How To Build SEO Discovery and Relevance for Search Engines?

Even the smallest websites can rank higher on search engines. Hop on as I give you practical strategies to enhance your site's relevance and help people discover your website.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is your golden ticket to improving visibility and driving organic traffic to your website. It revolves around enhancing your site to make it more attractive to Google and other search engines. In doing that, Google says you’re actually making it better for humans - hence your relevant content ranking on the search engine results page.

A big part of comprehensive SEO strategy is understanding EEAT (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness). It represents Google's way of assessing the content relevance and quality, and reliability of your web pages. By aligning your web content with these principles, you can notably boost your search engine rankings.

Despite the recent scarcity due to the latest core updates, even small websites can build authority over time.

I've personally managed to increase the domain authority of new websites very recently. The Vending Locator’s b2b SEO case study is the most telling example. Their authority score spiked from 6 to 24 in a matter of just 5 months. It goes to show that with the right strategies, brands can accelerate their SEO success faster than many might expect.

Key Takeaways

  • Effective SEO enhances both the discoverability and relevance of your website on SERPs.
    Implementing EEAT principles is essential for building trust with both users and search engines.
  • A strategic approach to backlinks, traffic, content quality, and even guest blogging can accelerate SEO success.
  • Understanding how search engines work and optimizing for these mechanisms is crucial for any digital marketing strategy.
  • To improve your search relevance you should focus on 5 key aspects: using keywords and matching user intent, enhancing content quality, using structured data, improving site speed, and leveraging internal linking

How Do You Build Discovery and Relevance for Search Engines?

An infographic titled "How Do You Build Discovery and Relevance for Search Engines?" with four key strategies illustrated.

Building SEO discovery and relevance requires approaching the topic from multiple standpoints. Here’s how you can make your website discoverable for search engine crawlers:

#1 Boost Your Backlinks

Collecting backlinks from reputable sites is like getting endorsements. Each quality backlink signals to search engines that your content is valuable. In turn, this can boost your site’s authority, on-page SEO, and rankings.

The more diverse and reputable your backlink sources are, the more juice you’ll squeeze out of the organic search.

Therefore focus on the quality of backlinks, instead of getting links from fishy or PBN sites. By improving your ranking you’ll drive more organic traffic through increased exposure.

#2 Boost Site Traffic With Relevant Content

Increased traffic doesn’t just improve your site’s visibility. It also indicates to search engines that your content is popular and relevant - well, sort of. Although organic traffic is not directly a ranking factor, user signals are. These are behaviors that your web visitors display when they look around your website.

The bigger the organic traffic, factually, the bigger the amount of user signals that Google will likely read as positive.

On top of SEO, use social media, email marketing, and other channels to drive users to your website. Regularly update your existing content and offer promotions or interactive content. This can also keep visitors returning and spending more time on your site. In turn, search engines will pick up on more user signals. If you’ve done everything right to improve user experience, you’ll see a boost in quality and relevance.

#3 Generate High-Quality SEO Content

Quality content creation is immensely important to SEO. Creating informative, engaging, and optimized content establishes your expertise, appeals to robots, and attracts users.

Focus on depth and relevance to cover topics thoroughly.

Also, pick the right publishing volume that takes into consideration your respective niche and budget. Ensure that your engaging content is updated regularly to reflect the latest information and trends. This will keep your site relevant, will snatch away a portion of search snippets, and encourage more visits.

Remember, well-crafted content goes beyond just drawing in readers googling your search terms. It also incites them to share your pages, which further amplifies your visibility in search and relevance.

#4 Engage in Guest Blogging

Writing for well-known, authoritative sites can expand your reach and credibility. Guest posts introduce your brand to new audiences, bringing traffic and collecting referral traffic.

Keep in mind though that Google doesn’t attribute any “SEO value” to guest post that provides a link to your site. When you post on other sites and play by the rulebook (as you should), Google instructs you to use rel=”nofollow” and rel=”sponsored” tags. By using these tags you’re saying to the crawler “Hey, don’t pass any value to this website.”

Still, it’s valuable if you position yourself as an expert in your field through guest blogging.

You enhance your profile, encourage more expert collaborations, and gain recognition. All of which are indirectly beneficial for SEO!

How Do Search Engines Identify Relevance?

A woman looking through a rolled-up document toward a flag on a distant platform, with icon bubbles including a checkmark and search SEO symbols around her.

#1 Semantic Search & Content Structure

Relevance is another biggie of effective SEO content strategy. It indicates how well a page's content aligns with a searcher’s query.

