SEO can be confusing but these simple steps will make it easy to do.
Depending where you are with SEO on your site, you may have completed some or all of these steps, generally this is the order that I like step through when creating a website or webpage from scratch. These steps are also used for reviewing a webpage.
Feel free to jump to the next step or steps you want to focus on.
This is not a complete detailed list of all the steps for SEO success, you may want to search for more detail on any one of these steps.
When creating a site from the beginning one of the first items that you will think of is the web address or uniform resource locator (URL).
You most likely will want a URL that is:
So before you finalize on the URL, do some research for key words that would be searched for and can be used in your domain name. Would qdclknk349sdvhohiqedc.info or seowebpage.info be easier to remember or share with friends?
You may also want to look at a list of internet top-level domains (TLDs) for your website such as .com .info .us .ca .me .org .net etc.
You may have heard that content is king or the most important item for a website success.
I have seen many sites that look great but have very little for content! They get the majority of their web traffic from paid links or advertising, this method of attracting traffic can get very expensive. Currently search engines can not read or look at images or pictures and understand them like a human does. They need to be able to read some content to determine what a webpage is about. Google has Webmaster Guidelines for content which every webmaster should read.
Do your homework and find out what is being searched for that is similar to your subject. Analyse how these search words/terms could be used on your website, and make sure your pages/content are primarily for users, not for search engines. Do not deceive your users.
Do not try to use all of your key words on every page. Focus each page to four to six key words per page.
Make sure you check the spelling, there are lots of free spell check programs available. Remember, lots of spelling errors or typos do not represent your site or business very well.
The meta Title tag is a snippet of HTML code that belongs inside the <head> </head> section of a webpage. The title tag should:
The meta Description tag is another snippet of HTML code that belongs inside the <head> </head> section of a webpage. Normally it comes after the Title tag, although the order is not important. The description tag should:
The meta Key Words tag is another snippet of HTML code that belongs inside the <head> </head> section of a webpage. Normally it comes after the Description tag, although the order is not important.
This tag has been abused by many Black Hat SEO and webmasters so many search engines do not use or consider it. If you do use it, make sure you are not abusing the meta tag.
If you are using the Key Word tag we will have only between four to seven key words and we make sure they are also used in the content of the page.
The <h1> to <h6> tags are used to define HTML headings and denote section headings. Search engines use your headings to index the structure and content of your web pages.
The use of images on a page should add value to the visitors visit and not be some pretty addition.
Having images with meaningfully file names also helps the search engines to understand the content on the page; which is more meaningful lnvfbibevib.jpg or faster_seo_results.jpg?
When adding images make sure you use the alt tag that goes along with the image.
I've seen some very fancy looking menu systems in my career, the problem with them has been either the search engines could not follow the links to find the other pages or a visitor could not use the menu on the device they were using. I've even seen a menu with blue background with red lettering, this would not been seen with someone that was colour blind.
Make sure your menu is easy to use by your visitor and meets their needs, not your wants!
Links is a method which one could link any two pages of information into a "trail" of related information, and then scroll back and forth among pages in a trail. Generally you should keep each webpage with 100 or less links, going over this number leads search engines to consider the webpage a spammy (unsolicited and unwanted) type of page, which you do not what.
Use a HTML page validator, nothing is worse than going to lots of work and have an error on the page that stops search engines from reading your page. The search engines are getting better at understanding common errors but why take a chance. A very popular validator is W3C Markup Validation Service which is easy to use and is free.
There is also an validator for your css code, CSS Validation Service from W3C.
The major search engines provide a service for Webmasters to review their site. It's a free service and a must do item if you are serious about doing SEO for a website. These tools help you to find errors in your site and help you solve these errors.
You might be surprise to see this as the last step. After your hard work with the above items it is always good to review your webpage with a tool like the seowebpage.info to check to see if you missed something or used some words too many times.
There is a site where I found that they used 'Check Price' so many times that search engines had 'check' and 'price' as the main key words for the site when it should of been something else.
Technical Note: Some of the links on this page do not pass the W3C validation test, but when they are changed to the standard Google serves a 404 error (page not found), so we must use an non standard URL link.
There are many other items which can improve your site from usability and crawl ability. This is a simple list of steps for basic SEO to get success with your website. Over the past decade I've seen people chasing the latest SEO fad/trend with poor results while other people who keep to the basics have their site grow with success. This is not to say the fads/trends are not important but the basics are more important.
For monitoring and tracking your website's effectiveness, Google Analytics can be a helpful tool that works well. If you are a big or a small business, Google Analytics is extremely helpful, as it provides statistics on the number of visitors to your site. There are other analytics tools available, just make sure you are at least using one analytics tool and tracking your visitors.
This is a very common method of delivering a mobile optimized website. You have a mobile site on a different sub-domain, such as m.url.com, keeping all of your mobile content on different set of URLs.
The two most important points if you're using this method are:
Remember that speed matters with mobile web pages and URLs.
Social media SEO, now that's a whole new subject and we will leave that for another page.
Do not trust SEO consultants who guarantee search engine position results (SEPR). If you don't believe me, see what Google has to say:
Google Quote on Guarantee Rankings: Beware of SEOs that claim to guarantee rankings, allege a "special relationship" with Google, or advertise a "priority submit" to Google. There is no priority submit for Google. In fact, the only way to submit a site to Google directly is through our Add URL page or by submitting a Sitemap and you can do this yourself at no cost whatsoever.
There will always be SEOs who try to trick the search engines algorithm (do you remember the white text on white background method), but search engines are always on the hunt to penalize dirty tactics. Despite the search engine algorithm updates, many people still use these sneaky tactics in hopes of improving their rankings.
Start on the road to SEO success with our free SEO - Search Engine Optimization tool, evaluate your website here.