Search Engine Optimization Strategies
Search engine optimization can be an overwhelming task. Fortunately, with a bit of organization and planning, it can be a very straightforward process. Here is a checklist for making sure a website is optimized.
Build a Useful Website
The first step in any SEO checklist should be to ensure that the site is useful. In order to help gauge a site’s usefulness, one should do a self-reflection as to whether he or she would frequent the site if they were looking for information on a particular topic.
Additionally, one should seek to have original content that is updated on a regular basis. Shady black hat techniques and manipulation tricks should be avoided, as it will only hurt the site in the long run.
Have a Game Plan
Search engine optimization is not something that should be done haphazardly. Site owners should know what terms and phrases they are optimizing their site for. This is not something that can be guessed, it has to come from keyword research.
Also, a plan for obtaining inbound links should be considered. Key questions should be evaluated. What sites would make good link partners? How can one engage site owners to exchange links or even link with no exchange necessary?
As soon as a domain is registered there should be a plan for tracking a website’s traffic and statistics. Knowing where traffic is coming from helps immensely with knowing how effective certain efforts are.
A statistics program should be put in place immediately, and not placed on the back burner for when the site is completed.
Write for Users, Not Search Engines
Though it may seem counter-intuitive, in order to rank well in search engines, one should not fill a site with content that is purely written for search engines.
It’s true that keyword density is important, however, overdoing it can lead to a site being banned or penalized. Or even worse, people won’t want to come back to the site, which negates any other marketing efforts in place.
Writing for a human audience is an essential part of building a useful website.
Start a Blog
Adding a blog to an existing website is a great way to keep content fresh. It also gives a site more pages, which can help increase search engine presence. Additionally, blogs are often linked to which helps with sites overall rankings.
Links from external sites are important, but internal links should never be overlooked. Links to various pages should be incorporated naturally into a site’s content. These links should use anchor text and not the standard “click here” phrase.
For example, instead of saying click here to read about SEO tools, it would be best to write: here’s a link to four free search engine optimization tools. Notice how the key phrase is where the link is placed.
It can be tedious and time-consuming, but each page should have its own title and description written.
If it’s done on a page-by-page basis, it shouldn’t be too much of a task to write a custom meta description for each new page. Likewise, each page should have a custom title like Meat Cutters and Boards, and not something generic like John’s Meat Supplies.
Having a checklist is place will help site owners avoid SEO mistakes and in turn, it will make the process go much more smoothly.