How to get your website on Google first page without special SEO tools, techniques?
All website owners and bloggers are keen to take their websites to the top of Google search results. However, only about 10 out of millions of webpages can appear in the top search result page (SERP). It is found that searchers usually don't go beyond the first few search results.
SEO experts (only a few of them may be genuine) confuse new bloggers and website owners with SEO terms like analytics, keyword research, deep SEO, search intent, algorithm and Core Web Vitals to fill them with awe. It is mostly deliberate.
As if that was not sufficient, blogging and SEO experts often talk of tools and utilities such as Google Analytics, Keyword Planner, and SEO plugins.
Some advice on SEO techniques and tools could be well-meaning, but much of that is hype.
How much SEO is really needed to get your website to the top of Google search pages?
Let me tell you the reality in short. Some search engine optimization is needed but not as much the SEO experts tell you. You can optimize your site with just being familiar with main SEO terms and how they work, and following what Google's own SEO experts say.
Google's search experts have said these things in their interviews or posts. These are available on the web:
- The best SEO techniques are concerned with the quality of content. If you write useful content in standard language, and do not copy-paste content from others, this part is taken care of.
- Google does not like too much search optimization. It hates SEO when it is done to fool search engines into believing that a webpage with poor content is of a very high quality.
- Google looks for content that satisfies the search intent of the searcher. So, if the content is relevant for a query, its chance of coming on top of search pages becomes very high.
- Google's experts have said that even Google cannot ensure that your website and webpages will take your website on Google first page for a meaningful keyword. That means, those claiming to take your website or blog to the top of search results might use some trick that does the job but that will be temporary. In fact, when Google discovers the trick, it might penalize the website badly.
Google is not being naïve, nor is it fooling you. But another reality is that if you strictly go by its advice as given above, your website or blog will NOT be able to compete with thousands of established websites/ blogs on your subject. So, we need to get the best out of Google's advice and implement in such a way that our website (in fact, individual web pages) come on Google's first result page - without employing any trick and without the confusing techniques and tools that SEO experts recommend.
So, before we move ahead, let me emphasize that I am not saying that all SEO experts try to mislead webmasters and bloggers. I am also not saying that the SEO tools do not work. What I am saying is that for common bloggers and website owners, a bit of SEO is good enough. Only if your blog/ website is not getting good amount of traffic despite all your efforts, you should consult an SEO expert. Look for a genuine expert, because there are thousands of fake experts ready to pounce on worried website owners and bloggers.
Simple on-page SEO techniques
For normal search optimization of a website the following are good enough SEO actions (and these tips are according to what Google says). If your blog/ website uses an SEO plugin, fine. If you do not have an integrated plugin to guide about SEO, follow some common search optimization techniques at the website level and also at the level of each article:
- Know your audience. Know what they want. Know what their problems are. Then write content keeping their needs. Write stuff that they are looking for. Write what will be useful for them.
If you keep just this much in mind, a lot of SEO is covered. Moreover, even when Google changes its search algorithm (=formula), your website will not be impacted. (Over-optimization done by an SEO expert is likely to be badly impacted when Google comes out with an algorithm change.)
- Write great content, but also keep SEO in mind. If your blog/ website uses Wordpress CMS, don't forget to install a plugin such as Rank Math or Yoast. These two are wonderful and they are free - they keep suggesting you what keywords you should add and how much. Based on your understanding about what your audience wants, search for some likely queries in Google or a SEO plugin. The suggestions that you get will tell you that you should include these search expressions (=keywords).
Let me give an example. If you are writing an article on 'exercise for kids at home', and you searched Google for this query, you will get suggestion like given in the picture below. Almost each of these suggestions tells you what people are looking for. So, use these keywords within the article in such a way that the answers to these queries are given in a natural way. You can keep these as sub-titles of the article, and make one or more paragraphs on these.
- Give the article a good title and one or more sub-titles. The title should be interesting and it should also have at least one of the keywords.
Give your article a good description. Wordpress, Blogger and website builders give you that facility. Wordpress calls it snippet. This is what comes below the search result. [In the given picture, "This depends on how your child is..." is the snippet/ description.
- A good description is that tells searchers what the article is about. In addition, it also tells search engines whether this article is relevant to a search query or not. From SEO point of view, it should have one or two keywords.
- Use an image in the article. On most blogging platforms and website makers, they give you the option to add 'alt tag' or alternative description to the picture. This alt tag normally is not visible to visitors but helps search engines about the subject of the image. So, adding a keyword here helps optimize the article for search purposes.
- Give links to other related articles on your website. Either give them as a list at the end of the article (as done in this post) or as part of the article or both. This helps visitors to find other matter on your website and gives a signal to search engines that your website is rich in the content that the searchers are searching.
If you take care of these simple SEO tips in each article - and you keep writing good articles - your website and its webpages will sure come up high in search engines.
As I mentioned earlier, what Google says is not enough in view of competition from established websites, you should follow a few other simple SEO techniques. I have many articles on SEO that I have linked below. If you are a new blogger or website owner, don't bother about the tougher techniques or technical SEO.
Expert articles on SEO
SEO definitions in case you get confused with what SEO experts tell you or you read on the web
A list of SEO techniques that search engines like and dislike