To start with, we can categorically say that search engine optimization means the process of getting traffic from the free, organic, or natural search results on search engines. Every business that wishes to survive online most definitely cannot avoid the use of SEO as a digital marketing tool.
One of SEO’s major Digital Marketing (Internet) strategies is that it considers how search engines work, what people are actually searching for, the particular and specific search terms or keywords typed into search engines and which search engines are preferred by the targeted audience. “SEO will help you position your website properly to be found at the most critical points in the buying process or when people need your site.”
Here are some of the basic essential things to take into consideration when optimizing your website.
What Search Engines Are Looking For
It is imperative to note that Search engines intend to do their best by referring users to websites and content that is the most relevant to what the user is looking for. Here is how to determine how relevancy.
- Content:Is determined by the theme that is being given, the text on the page, and the titles and descriptions that are given.
- Performance:This is determined by the speed of your site and how well it works.
- Authority:Does your site have good enough content to link to or do other authoritative sites use your website as a reference or cite the information that’s available?
- User Experience:This is characterized by how the site looks and how easy it is to navigate, how safe it looks and how high is the bounce rate.
What Search Engines Are NOT Looking For
Search engine spiders only have a certain amount of data storage, so if you’re performing shady tactics or trying to trick them, chances are you’re going to hurt yourself in the long run. Items the search engines don’t want are:
- Keyword Stuffing:Overuse of keywords on your pages.
- Purchased Links:Buying links will get you nowhere when it comes to SEO, so be warned.
- Poor User Experience:Make it easy for the user to get around. Too many ads and making it too difficult for people to find content they’re looking for will only increase your bounce rate. If you know your bounce rate it will help determine other information about your site. For example, if it’s 80 percent or higher and you have content on your website, chances are something is wrong.
Be Consistent With Domain Names
Domain naming is so important to your overall foundation, so as a best practice you’re better off using sub-directory root domains (example.com/awesome) versus sub-domains (awesome.example.com). Some other best practices with domain names are:
- Consistent Domains:If you type in www.example.com, but then your type in just example.com and the “www” does not redirect to www.example.com that means the search engines are seeing two different sites. This isn’t effective for your overall SEO efforts as it will dilute your inbound links, as external sites will be linking to www.example.com and example.com.
- Keep it Old School:Old domains are better than new ones, but if you’re buying an old domain, make sure that the previous owner didn’t do anything shady to cause the domain to get penalized.
- Keywords in URL:Having keywords you’re trying to rank for in your domain will only help your overall efforts.
- Focus on Your Meta Data Too
Your content on your site should have title tags and meta descriptions.
- Meta keywords are pretty much ignored by search engines nowadays, but if you still use them, make sure it talks specifically to that page and that it is also formatted correctly.
- Your meta description should be unique and also speak to that specific page. Duplicate meta descriptions from page to page will not get you anywhere.
Title tags should also be unique! Think your title as a 4-8 word ad, so do your best to entice the reader so they want to click and read more.