When assessing relevance Google considers the search intent, whether the content includes the same keywords as the search query, and the depth of the content provided on the pages on your site.

Key factors influencing the determination of relevance include intent, keyword relevance, and query context. This is where algorithms assess how closely keywords in the user's query match those within the content.

Modern SEOs therefore focus on semantic search.

They know search engine interprets the context and intent behind queries. This means that if they manage to cover the topic in-depth and contextually, using specific terms and phrases in the right places, it can rank highly. This is super important for the new, low-authrity websites that want to "hack" their way to the top.

I can attest to the effectiveness of search optimization focused on semantics. The SEO case study I’ve built for Wakeout, an iOS app of the year, proves semantics' importance for ranking.

In 2022 we crafted a detailed article about the benefits of taking physical activity breaks. After noticing the article danced around the top 20 search results, we paid close attention to including relevant terms and concepts. The level of detail put into this piece was unprecedented for me. And the outcome?

Our site, despite having a lower domain authority (DA) of 25, now ranks higher than sites with DAs of 100, like NCBI and CDC, and above Action For Healthy Kids, with a DA of 40.

A screenshot of a search engine results page with a query for "physical activity breaks," showing a mix of scholarly articles, practical tips for movement breaks, and informational resources.

While many factors contributed to reaching the #1 spot, on search engines like Google, the strategic use of relevant terms was a key component.

Furthermore, the structure of content matters for visibility in search engine results.

Properly formatted articles include clear headings, subheadings, and logical flow.

These make it easier for search engines to parse and understand the main points of the content, thus better evaluating the content's relevance.

#2 Content Freshness

Content freshness is a ranking factor that also plays a crucial role. Search engines favor recently updated content, especially for trending or fast-changing topics. Algorithms operate on the logic that more current information, especially for hot queries, is more likely to be accurate and relevant. So, they push it higher in search engine results.

Remember, freshness is not just about the date of publication; it also pertains to how often the site's content is updated.

The goal is to make sure the content piece covers the latest information or developments in the subject area.

Therefore, identify areas for improvement. SEO involves updating content on your site pages within timely intervals.

#3 User Signals / Behavioral Signals

Mainstream SEOs claim that user engagement metrics, such as time spent on a page, bounce rates, and click-through rates, provide search engines with clues about the quality and relevance of a page. In fact, tools like Semrush claim it’s the #1 ranking factor. Furthermore, the Local Search Ranking Factors report list these behavioral signals high in terms of their impact on rankability.

Frankly, I do believe that user/behavioral signals are a big ranking factor.

There’s one interesting test a credible user ran on the Local Search Forum way back. The results of his test showed that user signals are important for SEO.

In 2014, he conducted an experiment where he hired hundreds of micro workers to search for a keyword, locate a specific business in the search results, click on it, and browse the listing. A script monitored the business's search rankings every 30 minutes for several days. Initially ranked beyond 20th, the business climbed to the top position within three days..

High engagement rates are therefore a sign that the content is useful and satisfies every search query.

How Do Search Engines Discover Your Content?

A stylized vector illustration featuring elements related to search engine optimization (SEO), including a magnifying glass, mobile device with graphs, analytics charts, a speech bubble, a pie chart, and various icons representing data analysis and online search.

The process that search engines use to discover your content is called crawling. It represents a method where search engine bots traverse the web to find new or updated pages. It's what made the art of SEO.

For your content to be found, your website needs to be easy for these bots to navigate. This involves a meticulous setup of your site’s crawlability through the use of (1) sitemaps.

Sitemaps are XML files that act as a roadmap for your website's content. Efficient indexing strategies that use sitemap are facilitated by webmaster tools such as Google Search Console.

Optimizing your (2) robots.txt files is a crucial piece of all successful SEO strategies. It is key in building relevance. So you need to ensure that your site has healthy robots.txt.

This text file at the root of your domain instructs bots on which parts of your site they can and cannot crawl. This is how you ensure your servers don’t overload and point robots to index only your most valuable content.

Implementing (3) structured data is another significant strategy. It means using a specific format to provide information about a page and classify its related content.

For example, if you are posting a recipe for relevant keywords, structured data can tell search engines what the ingredients are, the cooking time, and other elements. Displaying this data is more likely to get you featured in search results. Optimizing pages by using structured data will ensure that your website hierarchy is logical and that important content is not buried too deep within the site.

Google’s own guidelines are perhaps a bit harder to follow along. However, they provide the most reliable advice on best practices for site architecture to optimize search discovery.

