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12 SEO Techniques for Websites to Rank Higher in 2020

12 SEO Techniques for Websites to Rank Higher on Google

Your website is ranking well for a set of keywords for a year. Suddenly, last week you realize it’s not on the first page. What happened!? Well, guess what..Google’s algorithm was updated. Google’s core algorithm update in May 2020 threw thousands of pages tumbling down to the 2nd page. According to Moz, Google made over 3234 changes to its algorithm in 2018. Back in 2010, that number was 5 times lower.

SEO has changed so much in the last 10 years that it takes at least 6 months for a fairly new website to get on the first page for competitive keywords like “email marketing”, “cake recipes”. Earlier you could optimize it within a month to rank no.1 for the same keyword.

And not to forget that Google has increased penalties too. Does that mean you will go for PPC advertising most of the time? Not at all. In fact, organic searches have a conversion rate of 14.6%. To get that coveted no.1 spot, I have put together 12 techniques that will help websites rank higher in this remaining year.

 psst...I need to let you know that some of the links below are affiliate links. It's not anything bad, this just means that if you make a purchase through one of the links below I might earn a small commission. (at no extra cost to you of course!) If you want to learn more about affiliate links click here to read my disclosure policy.

1. SEO Audits

“We’ll first do an SEO audit of your website and then send you the report”. This line is said by all the good online marketers to their first-time clients.

What is an SEO audit? In simplest terms, it is the analysis of any website for relevant content & best practices laid down by search engines.

Here’s how you can do it yourself:

  • Then click on Audit.
  • You’ll get a series of reports. Got to the SEO section.
  • There are not many errors on Neil Patel’s website hence it says A+. A website with a lot of errors gives a C or D.
  • This report displays errors like the number of broken links, Title and Meta tag errors, Keyword consistency, image ALT attributes etc.
Ideal title length is 50-60 Characters and the ideal meta description length is 140-160 characters.

  You can also get a full SEO site Audit by SEMRush for FREE by signing up here. You'll get a full SEO report + a checklist of what you can do to increase your search engine traffic.

2. Landing Pages

A landing page is a page on the website where visitors arrive after they click an ad. Or it can be your main page by typing the URL of your site. It determines what you can give to your readers or customers so that they keep coming back or buy a product before they leave.

An analysis by wordstream shows that a very good landing page has a conversion rate of 11.45%, whereas the average rate is 2.35%. Here are some of the important points for a landing page: 
  • A headline and a subheadline
  • Tell your visitors what you are offering in bullet points/short description. This makes it easier to find what they are looking for.
  • An image or a video
  • Testimonials, client logos (either of two)
  • A capture form for building email lists
A perfect landing page example is, author & book marketer Dave Chesson’s website Kindlepreneur.com

Dave Chesson helps authors sell more books. Once you subscribe to his newsletters, you’ll get valuable advice from him about how to exactly do that and use free tools that he has built. 

Check out this landing page article by ConvertKit which is the best email marketing tool right now.

3. Decrease Load Time

I’m sure you wouldn’t want to click on a link and wait for 10 seconds for it to load. The most devastating earthquakes were below 10 seconds. Okay now seriously a website would lose a customer if it takes so much time to load a page. According to Unbounce, there are 70% more conversions with a site speed of fewer than 5 seconds.

So, here is how you can find your website speed and reduce load time:
  • Go to Google page insights
  • Paste the URL of your website inside.

My website speed on mobile is 100 (scale of 0-100). Similarly, you can check your site speed on desktop too. Note down the errors and send them to your developer for corrections. If you have a wordpress website, you can check out wpspeedmatters.com here for more information or plugins that can speed it up.

4. XML sitemaps

A sitemap is an XML file that has all the URLs of a website. This helps search engines to crawl & index them easily. How to do this? It’s easy. Generate a file of your website with this list and then submit it to google. Here is a screenshot of a sitemap of the screenwriting blog miracalize.com

Harsh Agarwal who’s the founder of shoutmeloud.com explains it well in the post here.

  Still, having trouble figuring out SEO? Hire someone to do it for you. 

Hire a Fiverr freelancer to help with your website SEO and start getting more organic search engine traffic.

5. Featured Snippets

Google has started showing featured snippets for more & more posts in the last few years. They are short answers to a query or keyword on the top of the SERPs (search engine result pages). It is a smart & easy way to rank higher in SERPs. But it’s up to Google to decide which post should have a snippet. They look like this:

A study by ahrefs shows that 12.29% of search queries have featured snippets on the search results. Here are 4 important tips to get a featured snippet for your post.

  • Your post should answer the query precisely in the first 400 words.
  • Bold the answer to the query in the paragraph or the whole paragraph.
  • Answer every question that is related to the topic
You can also read some tips here by content marketer Julia McCoy.

