So, you’ve published a website. Integral to establishing your brand’s online presence, this is a big step, but if your business isn’t driving measurable results, it may be time for a boost in search engine optimization (SEO). Essentially, websites without SEO in place may as well be invisible. Here are some quick tips to communicate your site’s value and maximize its number of visitors.
1. Hone in on your keywords.
Arguably the most arduous task of SEO, keyword research is integral to Google’s ability to recognize your website’s purpose. Before doing anything else, sit down and discuss the words that define your organization. To evaluate your list, head over to a common keyword research tool, such as Google Ads Keyword Planner. The most fruitful keywords will likely yield results with a high traffic rate and a low number of other websites vying for them.
2. Check your page titles, meta descriptions and image alt attributes.
The most telling sign of a great Google ranking is your usage of SEO titles and tags. Just like the title to a book, title tags are the first explanation of your website’s content. Before users enter your website, the title will be displayed in the search engine result pages (SERPs). Ask yourself, “What is the main focus of each page?” This should guide you as you choose the most appropriate tag.
Equally important is the ability of a page’s meta description to draw in new readers. This is your chance to be creative. Basically, meta descriptions serve as advertisements. At no more than the length of a Tweet, write what you want to tell people about your page, being mindful of search words that may lead users to find your site. Don’t forget a call-to-action.
Last, don’t forget about image alt attributes. Not only do these tell Google about the photos on your site, but they also hint at surrounding copy on your page. An image alt tag should contain your page’s keyword or keyword phrase and a nugget of information that describes the image. Don’t be afraid to get specific!
3. Avoid keyword stuffing.
While keywords are your bread and butter, don’t overdo it. Not only will Google potentially label your website as spam, but you may turn away users due to readability. Imagine you visit a website because you’re interested in buying a cozy sweater for winter. If each sentence used the phrase “cozy sweaters” again and again, you’d be pretty turned off by the author’s blatant attempt at manipulating keyword usage. Not only is this tacky, but it might turn visitors away and decrease web traffic. As the old saying goes, “Too much of anything is never a good thing.”
4. Submit your site to Google Search Console and register with other search engines.
Verifying your site with Google Search Console pays dividends. Not only can you boost your ranking in Google’s SERPs, but you can continually track your website performance and adjust your focus keywords based on relevant metrics. Make sure you register the www and non-www versions of your website in the Search Console, because as users organically search for your site, they may type both versions into the search bar.
Now that you’ve put in some work, you’ve not only identified your website’s purpose according to Google, but you may be able to glean some insights that will boost your site’s traffic and, most importantly, assist you in reaching your overall business objectives.