates or new/additional information to the original content
- Tip #24: Add a Trusted Badge to the footer of your site
- Tip #25: Get links from websites who have gained authority in the space already -links are recommendations
- Tip #26: Get mentioned in the news or on credible media websites.
- Tip #27: Get Wikipedia mentions, or better yet, your own page
The Better Business Bureau, Yelp, Amazon and Google Shopping - the quality raters are trying to determine what the overall public sentiment is for your business. If you have the odd bad review, that is not likely to hurt- Tip #28: You should be encouraging good reviews on
- Tip #29: Add a Contact Us Page. You should have clear ways of contacting website owners, and associate your site with a physical location. Make sure that your contact information matches your whois info.
- Tip #30: Provide Helpful “Supplementary Content” examples include currency converters, loan interest calculators and interactive recipes
- Tip #31: Have a clear refund/return policy if accepting any transactions
- Tip #32: Have comprehensive specifications of the product if products are sold
- Tip #33: Add a Terms of Service and Privacy Page: These two pages help tell Google that a site is a trustworthy member of the internet
- Tip #34: Add Outbound links to your page (ideally within the body) to other pages and content on a similar topic
- Tip #35: Add Testimonials from customers
- Tip #36: Keep your URL as simple and as short as possible
- Tip #37: Make sure to have your keywords in URLs across various pages
- Tip #38: Use hyphens (-) instead of underscores
- Tip #39: Reduce or ideally eliminate parameters in URLs
- Tip #40: Check to make sure only one version of your site is browseable since there are typically 4 possibilities of the URL someone will request when they visit your site. Make sure the others properly 301 redirect to the single Canonical URL:
- http://example.com - http://www.example.com - https://example.com - https://www.example.com
- Tip #41: Use SSL to provide a slight boost to SERP ratings. Free certificate from Let’s Encrypt
Audit Your Website
- Tip #44: Make sure that your mobile site is providing the same content as your desktop site: factors such as text, images, videos, links, structured data, titles and descriptions all matter when considering mobile-first indexing
- Tip #45: Make sure every page on your site has a title specified in the title tag - This is the most important SEO element
- Tip #46: Place your keyword at the beginning of your title
- Tip #47: Make sure you final result looks good -test with SERPsim or Pixel Width Checker
- Tip #48: Image file names and alt tags should ideally include your target keywords but most importantly make sense
- Tip #49: Don’t use “Home” or “Profile” or other generic words
- Tip #50: Don’t spend time on Meta Keywords - they don’t matter at all
Tip #51: Ensure every page on your site has a meta description.
- Even though the meta description doesn’t directly affect SEO, it acts like an Ad and can have a large impact on your CTR which in turn can affect your final ranking (after the modification engine takes CTR into account)
Tip #52: Don’t use the same or a very similar meta description for all your pages; Google will penalize you for this.
- If you have the same meta description set on lots of your pages, for example product pages, Google may decide this default description is completely irrelevant and/or entirely unhelpful, which may then result in Google scraping random text (such as your nav header links) to use as your description instead.
- Tip #53: JSON-LD snippets are the new standard according to Google; Use JSON-LD to implement structured data on your website in order to be featured in rich snippets in Google, and to get a boost to your SERPs.
