There are many things that you can do to optimize your website for better ranking in the search engines. Although not a comprehensive list the following tips will help anyone to achieve a better ranking for their website.
If your site is already established then there is not a lot you can do about the domain name but if you are developing a new site then you can obtain the best name possible.
If you can purchase a domain name that is keyword rich then you are well on your way. If you can also match the domain name so that it describes your site or the product you are selling even better. For example wickerpicnicbaskets.com/net/org or .co.uk/org.uk perfectly describes what you are selling and includes all the main keywords.
Whether you purchase the com/net/org/co.uk/org.uk variation will depend on the market you are aiming at. If you are aiming at the US or global market then go for com/net/org but if you are solely marketing to the UK marketplace then purchase the co.uk if available followed by org.uk.
Arguably, one of the most important elements of on-page SEO is the title tag as what you put between the <title></title> tags is considered by the search engines as THE most important information about the page it is viewing.
The temptation is to stuff as many keywords in as possible but this can dilute the effect. Try and keep it short and to the point.
The Meta Description tag determines what is displayed as the snippet of text below the clickable title link in the results pages.
You can actually control what is displayed and it should be keyword rich with your domain name keyword used at least once and be descriptive and to the point. If you are aiming for organic search traffic then you want your snippet content to draw your potential customer in.
Many SEO specialists view meta keywords as irrelevant nowadays but I still think that search engines still place some value on them. You are basically explaining in a few short words what the content of your website consists of.
Use a maximum of 10 keywords separated with just a comma (no space after the comma).
The search engines like to see everything in a nice orderly structure and it is imperative that you use the heading tags in the correct manner. The search engines look to the headings of yourpage content to quickly determine what the content consists of. If youdon’t make the most of this fact then you will seriously harm your on-page SEO.
It is imperative that you only use the H1 tag once on any given page.
You also need to structure your H1 tag as close to your domain name and title as you can. By putting your targeted keyword/s in the domain name, title and H1 tag you are placing extra emphasis on the fact that your content is important.
You should use the H2 tags for sub-headings. Use a variation of the main keyword but keep it targeted.
H3 to H6 Tags
From H3 to H6 it is simply a case of using the tag that you think best represents the importance of the content you are wrapping the tags around.
Image Alt Tags
Search engines can only read text. Images with alt tags allow search engines to match the description to the site’s content possibly aiding in search engine rankings.
Aids for the partially sited include readers that can tell them the image’s text description and allow them to understand accompanying information about your images.
The search engines love quality unique content.
Never use someone elses content. Use it for research but always ensure that you use your own words.
Don’t overuse your keywords. A good rule of thumb is around 5%. So, for every 100 words you can mention your keywords 5 times.
MORE SEO IDEAS
Here are a few more ideas for optimising your website and attracting the search engines .
1. The search engines love websites that have stood the test of time and are well established. When your domain name becomes 2 years old and more the engines will like this.
2. When designing your search engine friendly website focus on a niche market with targeted visitors.
3. Choose keyword phrases that match your site’s theme ensuring that you will rank higher for those keywords and making your site more search engine friendly. Find out what keyword phrases your potential visitors are searching for and build a keyword list based on this. You will need to build a large keyword list that you can add onto. You will need these keywords as you continue to add pages to your site.
4. Always have your target market as a leading focal point and create a general theme which you can develop around on each page. If a potential customer clicks from page to page on your website they should still feel that they are on the same site. Using the same font style, font size and background color are simple methods of achieving this.
5. Stuff your site with quality and unique content. This is what the search engines love. A website that contains original quality content will consistently rank high with the search engines. Remember also that you can always create unique content by adding your own affiliate links, PPC text links and banners.
The 3 main things you want your keywords to do are:
1) Bring traffic to your website.
2) Enable you to get a high ranking against the competition.
3) Convert to sales.
Here are some tips to achieving these.
Let’s start with keyword research. There are many tools available to perform keyword research but the free keyword tool from Google is as good a place to start.
Now that Google shows an estimated number of average monthly impressions (instead of just the old green bar), the Google tool can really help with your keyword research.
Here’s a way to find the best keywords for your website using Google’s Keyword Research Tool
Step 1 - Enter your root keyword into the search box. Key in one phrase at a time and from 1-4 words in length. Click on the ’Get keyword ideas’ box and wait for the results.
(You can use the alternative option to generate keyword ideas from your website’s content if you prefer).
Step 2 – Change the Match Type to Exact, which makes the results more closely match organic search and under the Show/Hide Columns make sure your settings display Approx Avg Search Volume. (If you’re marketing a seasonal product or service you might change to a different setting.)
Step 3 – Analyze the results. What we’re trying to find is the low hanging fruit: the best balance of traffic volume, ease of search engine optimization and traffic that will likely convert.
The skill now lies in choosing keywords that have decent monthly search volume and which you can confidently expect to rank highly for using your SEO skills. It is tempting to go for keywords with very high monthly search volumes but they can prove ultra difficult to compete against the competition in organic search. A good rule of thumb is to aim for keyword phrases that have 5,000 to 10,000 monthly average searches.
Develop your keyword list using this criteria.
Step 4 – You now need to assess the competing number of pages in an organic search on Google in order to decide whether you think you can comfortably optimise your site to rank highly.
Whilst you’re assessing the SERPs also look at the AdWords ads. If people are willing to pay money to bid on these keywords chances are they are profitable.
You also need to decide whether you feel that the product or service you are promoting on your site actually fits in with this page and for each keyword.
Any keywords that you set aside because you feel that the competition is too fierce can be saved for the future.
Step 5 – You can evaluate your potential keywords further by assessing their commercial viability using the Microsoft Online Commercial Intention Tool.
Keep your list of keywords that still meet your criteria and move onto the next step.
Step 6 - Dig deeper into your keyword lists potential using Google’s Traffic Estimator. Look for the relationship of average monthly impressions to estimated daily click throughs in AdWords. Do they make sense and suggest commercial intention? If one phrase has twice the monthly impressions, but only 1/2 the daily AdWords clicks, something may be wrong. You may want to look closer.
The goal isn’t just traffic, it’s traffic that converts — buys, sign up to your email list, calls or emails your company and becomes a sales lead, etc.
When you complete these steps, you should have whittled your initial keyword list down to the “lowest hanging fruit”, the most opportune phrases (easiest to rank well in) COMBINED with the largest amount of quality traffic, COMBINED with traffic that should convert.