A few short months ago, my Google ranking sucked.

As you probably know, earlier this year, I re-branded my business to become The Melbourne Health Writer.

While I re-branded with new logo, new web URL and business cards, re-vamping my website was towards the bottom of the list of priorities – because you know, deadlines.

But it soon became clear that I needed to push it further up my ‘to-do’ list, because as a result of changing my URL, a lot of my hard-won Google juice had disappeared, despite having a redirect from my old URL. Basically, I wasn’t ranking in Google anymore.

So, I began the task of not only getting my Google rankings up again, but building a whole new website.

Find out how I increased my web traffic and zoomed up the Google ranks. Click To Tweet

The Challenges: Building a new website and writing copy that will rank

I wanted a brand-new look for my website to showcase my re-branded business. The web site needed to include extra pages to highlight my business services pages. It also needed to include more information about my experience, my achievements, and how I help my clients.

It also had to be more responsive and easier to navigate, and the design needed to be flexible enough to be able to add extra pages, if I ever needed to.

It was imperative to increase my Google presence by ranking for more key words and key word phrases. I also wanted to reduce my bounce rate and increase the time users spent on my site.

The solution: Applying my SEO knowledge

Building a SEO-friendly website

Rather than re-build and re-vamp my current website (which was a WIX site), I decided to build a brand, new site from scratch using WordPress.

Before building, I created a site plan to ensure I had included all the pages I needed, and to make sure these pages were easy to find through my menu structure.

I then worked on my colour palette, typography and layouts, and sourced images to ensure that the design ‘fit’ with a health copywriting business.

Writing SEO-friendly copy

Writing the web copy (including my page titles and meta tags) was key to increasing my web ranking (although SEO-copy is only one part of the SEO puzzle). I conducted keyword research and came up with keywords and short and long-tail keyword phrases that I wanted to rank for. I then assigned one of these per page in my site and wrote these pages with the intention of ranking on page 1 of Google, for these phrases. There is a total of 19 pages (excluding blog posts) on my site.

To climb the Google ranks you need a good website and SEO-friendly copy Click To Tweet

How I did it

At the time of building and re-writing my website, I was completing two SEO training courses, both run by Kate Toon. The ‘How to Set up an SEO-Friendly WordPress Site’ course, was invaluable. Not only did it provide a step-by-step guide on how to build a WordPress site, but it covered the most important part of all — how to make it SEO-friendly, and pleasing to the Google gods.

I was also undertaking the ‘SEO Recipe for Success’ course, which covered areas including the basic technical bits and bobs, keyword research, writing copy that would rank in search engines, link building, and content marketing; in short an SEO course that now enables me to do my own SEO, and SEO for my clients.

I applied all I learned in these courses while building my own new website.

You have two choices when it comes to SEO: Either get someone else to do it for you, or learn how to do it yourself. Click To Tweet

The results: I improved my Google ranking and increased my web traffic

Prior to rebuilding and re-writing my site, I didn’t appear on page 1 of Google for any of my keywords — not even the keywords I used to claim #1 spot for. The changing of the URL well and truly sucked my Google juice dry.

However…

In two short months after completing the above courses and finishing my website re-build, I now:

  • rank on page 1 of Google for 15 out of my 19 pages, for the keyword search term that I chose.
  • rank on page 2 of Google for 2 of these 19 pages, for the keyword search term that I chose. (I know, page 2 isn’t the same as page 1, but these results mean I am climbing the ranks again)
  • rank on page 1 for multiple search terms that I wasn’t even targeting.

I also rank in position #1 for my two main search terms, with one of these ranking in both the #1 and #2 spots. And in five instances I claimed the local pack listing as well.

In terms of my web traffic, that has increased by 46%, with the number of new users increasing by 43%.

My bounce rate has decreased by 35% and users are now spending on average, twice as long on my site as they used to. Users are also reading my blog posts, with some visits as long as 8-9 minutes.

The number of web enquiries has also picked up considerably. After the URL change, these dropped to zero!

Not bad for only two months.

In 2 short months, I have climbed to the top of the Google ranks and increased the traffic to my website. Find out how. Click To Tweet

How to improve your Google ranking

SEO is complex. Algorithms change, SEO experts often have conflicting ideas on what the best approach is, and there is no guarantee that you’ll end up on page 1 of Google. (If a web developer promises you this, then proceed with caution! They may only be targeting one obscure keyword phrase, and not the hundreds you need to rank for, for awesome SEO rankings across the board.)

However, by understanding how SEO works, and applying many of the principles that help websites rank highly in Google, you can dramatically increase your chances of being found on the inter-webs. And you can also rank on page 1 — just as I have done.

But — it takes time. In SEO terms, two months is a relatively short time to notice a difference. Experts advise that it can take anywhere between three and six months.

So, I’m pretty happy with what I’ve achieved so far.

But SEO is never done. It’s something that you must continually work on, to ensure your web presence is where you want it to be. It involves measuring your analytics, to see what is and isn’t working, and tweaking your strategy accordingly.

If that sounds overwhelming to you but you want to climb the Google rankings like me why not contact me to see how I can help?

Cheers
Nerissa

Please note: Building and designing websites is NOT part of my normal services.

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