6 seo tips
Here are 6 SEO tips to help you optimise your website and drive more traffic.
Keywords are the words and phrases in your web content that make it possible for people to find your site using search engines. When identifying keywords, think about what words users will enter into their browser to find websites such as yours and select words and phrases from the content of your website that someone is most likely to use when searching for your online business or website. Optimising your website for these keywords will help you to rank well in the search results for those terms. It often helps to include your location in your keywords. There are a number of free tools available for discovering keywords.
Meta descriptions and titles
Meta tags are snippets of code that help describe the content on your site to search engines. They make it easier for search engines to determine what your content is about and can have a considerable impact on your SEO and ranking. Search engines tend to use these meta titles and descriptions in search results to let searchers know what a page is about before they click on it.
Make sure you include your keywords in both your meta description and meta title tags. Each page of your site should be optimised separately for its own unique keywords, using different titles and descriptions.
Google has stated that ‘content’ is among its top three ranking factors. It is important to understand your audience so that you can use their language and provide them with the information that they are actually looking for. Be sure to make your content easy to read by using images, video clips, titles, white space, short paragraphs, easy navigation links and so on. Write for humans, and do not force keywords where they don’t belong.
Search engines have always prioritised text, images, and news, but now maps, social results, and all sorts of snippet boxes can show up on the first page for any given search. In particular, a video is an extremely effective tool.
When a user lands on your page Google pays attention to whether they stay around and visit other pages on your site or whether they quickly bounce back to the search results. How people interact with your site and the amount of time they spend on your site – known as dwell time – is an extremely important ranking factor for Google.
Make sure that users do not have to scroll down in order to see the main content of your page – the main content should be immediately visible when a user opens the page. Make the “above the fold” area of your pages compelling and clutter free. The more interesting that area is, the higher your dwell time – and rankings – will be.
Optimising your images for SEO
Optimising images is an SEO technique that people use to send search engines important relevancy signals through image filenames, alt text, title, description and caption. Because search engines can’t “see” images the same way humans can, an image’s alt text tells them what an image is about. Alt text can improve accessibility for people with poor vision who are using screen readers. Take the time to change the name of images from a generic name like “IMG12345” to something accurate and descriptive, such as “banana-cake-recipe”.
Make sure your website loads quickly. Large images will slow down your site and having a slow loading site can decrease your Google rankings.
You only have a short time to grab users’ attention and if your site takes too long to load, they will leave. Websites that load quickly are crawled more thoroughly and consistently by search engines than slower ones. Both Google and Bing use page loading speed as a ranking factor.
Google rewards websites that load quickly, especially in mobile search results.
Check if your website displays well on mobile, otherwise it may be excluded from mobile search results. Most search queries are now being done using a mobile device, and Google displays the mobile-friendly results first.
It helps your SEO to have a SSL secure certificate https:// which will mean that browsers display a green secure padlock icon next to your website name. Search engines may penalise websites without it and having one will help prevent hackers from attacking your site.
An XML sitemap helps search engines index and understand your pages easier and more thoroughly, improving visibility. It can be used to tell search engines when your website has been updated.
Your page names should make sense to humans and give them a good sense of where in your website they have landed. You should also separate words with hyphens and remove extra words (like “a” and “the”) in the page part of the URL slug.
Make sure that you don’t have 2 websites – www and non-www version. Decide which you want to use and redirect the other to it. In other words, if you prefer to use the http://www.domain.com version, then http://domain.com should redirect to it.
Broken links cause frustration and ultimately hurt your website. Search engines and users are unable to access your site’s content if you have URLs that return errors
Links to your website
When building links, quality is more important than quantity. One single, good, authoritative link can do more for you than a number of poor quality links. If too many of your site’s backlinks are from low quality sites, your site will also be considered low quality.
Try to write high quality content that is linkable and shareable.
In summary, search engines like Google want to show users the best result for a given keyword – if your page provides users with a comprehensive answer to what they are looking for they will want to rank your page high up on the first page of their search results.
Search engines reward sites that are optimised, well-composed, and feature unique and/or meaningful content. So think about humans first and search engines second, and optimise your website for relevant and targeted keywords.
By optimising your website and making your content more search engine friendly you can significantly improve your chances of achieving higher rankings.
I hope you found these SEO tips useful. You may also be interested in our SEO checklist.
This article was written by Jane Walker. Tel. 0777 169 1194 for advice or a chat about how we can help you further.