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Checklist Tips for SEO – 2023


By following a few important rules, you will have your website ranked #1 in Google search results within 30 days!

Warning, spoiler alert: no, you won’t. There are certain agencies that entice such full-bodied promises. But you can safely regard such statements as dubious. There are several reasons why a top ranking on Google does not actually work that quickly and easily. The content of good SEO optimization is enormously diverse and complex. Also is the number of Google ranking factors huge and even experienced SEO professionals discuss controversially which ranking factor is particularly important to achieve a top ranking. In addition, SEO optimization is always a lengthy process that requires patience and continuous attention. Simple and universal recipes for success are not available. But there are more effective and less effective methods, as well as crucial factors. We have summarized these in our SEO checklist.

Overview of the SEO checklist with the most important factors 

To start with: This article is about providing an overview of the points and measures that need to be taken into account in order to achieve a good ranking. We will continue to go into detail about the points in separate articles, as this would otherwise go beyond the scope here. You don’t want to miss any information and tips in this regard. Then sign up for our newsletter.  

SEO Earlier vs. SEO 2023

Everything used to be easier. The web is still full of SEO tips of the old, conventional kind. Back then, it was enough to include the defined keywords more frequently in various relevant elements and to provide a technically optimized basis. Added a few good backlinks – and the search-engine-optimized page was done. There were also ways to get good rankings with a few tricks and hacks (Grey Hat SEO or Black Hat SEO). The algorithm would be far too intelligent today for such tricks. In the meantime, the focus is on fulfilling the user intention, i.e. the effective goal behind a search query.

The focus is on the user experience

First of all, a little theory: In recent years, Google’s algorithm has become much more intelligent. Among other things, many new measurements were established, which Google uses to evaluate the relevance of the content. In addition to well-known aspects, the focus is increasingly on the user experience – and thus the following points:

Does the content provide exactly the information the user was looking for? Does the website – i.e. the text displayed, but also images, videos, products, services, etc. – have great relevance? The ultimate goal for Google is to show the user the content that is most likely to be what they were looking for and needed. And yes, Google understands whether the content is relevant or not.

User signals
if a user jumps off immediately, the landing page was probably not the right result. Google learns from this and will place the page further down for this search query. Traffic is also very much a user signal. Many of these signals can be specifically optimized with the right measures. 

is the landing page easy for the user to use? Does the website load fast enough? Are there disturbing elements that load downstream and cause text passages to jump out of the field of view again? Is it easy and intuitive to navigate through the website on mobile devices? Are buttons and elements big enough for the thumb? These are crucial points, which in turn require a good technical concept. Therefore, the technical expertise of a specialized agency is a key element to ensure an optimal user experience.

Trustworthiness & Expertise (EAT)
EAT stands for the three evaluation factors Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. Trust in a site is strengthened by the reputation of the brand. Positive ratings and high-quality backlinks also play a crucial role. Equally important are the authors’ expertise and the company’s pioneering position in the industry. If more knowledge is shared, we are considered thought leaders and assume a thought leadership role. 

The SEO checklist

Now for our checklist. The goal was to put together a simple and understandable list that really focuses on the essentials in this vast jungle with many influencing factors. The result is an SEO checklist that you can use to strengthen your understanding of good SEO effectively and without complicated depth.


Back in 1996, Bill Gates coined the phrase “content is king”. Back then, you probably had no idea how important content would actually become. Today, content is more king than ever. Using a reasonable content strategy, we pick up all the important points of good SEO. Content is then ideally relevant. Long-tail keywords are covered. Focus keywords can be displayed in all important elements. Users stay longer on the landing pages. The traffic increases. This all sounds very good in theory. But how do I put it into practice? The following points should help you:

1. Create keyword research

Before a content strategy can be set up, extensive keyword research is necessary – always taking into account search volume, market competition, and relevance. In this way, all potentially interesting keywords are collected and listed.

2. Define focus keywords

From the previously collected terms, the page structure has to be created or expanded and the optimal focus keywords have to be defined. So set a focus keyword and three other relevant keywords for all your visitable URLs. This step is very important because many optimizations will take place later on this basis.

3. Navigation Structure

In most cases, the defined focus keywords should have their own landing page with content specially created for it. It often makes sense to redefine the navigation structure based on keyword research. Various content strategy models should be considered, such as content clusters, holistic content, etc. 

4. Meta Tags

Do you maintain the Meta titles and descriptions? Do the focus keywords appear in it? If not, it’s high time to optimize the Meta tags. But beware: Not only focus keywords play a role here. It should also be clear what to expect from the user. Depending on the industry, mentioning the brand, the USP or a call to action (CTA) are also relevant. The maximum length specified by Google should also not be exceeded. 

5. The First Section / First Paragraph

The first section of a website is like the introduction to a book. There is no cheating here. Instead, the reader is introduced to the content of the page with a few sentences. If a keyword is in the first 150 words of the content, this increases the chances of a good ranking. 

6. H1

The H1 heading gets to the heart of the content of a page. That’s why it’s crucial that you state the actual focus topic of the page in the H1. On the other hand, you should avoid unnecessary gimmicks. Google evaluates the keyword within this tag as relevant. It should be noted that only one heading of type H1 should be used per page.

