We’ve seen it before and we’ll see it again… someone creates their own website for their business, but they have no idea what SEO is.
If you fall into this category, don’t despair! We have some tips we want to share with you.
Many website design & publishing platforms have basic SEO functions which are easy to miss. Even then, most provide the bare minimum and don’t suggest the full scope of what should be done.
A lot of determined DIY website creators end up taking a course and do a bunch of research to figure this out. Many of these people end up outsourcing for help. Because depending on the services they use for their website, they realize that they might be limited on their capabilities.
Most of these owners stress over how much time they’ve put into having a website that’s not optimized properly. The disappointment can be so great that they turn to teams like ours to fix their website and SEO. The truth is that this scope is so big, that we have to break it down into a 3-part article!
So if you need to start making changes to develop your SEO, begin here with..
Website Improvements to make for SEO
If Google cannot crawl any web page because it encounters any kind of error, it will be omitted from being indexed. What this means is that it won’t be searchable, which means no one can find it. This is a major issue for pages that contain crucial information on your business.. because some of your important content is missing from the world’s view!
Issues that affect this can range from having a code-related error, to having duplicated content, to having a slow load time. Having a lot of large images and other content that makes a page need a long time to load creates a red flag.
There could even be an error caused by code in the backend, completely unbeknownst to you. You would need to utilize Google Search Console or a SEMRUSH report to know what these errors are, because you won’t see the issue by working on the front end of your website.
Using one or both of those services will be the only way that you’ll have information that points to how it can be fixed.
Mastering your written content goes a long way when it comes to how searchable your website is. You need to start with determining your keywords. They are the unique, specific words that would be part of what people type into search engines to discover you. It’s important to make sure these keywords are used in your opening sentences and throughout the pages. They should also be a part of your page titles, meta descriptions, and the slugs on individual (non- home or landing) pages.
Niching down in your offerings also helps you to stand out in the crowd as well. Consider how many others are in competition with you and what makes you different. If you’re in a field where there are 50 other companies that have the same offerings as you do, how do you stand out? This is just one of many reasons that companies shift course, change their image, and stick to a specialty.
You also need to keep an eye on your content and be original.
Anytime Google crawls a page and finds keyword focuses as well as written content that your name has already published elsewhere, it will ignore it. This is one way that Google works to discern potential spam, and it will downgrade your position because of it. So if this happens, your site will immediately lose credibility and drop in rankings.
It’s okay to repeat your slogan, but you should not copy & paste sections of text across your website and elsewhere.
In order to fully optimize a website, you should have links on every page. This includes both internal and external links. Having internal links (to your other pages) makes a website more user friendly. Having external links (to websites outside of yours) adds credibility to your website. You can have as many internal links as needed (buttons are the preferred way to go), but you only need 1 external link per page to meet this SEO criteria.
Many new entrepreneurs feel uneasy about linking to outside sources because they don’t want to take attention away from their business. Think of it this way instead: If you link to a larger source that validates a point you’re making, it gives you more credibility. This is all you need to consider if you don’t have any external sources you want to link to.
Make it easier for readers to stay on your website by making it so that external links open in a new tab.
A great use for external links is actually being featured on other websites, blogs, or professional groups. This is why you see a lot of businesses that get involved in other organizations. Think about where you can feature articles, videos, blog posts, and more, and you’ll have external links.
Let’s shed light on why it’s important to regularly update your website. You can have a website that looks great, has no errors, and no need for further improvement.. but it’s not the end. If you haven’t made any kind of update to your website in over 12 months, it goes “stale” and will fall in ranking. It’s Google’s way of saying “this website/business doesn’t look like it’s being utilized anymore so let’s not pay attention to it”.
But we call this Growth because the updates can come in any form. You can decide to change your branding (colours, logo, images, etc). You could change up the layout to refresh the look and feel of the website. Or you could completely rewrite your content. Sometimes, it’s also as simple as changing your offerings and adding promotions.
This is also where and why blogging comes into play. Despite it being an older format of publishing online, it’s a form of media that continues to be strong. Adding a blog to your website can provide the form of updates it needs to stay fresh. And because you only build and expand your SEO through each blog post you make, you make your website more discoverable! There are also other ways to grow online, but we’re going to talk about that in Part 2.
There are other technicalities that improve a website’s SEO! It’s everything from the reliability of the hosting source, to security measures involved, to basic web vitals. All of these things would require a lot more explanation so we’ll talk about them in separate blog posts.
If considering all this is making your gears turn but you need help to get this done, consider our SEO Services. We’d be happy to help you prosper the same way in which we’ve helped our other clients succeed!
Northnet Media is your web team, providing your business with customized web solutions including website design, SEO (search engine optimization), WordPress development, online & marketing strategy, and website & email hosting.