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15 tips to improve your search rankings

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HitSearch director Andy Donaldson.

The following list includes practical advice across search engine optimisation, content marketing and conversion rate optimisation:

  1. Aim to keep your title tag below 55 characters with your most important keywords near the beginning.
  2. It is best keep Meta descriptions between 150-160 characters. Search Engines cut them off after 160.
  3. Site speed has a direct effect on your SEO rankings. Check it here.
  4. Blogs are better off on a sub folder not a sub domain. Use ‘example.com/blog’ not ‘blog.example.com’.
  5. Well-written descriptions can increase your click-through rate in the SERPS.
  6. Include social share buttons on all relevant pages.
  7. Are you making use of video? Youtube is the world's second largest search engine. 80 per cent of internet users watch video and 60 per cent share it.
  8. Spell check, spell check, splel check - the smallest mistakes make your business look unprofessional.
  9. Ensure you’re using site search on your website - it’s a great way for users to find content and it can be tracked in Google Analytics.
  10. Set up Google Demographics tracking in your analytics to find out your users age, gender and interests.
  11. Make use of testimonials, case studies and reviews to build trust with your users. Trust Pilot is a great tool to use.
  12. Make a friendly 404 error page to guide users back to hot spots on your website.
  13. Use www.copyscape.com to check your content is unique.
  14. Don’t make the user enter the same information twice when filling out forms or in the checkout process.
  15. Bounce rate and exit rate stats are as important as the overall traffic levels in understanding if your site is performing well.

Andy Donaldson is a Director of HitSearch.

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