How one can Rank Larger on Google (10 Steps)

  • December 31, 2022
  • elkenz
  • 11 min read

Tons of of things may enhance your Google rankings. However some are tougher to affect than others.

For that cause, if you wish to rank increased, it’s essential to be methodical. Begin by engaged on the straightforward issues which are inside your management, then transfer on to more difficult issues if wanted.

Right here’s the method:

How to rank higher on Google

Earlier than we get began…

The method on this information works finest for inner pages. If you wish to rank your homepage, learn our information to homepage search engine marketing. Should you run a neighborhood enterprise and wish to rank in native search, learn our information to native search engine marketing.

Should you already know which key phrase you wish to rank increased for, skip this step. In any other case, it’s essential to discover a web page that would rank increased for its goal key phrase. 

Right here’s a straightforward option to do this:

  1. Paste your area into Ahrefs’ Web site Explorer
  2. Go to the Natural key phrases report
  3. Filter for rankings in positions 2–10

It’s best to now see all key phrases you rank for on the primary web page of Google, however not in place #1. All it’s a must to do is select one.

Underperforming keyword rankings on the first page of Google, via Ahrefs' Site Explorer

Right here’s a tip: search for your essential key phrase targets for the corresponding web page.

For instance, our information to studying search engine marketing ranks in place #10 for “how lengthy does it take to be taught search engine marketing.” However this isn’t the first goal key phrase for the web page, so it’s probably not one of the best one to attempt to enhance rankings for.

Example of a long-tail keyword that probably isn't worth trying to improve rankings for


Should you don’t have any first-page rankings, attempt to rank increased for key phrases on web page two or three. It’s normally simpler to enhance rankings for pages which are already doing fairly effectively. However for those who don’t have any, bettering rankings on web page two or three is your finest guess. 

Search intent is the “why” behind the question. It’s why 90% of the top-ranking outcomes for “air fryer” are weblog posts and never gross sales pages. Google understands that searchers aren’t prepared to purchase. They wish to evaluate merchandise.

People searching for "air fryer" are looking to compare products, not buy

It’s good to align your web page with search intent to face one of the best probability at rating.

We realized this the exhausting manner when attempting to rank for “backlink checker.” 

Right here’s the web page we first created: 

Our original backlink checker page didn't match search intent

You possibly can see that it explains the best way to examine a web site’s backlinks with Ahrefs and provides searchers a free trial. 

This carried out OK and ranked for years in positions #6–10—nevertheless it by no means cracked the highest 5.

In 2018, we realized this was a search intent problem. All of the top-ranking pages for “backlink checker” have been free instruments. 

The top-ranking results for "backlink checker" in 2018 were all free tools

To resolve this, we added a free device to the web page. Virtually in a single day, the web page shot to #1—and it’s been there ever since.

Our rankings for "backlink checker" over time, via Ahrefs' Rank Tracker

To see how effectively your web page aligns with intent, examine the top-ranking pages for the three Cs:

  1. Content material kind Are they primarily weblog posts, product, class, touchdown pages, or one thing else? 
  2. Content material format Are they primarily tutorials, listicles, how-to guides, recipes, free instruments, or one thing else?
  3. Content material angle – Is there a dominant promoting level, like low costs or how simple it is?

For instance, all of the top-ranking pages for “pancake recipe” are weblog posts with recipes. And the dominant promoting level is how simple they’re to make.

People searching for "pancake recipe" clearly want a blog post with an easy recipe

3. Cowl the subject in full

Even when your content material aligns with search intent, you might not be giving searchers the whole lot they need. There could also be subtopics they’re searching for and anticipating you to cowl.

For instance, most top-ranking outcomes for “the best way to write a press launch” are how-to weblog posts. This paints a transparent image of search intent.

People searching for "how to write a press release" clearly want a step-by-step guide

However for those who have a look at these posts, most of them embody a template or hyperlinks to templates.

