5 Foundational SEO Strategies to Crush 2020

If you could focus on just a handful of SEO strategies in the coming year to improve your website, where would you start? I’m here to help. I will break down five foundational SEO strategies to help you get more visibility, traffic, and conversions in 2020.

1. E-E-A-T More

Experience, expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness: these form the basic job description of your website and what it’s supposed to prove, according to Google.

Google's Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines table of contents.
Screenshot of the table of contents from Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines

E-E-A-T is the foundation of any strategic SEO program. It communicates to your audience and the search engines that you are a quality resource. Thus, everything in your SEO content strategy, your SEO tactics and your offline efforts (such as speaking, teaching, etc.) should support this.

2. Full Speed Ahead

Got a slow website? If too slow then your chances of ranking in today’s search engine environment are slim to none. And if you do happen to rank, it’s likely that more than half of your audience will bounce.

The PageSpeed Insights tool is a good place to start. There, you can assess performance and see how improvements will fare. But which pages should you start with?

Screenshot of Google's PageSpeed Insights tool in action.

Take the top search queries bringing traffic to your site and check your top-ranked pages. Then find out who your competitors are for those queries, and make sure to beat their page load times. The SEOToolSet® has helpful tools for this exercise.

A screenshot of the Research Summary Report of the tool featuring top-ranked pages.
Research Summary Report shows top-ranked pages for a query. (SEOToolSet)


3. When Silos Are a Good Thing

While the business world talks about breaking down silos, the SEO world rejoices in them. Siloing organizes disjointed website topics into clear themes that boost not only E-E-A-T, but also keyword rankings.

Graphic illustrating how to silo for search engine optimization.

Of course, siloing is not all there is to ranking, but without it, you lose relevance. Being relevant is the key to a successful website now and in the future.

4. Tag, You’re It

In the race to quality content, meta tags are a secret weapon. Not only do they tell the search engines what the page is about, but they also serve as the enticing snippet in the search results.

Screenshot of the search results for www.bruceclay.com.

Here are the basics of creating a great meta tag:

  • Ensure each title tag is unique across your website.
  • Try to keep title tags below 78 characters, which is the cutoff for mobile users.
  • Use the top keyword in the title tag before the character cutoff.
  • The meta description tag should also include the most important info and keywords near the beginning.
  • If the search engine chooses to display your description text, it will include about 24 words or 160 characters with spaces.

The Bruce Clay SEO WP™ plugin is handy for content creators and SEOs to cross the finish line by writing compelling and original meta tags as part of the content process.

5. Excuse Me, Your Schema Is Showing

Google uses structured data to better understand what the content is on a page. Not only that, but structured data can enhance your presence on the search engine results page. Google may include “rich snippets” (as shown below) or “featured snippets” from your content that can further entice users to click through to your site.

Screenshot of a search results page that displays websites that have structured data markup.

The SEO industry continues to talk about the importance of schema to the ever-evolving search engine results page. If you’re new to the concept, Google has a great beginner’s guide for developers and website publishers here.

Focusing on the basics while using the right tools is a sure-fire way to get ahead in 2020. Make sure you’re using the industry’s leading SEO and content tools as you dial in on your strategy for the New Year. Learn more about our SEOToolSet® today.

FAQ: How can I enhance my website’s performance with SEO strategies?

A website’s performance is crucial for online success in today’s digital landscape. Whether you’re an e-commerce store owner, a blogger, or a business aiming to increase your online presence, leveraging SEO strategies is vital to achieving your goals.

  1. Optimize Your On-Page Elements:

Optimize your website’s on-page elements, including meta titles, descriptions, headers, and image alt tags. Ensure that your content is valuable and relevant and naturally includes target keywords.

  1. Mobile Responsiveness:

With most users accessing websites via mobile devices, a mobile-responsive design is imperative. Google prioritizes mobile-friendly sites in its rankings.

  1. Site Speed Matters:

Page load speed significantly impacts user experience and SEO rankings. Minimize image sizes, leverage browser caching, and use Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) to improve site speed.

  1. High-Quality Content:

Produce high-quality, engaging content that addresses your audience’s needs and questions. Regularly update and refresh your content to keep it relevant.

  1. Keyword Research:

Conduct thorough keyword research to identify relevant keywords and phrases for your niche. Utilize tools like Google Keyword Planner and SEMrush for insights.

  1. Backlink Building:

Earn quality backlinks from reputable websites within your industry. Quality over quantity is essential; focus on natural link-building.

  1. Technical SEO:

Optimize technical aspects such as sitemaps, robots.txt, and canonical tags. Fix broken links and ensure your website is easily crawlable by search engines.

  1. Local SEO:

For businesses targeting a local audience, optimize your Google My Business profile and acquire local citations.

