Do you want your website to rank highly in search engines like Google, but nobody has ever linked to your site?
Despite what you may have seen online and from various experts in the field, it is entirely possible to rank your website without backlinks.
How? By focusing more on on-page SEO, creating valuable content, and off-page mentions.
So, what are these techniques?
1. Create valuable content.
When you answer a search query thoroughly, you’re giving your readers what they want to know. You are providing value and being of service.
This will increase user engagement on your website, which will tell the search engines that your content is valuable. Consequently, the search engines will rank your website highly for that search term.
For the highest rankings, go more in-depth than your competitors. Make your content better by providing clear answers, and providing graphics or illustrations to help your reader understand the content clearly.
By far the best thing you can do to improve your website rankings and user engagement is to create better content!
2. Try to rank for “long tail” keywords.
These are keywords or keyword phrases that are niche-specific and may have very little search engine traffic. These can be phrases that ask questions or pertain to a very specific problem.
The reason why you want to aim to rank for these terms is that there is usually less competition, so it should be easier to rank highly in these searches.
It’s really just reaching for the low hanging fruit. Too many beginners try to rank for the most competitive keywords at the beginning. This creates frustration and few results, derailing the excitement to continue creating.
Ranking highly for these long tail keyword terms will be easier and probably quicker to achieve.
Plus, if you rank highly for lots of these terms, your overall traffic will increase. At that point, you may start to consider going after more competitive search terms.
3. Get customer reviews.
With local businesses, reviews submitted about your website online can affect your search engine rankings as well.
Testimonial reviews are great for improving the user experience because people put a lot of stock in what others are saying. See Amazon if you doubt this!
And a great user experience and longer time on your site is exactly what Google wants to see.
So it’s worth your time and effort to ensure that you are providing the best service possible for your customers. This will lead to great reviews and more customers and then more great reviews, and so on and so on!
4. Copy your competitor’s on-page SEO strategy.
Visit your competitor’s website and study their content.
One of the best things you can do is to model what is working well for your competitors. No need to reinvent the wheel.
You may think that creating longer forms of content is best when it comes to ranking. However, this is not always the case. Double check which keywords are ranking for their long form content to make sure its worth it.
Want a great resource for scoping your competitor’s keywords? This tool is my favorite.
5. Build internal links.
One thing Google loves is a really nice linking structure on your website.
All this means is you have your beefy authoritative articles that have links to smaller content articles on your site.
You can also link smaller related articles to each other as well. This web of linking is magical in Google’s eyes.
For each of your longer, authoritative articles, link smaller supporting articles in your website to this main page. This will help your longer page achieve higher rankings.
6. Ensure that your website is easy to navigate.
If your website isn’t easy to navigate, your visitors will just click off your website and go somewhere else. This can lower the time spent on your website and increase the bounce rate. These are both negative SEO factors.
Good navigation is all about making it simple and easy for your visitors to move around your website. Remember its all about the user experience.
A great way to achieve easy is to think SIMPLE. Simple sites with simple themes may not be super fancy but they achieve the goal of EASY for your visitor.
But if you want to know how to find simple themes that ALSO look professional and delightful for your visitors, check out these Astra themes here. This is what I use for this site now!
7. Have a mobile-friendly website.
These days, most internet users will access your website through a mobile device. If your website isn’t rendering properly on mobile, this will have a negative impact on user experience, rankings, and sales.
Be sure to optimize your website for mobile devices as well as desktops.
Most high quality themes will have mobile responsiveness built in already. See above for my best recommendation on mobile themes.
8. Increase your page speed.
Page speed refers to how fast your website page loads, and this too affects your rankings. Google has already said that page speed matters.
Not only that, but a faster-loading website improves the user experience of your visitors. No one wants to be waiting for a website to load. Chances are if they have to wait more than a few seconds, they will just leave the website, and likely not come back.
Page speed is so critical that studies and tests have shown that slow loading pages can actually reduce conversions and sales you make on your website.
This another reason why a high quality theme that is efficient and fast loading is important.
9. Get an SSL certificate for your website.
It has been shown that having an SSL certificate on your website increases your website rankings.
These days many search engines will warn its users that a website without this certificate is not secure, which will result in a user leaving the website immediately. This harms your rankings and possibly your reputation as well.
Plus the security it offers your website is absolutely worth the time to have it set up too.
Most good hosting services will have SSL certificates available for your website for free. I use Siteground, and it’s literally 3 clicks to get an SSL certificate set up.
If your website is still new and has yet to establish any authority within the niche, or if the competitors in this particular niche have very few backlinks, then it is certainly possible to rank highly for various search terms using these strategies.
As your website becomes more competitive, then building backlinks will certainly help you to continue to rank higher.
But in the meantime, don’t worry about the backlinks. Draw your visitors to your secure, quick-loading website and provide quality content that they’ll want to engage with and share with others.