Below, you’ll find some useful information about the primary factors behind search engine optimisation, and how their application to your site can affect your rankings.
SEO Website Design & Development
The first thing you need to think about when it comes to SEO is literally the basics of your site. It’s very important that your site is designed and developed to be SEO friendly. If it is, it’ll be a lot easier to optimise your site for Google, SEO marketing will be easier to carry out, and your site will have a better chance of being ranked highly by search engines.
When you’re planning an optimised SEO website, you need to keep the following in mind:
The structure of your site is an important factor in SEO. The URL of each page should relate directly to the type of content that the page contains, and all pages should be reachable from any other page. Site structure, and the associated navigation, has an effect on the way that search engines crawl and index your pages. Site speed is becoming another important factor, particularly with Google’s recent announcement that how fast the page loads may have an effect on your sites search engine ranking.
The structure of your internal links, and the anchor text that is used for them are also factors to bear in mind. Relevant anchor text, relating to the content of the target page, will be considered more credible by search engines. It’s also a good idea to have internal links to other pages in the content of your site as well. Don’t just rely on the navigation to point to important pages, but reinforce their importance with additional, internal links. It’s also a good idea to ensure that your site uses H tags correctly to identify the various levels of headings. It’s especially important that your H tags follow the standard numerical sequence. If you have an H1 Tag, followed by an H3 tag, search engines may assume that you have missing information on your page.
Finally, ensure you use optimised meta data for your site. Page titles are particularly important, but even though the rest of the meta data isn’t necessarily used by search engines, they are used by directory sites and the like. Which in turn, are crawled by search engines. For the little bit of extra work they represent, it’s worth doing properly. And while your meta description may not affect your ranking, it can easily affect the chances of visitors clicking on your site, as search engines will tend to use the meta description below the link to your site in their results.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Website Content
Another important factor when it comes to organic SEO is your site content. Also known as on-site optimisation, most SEO companies offer services for SEO copywriting, or search engine optimised content. In essence, this means writing content for your site which makes effective use of keywords.
However, a common mistake is to write content that is stuffed with keywords to such an extent that it becomes meaningless (or irrelevant) to the human visitor. Writing only for search engines not only has a negative effect on the usability of your site, but is becoming steadily more transparent to search engines, and can actually have the opposite result to the intended one, which is to make your site more important in the eyes of those search engines.
The best way to write content for your site is to write it with human readers in mind. While it should still contain keywords that are relevant to the content and the searches that users carry out, there is no substitution for relevant, readable and useful content.
Site structure, as discussed earlier, also plays a role in the content. Information on your pages should be optimised to match the needs of visitors to the site, contain headings in the correct H tags, and be relevant to the names of the pages. Finally, regular updates of your content will encourage search engines to index your site more frequently, which can be a definite advantage for your SEO marketing strategy.
SEO & External Links
A crucial part of ranking well in search engine results lies in the number of links that you have pointing to your site from other sites. The more links you have pointing to your site, the more likely a search engine is to consider your site a credible resource for related information.
Of course, not just any links will do. It’s important that the links come from a site containing information which is relevant to the information on your site. In addition, using keywords which are relevant to your site as the anchor text for any external links will also improve the credibility of the links, and by extension, your site.
Credibility is a very important criteria for SEO optimisation. Search engines take the credibility of your site into account when ranking it in search engine results. Credible, relevant external links from sites which are themselves credible will help you improve your ranking.
When it comes to website SEO, the more greater the number of optimised, credible links you have pointing to your site, the more authoritative search engines will consider you when it comes to ranking in the search engine results. When you add the authority derived from those links to an optimised site design, and optimised website content, your importance in the eyes of search engines will increase to the extent that you’re likely to rank highly, for the words you’re optimising for.
SEO Monitoring & Search Engine Optimisation Reports
As with many aspects of doing business online, it’s important to monitor your progress, and measure your results. When it comes to measuring your search engine optimisation, one of the most effective SEO tools at your disposal are detailed SEO reports.
Usually generated by specialised SEO software, SEO reports can track the progress of your ranking for certain keywords, monitor increases and decreases, and analyse the links pointing to both your site, and to your competitors.
A key part of any successful SEO marketing strategy, search engine optimisation reports help you to make sure you’re on track when it comes to your efforts to rank well on the search engine results. Unless you’re an SEO expert yourself though, you might want to consider getting an SEO consultant to help you interpret your reports. They’re often so comprehensive that it can be difficult to carry out your own SEO analysis on the data, even if you have the resources to generate them yourself. This is where an SEO company can be very useful.