It’s better to have a custom 404 error code page than to have an empty page — it doesn’t send a good message to search engines or site visitors. It turned out that featured snippets do drive traffic. For featured snippets, Google cites the source page in the spoken result and they provide a link to the page within the Google Home app, so people can click and learn more: While the page meta data (page description and keywords) are not nearly as important as they used to be, they still count. Take advantage of them by putting your keyword or phrase there. For SEO to truly work and be sustainable, it needs to include a process of build up. Any SEO consultant who says otherwise is fooling you. SEO is an ongoing effort, but one that is totally worth it.

Create Valuable Posts on a Consistent Basis

The size of your images can have a big impact on your overall site speed (which is an important search ranking factor). Creating content on a consistent basis not only builds links internally (by linking out from your posts), but also gives you the ability to naturally attract links to your content. A blog is essential to many strategies I list below, such as linking out. Google has several bots: Googlebot (desktop), Googlebot (mobile), Googlebot Video, Googlebot Images, Googlebot News. For most websites, the Googlebots for desktop and mobile are the most important bots. The average top-ten ranking is two or more years old and the average age for the pages in the number one position is roughly three years old.

Basic off-page SEO factors to look for when gaging your competition

When you run the same query on different search engines, you will probably get different results. This is because every search engine uses its own algorithm, based on various socalled “ranking factors.” These factors decide which results appear in the SERPs. Being listed at the top of the results not only provides the greatest amount of traffic, but also instills trust in consumers as to the worthiness and relative importance of the company or website. Importance and relevance aren’t determined manually (those trillions of man-hours would require the Earth’s entire population as a workforce). Instead, the engines craft careful, mathematical equations—algorithms—to sort the wheat from the chaff and to then rank the wheat in order of quality. The number one rule is to focus on your website visitors first. Give them remarkable content that invites them to stay on your site and visit several other pages. Content is more than an article, it can be anything from an infographic, stellar image, video, street views of projects, or a power point presentation – be creative. Search engines “see” this behavior (user engagement, lower bounce rates, higher time-on site etc), and they reward your site for it with better quality metrics and higher rankings.

Publish content that has a high potential for shareability

“Social search” is an evolving term for the way in which search engines factor a user’s social network -- also referred to as social graph -- into how results are displayed after a search query. Because people have shorter attention spans, keep the most important information in heading tags so they can scan and see if they want to delve deeper into the post. Producing low-quality content as fast as you can and sending it out en masse to as many article submission sites as possible has been looked down upon for some time. We asked an SEO Specialist, Gaz Hall, for his thoughts on the matter: "If you were involved in link-building practices that clearly violate Google quality guidelines and your website experienced a sharp drop in traffic, it might be Penguin."

Link acquisition is an ongoing investment

If you command authority in your specific niche, Google will always see you as an important asset. The number, accuracy and quality of your business' local citations improve its chances of featuring highly in search results. Choosing a perfect focus keyword is not an exact science. You should aim for a combination of words that are used by a search audience. Aim for a focus keyword that is relatively high on volume and aim for one that will fit your audience. Google found that over 50% of all searches are emanating from mobile phones. This means that you cannot ignore making your site mobile friendly.