Search Engine Optimization: An Intermediate Guide to SEO

You’ve implemented all the top-level SEO tips and you’re enjoying a trickle of clicks from search engines. How can you ramp it up so you experience that avalanche of traffic?

It’s time to dive deeper into search engine optimization with some intermediate and advanced level SEO skills. In this article, we’ll guide you on how to take your SEO to the next level.

Keep reading for our advice on crafting an expert-level SEO strategy.

SEO Refresher

When you’re ready to move beyond the basics of SEO, there are a number of different strategies you can use to improve your website’s ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs). But before we get into those, let’s first review some of the basics that you should already be doing.

These include creating unique, compelling content, developing a link-worthy website, and optimizing your site design for SEO.

If you’re not already doing these things, make sure to start with our beginner’s guide to SEO before moving on.

Assuming you’ve got the basics covered, here are some intermediate and advanced SEO tips and techniques to help you further improve your website’s ranking on SERPs.

1. Perform Keyword Research Like a Pro

One of the most important things you can do in order to improve your website’s SEO is to perform keyword research. The better you understand what people are searching for, the better you can optimize your site to rank for those keywords.

You also want to know the user intent behind each keyword you choose. That is, what are people trying to accomplish when they type that keyword into a search engine?

Are they looking to buy something? Are they trying to learn more about a specific topic? Or are they trying to find a website like yours? Combine these two to begin taking your SEO skills to the next level.

2. Optimize Your Title Tags for Better CTR

Your title tag is the text that appears on the search engine results pages (SERPs) for your website. It’s one of the most important elements of on-page SEO, so it’s important to get it right.

Your title tag should be:

  1. Relevant to the page’s content
  2. Descriptive and keyword-rich
  3. No more than 60 characters
  4. Unique on each page
  5. Engaging to encourage click-throughs

To edit your title tags, go to the HTML of your website and find the <title> element. You can then edit the text within that element to change your title tag.

For example, the title tag on this very article is “Search Engine Optimization: An Intermediate Guide to SEO.”

3. Use Engaging Meta Descriptions to Improve Your CTR

Your meta description is the short paragraph of text that appears beneath your title tag in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

While your meta description doesn’t affect your ranking, it is important for two reasons:

  1. It can help improve your click-through rate (CTR)
  2. It can influence the searcher’s decision to click on your result

This means that you should take the time to write unique and compelling meta descriptions for each page on your website. Just like with title tags, you can edit your meta descriptions by finding the <meta> element in your website’s HTML code.

4. Target Long-Tail Keywords

While it may be tempting to try to rank for the most popular keywords, it’s often more effective to target long-tail keywords.

Long-tail keywords are longer, more specific keyword phrases. They tend to have less search volume than general, shorter keywords, but they’re much easier to rank for.

For example, a long-tail keyword like “SEO tips for beginners” is going to be easier to rank than the more general “SEO tips.”

5. Optimize Your Website’s URL Structure for SEO

Your website’s URL structure can be an important ranking factor, so it’s important to get it right. There are a few things you should keep in mind when optimizing your website’s URL structure for SEO:

  • Use keyword-rich URLs
  • Keep your URLs short and sweet
  • Use hyphens to separate words
  • Avoid using dynamic URLs
  • Canonicalize your URLs
6. Optimize Your Images for SEO

Images are an important part of any website, but they can also help improve your ranking on SERPs. This is because images can be optimized with keywords just like any other piece of content on your website.

When optimizing your images for SEO, there are a few things you need to do:

  • Use descriptive file names
  • Include keywords in your image alt text
  • Use responsive images

To edit your image file names and alt text, find the image you want to edit in your website’s control panel and select “Edit.” From there, you’ll be able to change the file name and alt text.

7. Add New Content Regularly

One of the best ways to improve your ranking on SERPs is to regularly add new content to your website. This could be in the form of blog posts, new products, or even just new pages.

Not only does new content help keep your website relevant and fresh, but it also gives you more opportunities to rank for new keywords. This is because each piece of new content is like a new page on your website that can be optimized for SEO.

8. Implement Schema Markup

Schema markup is code that you use to improve the understanding of your content by search engines. You must modify the HTML code of your website to implement schema markup. If you’re not comfortable editing HTML, hire an SEO company to do it for you.

9. Promote Your Content on Podcasts

Podcasts are a great way to promote your content and improve your ranking on SERPs. This is because you can optimize your podcast episodes with keywords, just like you would any other piece of content on your website.

You can also be a guest on other podcasts to build your backlink profile and awareness of your business.

10. Monitor Your Rankings Regularly

Finally, it’s important to monitor your ranking regularly to ensure that your SEO efforts are paying off. You can do this by checking your website’s position on SERPs for the keywords you’re targeting.

To do this, you’ll want to set up a Google Search Console account. Once you’ve done that, you can add your website and start tracking your ranking.

Monitoring your ranking will help you fine-tune your SEO site design and ensure that you’re on the right track.

Get It Right with SEO Design Time

Hopefully, this guide has given you a good overview of some of the things you can do to improve your ranking on SERPs. Remember, SEO is an ongoing process, so don’t expect to see results overnight.

Need help implementing these more advanced SEO tips on your website? Let us help. SEO Design Time is one of Nashville’s top SEO agencies with experienced SEO marketing experts who can help you to implement all we’ve discussed here today.

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