6. Internal Linking

Internal links are links that point to another page on the same domain. I’ll illustrate with a screenshot of Wikipedia.

If you click on the word artificial intelligence it’ll open a page on Wikipedia itself. It necessary for the following:
  • Keeping users on the same domain to read your content
  • Improving page rank
  • Google gets to know that the content you are linking to is good which in turn helps in SEO
For example, if you have an article on “Pinterest marketing” & another one on “making YouTube videos”. You can’t link them together as they are not relevant. If you have an article on “graphic designing” then it would be relevant to link it to the “Pinterest marketing” article.

7. Quality Backlinks

If another website is linking to your website, then you have a backlink.

And links are one of the most important ranking factors. The more backlink a page has, the more traffic you can get from google.

But this is not Google 2008. Article submissions, directories are things of the past now. You can’t just submit backlinks to any website. That particular website has to have good authority. Otherwise, Google is bound to penalize you for it and ranking higher from then on is going to be an uphill task.

Some important points are summarized here to build quality backlinks:

  • Relevancy: backlinks from websites related to your website are counted
  • Over optimizing websites with keywords and posting that content on article submission sites is not useful at all
  • Linking from comments in forums is not advised
  • A good technique is creating quality content and letting bloggers link to you naturally. You can also do guest posts for free.

8. Mobile Optimization

More than 50% of the searches on Google come from mobiles. And the numbers are growing each year. That’s why it is highly important to have a mobile-friendly site. What mobile optimization means is the text is easily readable along with navigation being easy.

Here are some tips on it:

  • Choosing a mobile responsive theme. If you are using wordpress you can choose the Astra theme or Kadence theme launched in May this year.
  • Including a search function
  • Using AMP(Accelerated Mobile Pages) in your theme.
  • Get rid of popups for customers visiting through mobiles. Otherwise, this will increase your bounce rate
You can read this article for more and also suggest reading in-depth about AMP because that is the future of mobile browsing.

9. Schema Markup

Schema markup also called structured data is the latest thing in SEO. Schema markup is a collaboration between Google, Yandex, Bing & Yahoo!. Consider it as chapters within a book, while your content is the book(wonderfully explained on riserr.com). Look at the image below:

You can see the 3 yellow stars. Well, that’s because of the schema. You are more likely to click on reviews with stars. That is why schema is important for ranking.

This schema for all content types:

Articles, products, events, recipes, people, organizations, local business reviews, medical conditions.

How to add them to your website? It's a bit complicated to explain here so you can go watch these two videos to add schema.

If you are using wordpress, you can simply use the Rank Math plugin and it does the rest for you.

10. 301 Redirect

This image below by Hallam Internet easily explains it.

A 301 redirect is used for pointing to a new page when the old URL has been removed. For example, is site audits if you find a URL like this below:


You should point it to a new URL with similar content or the homepage of your website.

If there are broken links in your site, Google will penalize you for it.

11. Shorten your Permalink

Permalinks are the full URLs that you see on the top when a web page is loaded.

They remain the same even if you update your pages a number of times. And Google does consider these as a ranking factor. If you have an article on an online marketing course If your URL somewhat looks like this below:


Then it’ll be difficult for Google to rank you based on your content for that keyword.

Instead, if your URL is like this one below:


It is matching the content & title of the page. Now it’s easier for Google to crawl & index it.

I suggest you do this for all your pages to start ranking higher. You can check out this video by Google on the same topic.

12. Update Old Content

This is really easy to do. If you are not updating your content in 8 months maximum, your organic traffic is surely going to tank sooner or later.

Some ways of updating old content are:

  • Adding the latest statistics of the relevant topic you have written
  • Remove broken links
  • Link to better websites and pages.
  • Create infographics, pins, images with alt tags
  • Use the correct keywords
  • Share it on social media
  Need another way to grow your website traffic? Ana from The She Approach wrote an entire ebook outlining what she did step-by-step to get 100k monthly page views on her blog. You can learn all her tips and strategies in her 100+ paged ebook: The She Approach To Blog Traffic for only $25.


These techniques may not be easy to implement for new website owners and bloggers. However, nowadays researching old keywords and stuffing them in your content does not work. What SEO requires most are dedication and patience. Higher a developer or a good marketer or if you don’t have the money to learn from YouTube. But do implement these techniques to get your brand on top where even your competitor will have to ask you for help.

What SEO tip are you going to use? Let me know in the comments.

About The Author 

This post was written by Sarang Padhye. Here is a little bit about him. 

I provide Writing Tips & Free TV Commercial Scripts every week on my blog. I have written over 40 TV Commercials & analyzed dozens of screenplays. I self-published my own eBook on writing scripts for TV commercials which has sold over 1000 copies on Amazon.

Here are ways you can connect with Sarang: