Spend more than ten minutes online and it is clear that not all sites are the same. A poorly executed website not only looks badly upon the programmer or designer, but it also defeats the entire purpose of creating an online presence in the first place. The fact is that if a customer cannot easily access your site, then your website will not get the exposure it needs to produce enough traffic to generate leads.
The following four tips for designing an SEO friendly website are essential to overall success online.
There are hundreds of search engines on the internet. However, YouTube, Google, Bing, and Yahoo are among the top ten truly successful that business owners should be using. One of the criteria search engines use for placement are relevant keywords that match the meaning of your website. If you overly use keywords on your website or other web properties or choose the wrong, irrelevant terms; then your target audience may never find your site.
To avoid or correct this issue, consider your customer target goals. Place yourself in the shoes of your potential customer and research the keyword terms or phrases you would use to find
your products or services. Then, create keywords and keyword placement that list. Check the chosen words with a keyword tool, such as Google’s Keyword Planner, to see their popularity. Finalize your keyword decision and add them to your website strategically.
So you have decided on which keywords to use, but where do they go? Can you just throw them in randomly or do specific placement guidelines exist?
You should strategically place keywords in certain areas on your site. Your site should tell a story to the search engines. The keywords or phrases you choose, tells them how and where they should rank it. I used the word strategically because there are particular places on a web page where it is necessary to have your keywords inserted. You do not want your site characterized as being spammy; so be sure not to over-optimize your website with the same keyword. Below are some of the most important places on your site that you should insert keywords:
The title tag, meta description, URL, H tags (1, 2 and 3), Alt text (images) and the main website/web page content.
URL’s and File Names
To increase your site’s visibility to the search engines, it is necessary that they can identify URL names quickly. Make sure you are using relevant keywords within your URL structure for each of your web pages. Relevant keywords or phrases tell Google what the page is about and how and where to rank that page. It also lets your visitors know that they are on the right page for whatever it is they are searching. Check out these examples of a website about Jack Russell Terriers:
An example of a bad URL: www.yourwebsite.com/1245littledogs
An example of a goog URL: www.yourwebsite.com/jack-russell-terriers-are-great-little-dogs
The second URL would receive much search engine love because it is descriptive and relevant to the website’s niche.
Naming your images with relevant keywords are important as well. For example, black-jack-russell-terriers.jpg will appear in Google images search over absiew284.jpg. No one is going to click on the second choice if he or she is searching for images of a black Jack Russell terrier but the first image will receive clicks, and the chances of that visitor going to your website are a lot higher.
Social media plays a significant role in designing a search engine friendly website. It allows you to build a trusted community and keeps you connected to your current customers or clients, build your brand, show your expertise and acquire new customers. When those customers give reviews, share your links or like your content and follow you; this gives your website exposure and instant credibility. These are as social signals, and they play a significant role in how search engines, specifically Google, rank your website. Social signals are an excellent way of getting exposure, trust, and credibility.
Once you design your website, make sure you sign up with the four most important social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.
Your bright, shiny new website can be the most beautiful thing on the internet. However, if no one else sees it, what’s the point? If you want a solid online presence, you must incorporate the above SEO tactics. They are simple and efficient methods for getting your website noticed and loved by the search engines.
If you have questions about designing your website or if you have a site that not SEO friendly, then let us help. Click here for our RVA search engine marketing services.
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Image Credits: Images on this page appear courtesy of Sujin Jetkasettakorn, KROMKRATHOG, Stuart Miles, Idea go and sritangphoto at FreeDigitalPhotos.net