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KellyB | KellyB

SEO Guide: How to improve the ranking of your website

Nov 16th 2015 at 12:47 AM

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SEO stands for Search Engine optimization, and has become more difficult and complex in the last few years. SEO is a marketing discipline. It focuses on growing visibility in organic search engine results, and aims towards increased awareness in search engines, highly driven traffic, and improved rankings. A few years ago it was enough to build links, add some keywords, and create a landing page. But today, you need to optimize several different aspects of the website, to simply make sure that search engines understand the way your website is structured. These are some key steps to performing a successful SEO job.

Keyword Research

The first step of the SEO process. What you need are phrases or keywords that people are using to find websites. Keywords with a high search volume and low competition have a higher potential. However, these words are limited and cannot support a whole SEO campaign on their own. In those cases, you should focus on adding long tail keywords, because today’s searches are up to 4 keywords long. This makes it easier to move up on the rankings chart. You can check the parameters of your site at website SEO checkers, and your competitors’ websites also (for new keywords to target).

Technical Optimization

How do search engines know that your website is out there? They use crawlers, software created to read your site’s code and text. In order for a crawler to completely understand the website’s content, it has to be technically perfect. Focus on important technical points such as:

  • URL structure - Keep an URL under 100 characters long, and use dashes instead of underscores;
  • Title tags – They should be unique, have basic keywords at the beginning, and up to 160 characters long;
  • Heading tags – Headings are visible to all site visitors, and are part of an HTML. You can choose between six different headings (H1-H6), but every page should have just one, unique H1 heading;
  • Meta description tags – Should contain a 2-sentence-long page description, and be unique for every page;
  • Duplicate content - If an exact same contents exist under more different URLs on you website, it can negatively affect your rankings. Create redirections between multiple versions, or remove duplicate content.
  • Sitemaps and rich media – Your website must contain an XML because search engines use an XML sitemap protocol. Also, media (image, sound, and video) should have a related tag that briefly describes the media content.

Usability

By creating a website of high quality that people will want to use, you can easily improve your website’s rank. Clearly label different parts of your website, so users can find their way around with no problem. Good navigation should cover your entire site, because search engines may rank a multitude of pages simultaneously. Otherwise, visitors will not be able to explore your website, but stuck on one page. It should have good form, navigation, function, and visual design. Except for blog posts, no page should be longer than 800 words, containing relevant keywords.

Content Marketing

The content on your site should be fresh, useful, and engaging. It is the foundation of good SEO, so create: quality blog posts (it increases your site’s authority); guides, ebooks and other written content (for attracting new links) visual content like charts and infographics (again, attracts new links).

Social Media Strategy

Social media engagement is an important part of every successful SEO campaign nowadays. First, set your goals for social media, and perform a research to understand the audience that are interested in your market. Choose social media platforms that you will use by finding where your target audience is most active. Decide on the content you wish to post, and posting frequency. Also, connecting with influencers (people with a lot of followers) can very beneficial.

Link Building

Links are an important ranking factor. Links should be acquired from a diversity of popular domains, and link building should be done in a way so it attracts links in a natural way. The most basic link building techniques are guest blogging, broken link building, and contests or giveaways.

 

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