Ranking on Google is probably one of the highest priorities for bloggers who are intending to monetize their blogs. The reason behind it is simple. The higher your ranking on Google search pages, the bigger the traffic is. And of course, the bigger the traffic, the higher your income potential becomes, especially if you’re traffic is coming from premium locations such as the US/UK and Canada. Today, I’d like to share with you some tips on How to Rank on Google without Backlinks.
A Brief Background on Thrifty Hustler Blog
My blog – Thrifty Hustler will turn two years old by May 2021. In that span of time, I completely did not update this blog for nine months because I was busy with my online selling gig and other personal stuff. So in essence, I have only been actively blogging for 13 months as of the time of writing.
I do consider myself as just a part-time blogger, because as I’ve said, I have my own main hustle which is online selling. But due to the ongoing pandemic, my sales are very low and I found myself with a lot of time in my hands which I’m using now to grow this blog and to learn traffic generation and blog monetization.
I use this blog as my guinea pig in my journey towards learning how to make money online.
Since Thrifty Hustler has only been online for a relatively short period of time, most of my efforts are concentrated on writing content. Frankly speaking, I’d like to do a lot more blog marketing and backlinking because I’ve read in most tutorials that that’s the way to rank on search engines.
However, to my surprise, even without backlinking effort yet, some of my posts are ranking well on Google and I’ll be sharing with you some tips on how to rank on Google without backlinks and as well as other traffic generation tips that I’ve learned along the way.
How to Rank on Google without Backlinks
Write SEO-Optimized and Valuable Content
An SEO-optimized content really sounds technical and intimidating especially for new bloggers. If you’re not really going to compete with the big boys out there (at least not yet), one of the simplest ways to help you write SEO-optimized content is to think of your readers.
- Who are you writing for?
- What are your readers searching for?
- What kind of answers or solutions are they looking for?
Google is trying to basically give its customers – Google search users, the answer to their questions. And those answers are coming from websites and blogs.
Google ranks all of the existing websites online and puts the most relevant and helpful pages on the first page of the search engine.
As I’ve said earlier, when I started, and even until now, my focus is heavily invested in writing the best content that I hope could be of great help to anyone that would read it.
Aside from providing the information needed by the search users, I also want to give them a pleasant experience in reading my posts. This is also one of the reasons why I’m trying to write as often as I could. So I could improve my writing skills and minimize my grammatical and spelling errors in my articles.
Use Yoast SEO Plugin
Another simple way to help you write SEO-optimized posts is to use Yoast SEO WordPress Plugin. I personally use it as my guide in improving the way I write my content. It’s really simple especially once you get the hang of it.
It’s also color-coded to help you visually identify if your post is Good (Green), Average (Orange), or Bad (Red) when it comes to SEO.
Yoast SEO is not the only SEO plugin available on WordPress but I can only share my insights for Yoast since this is the only one I’ve tried using.
Here’s a screenshot of Yoast:
As you can see, it’s almost instructional and it tells you what you need to do to improve your posts for SEO. Aside from the SEO segment of Yoast, I also use the ‘Readability’ section to further improve my posts.
It’s not really difficult to follow Yoast and highly suggest that you install this plugin on your blog.
Write Long-Form Post
Google seems to favor long-form content especially if it’s really helpful and valuable to search users. And it’s not just good for SEO, it’s also good in improving your engagement to your audience and it prolongs the time they spend on your blog.
The longer they stay on your blog, the more chances of establishing a better connection with your readers.
Long-form content is usually between 2,000 – 3,000 words. It’s a lot, I know. But if you really choose your topic well, then you will be able to write articles within that word count (and sometimes even more).
However, please do not force the article to meet that number by adding ‘fluffs’ or non-value-add words to the content. It will just be detrimental to the long-term success of your blog.
Target Long-tail Keywords
It sounded like another jargon LOL! Well, it actually is!
Basically, long-tail keywords are just keywords with a lot of words.
Targetting long-tail keywords will help you find your space in the increasingly crowded online world. And also, if you think about it, Google users are not just typing root keywords, right?
Think about it?
Let me give you an example.
I’m an online seller and a lot of the articles that I write on my blog are about online selling and my target readers for these articles are people who are intending to make money from selling online.
