SEO optimisations is one of those things that you can hear a different approach to increasing a websites ranking and traffic from just about anyone. The amount of time I have had clients that have known a small part of what makes up SEO and tried to tell me how to best optimise their website is phenomenal, this is largely due to how SEO ranking factors have changed over the years as Google has continued to improve their ranking algorithms.
Keeping it Simple
At an overview level Google will always try to best and most relevant result for what the user is searching for. If you keep that perspective in mind when you are trying to optimise your website for search rankings, then you will stay on the right track. Build up the amount of quality content based around the keywords you are targeting and then worry about the smaller SEO optimisations. A website that has every possible technical & niche optimisation possible simply won’t rank higher than a website full of great written content that has been poorly optimised. I can’t stress enough that just jamming the keyword “apple pie” into a page will not get you to rank number one for apple pie. Now that’s out of the way, lets get into a few of the factors that I have found to been crucial to ranking well on google
Make sure you always make a backup of your website before you make any changes, sometimes the simplest mistake can wreak havoc to your websites rankings. It is always a good idea to keep note of all changes you have made when you are working on your website in case something does go wrong and you see a drop in rankings.
As Google indexes your website, it will look at the amount of written content and the quality of the content on your site, It will also look to see what sites have linked to your website. This is how Google will determine whether your website is trustworthy or not, newer websites that are less than a couple years old simply will not rank higher than a more well-established website that has been around for 5 or more years. This is why SEO is not a platform for get rich quick schemes, it takes constant work to build up your websites content over time and see results in the long run, not the short term
Mobile, Speed & Security
Mobile and speed optimisations are quickly becoming more and more important to your websites ranking as Googles algorithms are increasingly becoming more focused towards mobile devices. This means that the content on your website must load quickly and be responsive for the device that you are looking at it on. Google has also recently introduced security as a ranking factor, you can easily give your site a boost by installing an SSL certificate on your web hosting and forcing all connections to load over https using a simple plugin for WordPress.