Are you an SEO analyst? Do you have a process when you do website optimization? Most likely when you do SEO, you follow a process. This is most likely the process you are most comfortable with and most likely to work. This could be your favorite hack.
Of course you may have arrived with this through trial and error or through your experience with SEO. Would it be interesting to know the favorite hacks of other SEO practitioners as well? Wait no more! These SEO professionals shared with us their favorite SEO hacks!
I don’t believe in “hacks” or short-cuts in SEO, but I will say that branded, optimized content posted on social media profiles/platforms ranks quickly and consistently. – Kent Lewis
Best Digital Marketers for sure. SEO like Marketing, is a numbers game. Once one figures the leading and lagging indicators for each channel like Nick Eubanks, the rest is easy. It’s simply a matter of figuring out how the tactics map to each channel and business objective. – Jey Pandian
What a question! A few years ago I could have shared a bunch. I’m really not sure I have one that works today. The only hacks (maybe I should say shortcuts) I have are quick ways of pulling data, and that’s mostly from ranktank.org. URLprofiler is outstanding as well. – Bill Sebald
Getting internal ‘Buy In’. Sorry if this sounds like a cop out, but doing one simple presentation about SEO internally is the best thing you can do because, Ten heads are better than one. If you convince everyone in your company how important your organic traffic is, and how well it performs, they will start coming up with SEO Hacks for you; you will have a bucket full of ideas ready to go at a moment’s notice.
The way to achieve that is getting ‘Buy In’ via an internal presentation with some nice wins included in the deck. When it comes to content SEO, a nice trick is to simply appeal to ego. If you can get a quote from an industry expert or three within your content, then you are pretty much guaranteed they will share the content with their audience, and help spread it far and wide. Much like will be putting this post in my newsletter, on reddit, on twitter, on linkedin etc… – Danny Cave
I don’t really have hacks or tricks. The last commercial project I worked on was for the Westfield Corporation. We increased their annual traffic by a significant amount, over a million visits a year and that’s probably a modest estimate. I look at every piece of media as unique and implement optimisations based on what I have previously learned has been effective. I don’t see SEO as being about Facts or knowledge. It’s a tacit discipline. – Stuart McIlreavy
“Hack” is such a dirty word when applied to SEO – you can’t (or shouldn’t) cut corners when it comes to doing quality SEO work. You need to be prepared to take care of all the small details to generate substantial, lasting impact.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t find ways to improve the ease or speed with which you can accomplish SEO tasks – a great knowledge of Excel and formulae goes a long way to accomplishing a lot quickly but there are also a lot of tools out there now that help do the job. So I guess my hack would be “great Excel skills”! – Andrew Steel
Site speed. We all say we optimize this, but it’s a never-ending obstacle that can always be improved further. The faster your high-quality site loads, the more respected it will be compared to your competitors’ sites. – Logan Lenz
I don’t use any “hack” as such. SEO is hard work, and sticking to best practices can take a bit more effort but the long-term effects are more rewarding. Where I try to specialise though is in web analytics. Not sure if I’d call that a “hack” though. – Max Tandefelt
What’s better than a good link? That’s a link you “steal” from you competitor. By using tools as Screaming Frog or Xenu I like to find broken links on pages and then reach out to the webmaster and notify them that they have a link that ends in a 404. And then I suggest a page on my own site they can link to instead. – Lars Bachmann
Ha, ok … so I’ll answer this with a real website “hack.” This one’s tricky, so people may need to read it a couple times. Some website builders don’t give you FTP access, a way to add Analytics or any access for Search Console claim code.
Without some sort of hack you can’t claim Search Console or setup Analytics.
So what I found was that if you use the custom meta tag sections (the boxes for title, description and keywords) what happens is the CMS basically creates the
<meta name=”keywords” content=” (CMS BOX HERE) “>
So I found out that if you put into the keywords section this code:
“> <whole Search Console or Analytics tag> <meta name=”keywords” content=”
Then the CMS would (usually) interpret that as TWO meta keywords tags (one is blank) and your whole analytics & search console tag would be placed into the header code. BAM, hacked – Matt Antonino
I go the “quality content” route that we hear Google advocate so much. Mainly that requires sitting down each day and putting in the work. There are no shortcuts.
SEO-types would do well to think about this. You don’t see us content guys scurrying around with our heads chopped off when algo updates roll out. It’s you that Google hates, not us. Get your act together! – Greg Strandberg
Buying an old small site on the cheap and operating it as it was. Inserting a few links to your target sites. Also, not a hack, but making your sites meet accessibility criteria for the disabled has benefits in search positions in the long run. – Dan Crean
Politely asking for links. It doesn’t sound that revolutionary but it works. I use Brian Dean’s Skyscraper Technique quite a lot and you’d be surprised how many website owners will happily link to genuinely valuable content if you ask them nicely. – David Vallance
I personally don’t like the word “hack”; to me it implies that there are shortcuts to SEO success.
I think this is what often separates the great SEO agency from the ordinary agencies, taking the time to do the research, to be hands on, to go the extra mile for the client.
