What’s Involved In Search Engine Optimisation?
A lot of stuff is the simple answer but here’s a trade secret that will guarantee a rise in your present rankings. Updating previously published content is something Google love. What that means is that you look back over previous written articles and especially posts or pages that ranked. Now simply go back in there and update that content with any new relevant information on the topic.
Site Map Submission
Indexing your site map via the major search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo ensure your pages are crawled and presented in their results.
Focused keywords, page titles and meta descriptions should all be utilized properly. Keyword research and competitor analysis to see whats working for the competition.
Backlinks and Internal links
Public directories, social media profiles, guest blogs and comments to name a few places to place your backlink. Interlink content within your own site for a thumbs up
404 Error Page
All sites have a few dud or trashed pages and a customised 404 page to redirect users will give you a thumbs up from Google.
Page Speed and Design
How long it takes for your page to load is crucial to being ranked well. User design and experience is also a factor.
Written and Visual Content
Genuine, original and useful content relevant to your niche or product is a must. Also make sure your images are keyword optimised.
If you are selling multiple products online make sure you have the product descriptions keyword opimised. Often overlooked.
Mobile First and Navigation
Making sure your website is mobile and tablet friendly . Also make sure your navigation is well thought out.
Avoid the Bad Stuff
Plagiarism of written or visual content is a big no no. Site security and up to date software is also crucial to maintain a lock tight platform.
Are You Getting Found By Your Customers ?
If your website is not bringing you leads and phone calls well then you need to work on your SEO
What is Search Engine Optimisation SEO
Search engine optimisation is the term used for optimising your website to enable it to rank higher in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page). There are a number of factors that determine where you will rank on Google, Bing or Yahoo search engines. There are too many things to discuss here on this one page but we will split them into two categories.
- On-Page SEO – Looks at what you can control on your website
- Off-Page SEO – This is how authoritative your website is in terms of backlinks or endorsements from other websites including social media sites
What is On Page SEO?
On page SEO is the act of optimising different parts of your website so that it ranks higher in Googles search engine. Here are some of the most important factors
Title Tags and Meta Description
You must input your targeted keywords or phrases in the page titles. This can be done manually or with the help of a plugin such as Yoast. In the example below, you can see the search query was “Window Cleaners Dublin” and the first three results have that very term in the page title. It is also in the meta description as well.
You must also use a meta description to describe the content of the pages. This also allows you to insert your keywords or phrases into the description which helps a little with your rankings.
Image Tags For Search Engine Optimisation
You can also add keywords to the titles of images as image alt tags. Again this is another opportunity to optimise your site with the additional keywords.
Useful and Relevant Written Content
This is the first most important thing to think about when approaching search engine optimisation. Your content must be better than the site that ranks higher than you. That means you must be an authority on the subject matter. If you are not an authority on your written content well then you should be hiring a content writer with detailed guidelines for optimising each written article.
The grammar quality and sentence construction are also important. If your sentence is long-winded and difficult to read you are doing yourself no favours.
Apart from the standard fixed content pages, you can also additionally create extra written content using your blog page. This allows you to write extensively about your subject matter. Instead of calling it your blog page it could be titled, “Tips”, “Useful Tips”, “News”, “Updates” or whatever you like but the key point here is that each new page you publish allows more presence on search engines and each new page can be optimised for new keywords or phrases. The structure of each written page or post must also be correct.
Headings in your written content – H1, H2 H3
Headings are the largest words you will see on the page and for that reason Google give a little more importance to these words as it indicated the outline of the article. If these are structured properly your search engine optimisation will have better results and this will help you rank higher.
Site Speed and Page Loading Times
Site speed is another important factor. The following items affect your page speed.
- Poorly optimised images and Image size
- File size
- Code quality
- Your server and hosting
- To many redirects
- Script errors or code errors
Yes, you probably guessed this one. Your website must be designed to display on mobile devices. Google will always give preference to a mobile responsive site over a non-responsive site. In fact, at the outset, it is better to design your website with mobile-first in mind.
Internal linking is how the content of your website is connected via links. This should be done in a logical way so your reference to a particular service on your home page could be linked directly to that page. When done throughout your site this gives organisation and credibility to its site-wide content.
Off Page SEO
This refers to backlinking. The term backlinking means that other websites have a direct link to your website on their pages or posts. If the backlinks are closely related to your niche or service, well then the backlink is a better quality link. If the domain authority is high, better again. An example of higher quality links would be Government websites or news websites or even just websites that have higher authority than yours but have some reference to your products or services. There are several ways to do this easily to start off. You can use national business directories, many of which are free. You can use social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn etc.
To have higher quality backlinks requires some grunt work. If for example, you are trying to develop an Authority site, well contacting other authority sites and highlighting the fact that you have some killer content may allow you to guest post or place a link on their site.
How Long Does It Take For Search Engine Optimisation to Work
This is also a very important question. SEO is not a quick sprint, indeed it takes constant and sustained effort. If you want your website to rank organically, meaning your result is not a paid ad you will have to hire an SEO professional to optimise your website. If your website is not already design and built with SEO in mind you may have to redesign your website.