This We Know About SEO
How do I optimize my website's search engine?
Well, it's complicated. Not as complicated as it used to be back in the day. Still, though, it's complicated.
That's because Google, which crawls websites for a living, uses a complex set of ever-changing algorithms to determine where your site content ranks on its search.
Not too long ago, you could "salt" your website with lots of repetitive keywords and submit site maps to make your site more visible to them. Today, though, advanced content management systems such as Zephyr are more dialed into Google's ranking requirements.
We know for certain that Google values websites that enhance the user experience, are fast and easily responsive to different devices. We also know that rich content - such as blogs, videos and valuable links - makes a huge impact.
Here are a few other "back end" tricks that help as well:
Long-Tail Keyword Integration
Your content should be rich enough that it separates your website from competitors. Google values longer keywords that are relevant to your audience. A long-tail keyword is more specific than a head keyword. The head keyword is a general term lots of people write about.
A long-tail keyword is a more specific topic or a subtopic of the head term. For example, let's say a young professional just received a large commission check, and she seeks advice on how to spend or invest it. She is more likely to input "best investment strategies for first big commission" into the Google search field rather than "investment strategies". If you are a financial planner who has written a blog on commissions, the searcher is more likely to see your content on the first page of the Google search return.
Think about how you look at all of the visual elements packed into your view at any given moment. We are a highly visual society. Research shows that poorly designed websites peppered with too many words and images turn off users. When they click away, Google lowers your overall ranking.
Too often, website content managers believe lots of animation and deep explanations of their services or products will garner more page views and longer stays. They forget that one of the main visual elements on a site is white space. Read our blog "Why Websites Look the Way They Do"
Relevant Title Tag and Meta Description
Too often, people who load content onto their websites overlook adding helpful title tags and meta descriptions. This is the information that appears when you search a term and Google pings the list of recommended reading. Google searches the title and metadata, too. Your title and descriptive meta information should be inviting and clear about why the reader should engage.
Your website reputation matters. If Google views your site as authoritative in your industry, it will rank you higher. The best way to gain street cred is to have other reputable sites in your industry link to your content. This takes some work. You need to network with others in your industry and offer to share content. For example, see if you can get an industry association to publish or link to your blog. You also should offer to link their content on your website.
Fast Page Speeds
Research shows us that more than 80 percent of users expect pages to load in three seconds or less. Google monitors your website bounce rate and ranks it lower if it is slow. Read our blog "Google Has a Need for Speed From Your Website"
Between 50 and 80 percent of all website views come from mobile devices, and that Google’s algorithms prioritize mobile-friendly websites. If your website was not designed for all four types of devices (smartphone, tablet, laptop and desktop), you should consider investing in a new one.