Optimizing Content and Websites for SEO

Optimizing Content and Websites for SEO

Just a few years ago, most business owners believed that they needed to create articles that were over 2000 words long if they wanted their business to rank on the first pages of search engine results.

However, for specific topics and industries, most consumers don’t want to read so many words.

The most basic example of that is whenever someone looks up “how to tie a tie” on Google. They certainly wouldn’t want to read 2000, or even 1000 words on the topic.

They would much rather see a video or a few images that are going to teach them the procedure of tying a tie.

Word Count and Content Performance

These days, the length of the content doesn’t seem to matter too much to search engines, and instead, search engines such as Google or looking at whether someone opens a search result, and then immediately decides to exit that result.

If a lot of users are making the same decision to exit out of a specific result, that shows the search engine that the result isn’t great, and should be ranked lower.

However, there are specific topics and industries that can benefit from long articles in terms of increasing the search engine ranking, such as entertainment, education, e-commerce, insurance, retail, real estate, technology, and more.

Average Word Count

There are four common types of posts that companies across various industries create that result in long pieces of content. Those types of posts include tutorials, guides, lists, and answers to “what” and “why” questions.

The industries that most benefit from long pieces of content in search engines include e-commerce, entertainment, real estate, investment, travel, and education. Most other industries tend to skew more towards video content instead of written articles, simply because the topics they cover tend to be more advanced.

Average Number of Backlinks

Depending on the length of a piece of content, the average number of backlinks is going to be different.

While not every article is going to get the same amount of backlinks, generally, content that’s between 1000 and 1500 words long tense to get over 1000 backlinks.

Content that’s over 1500 words long, up to 3500 words tends to get nearly 2000 backlinks. As long as the content a company is creating is high-quality, companies in the aforementioned industries should aim to create content lengths between 1000 and 3500 words.

Average Website Traffic

However, it’s important to remember that backlinks aren’t everything, and even if a company is creating content that generates a lot of backlinks, it doesn’t mean that those backlinks will guarantee a lot of website traffic.

The content pieces that are between 2000 and 3,000 words long tend to generate the most traffic across a wide range of industries. Any content pieces that are longer than that tend to generate slightly less traffic, however, most companies tend to optimize their content for traffic.

That means companies creating content that’s optimized for website traffic tend to stick between 2500 to 4000 words. However, that’s not always true for every single industry and it’s best for companies to figure out what works best by researching their target audiences.

To improve their SEO efforts, companies have to optimize both their websites and their content. There are dozens of optimization strategies that a company can utilize to improve its SERP rankings, generate more traffic, and in turn, sales.

Some of the most important ones include focusing on organic traffic, improving the loading time of a website, and fixing any broken links.

Loading times

The average website takes 1.3 seconds to load on desktop, and 2.6 seconds on mobile. If a company’s website takes any longer than that it ends up falling behind its competitors. Websites that have a slow loading time end up leading to increased bounce rates, decreased visibility, and lower conversions for companies.

Additionally, for a while now, a company’s website loading time is one of the important ranking factors for search engines. If a website takes too much time to load, the odds are that the visitors are going to leave the page, and pursue a competitor instead of waiting around for the website to load.

One way that companies can fix slow website loading times is by running a performance analysis with Google PageSpeed Insights to better understand the speed score of their websites.

This tool can also help companies get suggestions for improvement and any errors that pop up. If the loading time for a company’s website is too slow, companies can also try optimizing their images, reducing the number of scripts, and plugins they’re using, minifying the code, or using a content delivery network.

Organic Traffic

Organic traffic is the number of website visitors that open the website through search engines without the company paying for search ads. Any organic traffic is generated through mentions, links, as well as other types of promotional efforts in digital spaces, such as social media posts.

This type of organic traffic is a very valuable sign of how popular a company’s website is, while also helping companies measure the quality and relevance of their website content, as well as the effectiveness of their SEO efforts.

Organic traffic is also valuable to a company’s bottom line since over 90% of companies have stated that organic traffic tends to drive the highest return on investment (ROI).

One of the best ways that companies can boost their organic traffic is by creating an SEO strategy, and utilizing select keywords in URLs, meta-descriptions, and titles. Companies can also conduct technical SEO reviews of their websites to ensure that every website element is working as intended.

Broken Links

One of the most common issues that many websites face, and even tend to have a few of, is broken links. According to a study, an average website tends to have nearly 6 broken links per 100 pages.

Broken links can happen for various reasons from content changes, to website updates, or deleted pages. Although this might not seem like a very big or important issue, most people are familiar with the frustrating feeling when they click on a link, and it doesn’t work.

This leads to a negative impact on the overall customer experience of that website. Additionally, broken links affect a website’s search engine rankings, largely because Google tends to rely on broken links for anchor text and PageRank.

If any links are broken, Google won’t be able to find and index them. However, fixing this issue is quite easy because all that a company needs to do is use a broken link checker to find any broken links, and then delete, redirect or fix them.