5 easy SEO tips to help your website

With 85% of the current search engine market share, Google shouldn’t be ignored when it comes to SEO. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is vital for any online business. Without it, you run the risk of being drowned out by your competition and not being seen by the people you want or need to: your customers.

What is SEO?

SEO is a method for increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. Put simply, this means that your website should be built with the user in mind and function as easily as possible. It should also be packed full of relevant and useful content. An important thing to know about SEO is that Google has certain criteria that websites should try and adhere to in order to be favoured. For your website to be considered Google-friendly, you should anticipate such criteria as:
1. Optimised web pages with popular keywords and phrases.
2. Correctly tagged images and videos.
3. Maintaining a healthy website by performing technical SEO health checks and, for example, redirecting out-of-date pages.
4. Contextual links that introduce readers to other relevant content.

How does SEO work?

When you type “How does SEO work” in a search engine, it scours billions of pieces of content across the internet. Through a process of ‘crawling’ and ‘indexing’, the search engine scans all available content on the internet, including web pages, PDFs, videos and more. Once it’s done, it collates its findings and orders – or ranks – them by how well it matches your query based on the data it finds. Within seconds, it has filtered through thousands of relevant factors and determined which content best answers your search query on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Now you know the basics of SEO, here are five easy wins for your own website.

Research and relevant keywords

Keywords are the foundation of successful SEO. When a potential customer uses a search engine, it’s your job to pre-empt what they’re searching for. For most small businesses this will be a combination of what you or your business does and where you do it, for example: “Plumber in Hertfordshire” or “Hairdresser in South London”. There are other ways to find more keywords, including using keyword research tools like https://keywordtool.io/, but you can also search for your keywords yourself using your preferred search engine. When you search for your keywords, as you type, you will see suggestions in the search bar, which gives you an idea of similar searches. Additionally, there will also be a list of suggested keywords at the bottom of the page that also relates to what you’re searching for – make a note of these and tailor them to use too.

Optimise page titles

When we talk about optimising page content, at a most basic level we mean improving your page titles across your website. For example, in the back end of the website, use HTML, and do things like 'title' element for the page title. This will get your keywords into the title of the page in a natural way. SEO should always be done in a natural user-friendly way, which means no spamming. Remember that page titles are shown in search results so we must inform the search engines what the page is about and get a website user to click on our listing. For example, your page title may be “Emergency Plumber – available 24/7 | Marcus’s Plumbing Service”, using the keywords and HTML behind the scenes.

Optimise your page content

Now you’ve used your keyword research to tackle your page titles, you now need to look at naturally weaving these keywords into our copy. Keep in mind you normally have header tags (H1, H2, H3 etc), body content (the text on the page) and images which support your copy. These can all be optimised. You must create website copy that accurately describes and promotes your business. Your keywords are best inserted afterwards and only when the content naturally allows it to do so. Google is clever and will know when you’re trying to cheat. Stuffing your copy full of keywords runs the risk of your site penalised. Not to mention it usually reads as clumsy and generally isn’t too helpful.

Optimise your website on the web

Don’t forget about the other places your website will be seen around the internet. Social media and business directories will also have details for your business, and this information is also used by search engines to help build trust and an understanding of what you do. On your social media profiles be sure to add web links, a full business address or comprehensive description using some of those important keywords here.

Register with Google Search Console

This is the super easy tip, but sure to register your website with Google Search Console – https://search.google.com/search-console/. This tool analyses your site and provides feedback you can use to improve how your site appears in search results, and where there’s room for improvement. This is information directly from the search engine so be sure to take advantage of this free advice from Google itself.

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