The 3 most important things you need to know
This article is about how to do SEO, what it is, why you need it and the 3 most important things you need to know about SEO. SEO is a topic I’m often asked about. It’s a topic that is often surrounded by mystery and misinformation.
In fact, I think it’s so important that any website I build has SEO included and when I hand over a site, I show clients what they need to do. SEO is also included in the modules for my Website Building Course.
This article gives you the three most important things you need to know about SEO so you can improve the likelihood of your website appearing top of the results when someone searches for what you offer.
1. Every page counts
The first thing to know is that every page in your website can be listed in search results. Automated programmes called ‘search bots’ exist to search and index every file they can find on the web. This could be pages, posts, images, documents, videos, audios – anything and everything. They do this by following links from existing websites, ‘seeing’ what’s on the page and indexing the content in it’s massive database.
When someone does a search, the search engine checks its database of indexed pages and calls up a list of what it thinks are the most relevant pages related to the search that person made.
Typically you may have many different services or products. You might also have many different problems that get solved by your one same service or solution. This means you can optimise each page for different specific services, products or problems and you don’t have to worry about cramming everything in your home page where too much info can cause overwhelm and inaction.
Not only that, if you cram too many different topics on the same page, then the search bot doesn’t know what the page should best be indexed for and that will cause your page not to be ranked very well in search results.
2. Blogging – best SEO tactic
So now you know that each page in your website can be optimised for different keywords and phrases, what next? Create more of what Google likes. Create more pages or posts with information that is unique and original. Also called ‘blogging’. Blogging is the number one thing you can do to easily help your SEO rankings.
Guru’s advocate blogging because it’s a great way to show your authority and expertise in what you do. You can have several articles that cover different angles of what you do.
Google favours fresh frequent content
Google is interested in making sure the search results it delivers to users are relevant, offer good value and quality. Since blog posts are useful and content rich, Google loves them. Which means that helpful and useful articles giving value are favoured in search results. When you blog frequently, the search bots learn to visit frequently to check out the new content and index it.
3. How Google knows what your article is about
The Google search bots don’t see any imagery, colours schemes, formats. They just see the text and code. It looks at and analyses the phrases and words used. It looks in the title, headings and in the article itself. The page is then indexed according to the most frequently used words and phrases and what it thinks the page or post is about.
If those are the words your potential client is using in their search term, then Google will call up a list of web pages using those phrases and keywords.
Put it another way, use the phrases and terms that your potential client is searching for in your blog posts and web content.
If your blog title and description matches the phrase the user put in the search engine, then your article is more likely to appear somewhere at the top of that list of results.
When your blog article is the only one with that particular phrased used in the title, description then boom – you go top of the list.
But if it’s a competitive term or phrase, then you need to make sure that phrase appears in the article itself, in some sub-headings and you have images also named with the phrase. Then boom, that will get you to the top of the list of search results.
Smart Blogging – How to do SEO
Creating articles that use your potential clients search phrases is such a simple strategy to implement and hands down better than any other strategy. If you only do that, then you’re already leaps above your competitors who aren’t blogging smartly. That’s how to do SEO.
I have a blog post called ‘WordPress or Wix, which is better’. Do a search for that term and at the time of writing (January 2017) you’ll see it comes in the top 10 of the results. It’s a fairly competitive term as you’ll also see some big guns listed wth my lil’ ol’ blog post.
Notice how I’ve used that term ‘WordPress or Wix which is better’ throughout the article, title and image. That’s how to do SEO.
However, word of warning – what doesn’t work is what’s known as keyword stuffing. Keyword stuffing is the practice of inserting keywords into the text so that it doesn’t make any sense. Or even sneakier, making those keywords ‘invisible’ to humans by making the text the same colour as the background. This gives the illusion of a blank section to humans. But search bots can see it because it ignore font colours. Keyword stuffing is NOT how to do SEO.
Google search bots have become very clever and smart. When they come across a web page with sentences that don’t make sense they know. They know the page is trying to rank high with keywords just for the sake of it. It doesn’t create any value for the reader. So, not only does it ignore the page, it also penalises it. The whole website is put onto the naughty step (technically known as the ‘sandbox’) which is very difficult to get off.
So there you have how to do SEO, the 3 most important things to know about search engine optimisation explained in non-geek speak.
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