5 Steps to Improve Website SEO
Following these five simple steps will improve your website SEO.
Continuing to work on these five areas will absolutely move your website up the search engine rankings.
1. Write Content
- Increase your Google listings by adding new pages to your website.
- Each page should cover a single topic.
- Ensure your page-title is well written and contains the keywords you want to be indexed for. This is the most important element of search engine optimisation.
See Page Title Format
- Write an impressive meta-description. This is your sales copy and is not used by search engines for ranking your website. You have two lines available, use them wisely.
See Meta Description Format
- Content headings. Use a main heading on each page in keeping with the page title and your page keywords. As per standard copy writing procedure use subheadings and short paragraphs to make it easier for people to read quickly and absorb your message.
- Extensive content. The larger the quantity of relevant content included on a page the better for search engine indexing. There is no penalty for a lot of content, in fact it is the opposite.
- Manually check results by searching on Google for your search terms.
Also monitor search engine results with Google Analytics.
2. Page Title Format
Google Search for “Section 32” https://www.google.com.au/search?q=section+32
This is a good example of a page title:
- 50 characters (including spaces), less than optimum 55 characters.
- Starts with main keyword “Section 32”.
Initially keep page titles under 55 characters in length.
Possibly add additional words later if looking for different search results.
55 characters is a reasonable title-length limit under the latest Google search results design, but the length can vary due to letter and word widths. See below, old design and new design below.
Google still processes keywords beyond the cut-off (including for ranking purposes), and other formats, like vertical results and Google+, may display your full titles.
- 80% – 57 characters (81.6%)
- 90% – 56 characters (91.6%)
- 95% – 55 characters (95.8%)
- 99% – 53 characters (98.7%)
- 99.9% – 49 characters (99.9%)
If all title tags were exactly 55 characters long, then you could expect about 95% of them to be left alone (1 in 20 would be cut off).
Use Yoast SEO preview as a good indication of how your title will appear.
3. Meta Description Format
- Use Yoast SEO to determine length.
- Write compelling “sales” copy for these two lines as the page title and these two lines are the items that prompt users to click-through to the website.
- The meta description is not used by Google to rank pages, so the page keywords are not important here. However, if the keywords are relevant to the user and the click-through page then incorporate them into the two lines.
4. Content Format
H1 – Post title
H2 – First subheading and subsequent main subheadings.
H3 – Subheadings within H2 tags.
H4 – Subheadings within H3 tags.
H5/H6 – As per H3 and H4 structure.
Paragraphs should be sharp and straight to the point within the first line so users can quickly scan down the page reading the subheadings and where interested the start of each paragraph.
Add extended content, further down the page, for both Google to index and readers who are interested in reading everything on the page. Google loves content.
5. Ongoing Work
Adding information and new pages to your website should never cease. If the structure of your content is being added regularly with your page titles, meta-descriptions, headings, subheadings and content in position the search engine listings will generally look after themselves.
However, there is a multitude of other things you can do to increase traffic and business online. You may want to consider doing something in the following areas. These are listed in priority order.
- Google+/My Business page. Add posts with information about your website.
- Listings on credible business directories.
- LinkedIn page.
- A separate blog with posts containing a brief description that points to the full page on your website.
- Using Google Adwords sparingly (or more depending on budget) is an option, but organic search results will always provide better quality leads. Google Adwords used in conjunction with quality content is beneficial. Return on spend needs to be monitored very carefully.
- Low priority: SEO Expert or Search Engine Marketer could be considered if you cannot achieve the ranking positions you desire. Be very careful when selecting a company for this work.
- Low priority: Twitter announcing new posts on your blog, topics on your website and “re-Tweets” of relevant information.
- Low priority: Facebook announcing new posts, topics, etc.
Remember the default position is always add new content in preference to anything else.
All of the above points have merit, but other than the first three, I would always spend the time and money on writing content as a preference.
Some SEO Tools We Use
Below is a link to some of the tools we use to assist us with SEO. Yes, it is an affiliate link, but we like this product because there are no ongoing monthly fees.
You can download and install any, or all, of the applications for free. A lot of the features are not available on the free versions, but if you’re only working on one website then the free version may be enough. Their Rank Tracker product is the one we use the most.