7. Subheadings

There are two things to consider when it comes to subheadings or subheadings. On the one hand, you shouldn’t write passages longer than 300 words. On the other hand, it makes sense to use related keywords or synonyms in the subheadings. We explain why under point 10.

8. Know the intention of the user

There are basically three types of search intentions:

1.  Information-driven searches: The person searching has a problem and is looking for a solution or information.

2.  Transaction-driven searches: The person searching is interested in a service or product.

3.  Navigation-driven searches: The searcher wants to visit the website but has forgotten the URL or is too lazy to type the address into the browser.

The respective page should also be written with these intentions in mind.

9. Know target groups and their language

Who are the key people we want to reach? An example: We are a hospital and would like to generate more traffic through content. Are we now writing a page for doctors and referring physicians, i.e. primarily using medical terms? Or do we want to reach patients, for whom we should use a more understandable vocabulary? The definition of the target group very often also has a direct impact on the writing style and the content.

10. LSI Keywords (Latent Semantic Indexing)

Recently, it has become more and more relevant for Google that pages not only cover a specific keyword but also have semantically appropriate connections in the content. The word “car” doesn’t even have to appear on a landing page, and it can still happen that this page ranks for the search term “car” – because the page is about cars without explicitly mentioning them. Because if semantically related words appear on the landing page, for example, “vehicle”, “car”, “motor”, “rims”, “e-car” or “petrol engine”, then the search engine will also recognize this. So if you use synonyms as LSI keywords, you not only bring variety to the text but also improve the content in terms of SEO. 

Technical SEO


How important is the domain for SEO? There are SEO professionals who believe that the keyword in the domain doesn’t matter. We strongly disagree – the web address is important. The domain is the figurehead of a brand. Changing them would usually involve high losses. Country-specific domain extensions (top-level domains) are also very important. A .ch domain receives a higher rating for searches in Switzerland than for searches in Austria or Germany. However, this reduces the chances of getting such a good ranking globally as with a .com domain, for example. A domain should therefore be chosen carefully and sustainably.

hreflang tags

The hreflang tag is used when there are different languages or content with regional differences on a website. It tells search engines which URL should be used for which index. Are your hreflang tags set correctly? Do you even need any?

Canonicals / Canonical Tags

Duplicate content is no longer as important as it used to be. Nevertheless, it is important to avoid this. With the help of correctly set canonicals – HTML elements that refer to the original URL – the creation of duplicate content can be prevented. 

Broken links

Are there internal links on your website that lead nowhere? So-called broken links harm the user experience and should be eliminated.


Have redirects been set correctly? How is the handling regarding «with or without www.» implemented? Does “http” redirect to “https”? Did you make sure that the website was not indexed with both variants? Are there hidden forwarding chains somewhere that even lead in circles? Redirects should always improve the user experience and not impair it.


Core Web Vitals

Google introduced a new rating process for websites at the end of 2021. The new metric is based on this. What is important here is the user experience in the first few seconds. How fast did the largest element of the website load (LCP)? When can the user interact with the website for the first time (FID)? Does the layout shift during reloading, for example, if advertising is being played (CLS)? These factors have also become very relevant for Google. 


Loading time, loading time, loading time: How performant is your website? That depends on various factors. How was the site technically implemented? How big are the images placed on the page? What is the proportion of JavaScript? How good is the hoster with which the site is registered? With the right answers to such questions, you increase the performance of your website – and thus improve the user experience.

Mobile friendly

In times when search queries mostly take place on mobile devices, one thing is clear anyway: websites have to be responsive and the loading time has to be as short as possible, even with 3G. But what about size and presentation? Is this also adapted to mobile? In any case, ensure a good user experience for mobile users.

User signals 

User experience

We have summarized the most important points above. The design, the performance, the mobile user experience, optimal meta titles, and descriptions, and of course the relevant content – these aspects are important for good user signals such as dwell time, bounce rate (return-to-SERP rate), or click rate (CTR). In addition, good user guidance must also be guaranteed.

Are there enough cross-links? Are calls to action placed prominently? Are other navigational features in use, such as breadcrumb navigation? These are essential points in order to achieve good user signals and at the same time trigger the desired actions such as orders, leads, and contacts.


Google Analytics & Co.

An analytics tool is vital to SEO success. For measurability, you should definitely set up a basic tool like Google Analytics. After all, you want to be able to evaluate which pages are relevant for the users, where they are, how long they spend on the respective pages – and where there are still deficits. This way you can continuously optimize your content.

Conversion tracking is a bit more advanced, but by no means less important. Among other things, there is detailed information about where events such as purchases or contacts took place, where the people who triggered the event came from, and what search intentions they used to find the site.

SEO monitoring tool

There are various tools for monitoring SEO. All have their strengths and weaknesses, which is why we use four solutions from different providers. But despite their different functions, they all have one thing in common: They help us to measure the rankings of individual URLs. Such a monitoring tool is indispensable, especially for sites that have hundreds of URLs. It shows exactly where we fell or rose in the rankings. In this way, continuous search engine optimization can be constantly promoted. Anyone who thinks that optimization is only necessary once is wrong. The optimization takes time, is constantly being developed, and should be checked continuously in the form of regular reviews. Otherwise, it will be difficult with the longed-for top ranking on Google and Co.


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