  1. User Experience (UX):

Enhance user experience with a clean, intuitive design, easy navigation, and clear calls to action (CTAs).

  1. Analyze and Monitor:

Regularly analyze your website’s performance using tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Monitor keyword rankings and user behavior to identify areas for improvement.

  1. Schema Markup:

Implement schema markup to provide search engines with structured data about your content, helping them understand and display it more effectively.

  1. Social Media Integration:

Integrate social media buttons and encourage sharing to increase your website’s visibility and traffic.

  1. Secure Your Website:

Installing an SSL Certificate to ensure your website remains safe is essential to keeping visitors away. Google prioritizes safe sites in its rankings.

  1. Content Promotion:

Reaching more people, expand the reach of your content by using email marketing, social networks, and other online channels to promote it.

  1. Adapt to Algorithm Changes:

Stay updated with search engine algorithm changes and adjust your strategies accordingly.

These SEO strategies can enhance your site’s performance and visibility in search engine results, ultimately increasing organic traffic. SEO is an ongoing process; keeping up with trends is essential for success.

Step-by-Step Procedure to Enhance Your Website’s Performance with SEO Strategies:

  1. Conduct thorough keyword research to identify relevant keywords for your niche.
  2. Optimize your website’s on-page elements, including meta titles, descriptions, headers, and image alt tags.
  3. Ensure your website is mobile-responsive to cater to users on various devices.
  4. Improve your website’s load speed by optimizing images and utilizing CDNs.
  5. Create valuable, high-quality content that addresses your target audience’s needs and questions.
  6. Earn quality backlinks from reputable websites within your industry.
  7. Attention to technical SEO aspects, such as sitemaps, robots.txt, and canonical tags.
  8. Optimize your website for local SEO by managing your Google My Business profile and acquiring local citations.
  9. Improve user experience (UX) by designing an intuitive site with clear calls-to-action and user-friendly designs.
  10. Use Google Analytics or Search Console to evaluate the performance of your website regularly.
  11. Implement schema markup to provide structured data to search engines.
  12. Integrate social media sharing buttons on your website to increase visibility.
  13. SSL certificates will ensure the safety and protection of your website.
  14. Leverage social media and email marketing to spread your content.
  15. Stay updated with search engine algorithm changes and adjust your strategies accordingly.

Follow these steps to unlock the full potential of your website through effective SEO strategies.

Bruce Clay is founder and president of Bruce Clay Inc., a global digital marketing firm providing search engine optimization, pay-per-click, social media marketing, SEO-friendly web architecture, and SEO tools and education. Connect with him on LinkedIn or through the BruceClay.com website.

See Bruce's author page for links to connect on social media.

Comments (15)
Still on the hunt for actionable tips and insights? Each of these recent SEO posts is better than the last!

15 Replies to “5 Foundational SEO Strategies to Crush 2020”

Very Helpful and Informative Blog. Thanks for sharing the article with us.

I found these techniques to be very actionable. Definitely focusing on improving the page speed and E-A-T is the way ahead in the SEO industry. It is high time that brands take a serious note of these things.

Really useful tips to improve and modify your site. I will use them for my blog on software development and I think I will get very good results.

Great marching orders for 2020, Bruce. Though these have been on the plate in 2019 and, in some cases long before, I believe the prioritization is spot on and that which we will focus upon this year.

Hearing more of the future of voice search optimization. Do you think it will be a significant factor in 2020 or will it more likely appear in the 2021+ list of foundational strategies?

Thanks for sharing Bruce, definitely all key factors in particular site speed and using silo’s.

Hey Bruce, wondering what your thoughts are on GMB’s and their importance for overall SEO health as a foundational tactic at the very least? Thanks for the post!

I really think most peopel overlook how effective a good meta description tag is and how much it can improve your CTR from the search results.

Helpful guidelines.

Thank you for the post!

Hi Bruce, If I had to pick 5, these would have have been them. I’m curious were they in any particular order?

Hi Bill – This is the order I would go with. In general the nature of each site might sway a few one way or the other but IMO do them all and do not worry about the order.

I’ll take note of it to E-A-T more.

Useful insights you shared here about SEO and techniques that really matters to boost search ranking this year. Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (EAT) and site loading speed are the key elements to achieve top position in SERPs.

Thanks for sharing valuable information with us…!!!

All good things to implement :-)

Paula Allen

Andy: Thanks for being a frequent visitor & adding your insights to the blog!


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Serving North America based in the Los Angeles Metropolitan Area
Bruce Clay, Inc. | PO Box 1338 | Moorpark CA, 93020
Voice: 1-805-517-1900 | Toll Free: 1-866-517-1900 | Fax: 1-805-517-1919