How to Get on the First Page of Google Search Results
Written by Craig Nicholson
May 21, 2018
7 Strategies to Help You Get on the First Page of Google
If you want your business to found on Google, you need to be at least on the first page, but preferably in the top 3 results – especially when the majority of people never go beyond the first page.
Here’s 7 of the most effective strategies you should use to try and get on the first page of Google:
Strategy #1: Stop Trying Too Hard to Please Google
This may sound crazy…
But you need to think of your web visitors first.
Google has now evolved and become more human than it used to be and its aim is to see your website through the eyes of your visitors. Therefore, providing your web visitors with what they want to see will in turn help you get better Google rankings.
Years ago, many websites used black hat SEO techniques that would only focus on search engines and not a human audience.
Keyword stuffing, invisible text and backlinks from low quality websites were some of the risky and deceptive SEO methods that may of worked for a while…
But Google got wise and changed their algorithm!
This was a major turning point for Google. They wanted to make the web a better place by reducing the rank of poor quality sites and rewarding higher quality sites by pushing them to the top of the search results.
And many websites that used black hat SEO dramatically lost their organic rankings.
You may be overwhelmed by all the Google algorithm changes…
But instead of getting obsessed with Google, you should focus on your website visitors – and provide them with:
- Quality content that’s engaging
- Include more images and video
- Answers to their questions
- Easy and fast navigation
- Easy contact methods and call to actions
By doing this your are ensuring the long term success of your website on not only Google but other search engines. You will then be rewarded with higher rankings and conversions.
While you are creating your website content, you can refer to Google’s up-to-date webmaster guidelines and make sure your content is set up correctly for ultimate SEO and also to prevent you being penalised.
Strategy #2: Keyword Research
Extensive keyword research will help you to create the right content on your website for your target audience.
However, you’ll probably find it difficult to rank for one to two keywords because the web is already over-crowded and there may be other well established businesses ranking for these highly competitive keywords.
So that’s why I recommend using…
Long Tail Keywords
These are three and four word key phrases which are extremely specific and provide the following advantages:
- Less competitive than shorter keywords, therefore easier to rank.
- Higher click through rate (CTR).
- More specific, therefore provide better conversions.
- Long tail searches make up the majority of searches on Google.
- Better for voice search.
If you start using long term keywords on your website, you are better setup for voice search.
Search assistants like Alexa and Siri are becoming more advanced so adding more conversational sentences to your site is definitely the way to go.
You can find out what conversational phrases people are using, by using Google’s autocomplete feature.
You could also add an FAQ page as this is a good place to feature the type of questions people are using on voice search.
Strategy #3: Video
You can’t ignore the power of video and here are 7 good reasons to start using it on your website:
- It’s been reported by the BBC that the average attention span is down to 12 seconds. Therefore video is a great way to quickly get your point across, even to the laziest web surfers.
- Video will account for 80% of all internet traffic by 2019, according to Cisco.
- Adding a video on your landing page can boost conversions by 80%.
- Google loves video so you are more likely to show up on the first page.
- Mobile video consumption is rising 100% every year, according to Youtube.
- If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine what a video is worth. Your visitors will be much more engaged watching a video instead of reading text.
- Video provides a better ROI
- Video builds trust with your audience.
- Website visitors spend more time watching a video on a site. Therefore it sends signals to Google that your site has good content.
- Video appeals to mobile users.
- Video marketing can explain everything.
- Video encourages social shares.
Strategy #4: Mobile First
Many websites are now responsive so they adapt to work on large desktop screens down to tablets and mobiles. But for a long time, there was a focus on designing for the largest screen size first.
Because mobile internet usage is overtaking desktops, you should provide a better user experience for your mobile visitors, instead of it being an afterthought.
In the past, Google generally crawled and indexed a website using the desktop version. But since March 2018 they started using the mobile version of a web page for indexing and ranking – to help the growing number of mobile internet users.
It’s true that smartphones are popular for certain activities such as social media, messaging and quick browsing. However, desktops and tablets are used more for extensive browsing and purchasing. And for that reason it’s best to give your website visitors the best experience on all devices.
You should also research your target audience, discover what devices they use and tailor your website to their needs. This way you are thinking of your web visitors first, as mentioned in the first strategy.
Strategy #5: Schema & Rich Snippets
Schema markup is code that you put on your website to help Google and other search engines return more informative results for users.
If you’re not using Schema, you’re not benefitting from one of the most powerful SEO techniques out there. And because very few sites use it or even understand Schema, your competitors are probably not using it. So here’s your gain.
By taking advantage of Schema, you’re giving Google exactly what they want and it makes their job much easier.
By adding the correct Schema markup to your website, Google may add a rich snippet to their search results, for example the yellow review stars or a thumbnail of a video.
The great thing about rich snippets is that they stand out in the search results and build trust, therefore providing a better click through rate.
Strategy #6: Website Security & HTTPS
Https (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) replaces http and is the safe way to browse a website because it’s encrypted and secure when sending or receiving private data or information.
SSL certificates were mainly used for ecommerce sites so that credit card numbers and other sensitive information were not readable by anyone other than the intended recipient.
But for some time, Google have been trying to push https everywhere in order to make the web a much safer place.
If you want to secure your website with https, all you need to do is install an SSL certificate which you can do relatively easily through your hosting company.
Strategy #7: Backlinks
Backlinks sometimes get a bad rap because of the spammy link building tactics that are often used by untrustworthy SEO companies or link exchange schemes.
But link building is still important if you want your site to rank organically.
Basically, backlinks count as votes from other websites.
Getting a backlink (vote) from a high authority website will tell Google that your content is valuable and trustworthy and it will help your site rank higher.
But getting a backlink (vote) from a low quality website will have the opposite effect and your site will get penilized.
Backlinks still remain a major ranking signal for Google but they would rather see quality over quantity. And they also want to see links from authoritative websites in your niche.
So beware of companies offering mass link building techniques that sound too good to be true. Instead, focus on quality backlinks from high authority sites in your niche.
The best overall strategy to help you get on the first page of Google is to think of your audience, give them what they want and answer their questions. If you provide them with engaging content and use the other strategies mentioned in this post then you will be well on your way to higher rankings on Google.
If you would like more advice on this subject, please contact us or leave a comment below.