The first step in this journey is to analyze competitor positions. We need to study the profiles of competitor websites to understand how search engines view them. This insight will allow us to determine the most cost-effective methods to optimize our site in a way that appeals to search engines.
Let's say you're a small local business, and you want your site to appear in the top ten for organic searches in your area.
Here are the initial steps:
1. Make a list of competitors. Focus on those with websites that are well-indexed. If, for instance, no such competitors exist in your area (which certainly simplifies your task of ranking high in local searches), look for companies in your field from nearby locations. Start with 5-10 companies; that's enough for now.
2. Examine competitor websites. This crucial step lets us identify patterns that have made Google rank them higher. Analyze from the perspective of content length, URL appropriateness, page structure, and image presence. Read about SEO basics here.
Create a table in Google Sheets with the following columns:
- Company Name
- Website Address
- Position in Google
- Number of Pages
- Website Engine
- Main Header of the First Page & Description
Once you have this table with preliminary analysis, you can begin developing content based on the acquired data and keywords.
3. Choose keywords
But how do you know which keywords people are using to find your competitors? For this:
- Register on SemRush.com or SimilarWeb.com. Their free version provides essential information. You can make up to 10 queries per day for free.
- Enter your competitor's website address in the search box.
- Review the results.
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The list will contain around ten words that have recently been used to find the site. The example above indicates that, although the website ranks for this keyword, you can easily start competing for it. Note this keyword to add it to your site!
By analyzing each competitor, you'll gain an understanding of the keyword structure. Choose the keywords you wish to target for your website. Integrate them into your page titles, meta tags, texts, and URLs. This will give you a free and efficient tool to structure your website semantically, yielding future benefits.
Read about the proper way to integrate keywords into texts so search engines will appreciate them in this article.