Search engine optimization or SEO for short is a digital marketing practice which has the end goal of placing your website at the top of the search results page. When coupled with other marketing techniques, it can increase the visibility of your page, improve its credibility and bring much-needed traffic to your business. Much like the good sites, the search engines can recognize badly optimized websites and no matter how much resources you put into digital marketing, that website will not be displayed at the top of search results. With that said, here are 12 different tips you can use to improve your website and secure a top ranking position.
Writing relevant content
“Content is king” is a title of an article written by Bill Gates in 1996. Twenty years later, unique, high-quality content has an enormous impact on digital marketing and search engine ranking. Regularly published content with proper url structure and well-placed keywords get picked up by the search engines and put at the very top of the results page. This leads to an increase in traffic and better credibility for your company.
Making your URL short and descriptive
Visitors should be able to understand what your website is about, even with a single glance. Creating a coherent URL structure guarantees a better search engine visibility and also helps the visitors know what exactly they can expect to find on your website.
Using headings in page titles
Google and other search engines favor web pages with properly designated headings. Adding a short description under a right heading makes a significant difference between your page being in the top of search results and not being displayed there at all.
Trading underscores for hyphens
Using underscores to separate different words when writing your URL name leads to search engines interpreting it all as one single word. That’s why using hyphens over underscores is so significant, as it decreases the chance for a page to be misinterpreted.
Meta-description refers to a small paragraph displayed under the title tag in the search results page. It should be between 150 and 160 characters long and it should be used to present your brand or service in the results, that is, before visitors actually click on your website.
Anchors within texts
Anchors are links leading to other posts or websites found in the content itself. They are mostly clickable words or short descriptions followed by a link. In most cases you should refrain from using the “Click Here” anchor, as it provides very little information regarding what you are linking.
Adding description to images
Search engines cannot read images. Instead, they depend on short image descriptions called ALT text. Using the ALT attribute helps the engines understand what that image represents. This is accomplished by optimising the images using image-specific keywords.
Improving page load times
Recently, Google added new criteria for its ranking system and that’s the page load time. This means that faster loading websites have an advantage over the slower ones and get sent to the top of the search results page.
Using page-specific keywords
Every page on a website plays a specific role. These roles can be highlighted by using descriptions for on-page and meta-information and creating distinctive page titles. By doing this, you give a potential visitor a greater chance of finding your website.
Hiding Irrelevant Pages
Not all pages need to be in the top results of a search. Landing pages, region-specific pages, and password-protected pages are just some of the examples of pages that should be kept away from search engines. This not only keeps those pages private but also prevents them from competing with the important, content-heavy pages.
The long list of things search engines are looking for in a website also includes device compatibility. Half of all searches are made using a smartphone, so make sure your website is properly optimized for all screen sizes and devices.
Some marketing agencies tend to over optimize content to the point where it simply becomes unreadable for the visitors, which can lead to a potential loss of new customers. Providing the end user with reliable content will generate a more organic buzz, with people discussing, sharing and recommending your services. This, in turn, increases the SEO ranking of your website and drives more visitors and potential revenue.
Author bio: John Stone is a business consultant at Algorithm Seo Sydney. Through years of experience, he became a devout believer in the notion that form should always follow function and that developing the ability to think outside of the box is a prerequisite of being a successful entrepreneur.”Author's Google+