Free SEO Guide: Ranking on Google in 2016

A lot has changed in the SEO world in 2016, your digital marketing strategy should change accordingly to accommodate these changes and updates to Googles search algorithms to give your website a better chance of ranking higher on Google’s SERP.

Rank higher 2016

1. Good ‘ol On-page SEO

  • Research topics and see what people search for the most, you can use Googles keyword planner or analytics for this. If you haven’t done keyword research in a while, do it again.
  • Make your pages: It is important to always use 1 main topic per page, use the exact match ketword only if it is natural (Google recently released their “Hummingbird” update to the algorithm which heightens the ranking factors of Broad Match keywords i.e. “Local SEO Firm” may also rank for: “Local Search Engine Optimization Company” and others. Your main search phrase should still appear in the domain URL, the title, in a header and in the content. It is very important that your site stays fresh, the content on your site needs to be updated regularly.
  • More Pages = More Rankings: Bigger sites with more content rank better! Also sculpt your page rank to rank your best pages, don’t always link to your index pages, you should try promote your pages that are about your best keywords.
  • SERP CTR Matters! Your click through rate on your sites SERP listings give search engines valuable information on whether or not to rank your site and as such better meta-titles and descriptions = better ranking now. You can find your CTR at Google Webmaster Tools > Search Queries > Top Pages. It is also important to check how it looks on a SERP emulator. Use psychological power words to draw in visitors and increase CTR. Words like; “Free, new, you, top, best” etc.
  • SCHEMA mark-up (on-site and off-site) can get huge results! It is one of the most powerful ranking factors in 2016! Use 3rd party rating and reviews sites to get off-page SCHEMA for your pages.


  • Google Local Listings: Enhanced listings are your friend, contact your Google local business partner so you can update your Local listing, it is also important to make sure your maps listing is updated.
  • Be mobile friendly! The majority of users on your site are accessing it on a mobile! It was one of the biggest updates to Googles algorithm in 2015!

2. Social


  • Share your pages: Twitter, facebook, reddit, G+ and others are great for sharing any new blog posts or your key pages with potential customers.
  • Activity on associated social profiles: Keeping your social profiles updated and active is definitely a ranking factor for Google in 2016, it tells Google that you are a real site. Posting share-worthy content is what counts, make sure your content shows you are a thought leader in your industry.
  • Engage, comment and talk! Always be outgoing, friendly and thoughtful when posting on Social media, you don’t want your pages to be cold and empty.
  • Get buzz from experts! Get local experts in your field talking about you on social media!

3. Backlinks

Yes, you still need a few links in 2016. BUT,.. It is very important not to buy links from this guy:

Sleazy SEO

It is imperative that you get back-links that Google trusts! These are: High Authority sites, real businesses and sites with a high trust rank (You can check this on Majestic) You want to be the main content link, not a link snuck in the sidebar or footer. -Don’t match current spam patterns!

  • Links Google will most likely ignore are: Manually submitted business listings, press releases, new blogs or sites, footer links, bookmarks, forums etc.

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