Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a crucial element to your website’s success. SEO elements within your website will determine where it ranks in Google, search relevance, and how credible it is. We are going to dive into 3 basic SEO best practices to help improve SEO score and bring more traffic to your site.
Performing a content audit on social media, website content such as pictures, descriptions, forms, and blogs, all needs to be reviewed for optimization. Small errors within your content such as spelling, grammar, spacing, different font sizes, or duplicate titles, will affect your SEO score. To avoid making these errors, write the content copy in a word document or check it using free software such as Grammarly. Typos and grammar errors can sometimes mark your content as unprofessional or unreliable. It may seem like a simple task, but it is common for some website content to have a few errors here and there. Moving on to images, all images need to have alt text. Alt text allows search engines to pull information from the image if it matches a keyword search. Alt text will tell the user what the image is about in case the image is not loading, or their internet speed is slow. Having image alt text will also boost your SEO score because there’s more credible information for the engine to crawl. The first step in improving your SEO score is performing this audit, that way you have an idea of where the website ranks currently and after optimization it will be clear where there is growth.
Back End Elements
SEO is more than what’s on the surface, the back end of every website needs some work done in order to improve their score. The main elements here that need to be addressed are:
- Meta Descriptions
- Title Tags
For each element, it’s important to check that there are no duplicates on any of your other pages. This will cause confusion among the search engine and ultimately lower your SEO score. Meta descriptions are crucial, it is the first snippet of information a user will see before entering your site from a google search. Meta descriptions need to be concise and within 140 characters. Each meta description needs to be unique, that way there is no confusion in the search engine and user’s know which page they’re looking for in a search. Each page also needs a unique title tag. This helps users to find the most relevant page for their search if the title tag matches accordingly. Duplicate title tags will also confuse the site crawl, sometimes it will count the page as having an error or mark it off as being unreliable. H1’s and H2’s defines what your page is about. This includes home pages, services, blogs, about us, etc. Every page needs an H1, and most pages will have H2’s. H1’s are the main heading on each page and H2’s are subheadings of H1’s. These headings also help to break up the page so that it is easier to read and gives a better user experience.
Since Google crawls the back end of websites, it will rank your page lower than others if it has duplicates. Whether those duplicates come from meta descriptions, title tags, headings, or the URL itself, the search engine will automatically rank it lower than a website without those errors regardless if the information matches closer to the initial search. While all these elements are important for Google ranking and SEO scores, it also helps improve user experience. Ultimately, user experience is what is going to drive traffic to your site. The easier your site is to find, read through, and navigate, the more traffic is going to come and stay on your website.
The last element of SEO is keywords. First, you need to define what kind of searches your company needs to be found for. For example, a shoe company that sells hiking boots will want to focus on keywords such as hiking, outdoors boots, durable boots, camping shoes, mountain climbing, eco-friendly, etc. These keywords tie into their products, and their company values. They have a specific target market, so utilizing target keywords will help those people find their products. Keywords are also competitive, so it is best to be a little more specific with what you choose. It is also important to remember that you don’t want random keywords, you want to make sure that the keywords users are searching for is bringing them relevant information. If a user makes a search and what they find from your site is not what they’re looking for, then they will leave the site right away and impact the bounce rate of your website. For this reason, it’s crucial to have keywords that accurately and effectively bring the right people to your website.
These basic SEO practices will help to improve the overall ranking of your website but remember that there is much more that can be done. A website is never truly finished, there will always be way to improve, optimize, and update. Technology is a great tool, but sometimes things still break or go wrong, so always be checking for errors and different ways to optimize for a better user experience.