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8 - 14 : 75 Actionable SEO Tips


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8. Find Questions that Need Answered…Then Answer Them With Content

Q&A sites (like Quora) are a great source of keyword/content ideas.

The trick is to look for questions that have been asked many times. This indicates that there’s currently no good answer to be found on Google.

seo-tips-search-on-quora.png

Here’s another trick:

If you spot a Quora ranking in the top 3 in Google for a keyword, then that keyword probably isn’t very competitive.

And if it isn’t very competitive, it’s a prime keyword opportunity!

But…how do you find relevant keywords that Quora ranks for without going insane?

Use the “Organic keywords” report in Ahrefs Site Explorer.

Site Explorer > Enter Quora.com > Organic keywords > Filter by keywords related to your niche > Filter by positions 3 and under > Sort by volume

Organic-keywords-for-quora-com.png

Here, we can see that Quora is ranking #3 for the keyword “SEO leads” (450 searches/month)…

All we would need to do to beat Quora in the SERPs is create content around the question: “Is it a good idea to buy SEO leads?”

Cool, right!?

You can also find niche-related questions with Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer.

Keywords Explorer > Enter broad keyword > Phrase Match > Filter by keywords containing the word “how”, “what”, or “where”

Keyword-questions-for-seo-in-keywords-ex

Recommended Reading: How to Uncover Conversion Focused Keywords Using Quora and Reddit

2. Content

Keyword research…DONE!

Now it’s time to create some content around those keywords.

This is arguably the most essential aspect of SEO.

After all, you can’t rank if you don’t have content!

BUT…content creation is more than putting a few words on a page. Or hiring a crappy article writer @ $0.01 per word.

article-writer-upwork.png

There’s an art to writing GREAT content!

Now, we like to think our content on the Ahrefs blog is pretty good, so many of the tips below come from our own experience.

Let’s go!

9. Find Proven Content Ideas for ANY Topic (or Keyword)

Looking to rank for a keyword, but stuck for content ideas?

Well, why not start by looking at the most popular content that’s already out there?

It’s easy to do with Ahrefs Content Explorer.

Just enter a topic or keyword, hit explore, and you’ll get a list of the most shared and linked to content for that keyword.

Content Explorer > Enter topic or keyword > Explore

seo-tips-contnet-explorer.png

But what if you don’t already have a keyword in mind? Then what?

Use the “Best By Shares” report in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer to find your competitors most shared/popular content…then create something even better.

Site Explorer > Enter competitor’s domain > Explore > Pages > Best by shares

ahrefs-site-explorer-best-by-shares.png

You’ll get a list of all their content, with the most shared articles at the top.

Once you know what’s popular, the trick is to take those ideas, adapt them, and make something even cooler!

10. Use Real World Case Studies in Your Content

There’s one simple way to differentiate your content when targeting a popular keyword.

And that’s to include real world case studies.

I_Asked_235_People_to_Tweet_My_Article_a

Recommended reading: I Asked 235 People to Tweet My Article and All I Got Is This Cheerless Case Study

Including actual data and examples is also great for building trust and showcasing your product or service.

11. Write a KICK-ASS Introduction That Hooks The Reader In Straight Away

OK, so someone clicked through to your page…

GREAT.

But that’s just half the battle.

Your next job is to keep them there. That’s why your introduction needs to be absolutely kick-ass.

Here are three tips for writing your intros:

  1. Keep it short;
  2. Tell the reader exactly what they will get from reading your post;
  3. Hook them in.

Those first two are pretty straightforward, but how do you hook your readers in?

Basically, you need to get them excited to read on…and keep them away from that back button!

One “trick” here is to hint at the takeaways at the start, but hold a little back.

This helps to keep visitors engaged and reading to the end.

Here’s an example from my recent outreach case study:

I Asked 235 People to Tweet My Article and All I Got Is This Cheerless Case Study

BUT…

No amount of “tricks” will work unless you make sure that your page definitely answers all queries for which it ranks.

Fortunately, it’s easy to find out which queries your page ranks for. Just run the organic keywords report in Ahrefs Site Explorer for any URL and you’ll get a list of all keywords that are driving traffic to the page.

Site Explorer > Enter domain > Explore > Organic search > Organic keywords

organic-keywords-ahrefs-blog.png

12. Make Your Content SUPER Easy To Read (And Digest)!

There’s nothing worse than clicking on a search result and being confronted with a big, scary wall of text…

text-formatting-hard-to-consume.png

You should avoid this at all costs.

Here are a few pointers to keep your writing informative, clear, and easy to read:

  1. Separate your content into logical sections (which is good for SEO!);
  2. Write in short, simple sentences (note: at Ahrefs, we try and keep our paragraphs to a maximum of 2 or 3 sentences);
  3. Weave storytelling throughout your content (great example);
  4. Use bullet points and numbered lists;
  5. Break up your content with images;
  6. Use videos, slideshows and other multimedia throughout (where appropriate!)

Hemmingway Editor is a great free tool that will help with this. It gives hints on where you can improve (and simplify) your writing.

Just paste your draft into the editor and work your way through the hints and tips.

hemingway-app-for-readability.png

It also checks basic spelling…although Grammarly is better.

I Asked 235 People to Tweet My Article and All I G

Recommended Reading: Grammar Mistakes, Fixes, and Writing Tips for the Excellence-Minded Blogger

13. DON’T Write Words Just For The Sake Of It!

Don’t fall for the perpetual myth that “longer content is better for SEO”.

This isn’t always the case.

If something should be short…keep it short.

Also, make every effort you can to remove unnecessary fluff from your writing (again, the Hemmingway Editor can help with this).

And just to show that we ain’t hypocrites…here’s what this post used to look like:

from-200-to-75-seo-tips.png

Yep, that’s 200+ tips…so, what happened to the rest of them?

Simple. We realized that many of the tips were either outdated or unimportant.

So, we revisited the post and removed the fluff.

The result? A more refined list of the best 70+ SEO tips that you’re reading right now!

14. Link Out (Because It’s Good For Your Readers and Might* Help SEO)

Linking out to high quality, authoritative, and topically related content aids relevance and builds relationships with other site owners in your niche.

We also found a small positive correlation between the number of outbound links and Google rankings.

links-strongly-correlate-with-rankings.p

IMPORTANT: Correlation ≠ causation! We believe that Google probably looks to outbound links when they are lacking other ranking signals, hence the small correlation. I doubt there is any way you could use this to your advantage so please, don’t go forcing outbound links into your content where they aren’t needed! ?

Recommended reading: On Page SEO: A (2M Keyword) Data Driven Analysis

Best practice is to open external links in a new tab/window to keep visitors on your site.

3. On-Page SEO

GREAT content isn’t everything…

It also needs to be optimized for both Google AND humans.

Without proper on-page optimization, even the BEST content can fail.

For straightforward implementation of the tips below, we recommend installing Yoast’s free SEO plugin (if you’re running WordPress).

yoast-seo-plugin-in-action.png

SIDENOTE.
It can also be used for more advanced tasks such as: setting canonical URLs, integrating your site with Google Search Console, and more.

Want to know more about WordPress SEO? Watch this:

 

Let’s get started with our on-page SEO tips!

ahrefs.com

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