The Basics of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Getting SEO Right
Everyone who has a business with an online presence should have heard of search engine optimisation (SEO).
In 2013 there were an average of six billion searches per day through Google, which is the most prominent search engine in the UK by a significant margin, and there is intense competition to rank highly in these search results. This is because appearing towards the top of Google searches can be an extremely cost-effective way of marketing your business.
When Google was founded by Larry Paige and Sergey Brin, in an era of poor search engines, it revolutionised search through indexing and the concept of back-links. The premise was that if your content was well organised and there were a large number of links back to your site, particularly from high traffic sites, then your site deserved a high search ranking.
Google now uses complex algorithms to judge your site, which are updated regularly.
These changes need to be considered and, as a bare minimum, here are the basics that you should be adhering to.
Website Set-up for SEO
This should be your primary focus as Google is focusing more and more on good practices when it comes to website builds. Your website should, amongst other things:
• Have unique and accurate page titles
• Have completed ‘description’ meta tag, preferably a unique description for each page
• Have simple to understand URLs and avoid generic page names like ‘/page 1’
• Be easy to navigate (try to avoid the need for dozens of clicks to access information
• Contain compelling and useful content. This is hugely influential as people will be more likely to stay on your site and direct others towards it
• Have useful link text, opposed to ‘click here’
• Pictures: make the most of the file name and avoid ‘image1’
• Use a heading tag to highlight important text
• Combat spam with ‘nofollow’, which can be important if you have a comments section with links to poor sites
• If you have a mobile site, ensure that you allow ‘Googlebot-mobile’ to access your site
• Contain a blog that is regularly updated
Now, if you do all of the above you will be well on the way to achieving a better ranking in Google. Although please bear in mind that it can take many months for the fruits of your labour to become visible!
We will focus on further ways to improve your SEO in future articles, however do not hesitate to contact us if you require any assistance!