Example of a page ranking for "how to write a press release" with a free template
Example of another page ranking for "how to write a press release" with a free template

Google probably is aware of that searchers worth posts with templates greater than these with out, so it’s best to most likely embody one if you wish to rank increased for this key phrase.

Listed here are a few methods to search out subtopics to incorporate in your content material:

  1. Eyeball the top-ranking pages for commonalities – Pay specific consideration to subheadings. 
  2. Discover key phrases top-ranking pages rank for that you just don’t – These usually map to subtopics. 

Right here’s the best way to do the latter in Ahrefs’ Web site Explorer:

  1. Paste your web page into Web site Explorer
  2. Go to the Content material Hole report
  3. Paste in a couple of top-ranking URLs

For instance, right here’s what we get if we plug in our submit about making a go-to-market technique. 

Example of subtopics searchers want to see

Freshness is a query-dependent Google rating issue. If searchers are more likely to worth up to date content material, Google ranks recent pages increased. 

For instance, individuals worth freshness when looking for “high google searches.” They need the most well-liked Google searches proper now, not 10 years in the past. That’s why rankings and site visitors for our web page drop when the content material turns into stale and soar again up once we replace the web page.

Keyword ranking fluctuations for our list of top Google searches over time

Should you’re not sure whether or not Google values freshness, examine the dates on top-ranking pages. 

For instance, all top-ranking outcomes for “finest headphones” have been up to date just lately. However many top-ranking outcomes for “finest parks in london” haven’t been up to date for months and even years. This doesn’t matter as a result of it’s not like new parks are constructed each day.

The results for "best headphones" are all fresh
The results for "best parks in london" aren't particularly fresh

If freshness is necessary to your key phrase, you could rank increased by refreshing your web page. 

Making the aim and relevance of your web page clear to Google and searchers is the job of on-page search engine marketing. It’s the icing on the cake that highlights the work you place into matching intent and overlaying the subject in full.

Listed here are a couple of easy methods to enhance your on-page search engine marketing:

  • Use H1–H6 tags to construction your content material hierarchically Google recommends this. Wrap your title in an H1, subheadings in H2s, sub-subheadings in H3s, and so on.
  • Use a brief, descriptive URL Google says easy URLs convey content material data. 
  • Write a compelling title tag and meta description – This will likely make it easier to get extra clicks and ship optimistic indicators about your content material to Google.
  • Optimize your pictures – Google says to make use of transient however descriptive filenames and alt textual content. It’s additionally price compressing pictures to enhance web page pace—which is a rating issue.
  • Polish your copy – Google says customers take pleasure in content material that’s effectively written and simple to observe. Use quick paragraphs, good grammar, and confirmed copywriting methods to maintain readers engaged.

Study extra: On-Web page search engine marketing: Full Newbie’s Information

Inside hyperlinks are hyperlinks from one web page in your web site to a different. They’re necessary as a result of they’re how PageRank flows round your web site. In different phrases, inner hyperlinks increase a web page’s authority and inform Google it’s necessary.

Right here’s a straightforward option to discover related inner hyperlink alternatives:

  1. Join a free Ahrefs Webmaster Instruments account
  2. Crawl your web site with Web site Audit
  3. Go to the Inside hyperlink alternatives device
  4. Set the goal URL to the web page you wish to rank increased

This device takes all of the key phrases your goal web page ranks for within the high 100 and finds mentions of them in your web site. It then suggests them as contextual inner hyperlink alternatives.

For instance, suppose we set our information to constructing a content material advertising technique because the goal web page. In that case, there are 13 potential inner hyperlink alternatives. 

Searching for internal link opportunities in Ahrefs' Site Audit

Right here’s one in every of them:

Example of an internal link opportunity, via Ahrefs' Site Audit

Right here, it’s suggesting that we internally hyperlink the phrase “content material advertising technique” in our record of content material advertising instruments.

Internally linking this phrase might assist our submit to rank increased. 

