A beginner’s guide to SEO

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is a technique used to enhance a websites positioning on search engine result pages (SERP’s) such as Google. This guide covers some basics.

  1. Site Speed

Recent studies show that a delay of a single second in page response time can yield a 7% reduction in conversions. Can you afford to lose potential custom from your visitors?

Here are some good website speed test tools you can use that may help to highlight any issues which you can pass onto your web design team

  1. http://tools.pingdom.com/fpt/
  2. http://whichloadsfaster.zomdir.com/
  3. http://www.webpagetest.org/
  4. https://gtmetrix.com/
  5. https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/

If your results aren’t optimal, don’t worry – there are many ways to increase your site speed.

  1. Essential Tag Fundamentals
    In on-page SEO, the major types of Meta tags that you should pay close attention to are:

1). Title tags: When you’re writing your webpage title tag, it should be short, clear, and descriptive. The ideal length is 50 – 60 characters. If your title tags exceed 60 characters, Google will only show the ­first 60.

2). Meta description: The meta description is used by search engines to gauge which topic you’re writing about and the exact audience they should send to that page. So make it descriptive and short – no more than 160 characters.

  1. Creating Content That Drives Search Tra­ffic
    1. When creating content ask yourself the following questions. If you answer “yes” to all of them, then you are creating a high quality article.1. Is my content interesting to read?
    2. Is my content in-depth and well-written?
    3. Is my content written with the user in mind?
    4. Is my content easy to share?
    5. Is my content optimised for my keywords?
  1. Optimising your website design and content
    Present your content and design in a way that users can ­find what they’re looking for immediately. Improve your design. Make your site easy to navigate, legible, and choose the combination of colours wisely.

If you want to improve your search rankings, you need to consider two aspects of your content:

i). Avoid low-quality content:
For your content to be high-quality, you’ve got to research adequately, and spend enough time writing the best content you’re capable of. By providing relevant, fresh and unique content you should see an increase in traffic to your website.

ii). Avoid thin content:
For product descriptions 300 words or more is fine but if you decide to write in-depth articles of  2000 words or more, recent stats have found that content length affects rankings.
Check that Google can access all of your content

To check if there’s any broken link present on your site, log in to Google Webmaster Tools with your existing Google account or sign up for free. Click on the “Health” tab at the top left, and then hover over crawl errors.

Check if there are any of the following link types:

1. Broken links
2. Poor Internal linking
3. Complex URL
4. Dynamic pages
5. Error in Robots.txt
6. Orphan pages
7. 301 pages
8. 404 pages

If any problems are detected these should be fixed immediately.

  1. Mobile Device Friendly (Responsive)
    You can always check whether or not your blog/website is responsive through Google’s mobile-friendliness test tool. Just pop your website address into the search box, then click the blue “ANALYZE” button.

    Every day more people are surfing the Internet on smart phones and tablets. To maximise your target audience a mobile responsive design is needed. If your website is more than a few years old the chances are it isn’t responsive.To find out more about responsive website design watch our easy to follow video.

If you need help optimising your website contact us