With the majority of web users accessing websites through search engines, search engine optimization is no longer an activity that website owners can ignore or take lightly. However, most of them mistakenly assume that SEO only involves writing great content for a website. Unfortunately, there is much more involved, and it all starts at the site’s most basic structure. The following are the essential building blocks of search engine optimization that all website owners must be aware of before starting the process:
A website can have excellent marketing features and great keyword targeting. However, if the code is clumsy or messy, crawlers will not be able to index the website. Therefore, to run a successful SEO campaign, it is important to start with the code. There are several web standards that web designers and coders must adhere to in order to make the website search engine friendly. They should also ensure that there are no black hat SEO techniques hidden in the code, as this could get a website banned.
When designing a website, it is important to ensure that everything adds value and helps in the site’s search engine optimization efforts. This is by creating appropriate titles, meta descriptions and naming images and videos appropriately. It is also important to ensure that the website is easy to navigate, and that the links are working. This way, when spiders crawl through the code, they can get all the information they need to index and rank the page appropriately.
To rank higher in search engines, the most valuable content should be in HTML text format. This is because flash files and java applets are often ignored by crawlers. To ensure non-text files are indexed, it is advisable to provide an ‘alt’ text for images, include a transcript for videos and supplement java plugins with text on the page. Search engines see sites very differently from how users see it. For example, a site built entirely on flash displays nothing to a search engine, though web users view it as a beautiful and interactive site.
Another very important factor when coding a website is responsiveness. Search Engine Optimization helps make websites more visible and accessible to searchers. However, many searchers these days access websites on their mobile devices. If a website is not optimized for a mobile device, it may lose a lot of potential clients and subscribers.
A lot of focus is placed on content, and for good reason. Content is king in the search engine optimization world. It is important for the search engine optimizer to get the appropriate keywords and to create useful and informative content. Website owners should remember that major search engines such as Google have algorithms that penalize websites that have thin content. It is important to ensure that the content on the website is rich in information, and useful to the person who visits the website.
Content also makes it possible for the website to become visible to a search engine. Search spiders only read what they can see. If a picture is not labelled appropriately, they cannot index it appropriately. If the content does not have the appropriate keywords, the spiders cannot rank the page highly for that keyword. However, website owners should not stuff keywords, as search engines can easily spot this and penalize the site. The content should sound natural when a site visitor reads it.
A website’s content should also connect with the right audience. Website owners can try to include geographical locations to target people in a specific area. If conversion is the goal, it is important for the content to inspire or encourage visitors to perform an action such as subscribe to a newsletter or purchase a product.
Quality content not only attracts new visitors to a website, it also keeps them coming. The popularity of a website can show search engines that it is considered relevant for a particular keyword, thus increasing its ranking. It is also advisable to update the content on the site once a week or after two weeks to give spiders new reasons to re-crawl the site.
Major search engines use various criteria to rank a website highly on its pages. Even if a website is well designed and has relevant and keyword-rich content, it may still not appear on the first few pages of search engines results pages. This is because search engines also consider a website’s credibility or authority when ranking it.
In order to have a competitive advantage, a website has to get authoritative links from other websites that are relevant to its industry. When there are various links to your website, search engine algorithms get the message that your website is important, trustworthy, credible and authoritative.
The more authoritative and popular a site, the more valuable a link from it is. However, it is important for website owners to know that search engines can penalize a website if it uses dubious means to build links, such as using link farms and buying links. In link building, quality of back-links is more important than quantity of back-links.
While increasing visibility and accessibility is the main goal of search engine optimization, the site may not serve any purpose if it does not get any conversion. Therefore, it is important for website owners to ensure that they include information on the website that encourages a user to perform a specific action. This can be in the form of subscribing to a newsletter, sharing on social media pages, buying a product or even signing up for a webinar.
Sometimes, a website’s search engine optimization efforts do not increase traffic, conversion or leads. This could be because the website did not target the right audience or optimize the right keyword. It is advisable for websites to use web analytic tools to monitor and analyze their site’s traffic. They can also use free tools from Google to evaluate the keywords and phrases that increase conversions via paid search, as well as new phrases they can use on their site.
To guarantee success, it is better to hire a company that ensures the website is optimized from the designing and coding phases to the content creation phase. SEO Tampa companies have experienced and qualified web designers and SEO experts who can ensure that everything on the website works well so that it is friendly to both search engines and site visitors.