So you have a striking website with great content that showcases your brand beautifully. But what does it help if no one ever sees it because they don’t know about it? Without the right SEO, your website will forever remain the wall flower at the senior dance.
Search engine optimisation, or SEO, is crucial to get your website noticed. Google, Bing and other search engines use alt tags, file names, backlinks, keywords and other technical elements to determine how to rank your website, so you need to know how to make the most of these to climb the rankings and be number one!
Here are some tips on improving your chances to be noticed:
- Content is king. Probably one of the biggest clichés in the business, but for a reason: To be highly ranked, you need quality content that is relevant and unique; content people would want to see. Use your keywords wisely and remember to always write for the visitor and not for rankings’ sake: search engines rankings know when they are being played.
- Use the right permalinks. This is a permanent static hyperlink to a particular page. Use words that describe what the page is about instead of random numbering as these are also taken into consideration. Remember that only the first four words in the permalink counts – don’t overdo the rest.
SEO or search engine optimisation is the name of the process used to optimise a website’s content, structure and quality in order to improve its organic visibility in search engines. SEO includes a number of processes such as keyword research, content development, site speed optimisation, structured title and description creation and improved website architecture.
- Backlinks count. These are links to and from other pages: you click on this link (usually a highlighted word) in the content and are routed to the page in question. Exchange backlinks with other websites that are relevant to yours as well as with websites with high rankings. You can also link the pages on your website with each other, but only where relevant!
- Name your image files right. Instead of using numbering or codes for your image files, use descriptors of the image so that the ranking systems can pick up those keywords and use it for ranking. Remember the Alt tag and title tag for images, as these are taken into consideration too when determining rankings.
- Highlight important and catchy content or keywords. Use the “h1” to “h6” function to prioritise headings or subtitles and make sure they contain the right keywords.
One of the most important things to know about SEO is to keep it clean and honest. Search engines have programs to sniff out black hat techniques and “insincere” content, and they will take action if you’re caught. If you follow the rules and play by the book, and if your website contains quality and unique content that is relevant, rising up the ranks should not be difficult and before you know it, you’ll be top-rated.