It is through the processes we have in place as an agency that we truly learn about the client, their online industry and the SEO landscape for their industry. – Chris Lister
I wouldn’t call it a hack, but really taking the time to analyse your competition can lead to some great opportunities that you might have missed. It’s very easy to fall into the trap of doing SEO in isolation – the client wants to rank for these keywords, so that’s all we’re going to work on. But a day analysing your competitors can help unlock lots of new potential.
I’d also stress the importance of semantic SEO and correct site structure. Having a poorly structured website with a messy internal structure can negate any gains you may be making elsewhere. Make sure your foundations are solid. – Colin Cheng
It’s not really a hack as such, but so many people are creating content for the sake of having content and not worrying about the quality of it and then wondering why they aren’t seeing results from their efforts. At Louder Online, we ensure content we are creating already has a hungry audience before creating it which ensures that the content gets the desired results driving links, social traffic and search traffic. – Aaron Agius
Definitely using Google Sheets (Google Docs’ version of Excel) as a site crawler using the importxml and importhtml functions. When I first found out this was even possible, it blew my mind! I admit, it’s not the most efficient solution to use on a large enterprise-scale site, but the beauty of it is that you can add your own rules to easily check your commonly-used SEO tags.
You can quickly see if any anomalies get flagged up, for example if a canonical tag that you would expect to be self-referencing (pointing to itself) is incorrectly pointing somewhere else. – Daniel Morgan
My favorite hack is to use creativity to solve SEO problems. Most of the time you have to think outside of the box, especially when it comes to activity sectors where there is a lot of competition and you have to stand out. One good example is the way you get good links nowadays – good creative content is the best way to do this, but this kind of content is hard to produce unless you have the right people to do it. – Nuno Hipólito
Using small, subset sitemaps and feeding them to Google Search Console to help troubleshoot indexation issues. – Michael Cottam
I think if the on-page and the technical factors are implemented correctly then half the battle is won. – Bharati Ahuja
Since I’m with Ahrefs, my favorite is obviosly reverse-engineering what competitors do.
We have awesome tools to spy on the backlinks they get and the keywords that they rank for. This can give you tons of insight on what they’re doing and come up with all sorts of ways to beat them on their own field. – Tim Soulo
Writing better content, and more of it. I always write as if I’m talking to the person who may want that product or service and richer deeper content not only ranks well but can really help to drive purchase and engagement. – Jonathan Guy
Using PPC data to target lead generation keywords. Schemas. – Carla Dawson
I like things that save me time, especially when it’s a mundane task. I recently put together a bookmarklet for myself and the team I work with that lets us copy the page URL, Title and Description for a page we’re on very quickly so we can paste it somewhere else. If you’re interested in trying it, you can get it here. – Alex Ramadan
I usually avoid most things that would be considered a hack or shortcut. Shortcuts usually come back to bite you later. – Adam Thompson
I wouldn’t call it a hack, but frankly, it shocks me how many people don’t understand the value of prop URL rewrites, 301s, and canonicals. Nearly every site I look at has some issue with these. – Eric Pratum
I don’t know if you’d really call this an SEO hack, but as a writer I’ve been really pushing Quora lately. I am realizing that there is so much untapped potential on that social network to not only ask SEO questions but to get your name out there through answering. Show your authority and build credibility, and you have the opportunity to earn tons of natural links! It’s a great community, and as a writer I get some great ideas and inspiration from Quora. – Amanda DiSilvestro
Spend time upfront writing lot’s of content (2,000 words or more) on each of your landing pages. Optimized, quality content is still king. It takes some of the weight and time off hours of future link earning. – Marvin Russell
I experiment with Google Autocomplete when researching content ideas for our clients. One hack that I learned from Rand Fishkin is that adding “_” before and after keywords actually produces different Autocomplete results. Type in “Will Google” and then “Will Google _”. See? Different results. – Chris Long
Favorite seo hack: Comparison pages.
For most of our clients we create several types of comparison pages.
Let’s assume you sell iphones.
· Compare all individual iphone to each other. Iphone 6 vs. iphone 5. Iphone 6 vs. Iphone 6s
· Then compare your products to competitors. The iphone 6 vs. Samsung Galaxy S6
· Compare brands: Apple VS. Samsung
· Basically anything you can compare that makes sense, you should.
Not only does this allow you to work in the same keywords several times on your website. Those pages are conversion beasts, easy to promote and very easy to create.
Win-win-win – Bart van der Meer
Content expansion to target longtail keywords. Gone are the days where people simply punch two or three words into Google and convert. Google has given people the power to become great researchers. Potential customers will scope Google for information and reviews before they decide to buy, and your business needs to be seen in every stage of the customer journey. – Dan Callis
I hate the word ‘hack’. It was ‘hacks’ that got SEOs into trouble in the first place. But if you want to know what has really made a difference to our efforts, it’s this: be in control of everything. And if you can’t be in control, make sure it’s happening.
It’s not like 10 years ago where 100 links would shoot you to number 1. Now you need to be a Head of Marketing and a Head of IT rolled into one. Don’t focus on one slither of SEO, control the lot. That’s not a hack, is it. It’s more world domination. But you should do it. – Gareth Cartman