In order for your membership website to rank in search results, you need to have an SEO strategy that drives organic traffic to your site.
When search engine optimization (SEO) is done correctly, it can help your business to get on the first page of Google search. As the first page receives 95% of all web traffic, that’s where you want to be.
Google looks at more than 200 factors for website ranking and is always working to improve the search results it delivers. Its latest algorithmic update, known as BERT, was rolled out in October 2019 and refined Google’s understanding of search queries that are in natural language.
By leveraging these 5 SEO best practices, you can improve the optimization of your membership website to appear in the results for organic search queries.
1. Start with a solid website structure
While traditional SEO factors such as keywords and links are important, search engines emphasize user experience. This includes factors such as page loading speed, good design, mobile-friendliness and an intuitive menu. Focusing on UX not only keeps your visitors happy but it is also good for SEO purposes.
If your membership website is difficult for visitors to navigate, it is probably hard for Google to ‘crawl’ and this will affect your ranking. It must be easy for everyone – including those on mobile phones – to access, load, read and navigate. Page loading speed is an important SEO ranking signal and you can use Google PageSpeed to help you improve it.
2. Do your keyword research
Keyword research can be pretty complex but it basically involves learning what terms people use when searching for topics in your industry.
Develop a list of relevant topics and then brainstorm some keyword phrases. Use keyword research tools to find out how popular certain keywords are and how hard it is to rank for them. Decide on those you’re more likely to rank for – ones with less competition that enough people still use to search.
Google’s Keyword Planner is a powerful free tool for keyword research. There is all kinds of SEO software you can use today to make SEO easier for you and Moz and Yoast are two popular options.
Google uses latent semantic indexing (LSI) to analyze the meanings of different keywords within your content. It needs to understand exactly what your page is all about so it knows where to include it in the results for people searching for the answers it provides
Long-tail keywords are specific and usually include several words. They are less competitive than those that describe what your brand does at a general level. For example, if you have a membership site, this is a very popular online business model. Instead of just using the keyword ‘membership site’, you will need to be more specific, such as using the keyword phrase ‘membership site for women bloggers.’
3. Develop authoritative content
Creating fresh content on a daily basis helps to build your online presence and drive traffic to your membership site. By creating relevant content that’s better than existing content, you have a good chance of ranking. This usually means writing long-form content with accuracy and depth.
On the first page of Google, you find long-form content for given search terms, usually consisting of about 1,800 words. Comprehensive long-form content is one of the best ways to tangibly improve your SEO. Everything else, such as on-page optimization and social media promotion, depends on the value of your content.
Writing comprehensive long-form content takes time, you may opt to use an assignment writing service. This will allow you to focus on other aspects of growing your membership website audience.
4. Pay attention to on-page optimization
URL and title tag: Your URL for a page should be short and sweet and include a keyword. Your title should also include a keyword as close to the beginning as possible.
Meta description: Your meta description should accurately describe what your page is about and entice people to click.
Headings: Format your content with heading tags. Your keyword should appear in your H1 heading or title and you can include one in at least one sub-heading.
Visual media: Images, pictures, videos and gifs reduce bounce rate and increase the time people spend on your site. This helps you to boost those user-interaction signals. Remember to optimize your image file names and ALT tags to help search engine spiders to find and index them.
Link internally and to authority websites: When you link to your own content or to external sites, it’s important to use relevant phrases for the anchor text, both on your regular website and membership website.
If you have outbound links to related authority pages, such as those found on .edu and .gov sites, it helps Google to figure out what your content is about.
Use keywords: Drop your keyword in the first 100 words and use related keywords throughout your content.
Optimize your page for social sharing: By adding social sharing buttons, you will indirectly improve your chances of receiving inbound links.
5. Create a strategy to obtain backlinks
To increase the domain authority of your membership website, you need to build strong backlinks. Some businesses do whatever it takes to build links to their site but these aren’t always high-quality links and can be detrimental to their SEO efforts.
Quality backlinks will tangibly improve your SEO rankings. The better the quality of the content on your site, the more likely others will be to want to link to your articles within their content. A good way to get quality backlinks is to guest post on authority websites in your niche.
Creating the perfect SEO ecosystem for your membership website sets you up for long-term organic growth. It guides your marketing team’s efforts in the right direction and performance metrics also gain a solid base to be formed on.
James Murphy is a writer and editor from the USA. He spends a lot of time reading and writing trending blogs and articles to enhance his writing knowledge and that makes him highly successful. James is the father of two lovely toddlers and a die-hard fan of the New York Yankees.