SEO Checklist 2021: Comprehensive Steps to Rank High on SERPs

Eagerly seeking ways to rank high on the search engines?

Achieving a high rank on search engines is the top priority for website owners and digital marketers. The goal of search engine optimization is to boost organic search, increase brand awareness and credibility to drive higher ROI. 

What if we deliver too much efforts and money to drive traffic and still nothing happens?

It may happen if we don’t execute SEO practice carefully. SEO strategy includes an on-going process that begins from the SEO basics to the technical part. It ensures organic traffic, improved keyword ranking and conversions. This result-oriented strategy delivers expected results only when we follow the Smart SEO checklists of 2021. 

Before we proceed to the SEO Checklists, let’s have a look at the benefits of the SEO strategy 2021:

#1. Targets Quality Traffic

SERPs top-positioned websites receive a majority of the impressions, clicks and quality traffic. This benefit of SEO practice enforces websites to rank on the top positions. Having informative and keyword relevant title tags and Meta descriptions are mandatory that show up on the results page to ensure the relevant information. 

#2. Provides Great Insights

This practice enables online sellers to have great insights into their customer requirements as per their age, gender and region. It not only helps the businessman to know their customer’s browsing behaviours but also aware them to see new trends.      

#3. Improves User’s Experience

Google has rapidly evolved over a decade and aimed to improve the user’s experience. It has been an integral endeavour of the SEO strategy to deliver only high-quality, trustworthy and credible source of results. A better user experience results in more clicks, better brand recall and a higher conversion rate.   

#4. Boosts Brand Visibility & Credibility

An effective SEO strategy allows having a wider audience and optimum exposure that ultimately boosts brand visibility. Ranking higher on the search engines with relevant keyword search increases the credibility of the brand.       

#5. Higher ROI & Conversion Rate

SEO paves a way for online sellers to get site visitors for purchasing, subscription or sharing of their social content. No doubt it is highly quantifiable and a profitable approach to boost ROI with the maximum conversion rate.   

These benefits are enough to validate the significance of SEO services. It enables the businessman to expand their business across the globe and heightens the ROI.   

SEO Basic Checklist for 2021  

SEO benefits let the businessmen explore a new edge of success with search engine optimization. The only condition is to follow the SEO checklist properly. It doesn’t only bring organic results but also lays down the strong foundation of digital presence. This checklist will help business owners and digital marketers to drive SEO success in 2021 while covering the below-mentioned practice points. It will include SEO basics as well as the must-knows steps to analyze the off-page and on-page signals.  

  • Set-up Google Search Console 

This essential tool enables you to have great insights into the website’s performance along with the wealth of data. This initial step allows you to monitor organic visibility, know how Google view their site and optimize its organic presence. It also outlines referring domains viewing, mobile site performance, rich search results, queries on hot topics and pages.

  • Install Bing Webmaster Tool

The next step of the SEO Basics Checklist is to install the Bing Webmaster Tools. If you’re dubious about its popularity as compare to Google, then be aware of the fact that up to a third of all searches is done on Bing. Overlooking this step can steal big data and insights into search terms and other vital factors. Its nifty feature makes it a built-in keyword research tool.  

  • Setup Google Analytics

This free marketing analytics tool is an ideal approach to see how people are reaching your site, how much traffic the website is getting and identify the pages that bring the most traffic. It allows you to have insights into the organic traffic, average bounce rate, page view and time on site.

  • Install and configure an SEO Plugin

SEO plugins of WordPress such as Yoast, All-in-one SEO Pack, Google XML Sitemaps, Squirrly SEO, SEOPress and Rank Math are known as the extension modules for CRM, browsers and software solutions. It allows the expansion of source software, its tasks and functions that play a significant role in search engine optimization, online marketing, web analysis and other prospects.

If using different CMS, then consult with your developer to check the need to install a dedicated SEO plugin or module that accomplishes your website goals.

  • Create A Sitemap & Submit It

Generating a sitemap allows the Google crawlers to cover all page of the website without any discrimination of the size. It supports search engine optimization and makes it easy for search engines to discover relevant data and rank high. This list of URLs denotes the main content of the site and ensures it gets crawled and indexed. XML has been the most used sitemap format.    

  • Create a Robot.txt File

A robot.txt file lets know the search engine crawlers which pages or files can or cannot be crawled. It is necessary to avoid the overloading of the site with requests. It is commonly used to block some sections from crawling. Even if you’re not planning to prevent any page from being crawled, still it is required.

  • Check Indexing of Your Website

Do you also believe that your website gets indexed by itself by Google? In actual, it’s not. It is necessary to ensure that all pages of your website are crawling and indexing. You have to index every page of the website manually or through some tool. There are some website audit tools you can use to double-check and make sure all pages are indexed.

Keyword Research Checklist 

Did you ever know that keyword mastery is an art that paves the way for SEO practice and campaigns? It is an approach to understand the target audience’s needs and searches that dictate your brand in the online marketplace. A little effort to find the industry-relevant keyword can deliver you a high-traffic SERP ranking for competitive profits. This checklist will help you to have a robust process and follow an ideal keyword research process.

  • Find A Primary Keyword To Target

Researching and building a list of related keywords is the first and foremost task before we onboard SEO strategy for 2021. Get started with primary keywords and terms your competitor is focusing on its business. There are countless methods that can help you to research the related keywords with the highest search volume. Each page of the website must target one main primary keyword. 

  • Do Solid Keyword research through Google Keyword-Planner

Finding solid keywords are beneficial to drive traffic, leads, sales and conversion rate. It is also referred to as head terms and pillar page keywords. This step is necessary to summarize your product line and services. Keyword Overview tool can help you find those high volume and high competition traffic-driving keywords and identify the head terms.          

  • Get Long-Tail Keywords With Google Suggest

If your keyword list misses long-tail keywords, then your SEO strategy is lagging. If you’re the one who is looking for the approaches to find the long-tail keywords, then Google Suggest will help you. The results on Google suggest are the terms, people are searching for. It has been the best tool to find great keywords that makes keyword research easy.

Targeting long-tail keywords with head terms allow you to optimize your website’s pages and get them ranked high on the search engines. You can also use some keyword tools that will help to find the long-tail keywords.

  • Also, Identify Low-Competition Keywords

“Did you know focusing on low competition keywords is the secret of SEO success?” You might be surprised to know that low competition keywords are as vital as long-tail keywords and head terms. If performed well, it can help you generate quick traffic. You can find these terms by filtering high volume keywords with less competition.  

  • Create a Keyword Map  

After identifying the target keywords, it becomes necessary for us to map them to the pages on the website. This process is known as keyword mapping, which allows you to identify the steps and drive traffic:

  • Where to optimize?
  • What type of content to build?
  • Where to add new pages?

It is necessary to ensure that you’re moving ahead in the right direction with the right keywords. Make sure that you’re creating content that matches your target audience’s searches. The most important step of SEO strategy Keyword Research is to analyze the ranked pages, their search terms and intent for searchers. 

  • Identify The Questions Target-Audience Seeking For

Delivering what our target audience is searching for can help you rank well on the search engine result pages. It gives you an opportunity to be an answer engine for your targeted audience. Websites like the keyword overview tool enable you to check the monthly search volumes of the search terms. Content with more specific keywords helps you to be popular among searchers.

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