Additionally, (4) regular content updates signal to search engines that your site is relevant. Regularly updating encourages more frequent crawling and can make your site rank higher in search engine.

5 Key Ways To Building Relevance for the Algorithm

An infographic highlighting five SEO strategies: Optimize for User Intent, Enhance Content Quality, Use Structured Data, Improve Site Speed, and Leverage Internal Linking.

Want to make your content easier to find online? Here are five proven tips I draw from my own experience to climb up those search rankings:

1. Right Keywords and Matching User Intent

Computer screen showing a circular graph of marketing-related search queries from the "Answer the Public" website.

Getting content SEO right means optimizing for user intent.

It means helping the searcher find his/her desired answer with tools like Google.

When your content lines up with what your potential customers are searching for, you're more likely to meet their needs. This will serve you well in the eyes of search engines.

Teams can start with detailed keyword research to figure out the exact phrases your audience uses. They should use tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, or even AnswerthePublic to pinpoint these golden nuggets.

Keywords that have lower keyword difficulty scores and less quality content competing over them…Those should be on everyone’s radar!

Another important step that I’ve seen people overlook is verifying if the search volume would bring in any significant traffic. Sometimes search volume looks promising. But after checking the competitor’s estimated traffic on the ranking page, you’ll notice it’s a flop.

Therefore always make sure the first three ranking pages on Google for your targeted keyword are recording organic traffic. In case they are not, you should consider other more lucrative options.

Finally, understand why they're searching—are they shopping, gathering info, or solving a problem? By matching your content to their goals, you boost its relevance and your chances of making a sale or conversion.

2. Enhance Content Quality

Smartphone and laptop displaying content writing tools. The phone shows an article titled "Content Writer and SEO Content Writer: What's the Difference?" The laptop screen shows a document editor with SEO analysis tools and scores.
Content SEO is a game of details, not quantity. Only once you truly understand this can you punch up the publishing volume.

More content isn’t always better. In fact, I’d be a happier man if I saw brands spending more time on a single post rather than focusing on churning more content out. Therefore, boost your search rankings by creating top-notch content that speaks directly to your audience's needs.

High-quality, well-researched content gets more backlinks and shares. This in turn signals to search engines that your site is valuable and credible.

Also, ensure your content is supercharged with custom visuals, videos, and other content. Focus on well-organized content packed with actionable tips.

This not only keeps users interested but also encourages them to stick around longer. By now I hope you understand this can really help your SEO efforts.

3. Use Structured Data

Monitor and smartphone displaying and a Google Search Central video on structured data.

Websites that are counting on big SEO results should also take care of technical SEO. Employing a technical SEO who takes care of structured data, like JSON-LD, is key for helping search engines understand and showcase the content.

Use it for key articles, products, or events to boost how accurately search engines index your stuff.

Plus, structured data can help land your content in rich snippets. Those eye-catching search results can drastically increase your click-through rates.

4. Optimize Site Speed

Laptop and smartphone displaying website speed analysis tools. The laptop shows a page with the message "Make your web pages fast on all devices," while the phone displays a performance report for a website, highlighting scores for performance, accessibility, best practices, and SEO.

A fast website keeps users happy and sticking around, boosting your SEO in the process. To speed things up, shrink your images, use modern formats, cut down on HTTP requests, and use browser caching.

Check out Google’s PageSpeed Insights or Lighthouse Chrome extension for tailored tips to make your site quicker and user-friendly.

5. Leverage Internal Linking

Laptop showing a webpage about SEO, highlighting semantic search and a Wakeout case study.

Internal linking is a secret weapon for SEO you actually have control over. It boosts site indexing and navigation without requiring any knowledge in SEO whatsoever.

Linking your pages together will help search engines find and understand new content. It will spread the link juice rightfully across your site.

Make sure your links use descriptive, keyword-rich text.

This not only lifts your SEO game but also makes for a better user experience by linking to related info.

Whenever you decide to share the link juice, don’t force it. Instead, make sure the link blends in with the context. Otherwise, people will ignore them and Google will mark these links as spammy.

Also, make sure you publish your cornerstone content. The long-form, pillar blog articles that cover the core topic of your website in depth. Plus, after publishing make sure you link to these pieces the most. This way you’re giving Google a signal that these pages are of utmost importance for your website.

By focusing on user intent, high-quality content, structured data, quick loading times, and smart internal linking, you'll not only shoot up in search rankings but also create a more engaging site. These strategies are key to driving more organic traffic and growing your online presence.

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