- Tip #54: Utilize Search Console’s new feature to check your product schema data and other enhancements
- Tip #55: Use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to immediately see if you have any warnings or errors
- Tip #56: Use Karma Creative’s solidus_seo gem
- Tip #57: Test for speed using: WebPageTest.org, Pingdom Website Speed Test, Ahrefs, or Yslow
- Tip #58: Configure paperclip to optimize all your images by default - solidus_seo does this for you
- Tip #61: Remove and reduce redirects as much as possible
- Tip #62: Use consistent URLs
- Tip #63: Identify which resources can be cached by intermediaries such as a CDN. Use a CDN to reduce the load on the server and ensure the shortest distance for the data to travel from site visitor to content provider and back
- Tip #64: Minimize churn by separating out frequently changes resources into separate files
Tip #65: Check for bottlenecks to improve performance, such as: n+1 queries and other database query issues (check with the bullet gem)
- Slow routing
- Lack of memory
- Ideal performance should be a server response of 200 ms or less
Tip #66: Reduce your DNS lookups
SEO Content Guidelines
Keywords and Content
- Tip #68: Avoid Keyword Cannibalization: Make sure that there are not multiple pages focusing on the same keywords
- Tip #69: Keyword Frequency: Make sure your keyword appears within the first 100 words of your content, and 2-3 times within the first 300 words
- Tip #70: Do NOT stuff your keywords, again, that is a tactic that will now get you penalized.
- Tip #71: Add modifiers like “2019”, “best”, or “review” to your title to help rank for long tail keywords
- Tip #72: Predict the next searches of your users and have content prepared to meet their possible queries
- Tip #73: Use targeted keyword list to generate topic ideas, perhaps even video
Tip #74: Mind map search intent associated with your keywords across the buying cycle - these stage-based search intents can help you form content pillars as part of a broader content strategy. Maybe each of these search intents is literally a separate category of articles on your website. Stages:
- Attraction: meeting intentions triggered by life events
- Consideration: learning about solutions and benefits
- Preference: why should they trust you and how are you different?
- Conversion: why buy from you now?
Quality of Content
- Tip #75: Format your text so it’s digestible
- Tip #76: Use Visual Assets such as images, diagrams, infographics, charts, etc to make content more appealing and keep interest of the reader
- Tip #77: Add media like video or audio.
copyscape to seek any out on your site and improve or remove it- Tip #78: Avoid Duplicate Content: Use a tool such as
- Tip #79: Choose “List” Posts (or “Why” Posts): A numbered list of tips, techniques, reasons, myths, etc [list posts have 6.19 referring domain links on average, and outperform Quiz, How to, Video, and Infographic post types]
- Tip #80: Avoid using generic subheaders such as “more information”, “details”, etc
- Tip #81: Post Long Content - Think: 9000 words. Use it as a target and see how many you end up with. This greatly impacts Dwell Time. For PDPs, shoot for 2000
- Tip #82: Consider removing pages from your site with less than 200 words and almost no organic traffic
Tip #83: Create a Podcast
- 25% of listeners have bought product after listening to a Podcast
- 60% increase in mobile listening in the last year
- Podcasts are now indexed directly
Tip #84: Regularly update your pages with new information. The frequency of page updates play a role in freshness.
- Think: How often has the page been updated over time? Daily, weekly, every 5 years?
- Tip #85: When updating pages, change more than just the date or correcting a typo; Google knows the difference. The significance of edits and changes serves as a freshness factor.
Tip #86: Plan a piece that does everything the top 5 pieces do:
- Meet search intentions faster and more concisely than your competitors
- Tell readers exactly what you’ll cover
- Write for a lower reading age than your competitors
- Use an even clearer structure and formatting than your competitors
- Give clear definitions of any key terms and concepts
- Expand on the topic as you progress through the piece
- Have some personality in your writing
- Find and use primary sources, one example is soliciting experts in the topic - this is truly original content
- Quote experts and include social proof
- Tell readers what to do next: leave them with a strong CTA at the end
- Tip #87: Add transcription of any audio or video on your site.
- Tip #88: Include a Sitemap. Presence of Sitemap helps search engines index your pages easier and more thoroughly, improving visibility.
- Tip #89: Include a linked table of contents that will help Google better understand your page’s content. It can also result in sitelinks
- Tip #90: Add Internal Links to your page - at least 2-3, but a few more is even better. Internal linking is important because it affects Domain Authority, an important factor in SERP rankings.
