The world wide web has grown to be an expansive realm. For almost every single conceivable topic, there are multitudes of websites competing for user attention. So, then, how could your website shine above the rest?
You need to optimize.
Discover below 8 tips for beginning your Search Engine Optimization Journey
SEO Tip 1: Begin With On-Page Optimization
When beginning your SEO journey, on-page optimization is the perfect initial step. Fine-tuning titles, keyword uses, meta content, and other elements can aid your page in finding more relevant audience members. This also has the added benefit of making your site more readable to search engines, so they’ll better know how and when to showcase your site in the search results.
These changes are quick, and show results quickly so, if you’re still in the process of convincing your team that SEO is worth it, start here. Search engines favor sites that very clearly inform them of the purpose, value, and authority they can provide.
When updating your website’s elements, also consider what keywords and key phrases would captivate your target audience. If you can fit this in seamlessly to your content, you’re golden. Be careful to not overdo this, though, as search engines and readers are rather good at telling when you’re stuffing in phrases for optimization’s sake.
SEO Tip 2: Produce High-Quality Content
Good SEO requires high quality content - there’s no way to get around that. Search engines are constantly updating to prevent “SEO Hacks” from unfairly making their way to the top of search results. If you want your web page to rank, you need to truly provide meaningful, original content.
Google and other search engines give the best rankings to websites that provide users with relevant, useful, and interesting content. Plus, you’ll see added benefits here when you create more and more high-quality content. Users respond better to well-crafted content. With better pages, you’ll likely see lower bounce rates and more time spent on each page.
Also, diversify your content types. Blog posts work really well for some audience members, but others prefer images, videos, podcasts, tools, etc. A high quality blog will on attract readers, but the watchers, glancers, and listeners will appreciate high quality content too!
SEO Tip 3: Optimize for Mobile-Friendliness and Responsiveness
Mobile devices are being used more and more to access the internet. In order to captivate this audience, you need to ensure that your website is easy to use on screens smaller than desktop monitors. Emphasizing responsive design is paramount, Google and other search engines prioritize sharing mobile-friendly websites.
No one likes interfacing with an awkward layout. You’ve likely navigated away from sites before because they took too long to load on your phone or felt clunky to navigate through. To prevent this from happening to users on your website, compress images, ensure your code is streamlined, and improve the browsing experience by utilizing browser caching. Additionally, you can modify buttons and links you add to your site to make them touch-friendly.
The best way to ensure that your design is mobile friendly is to test it. When you push changes, pull out your phone and see what it's like to navigate your site. It’s also really helpful to have others test it out on their own devices. Testing a website on an iPad might reveal different errors than testing on an android.
SEO Tip 4: Optimize Your Website’s Page Speed
If your website is taking too long to load, you’re going to lose the interest of a good portion of your audience. When sites take too long, users will eventually give up and search for their answers elsewhere. Ensuring that your website loads fast enough to keep audience attention is paramount.
If you’re interested in improving your site’s speed, I highly recommend this article by Cloudflare that provides 8 tips you can use to start speeding up your website’s load times.
SEO Tip 5: Work Towards Building Organic Backlinks
Search engines partially determine page rankings based off of the authority of a given website. Essentially, the more websites that cite you or link to your web pages, the more search engines see you as a valuable and informative online resource. Each link to your site is seen as a stamp of approval from another company - and search engines favor sites that are generally approved of.
To build backlinks ethically, reach out to other companies. Writing partner blogs, guest posting, and the like can be super helpful for your website’s visibility. It can also make a positive impact to reach out to influencers here, especially if the search engine you’re looking to optimize is a social media search engine.
Be warned: using black-hat SEO practices can result in harsh penalties from search engines. Purchasing fake or low-quality backlinks may offer a quick route to improving authority temporarily, but the penalties that will likely result are not worth the cost. Instead, build backlinks by making connections with other companies and providing quality content.
SEO Tip 6: Consider Your User Experience and Engagement
Once you’ve managed to create a website that is getting a suitable amount of visitors, the next step is to optimize so that those visitors are converted into customers. To accomplish that, you need to consider user experience (UX). When users experience good UX, they’re more likely to stay on your page longer and navigate to other portions of it. Both of these metrics act as a signal to Search Engines that your content is high-quality.
If you’re unsure where to begin with UX, website organization is a great foundation to build. Make the pages on your site easy to find within the structure of your nav bar and at the footer of your pages. Within each page, use headers, labels, and helpful images to make the design of the page feel logical.
Once your organization is solid, optimize your pages to direct users on a journey to conversion. Craft calls-to-action (CTAs) that lead them towards your sales pages in a way that feels organic. And, of course, make each of these steps optimized for load speed and mobile friendliness.
SEO Tip 7: Local Business, Meet Local SEO
If you have a physical location, Local SEO is a MUST. Creating content that specifically targets your local area(s) can help bring folks through your door. The best way to do this is to prominently display your address throughout your website - it’s customary to provide it in the footer of your website. Once your footer is set up, create copy throughout your site that mentions the cities you serve and create location-relevant blogs, news, and pages.
Bonus Tip: Google My Business is a phenomenal profile to set up if you have a physical location. When people enter relevant searches on Google, Google will prioritize these profiles over websites without them. Filling out details on your company here will help users narrow down whether they want to navigate to your website, or even directly to your store!
SEO Tip 8: Regularly Monitor Your Website and Update It Accordingly
Effective SEO is an ongoing process. Making the changes above once and moving on will not provide you with the results you’re seeking. Search engines are constantly updating, favoring new practices and methods, and new companies are constantly entering the space. I highly recommend using a tool like Google Analytics or Ubersuggest to periodically check in on your progress. A strategy without data supporting it is merely a guess.
A well-executed SEO strategy is the cornerstone of online success, as it significantly enhances website visibility, drives organic traffic, and increases conversion rates. To turbocharge your online presence, it's crucial to start implementing these SEO tips and strategies immediately, ensuring that your website climbs the search engine rankings and reaps the rewards of improved online visibility. Don't wait – take action today to unlock the full potential of your digital presence.