There are many times during the lifecycle of your website that you will need an expert SEO.
If you don’t enlist the help of a true professional for the following five scenarios, you are risking rankings, traffic and revenue in 2023:
1. Site redesigns
This new year, many are planning to refresh their websites. The problem is that SEO either never enters the conversation during a site redesign or it’s not handled properly. This is a problem.
A site migration is when a website undergoes major changes, such as URL updates, a redesign, or content management system or hosting provider changes.
Any of these changes can negatively impact the website’s performance in the search results when handled well.
And make no mistake – there is a lot to consider. So much so that we usually break up our SEO checklist into pre-launch, launch and post-launch activities when involved in a site migration.
Even when it’s done correctly, it is common for sites to see a temporary drop in organic traffic (80% of SEOs expect it) but it should recover and even excel past previous benchmarks.
When it doesn’t, though, something has gone terribly wrong. The website may never recover and can experience a long-term drop in traffic.
If you’re going to make significant changes to your website, make sure you have the guidance of a seasoned SEO during the entire process. A website design agency may not have the expertise needed.
2. Deep analysis
Even if you are ticking off all the boxes in an SEO checklist, something sinister may be lurking behind the scenes of your website that’s causing a drop in traffic. Only a deep-dive audit can uncover something like this.
It is common for site owners to only focus on the top-performing pages. But that’s only a small representation of your website’s quality. The other 80% of webpages on your site could be harming the overall quality and relevance of it, thus impacting your traffic.
One example? Google’s helpful content update, which looks at the entire website in terms of content quality. If some pages are considered bad, it can impact the whole website.
Let’s also not forget the impact that well-organized, quality content site-wide can have on relevance. According to Google’s Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide:
“The navigation of a website is important in helping visitors quickly find the content they want. It can also help search engines understand what content the website owner thinks is important. Although Google’s search results are provided at a page level, Google also likes to have a sense of what role a page plays in the bigger picture of the site.”
In other words, webpages don’t exist in a vacuum. There are many instances where Google considers the site as a whole when ranking.
There are other hidden issues on a website that can easily be missed without a technical SEO audit. For all these reasons, it’s critical that website publishers get a better understanding of their site through a proper audit.
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3. Ranking for highly competitive terms
Let’s be honest, what keywords aren’t competitive these days? Do a search for any keyword and you will find millions of results. Yet, Page 1 is all that matters.
Some keywords are easier to rank for than others. For example, you might have an easier time ranking for something like “list of top video games in 2022” versus just “games.”
We should know. It took us years to help a client rank number one for the highly competitive term: “games.” But we did it. And it stuck.
Ranking for million-dollar keywords doesn’t happen by just following a checklist. It happens with deep SEO expertise from professionals with decades of experience – those who live and breathe technical SEO and understand what’s happening in search right now.
Sure, you can get SEO guidance from anywhere, but if you’re trying to rank for highly competitive terms, don’t settle. Get an expert SEO.
4. Navigating changes to Google
The search engine results pages are constantly in flux.
In 2021 alone, Google ran more than 700,000 experiments, which resulted in more than 4,000 changes to search. That’s about 11 changes per day. Do you have the time to follow and dissect all the algorithm updates and how they apply to your website?
Algorithm updates lead to page one shake-ups and competitors pull ahead. Maybe they have more resources and bigger budgets, maybe they just did slightly better than you. Now you must figure out what changed and how to get ahead again.
Countless factors influence your rankings in the search results. Trying to figure it out should be left to an SEO professional.
5. Technical SEO
Anyone can do easy on-page SEO, but it takes knowledge and experience to get the technical part right. Things like mobile usability, site speed, structured data markup, robots.txt, server maintenance, page experience and much, much more.
Technical SEO requires the expertise of a professional working in tandem with a website developer or webmaster to ensure the correct changes are done well. One mistake and it can throw SEO results off quickly.
Every website needs to ensure the technical part is right to rank. Why? Because if a site is not crawlable, it won’t rank.
Google’s Gary Illyes once said on a Reddit thread:
“[I] really wish SEOs went back to the basics (i.e., MAKE THAT DAMN SITE CRAWLABLE) instead of focusing on silly updates and made up terms by the rank trackers, and that they talked more with the developers of the website once done with the first part of this sentence.”
Level up your SEO game in 2023
A new year brings new possibilities for your website.
It’s time to seriously consider how you will integrate expert SEO strategies so you have a chance to compete on Page 1.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.
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