Search engine optimization (SEO) is an ever-evolving field. While there are many basic SEO best practices that are widely known, there are also lesser-known, more advanced techniques that can give your website a boost.
In this post, we’ll explore some of the most effective advanced SEO tips from industry experts that most people simply don’t talk about. Implement these strategies, and you’ll be well on your way to ranking higher and driving more organic traffic.
Focus on Optimizing for Voice Search Queries
- Voice search is growing rapidly. Per Comscore, 50% of all searches were to be done by voice by 2020.
- Think with Google says that 50% of its searches in the Google App Store are now done by voice.
- A study by Voicebot.ai found that 41.9% of adults in the United States used voice search in 2022.
- eMarketer predicts that 55.2% of all searches will be voice searches by 2023.
- A study by Adobe found that 71% of consumers prefer to conduct queries by voice instead of typing.
- In a global survey by Google, 62% of people said they used voice search to find information about products or services.
With all the current buzz around AI – thinking about voice search has slipped off many people’s radar. Have you optimized your site for voice queries?
Voice search queries are typically longer and more conversational than text queries. You need to think about how real people ask questions to optimize for featured snippets and voice search results. For example, instead of using a keyword like “blockchain explainer”, try optimizing for “what is blockchain and how does it work?” I’ve seen sites rank highly for conversational long-tail queries by optimizing headlines, meta descriptions, content, and structure around commonly asked questions.
Create a Separate Mobile Site or Different Mobile Experience
Many companies don’t have a dedicated mobile website optimized for smaller screens and touch devices. With Google’s mobile-first index, not having a mobile site can drastically hurt your rankings. Creating a fast, easy-to-use mobile site with clear CTAs and simplified navigation can improve user experience and help you rank higher in mobile search results. Use tools like Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to identify any issues. When you open any of these, they focus on Mobile first. As an SEO agency, we approach mobile optimisation by either designing a website for mobile first or having fewer design elements and content elements on the mobile version. The vast majority have the exact same experience on desktop as mobile. Is this right?
Implement Proper Link Building Techniques
Many businesses try to cut corners with link building. They’ll guest post on spammy sites, buy links or churn out low-quality blog posts stuffed with keywords purely to get backlinks. These tactics can actually hurt your site. The key is focusing on high-quality content and natural link-building strategies like:
- Getting interviewed by industry experts on blogs and podcasts
- Creating visual assets like infographics, diagrams, and charts that others will want to share
- Writing comprehensive guides, ebooks and tools that publishers will want to link to
- Securing backlinks from reputable sites through outreach and guest posting
It’s about building relationships, establishing yourself as a thought leader, and playing the long game. Patience and persistence pay off.
Improve Site Architecture and Internal Linking
Proper site architecture and internal linking are advanced SEO strategies that get overlooked quite often. Your information architecture impacts how bots crawl and index your site. Optimizing it can improve search visibility and rankings. As we write this article, the August 2023 Google Core Update is rolling out, and with less budget for crawling websites – the internal link structure and site set-up will only be more important.
- Some best practices include:
- Creating clear, semantic URL structures with keywords
- Implementing breadcrumb navigation
- Using heading tags appropriately to create a hierarchy
- Ensuring pages are easy to navigate in a logical flow
- Using descriptive anchor text for internal links
- Checking for broken links regularly with tools like Screaming Frog ( Free for websites up to 500 pages )
Having an optimized internal linking structure helps bots better understand relevancy and authority.
Master Google Analytics and Search Console
Understanding how people find and interact with your site is key to SEO success. Mastering Google Analytics and Search Console provides data to inform your strategy.
In Analytics, go beyond vanity metrics and focus on goal completions, engagement metrics, behaviour flow, and conversions. See what pages drive actions, where people exit, and what needs improving.
In Search Console, analyze click-through rates, impressions, top-performing content, queries, and optimization opportunities. See if site crawl errors are impacting rankings.
Let the data guide your keyword targeting, content creation, link building, and site optimization efforts. Measure what matters.
Create Content for Featured Snippets
Many forget about featured snippets – the special search result summaries that appear above regular results. Ranking #1 in snippets essentially puts you ahead of the competition. Study what types of featured snippets appear for your top keywords in your space. Identify the key phrases and question variations that trigger them. Look at what data, lists, attributes, and media the top results include. Then optimize your existing and new content accordingly, focusing on providing a full-featured snippet answer. I’ve seen some sites double their traffic after optimizing for and ranking #1 in featured snippets, so it’s worth the effort.
Generate Local Content
For businesses operating locally, optimizing for local SEO is critical. Generating location-based content can help you rank higher on Google Maps and in local search results.
Some local SEO content ideas include:
- Detailed ‘About’ page with your address, phone number and business hours
- Listings on directories like Yelp, YellowPages, Foursquare
- Location pages with information about each branch
- Local area guides with recommendations and highlights
- Neighbourhood-specific blogs, events listings, and resources
- Hyperlocal landing pages optimized for suburb names and regions
- Location-enhanced pages and blogs using schema markup
The key is demonstrating expertise and relevance for local audiences. Provide the information people need when searching locally.
Optimize Site Speed
With page speed becoming a ranking factor, optimizing site performance has become integral for SEO. The faster your site loads, the better it is for conversions and search rankings. Some speed optimization tips:
- Compress images and media
- Enable browser caching
- Defer non-essential JS
- Streamline web fonts
- Remove unnecessary redirects
- Async load non-critical resources
- Optimize server response times
Test site speed with Google PageSpeed Insights and Pingdom. Identify bottlenecks and make performance improvements. Aim for sub-3-second load times on mobile.
Master SEO-Friendly Design
Design and SEO go hand in hand. Using SEO best practices in your design improves crawlability, indexation and rankings.
Ensure your site includes:
- A simple, linked site logo
- Easy-to-find navigation menu
- Intuitive information architecture
- Descriptive page titles
- Short, keyword-rich meta descriptions
- Optimized image file names and alt text
- Easy-to-read font sizes and use of headers
- Fast-loading images and media
- Prominent calls-to-action
Good findability, navigation and usability increase time on site, lower bounce rates, and improve conversions – all positive SEO signals.
In the competitive and ever-changing world of SEO, you need to go beyond the basics to get real results. Implementing some of these advanced strategies can help take your website’s visibility to the next level. Focus on continuously improving user experience and relevance, not shortcuts. Build high-quality links slowly over time. Let data guide your decisions. If you master both the art and science of SEO, your rankings will gradually improve. Keep testing new techniques and pushing the envelope – just like the SEO experts and thought leaders do. With the right knowledge, tools and persistence, your site can compete and thrive online.
What unconventional SEO tactics have you found to be especially effective? What other advanced tips would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!