- Tip #91: Sprinkle long-tail versions of your target keywords throughout your content
Tip #92: When writing a new article to target replacing an existing piece of content, add more on-topic congruent copywriting: If the original content has 10 ideas, make 100 ideas
- Tip #93: Put quotes in rich quote boxes to make your content more visually engaging
- Tip #94: Use an h1 tag for the title of your page within the body
- Tip #95: Use h2 tags for the subheadings of your page
- Tip #96: Correctly use h3 tags, when appropriate.
Tip #97: Generate links from other websites with the aim of increasing rankings on SERPs, thus driving more organic traffic from your target audience and helping to build brand authority.
- Links in the beginning of a piece of content usually carry slightly more weight than links placed at the end of the content.
- Generally, a link embedded in a page’s content is more powerful than a link in the footer or sidebar area.
- Tip #98: Obtain new original content by soliciting experts in the topic
helpareporter.com and sign up for an account as a source. You will receive daily emails from reporters. The best way to get your answers successfully published is to be one of the first to respond- Tip #99: HARO Go to
- Tip #100: Links from diverse sources are a sign of a natural link profile.
- Tip #101: Do not buy links, spam content boxes, and or heavily stuff your keywords, these are all ineffective.
- Tip #102: Use Majestic Citation Flow to rank the quality of your backlinks
- Tip #103: Make sure that all your links are properly attributed. If you are using sponsored links or link resulting from user generated content then they should use the new link attributes: rel=sponsored and rel=ugc
Tip #104: Find out who is linking to your competitors and which pages they are linking to.
- Use a tool like Ahrefs to find all the backlinks, filter out spam - who are the high quality domains that are linking to the competitors?
- Then, look at which pages the competitors are linking to. How do these pages compare to yours? Is there an opportunity to improve/change your page? Are there topics you could target in your own content?
Tip #105: Fix and acquire broken links: Use a tool like LinkMiner to check for broken links
- Make a connection with the owner of the page through email outreach, and promote your content in place of the broken content
Tip #106: Use Link Reclamation to build more links: Use BuzzSumo to find places on the web where your site or article is mentioned but no link.
- Email the author or maintainer asking for a link
- Tip #107: Use Google’s reverse image search to look for places on the web where your graphics are being used without attribution or a link
Ranking in Local Searches
- Tip #108: Execute an outreach campaign to try and get your site linked from other local businesses
Google My Business page/account - new features are available such as setting a preferred profile cover photo- Tip #109: Claim your
- Tip #110: Claim your business profile on various other services and fill in all applicable information
- Tip #111: Build citations on business directories -Make sure your information is accurate. It needs to be EXACTLY the same everywhere it’s listed on the web.
- Tip #112: Create a Facebook, Twitter and Instagram account to build your brand. Accounts with a lot of followers/likes signals a popular brand
- Tip #113: Create an Official Linkedin Company Page
- Tip #114: Add prominent social media buttons to your website because they can increase sharing by 700%
- Tip #115: Add CTA Buttons to tweet or share from directly within your content.
Tip #116: Focus your time on Facebook and Twitter. Traffic on these sites gets your webpage indexed quicker as long as your posts are relevant to what is being searched. i.e. posts about king sized mattress will help when users search ‘king sized mattress’
2018 study by Hootsuite - Pages with high social shares received an average 22% boost in rank over those that did not
Building a Strong Social Media Following
- Tip #117: Keep all your profiles up to date and put out consistent content to indicate a strong online presence, resulting in valuable mentions and even partnership opportunities.
- Tip #118: Seek out and collaborate with organic influencers. Organic influencers are social media accounts that have influence relevant to your brand, earned because of genuine expertise, authority, and trustworthiness. Tell them about your brand and company and make a lasting connection.
Hiring a SEO
The one thing that can't be faked is long term success.
- Tip #119: Some questions you can ask:
Do they guarantee results?
Are they transparent about the strategies they will be using?
Do they use PBNs (Private Blog Networks)?
Have they ever attended or participated in any conferences?
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