Last year I wrote an article about Grailed – How to Make Money on Grailed – Beginner’s Guide.
I didn’t target the keyword ‘Grailed’ because honestly, I will not be able to compete with the owner itself of the keyword which is Grailed.com. But instead, I targeted the keywords which I know my target readers (prospective Grailed sellers) will type on their keyboards and some of those are:
- Grailed Beginner’s Guide
- How to Make Money on Grailed
- How to Sell on Grailed
So far, I rank #1 for Grailed Beginner’s Guide and ‘How to Make Money on Grailed’ and I rank #3 for ‘How to Sell on Grailed.’
I outranked them for the first two keywords but I failed to outrank Grailed for the last keywords hahaha!
Here are screenshots for your reference. I use an incognito page so it will be less biased to my search history of course.
Traffic is not that high even though I’m ranking #1 for two long-tail keywords. This is probably because Grailed is a niche market and it’s not as popular and as big as eBay which leads me to the next sub-topic…
Target Smaller Markets – Less Competition
Blogging for profit is a business. And just like any other business, the more popular the product or the service, the tougher the competition is. Use the same logic in ranking in Google.
Aim for the smaller market or the keywords with less competition.
If you aim for the less popular keywords then you will surely have greater chances of ranking on Google.
Know Your Competition
David and Goliath is a very popular story across many countries and cultures. It’s basically a story about how a regular-sized person defeated a giant.
The moral of the story is, even if you’re just a regular person, you are capable enough or strong enough to beat someone waaay larger than you.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way though in the real world.
If I fight someone muscular or buff, I might die right away once the first punch land on my face LOL! Sorry if the second analogy sounded so morbid.
But you get the drift right?
The same goes for ranking on Google. Before you write your article, type your target keyword or your topic on Google and see who is on the first page and see for yourself if your blog stands a chance against them.
If you think you don’t stand against any of the top-ranking websites, then just move on to your other target keywords until you find a competition that you could win against.
Speed-up Your Blog
There are multiple ways on how to improve the loading speed of your blog and some of those ways are:
- Minimize the size of your images. Before I upload the image to my WordPress, I optimized the images using ImageOptim for Mac.
- I also use a plugin called Smush.
- I use Cloudflare to also improve my blog loading speed
- I also use Hostinger for my web host which is known for its speed.
And there are a lot more ways on how you could speed up your load time.
Why is it important?
Regardless of how useful your content is, if it’s not loading on your reader’s smartphone or laptop then they will just move on to the next website.
And even if you’re ranking #1 on Google, if a customer clicks on your link and it doesn’t load up, then they will move on to the next website. And eventually, your ranking will go down in the SERP because Google customers are not having a great experience interacting with your website due to its slowness.
I still have a lot of work to do in order to further improve my site speed and it should always be one of the top priorities for every blogger out there.
Use Alt-tags for Your Images
Aside from making your article searchable, make your images searchable as well by adding alt-tags. You can do this on WordPress and you don’t need any additional plugins for this.
Ideally, it should contain your keywords, but sometimes, because I use a variety of images, I use whatever is applicable to the image itself.
Use Header Tags
Prior to knowing its advantages, I basically just used the Header tags to improve the formatting of my post and to basically increase the size of my font. LOL!
And since I’ve been using it a lot, it worked wonders in helping me rank on Google and even helped me land a few Google Snippets.
I accidentally discovered for myself how the Header tags play their role when it comes to SEO. So be sure to use it.
Interlink Your Articles
Interlinking your articles has so many advantages. And even though, it’s not as ‘juicy’ as getting a ‘do-follow’ external link, it still plays a crucial role in improving your overall onsite SEO.
Aside from that, it also helps your readers find the other relevant articles on your blog.
Once your blog grows bigger, the easiest way for you to point your readers to other relevant posts is to interlink your articles.
These are just some of the most simple ways to help your blog rank on Google without any backlinks. But of course, it will also help you rank consistently on Google if you have a ton of backlinks but it’s kinda challenging and difficult (but doable) especially for new bloggers.
If you do the above-mentioned steps, then you will definitely see your blog ranking in no time.How to Rank on Google Without Backlinks - Beginner's Guide Click To Tweet