Should you don’t see any outcomes on this report, it’s both as a result of:

  1. Your goal web page doesn’t rank within the high 100 for any key phrases.
  2. You don’t point out any of the key phrases it ranks for in your web site.

Both manner, you’ll find alternatives in Google by looking for web "".

For instance, there are many mentions of “content material advertising technique” on our weblog.

Searching Google for internal link opportunities

Having many related pages about the identical factor is taking pictures your self within the foot. That’s as a result of backlinks get unfold between pages and are a rating issue. So you’ll be able to find yourself with many weak pages as a substitute of 1 robust sufficient to rank.

One strong page about a topic will usually rank higher than multiple weak pages about that topic

To resolve this downside, redirect weaker pages a couple of matter to the strongest one. This consolidates backlinks and creates a web page extra able to rating.

Redirecting and consolidating pages about the same thing gives you a strong page more capable of ranking

To seek out pages in your web site concerning the key phrase you wish to rank increased for, search Google for web .

For instance, our web site has two very related pages about meta key phrases. We have now a weblog submit explaining meta key phrases and a glossary web page that does the identical factor. 

Example of a possible keyword cannibalization issue

Redirecting one in every of these to the opposite to consolidate backlinks might assist us rank increased for this key phrase. It creates one stronger web page from two weaker pages.


Hold search intent in thoughts when doing this. In case your pages fulfill completely different intents, redirecting might not be one of the best concept. This tactic is finest when pages are very related. 

Backlinks are one in every of Google’s most necessary rating elements. Andrey Lipattsev, a search high quality senior strategist at Google, confirmed this in 2016. 

Sadly, constructing high-quality backlinks is without doubt one of the most difficult elements of search engine marketing. It is because it’s not one thing you’ll be able to totally management. You need to create one thing worthy of incomes backlinks, then persuade individuals to hyperlink to you. 

That is why it’s the ultimate step in our course of. 

Right here’s place to begin for those who’re new to hyperlink constructing:

  1. Paste a competing web page into Web site Explorer
  2. Go to the Backlinks report
  3. Search for backlinks you might be able to replicate

For instance, let’s say we wish to construct hyperlinks to our newbie’s information to search engine marketing. If we search Google for competing pages with the Ahrefs’ search engine marketing Toolbar put in, we’ll discover that one has hyperlinks from over 14K referring domains.

Number of referring domains to Moz's beginner's guide to SEO, via Ahrefs' SEO Toolbar

Based on Ahrefs’ Web site Explorer, right here’s one of many pages it obtained a backlink from just lately:

Example of a potentially replicable backlink via the Backlinks report in Ahrefs' Site Explorer

Wanting on the referring web page, it appears the hyperlink comes from a piece itemizing three of one of the best search engine marketing guides. 

Example of page linking to competing beginners' guides

If we attain out to the creator and introduce our newbie’s information to search engine marketing, there’s an opportunity they could add it to their web page.

Rank monitoring is the one option to know in case your efforts to rank increased on Google are working. 

Though you are able to do this without spending a dime by looking out on Google, it isn’t normally dependable. It is because elements like location and search historical past can have an effect on the place you see a web page rating. Utilizing a rank monitoring device like Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker is far more correct.

You possibly can observe 10K key phrases on this device, however you solely normally want to trace the primary key phrase for every web page. 

Hit the graph caret subsequent to any key phrase in Rank Tracker to see its rating progress over time. 

Rank tracking in Ahrefs' Rank Tracker

Rating excessive on Google for one key phrase is nice, however rating excessive for a lot of key phrases is even higher. So when you’ve adopted this course of for one key phrase, repeat it for extra.

You’ll rank increased for lots of of key phrases and get tons of natural site visitors earlier than you understand it.

Remaining ideas

You are able to do many issues to rank increased on Google, nevertheless it is smart to begin with the straightforward ones which are inside your management. If these don’t transfer the needle, spend money on more difficult issues like hyperlink constructing.

Give me a shout on Twitter when you have any questions. 

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