Have you ever come across those ugly sites that are so predictable that you’ll merely browse through it and in your head it says: I already know what they’re kind of getting at, there’s no need to write that much?
Well, you have, you also come across those sites daily. This especially so in the SEO services industry in Singapore.
Just to prove myself, look at these boring ass ads:
Wait, the last one is pretty unique I must say. ‘No smoke and mirrors, just results’. That’s interesting copy. Okay, I’m not here to make fun of SEO consultants or agencies. I’m here to teach you the SEO ranking factor to master in 2018 and beyond.
That is: user experience signals.
You can’t control if someone relies to your pitch for a guest post to earn a backlink, you can’t control your results with off page SEO. However, you can maximize your on page SEO and you should maximize your user experience signals by writing irresistible content for your audience. What you write on your site is the most controllable factor when it comes to digital marketing.
You should maximize it.
I once beat my competitor who has multiple backlinks with this one SEO ranking factor. I deleted half my site articles, re-wrote a lot of them, and that lead to a reduced bounce rate to 0.87%. I outranked them with little to no backlinks.
User Experience Signals: Bounce Rate & Time on Page
These data can be tracked in your Google analytics data.
- Bounce rate is the rate at which someone leaves your page without clicking into another page. The lower the bounce rate the better.
- The average session duration shows the time spent on a page. The longer the better.
These are user experience signals that Google uses.
How to Decrease Bounce Rate & Time on Page?
- Remarkable Content
One of the easiest way is to write remarkable content that is useful and engaging for your audience. Stories, statistics and researched content make the best form of content.
You should also always be asking yourself: there are tons of information out there, what makes your article or your website stand out from your competition? To differentiate, you can include personalized stories, real life examples and case studies in your article to make it more interesting and engaging.
- Longer Content
The second way is to write longer content. Research has shown that many post and pages that get ranked first on Google have around 1900 words. No, you should not write spam-my articles just for the sake of writing 1900 words. Your audience is going to realize that, and they are going X your site, and you’re going to get a high bounce rate.
- Master the Language of Your Audience
The third way to do it is to master the language of your audience. Stop writing technical how to guides. The library has tons of that already. For EG. No one cares about the 4 factor model of investing, everyone cares about if the stock market is risky.
This is how I plan on beating 99% of the SEO companies, and differentiating my SEO courses in Singapore. They are outsourcing their articles to writers who write generic, blend SEO advice. Their sales pages are ugly, filled with Google Page Rank 1 promises. Ugh. I can’t get through half their sales pages. The majority of them look similarly monotonous. There’s a complete lack of effort.
When you master the language of your audience, people will find you more relatable and will they will be glued to your site.
- Bucket Brigades
The fourth way you can use is to include some copywriting tactics in your sales pages. One of the way to do it is to include bucket brigades.
Here are some examples:
- Here’s the deal
- But there’s a catch
- What’s the real deal?
- How can you actually use this?
- The best part?
- Why does this matter?
- That’s not all…
I don’t recommend including these terms in the majority of your articles. They can get quite annoying if over-used. However, for your pages that have high commercial demand, you may want to pepper these in to increase your time on page.
- The App Formula
You also have the APP formula, recommended by SEO expert Brian Dean. It’s called the agree, promise and preview formula. He mentions that you only have 2 seconds to convince your user if your page is a good fit when they click through into your page. It’s a story telling formula where you agree with your audience about the problem he or she faces at the beginnning of your post, you then follow up with in a promise, and a preview to a solution in that order.
Just like bucket brigades, from a branding standpoint, I don’t think this should be over used. It can get dry and boring if all your articles are phrased like that. If you are a good natural story teller, writing remarkable shouldn’t be a problem.
Relevant and informative videos can be a method to retain your audience to spend longer time on your page. Note, you can’t just spam random videos and expect people to watch. Your video has to fit into the context of your article.
- Addressing Your Audience Hopes, Fears and Dreams
I recommend delving deep into your audience hopes, fears and dreams and address these issues your audience face in your articles. This way, you’re not tricking them into staying longer on your page, however, you’re writing something that they are thinking about and looking to solve on a daily basis.
I wrote about how you should do your customer research and get feedback from your market before you launch a marketing campaign. There are many ways to go about it. You can it online, and offline. This way, you get multiple angles on how to address your audience’s hopes, fears and dreams.
The SEO Ranking Factor to Master in 2018
Links can be bought and manipulated, however, user experience is hard to manipulate. My personal guess is that UX is what Google is going to focus on in the near future. They are already making mobile friendliness and site speed official ranking factor. Come on, it’s 2017-8, stop creating or designing non intuitve sites, nothing irks me more than a buggy link that leads to a dead page. Your competitors may have more linkes than you, however, you can outsmart them by crafting your content and your site in a manner that’s great for your user’s experience.