Improve Google Rankings Immediately With These 7 Website Fixes

7 website fixes improve google rankings
Improve Google Rankings Immediately With These 7 Website Fixes

Ranking on the first page of Google results page is most critical for businesses that have an online presence, and are dependent on organic traffic.

In this post, I am going to show you how to improve Google rankings of your website by making 7 simple changes.

Let’s say you have a great looking website that has fantastic content. Are you happy with the number of visitors or sales the website is generating? 

Well, if your website looks great and has quality content, you might have answered YES to the question above. Or, have you not?

If your answer is NO, this guide is for you.

Tons of websites talk about 100s of optimization techniques, and that only adds to the confusion. Most of us are stuck with the question, “what really works?”

I admit I felt the same a few years ago.

SEO is not rocket science
SEO is not rocket science

I want to tell you this, SEO is not rocket science. A lot of SEO gurus out there keep telling you (or scaring you) that Google has changed considerably over the years, they keep updating their search algorithm, the Pandas, the Penguins and the whatever bird shit updates. Lol!

What’s essential for you to know is that Google concentrates heavily on providing the best possible user-focused and user-friendly results. If Google’s users are not happy with the search results, their reputation is at stake.

Here is the Google rule book.

And the websites that follow these rules are blessed with TOP rankings on Google.

That’s it! 🙂

A user wants an answer, or actionable step-by-step guides, or whatever they are searching for ASAP. Nobody likes to go through a whole lot of fluff that they need to churn through to get what they want.

Let’s begin with the 7 Actionable SEO Fixes.

1. Improve Google Rankings By Optimizing Website Speed (Loading Time)

Ever visited a website that takes a long time to load? You keep hitting the refresh button, and the site refuses to load. Out of frustration, we either hit the back button to reach back to Google results or exit the website.

How fast (or slow) your website loads has a phenomenal impact on your Google rankings and you can improve Google rankings by decreasing the loading time of your website.

Get a quick insight on how fast your website loads with this Page Speed Checking Tool by Google.

Linkedin site loading time
Linkedin Loading Time

OK! That was a pretty perfect example. Let’s try another URL.

Note: (This is for example purpose ONLY with no intention of causing any harm to the brand).

Thrillophilia site loading time
Thrillophilia Site Loading Time

What’s interesting to note is, this tool will tell you precisely what needs to be corrected on your website to make it faster.

Site speed improvement suggestions
Site speed improvement suggestions

When you search for something on Google, it comes back with the most relevant results for your query. Say, you visited the top most website on the search results page and it takes a long time to load.

Loading Icon

The next thing you would do is, either refresh it till it loads or simply click the back button to visit another website.

Now let’s say the 4th website on the search result page loads almost immediately and satisfies your search intent. You stick on to it, read the page entirely and spend a solid 4.30 Minutes. This sends a strong signal to Google and it gets promoted to a higher position on search results.

Page loading time is all the more important for mobile users as it contributes to more than 50% of the total visitors of a website.

Mobile share of organic search visits
Image Source: https://www.broadbandsearch.net/

Even Google confirmed in 2018 that page speed would be a ranking factor for mobile searches.

Google official statement on importance of page speed
Google official statement on page speed
Effect of a slow loading website on visitors
Effect of a slow loading website on visitors

1.a Compress Images

Compressing images on your website can improve your website speed significantly. Images eat up a lot of page size, usually.

Recommended Image Compression Tool: https://saerasoft.com/caesium/

Image compression, optimization
Image compression

1.b Minify Codes (HTML, JS and CSS)

Minification is the process of removing the unnecessary code from your website while not disturbing the functionality. Use these Google recommended tools to minify your code to reduce the page size and speed up your site.

Minify site code
Minify site code

1.c Implement Content Delivery Network (CDN)

Surprisingly, many companies and website owners still aren’t aware of the benefits of CDN and how it can help their rankings.

So, what is a CDN, and how can it help in improving SEO rankings?

A Content Delivery Network or CDN is one of the easiest ways to boost your website loading speed.

CDN works by figuring out where your visitor is physically located and serving the site resources from a server closest to him.

If your business is targetting a specific city or country, it is wise to find a web hosting server located in the same region.

If you already have a US-based server and your target audience is in Sri Lanka, I recommend using a CDN for a better user experience.

Users that are located far away from the server will have a tough time loading the site, especially if the website is on a low budget, “Shared Hosting.” More on Shared hosting later.

Using a CDN for faster website loading
Content Delivery Network (CDN)

Popular CDN Service Providers: CloudFlare and SlackPath

1.d Enable Browser Caching

A browser cache is the temporary storage area on your computer that holds the most recently visited (downloaded) Web pages. So, the next time you visit that website, it loads much faster.

As you jump from Website to Website, caching (storing) those pages in memory lets you quickly go back to a page without having to download it from the Web all over again. This improves speed dramatically.

Enable browser caching
Enable browser caching

How To Configure / Enable Browser Caching?

Open the Filemanager on your Web Hosting cPanel or use FTP clients like FileZilla to implement this.

Search for the folder “public_html” and open it.

Open a file named .htaccess and copy/paste the exact code shown below at the top of .htaccess file.

Save and Exit. Check your Website speed after implementing this code. Another great tool for website speed check: https://www.gtmetrix.com

Simple as that!

If you can’t find the .htaccess file, enable “show hidden files” to find it.


  ExpiresActive On

  # Images
  ExpiresByType image/jpeg "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType image/gif "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType image/png "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType image/webp "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType image/svg+xml "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType image/x-icon "access plus 1 year"

  # Video
  ExpiresByType video/mp4 "access plus 1 year"
  ExpiresByType video/mpeg "access plus 1 year"

  # CSS, JavaScript
  ExpiresByType text/css "access plus 1 month"
  ExpiresByType text/javascript "access plus 1 month"
  ExpiresByType application/javascript "access plus 1 month"

  # Others
  ExpiresByType application/pdf "access plus 1 month"
  ExpiresByType application/x-shockwave-flash "access plus 1 month"

Good News For WordPress Websites

You can implement all of the above load time tweaks with just a few clicks with the help of W3 Total Cache plugin.

Plugin Page: Use W3 Total Cache

W3 total cache
W3 total cache

1.e Avoid Shared Web Hosting

Let’s face it. You get what you pay for.

The thing with shared hosting is – most of the sites are hosted on the same server and they all use the same CPU resources such as RAM, IP address, disk and cache.

Hence, sites hosted on a shared hosting plan tend to be slower than sites hosted over a Cloud hosting plan or dedicated hosting plan.

Avoid shared hosting
Avoid shared hosting

According to Matt Cutts, former head of search quality at Google, your hosting option is not a ranking factor because Google understands that you can’t control who else is on that IP address.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean your hosting option has no effect whatsoever.

For example, while your web hosting might not directly affect your Google rankings, it can affect its performance, indirectly affecting its ranking as a result. 

Whether you are a small business or a larget enterprise, if you are dependent on organic traffic through Google rankings, you better step-up your hosting game.

2. Having User-Centric Landing Pages Improve Google Rankings

No one should build websites ONLY for search engines. Websites should be built for users. If the users are happy with your website, Google will like it too, resulting in massive traffic from organic rankings.

“Less of self-boasting and more of how can it help your user” approach is recommended.

Let’s look at a Lousy example first.

Bad landing page
Over optimized landing page

This page focuses heavily on Ranking higher on Google for search terms like Best SEO company in India and SEO Services India, a classic example of websites designed for search engines.

This website might enjoy a temporary boost in rankings. However, if users don’t find valuable content, the exit rate of the site shoots up, resulting in a drop in rankings. Google knows if a user doesn’t like a website.

Great Examples

Google webmaster tools landing page
Google webmaster tools landing page

Here is another one.

SEO company landing page
SEO company landing page

..and check out Linkedin as well.

Linkedin Landing Page
Linkedin Landing Page

Bottom Line: Avoid self-boasting and focus on providing value. How can your website help the user? What’s in it for him?

Same Goes With The Content

The content of every page of your website should be user-centric. It should comprehensive and answer every question the visitor has.

3. Optimize Your Meta Titles and Descriptions

Meta title and descriptions are HTML attributes of every web page that’s available on the internet.

Meta titles and descriptions
Meta titles and descriptions

HTML Formats

Meta Title

<head><title>Example Title</title></head>
<head>  <meta name="description"content="This is an example of a meta description. This will often show up in search results."></head>

SEO Best Practice

Primary Keyword – Secondary Keyword – Brand Name

Example: Improve Google Rankings With These SEO Best Practices – Brand Name

Things To Remember About Meta Titles and Meta Description Tags.

  • Meta Title helps search engines and visitors know what your page is about. Consider this as your first impression. A good meta title can boost your rankings as well as user experience. A bad title can do the reverse.
  • Although not as significant as it once was, your title tag remains an influential on-page SEO signal. Starting your title with your keyword “does” make a difference.
  • A well-written Meta Title can be the make-or-break factor in determining whether someone clicks on your link or not.
  • Avoid ALL CAPS in meta titles.
  • Start the title with your primary keyword or it should appear as early as possible in the title for maximum SEO impact.
  • Avoid keyword stuffing in the titles (Example: Buy Shoes, Buy Cheap Shoes Online, Shoes For Sale) – it’s unnecessary and counterproductive to stuff every version of your keyword into a title. This might result in bad CTRs (Click Through Rates, an important SEO factor).
  • Ensure your meta titles are not more than 50-60 characters in length, else they will get truncated. This might impact your CTRs.
Truncated meta titles
Truncated meta titles
  • Every page of your website needs to have a unique title and description. Avoid duplication at all costs.
  • If you are a well-known brand, ensure you add your brand name in the title to boost click-through rates.
  • Never misguide visitors with wrong information in the meta title and description tags with an intention of increasing CTRs. This will only harm your rankings as you will have heavy exit rates.
  • Google generally truncates meta description snippets to ~155–160 characters. It’s best to keep meta descriptions long enough that they’re sufficiently descriptive.
  • Meta descriptions are not connected to search engine rankings but are remarkably influential in earning user click-through from SERPs. These short paragraphs are a webmaster’s opportunity to “advertise” content to searchers.
  • KeyTakeaway: You can improve Google rankings of your website by optimizing your meta titles and descriptions, as it directly affects your CTRs (Click-through-rate).

4. Optimize URL Structure To Improve Google Rankings

Getting your URL structure right for customers and Google is imperative. SEO friendly URL structure plays an indirect role in getting top rankings on Google by improving the CTRs.

Your URLs are often the first thing Google and customers will see when it comes to your website. Setting up correct URLs is definitely in your control.

Let’s quickly have a look at the excellent vs. lousy example.

URL Structure
URL Structure

Things To Remember

  • All the URLs on your website should be easily readable by your visitors, and they should know what to expect from the page by looking at it.
  • URLs are a minor ranking factor. While they do give importance to the authority of the overall domain itself, keyword use in a URL can also act as a ranking factor.
  • Use hyphens to separate words instead of underscores, spaces or any other special characters.
  • Avoid using uppercase letters as domain.com/Page and domain.com/page are considered as two different webpages by search engines. Search engines might flag your site for “duplicate content”.
  • You can use your primary targetted keyword in the URL, but ensure you don’t overdo it by being repetitive.
  • Follow the above best practices to see some very good improvement in Google rankings.

5. HTTPS Is What Your Need

You don’t want your SEO (and your rankings on Google) to suffer because you preferred a hosting option that leaves your site exposed to attacks.

Google webmaster central blog
Google webmaster central blog

Google is working to make the internet as a whole a safer place. A large part of that is ensuring that the websites that are being accessed through Google are secure.

The future of the web is a secure one. People in your organization need to understand the importance of HTTPS (SSL), and implementing it should be on the road map.

Key Takeaway: Improve Google rankings by implementing an SSL

6. Check Your Content-Length

Content with a higher number of words can cover a more far-reaching breadth and are likely favoured in the algorithm compared to insufficient, shallow articles.

Content Length
Content Length

Numerous articles online give insight into the “ideal” length of a page or a blog post. Search Engine Journal, for example, cites a 2016 study that observed the average word count for top-ranking results is around 1,900 words.

Nevertheless, ideal lengths fluctuate depending on the subject, your target keyword, and the competition. Google pays closer attention to how visitors engage with the content than merely the length of the material.

If one post has 1,900 words, but visitors don’t spend enough time on it, or click the back button and go to a different result, Google will probably feel your lengthy content is not answering your visitor’s questions and drop your rankings.

There is a lot more to content than merely the length of it. You should write lengthier content, but cover your subject thoroughly.

Key Takeaway: Pages with comprehensive and in-depth content can improve Google rankings of your website.

7. Schema Markups for massive CTR Boost

Schema Markup is an indirect rank booster due to its attention-grabbing productive results that increase CTRs. It also helps search engines better understand your content and makes your website stand out in the search results page.

CTRs profoundly impact search engine rankings, and you can’t go wrong with Schema markups.

A quick example for the Keyword “Titanic Movie”.

Schema markup example
Schema markup example

Another one for the keyword “Chicken 65 Recipe”.

Chicken 65, Schema markup
Chicken 65, Schema markup

Check out the Google case study for evidence of why adding Schema Markup to your site may drive awesome results.

Schema Plugins for WordPress can be found here.

Or..

You can check out the official documentation of Schema Microdata here.

Three formats of schema markups are most popular on search engines.

  • JSON-LD
  • Microdata
  • RDFa

Instead of learning new code skills, you can use Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper to get the code by selecting the type of content that you want to markup and manually inputting the website URL and data.

Structured data markup helper
Structured data markup helper

Need some real examples to make this simpler for you? Well, here is a bonus page that shows the most common Schema Markup types with the exact code.

Mark Zucherberg Google Result
Mark Zucherberg Google Result
<script type=”application/ld+json”>

{“\u0040context”:”http:\/\/schema.org”,”\u0040type”:”Person”,

“name”:”Mark Zuckerberg”,

“jobTitle”:”Founder and CEO”,

“address”:{“\u0040type”:”PostalAddress”,

“addressLocality”:”Palo Alto, California”},

“affiliation”:[{“\u0040type”:”Organization”,

“name”:”Chan Zuckerberg Initiative”},

{“\u0040type”:”Organization”,

“name”:”Facebook”}]}


</script>

Key Takeaway: Schema markups improve the click-throughs, and high CTRs improve Google rankings.

Pretty straight-forward and effective!

Well, this brings us to the end of the post and hope it will help you in achieving better rankings.

Now I’d like to hear from you.

How do you improve Google rankings for your website and which SEO ranking factor from this list was new to you?

Let me know by leaving a comment below.

Hi, Iam Vikas Solanki

I am an Internet marketing consultant, blogger, owner of an award-winning Quick service restaurant (DumSquare), and a cryptocurrency trader.

I am an amateur photographer on the side and also love travelling to exciting places.

BlogYep.com is my recent project focused on helping beginners start a blog.

Improve Google Rankings Immediately With These 7 Website Fixes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *