Follow these great tips to improve your website’s search engine rankings. The key is time. You cannot expect instant results. Stick to it, don’t give up and as your search rankings improve, adjust your SEO strategy appropriately. You will need just as strong a strategy in the beginning as you will to maintain your dominance in the number one position later.
Have a professional website developer with SEO experience build your website.
There are right ways and wrong ways to build websites. Having your website built by a reputable and knowledgeable developer can mean the difference between an effective sales tool and a lost phone book listing. It’s important to have the basics of SEO built into your site.
The front-end of websites are programmed in a language called HTML. Search engines can read HTML. Experienced developers will know that there should be additional HTML tags written to tell search engines important information.
Content, content, content!
Good, informative and relevant content is the most important factor of SEO. Search engines work hard at finding the best results for their users. They fundamentally do this by matching their users’ search phrases with a website’s content – word for word.
To create the best possible content for SEO, first think of what your potential clients will be searching for on the Internet. Keywords are the words and phrases that your potential customer types into their search engine. You must think like your customers and understand the terminology that they may use when looking for your products or services. Google Adwords KeyWord Suggestion Tool is a free online tool that can be very beneficial in this process. When determining your best keywords and phrases, look for the ones with the highest searches per month and the lowest competition.
Create a list of these keywords and phrases. Now, be sure that the content in your website contains these words multiple times. While rewriting and beefing up your website’s content to include these words and phrases, make sure that your website is still readable and that all content is relevant!
Be warned, Google will penalize you if you hide words or overload your content with keywords to the point that your website is not easily readable. This may be a fast way to reach the top, but it’s also a fast way to hit the bottom once Google catches you. Use your keywords as naturally as possible.
Use and placement of keyword optimized content.
Search engines weigh specific content more highly than general website body content. Your page address, page titles, page descriptions, headings, topmost content, bottommost content and bolded text are given more dominance than other content. It’s very important to include your keywords and phrases in these locations.
Think of it like this: you should give search engines a good road map to each of your website’s pages. Each page address should properly describe the page. Then, to not confuse search engines; your page title, page description, headings and content should all reasonably match. In other words, the same page’s keywords should be present in all locations.
Images & Videos
Search engines don’t have eyes. They rely completely on words to describe what they’re looking at. Make sure to properly name your images and image tags to best describe them to search engines. Try to include your keywords to help optimize your site.
Videos have become very popular over the past few years. Search engines have noticed this trend and now give them more weight when providing search results. Including relevant videos on your website is currently a good SEO strategy.
Make sure to add a title rich with keywords to your video and add a description that clearly illustrates what the video is about. If posting on other sites such as YouTube or Vimeo include your website link within the description.
Search engines know when you’ve last updated your content. They give more weight to websites that have fresh content than those with old, stale content. Search engines record the frequency of your updates. If your website does not get updated often, search engines will crawl your website less frequently. This gives opportunity to your competition to surpass you in the rankings.
To stay a step ahead of your competitors, create a way to add fresh content to your website on an ongoing basis. Consider adding a blog, news feed, article section, image gallery or question forum.
Every website is given a Page Rank between 0 and 10, it could be described as a reputability rating. It is almost impossible to achieve a top rating of 10. Facebook is currently rated a 9, cbc.ca an 8, YouTube a 9, google.com a 9, and Oprah.com a 7. There is a mathematical algorithm that determines a website’s Page Rank. The equation measures reputable links. A page that is linked to by many pages with a high Page Rank is given a high Page Rank itself.
Google will give more weight to a website that has a slightly higher Page Rank compared to the same site with a lesser Page Rank. Improving your Page Rank will in turn improve your search rank. Small businesses should be proud of achieving a Page Rank of 3 or higher.
Linking to other sites has very little importance, but when reputable and relevant websites link to your site, it tells search engines that the information your website contains is important and valid.
For example, if you run a dog grooming business and a well ranked website about caring for your pets links to your website in an article about best grooming practices, the information on your website has just been validated. Search engines will rank your site higher. If a website about home renovations links to the dog grooming website, search engines will not see proper relevance in the content and the link will hold little weight.
Try writing articles about your business offerings and send them out to relevant websites requesting that they publish or share your articles. Write press releases when new and exciting things happen within your business and share them with local media. Come up with creative ways to make others in similar and complimentary industries want to link to your website.
Social Media & Sharing
Recently Google admitted that their search algorithm includes some measurement of social media sharing. It’s now important to include social media in your SEO strategy.
Social media has the power to quickly make a video, image or piece of information go viral. When a link to your website is shared on a social media site, it is now given weight. If the person sharing it is also considered to have ‘authority’, search engines will consider the share more important. A person with ‘authority’ is someone who has many followers and consistently has others sharing the information they post. Watch how one share can turn into hundreds of shares!
Make sure to link to your social media sites from your website. It tells search engines to connect the activity on your social media sites with your stored website information. If you have relevant information shared by users with authority, it will positively impact your search rankings.
Make sure your website has enough interesting and helpful information to maintain a user’s attention for a lengthy period. The longer a user stays on your website and visits multiple pages, the more relevant search engines consider your information.
Adding interactive tools and posting articles to your site may help to keep visitors interested for longer. An interactive tool could be a quote generator, unit convertor, mortgage rate generator, language translator, etc. Think about what would be most beneficial to your clients.
The more interactions a user has with your site by clicking to a new page, drawing information from a database or answering a survey, the higher search engines will likely rank your site.
All that said – and there’s no arguing it – the most important thing to take from this list is CONTENT! Add fresh, relevant and keyword optimized content to your website on an ongoing basis and be patient! Your site will slowly but steadily move up in the rankings.
Collaborative Haus Marketing is a full-service marketing company in Ontario serving Midland, Penetanguishene, Barrie, Orillia, Parry Sound, Toronto, and surrounding areas. We’re a group of committed, honest, creative and knowledgeable professionals determined to build solutions that help your business succeed. We believe small, medium and big businesses deserve the same caliber of professionalism, quality of service and exceptional results.
Contact us today! Our first meeting is always free!