If you’re carrying out your SEO yourself and haven’t decided to work with an SEO agency, it is likely that you’re focused only on a few certain aspects of SEO. This is understandable, as it is unlikely you have the time or the money to commit to delving deep into the detail of SEO like an agency would.
While we understand it might be impossible for you to give SEO a consistent focus, especially if you’re a one-person operation, or you feel like you spend your days fire fighting, you should definitely be giving an extra focus to some additional search factors.
These are the areas that it is likely you prioritise already. Keyword research, as well as taking a wider look at competitors and your industry, would probably have been top of your list so you could perform the SEO basics in terms of building your site.
Using this information, most small business or new website owners will then optimise their page titles, metadata, and content, although the degree to which they’re successful at doing so will usually differ.
If this sounds like a familiar tale, then you don’t need to be kicking yourself just yet: these are all important things that should be optimised. However, to get more out of your on-page SEO, particularly if you’re not able to dedicate the time and effort you need or want to SEO, you need to be taking these added steps, too.
Ensuring that your URLs are optimised is a quick SEO win and makes your site easier to navigate. We’ve all visited websites where the URL appears like this: http://www.yourwebsite.com/038294k.
Not only does it look awful and not give you any information about what is on the page, it isn’t a good step to take for SEO. Not only do Google look closely at your URLs, they also want to see how they relate to the metadata and content you subsequently populate the page with. Labelling content as 038294k isn’t going to relate to anything, no matter how you dress it up.
If you’ve been guilty of using this type of URL in the past and are changing, be sure to set a 301-redirect so anyone who bookmarked your old page or finds it on social media can still access your content.
Gone are the days when merely submitting your XML sitemap to Google using Google Webmaster Tools was good enough to prove how strong your internal link structure and site architecture is. Although this is still an important part of SEO, maintaining a robust network of internal links is important for boosting your rankings, too.
While link structure is the headline, using internal links also helps Google to categorize your site correctly, and appreciate that you have a wide range of content covering a particular field, and can therefore be considered an authority on a particular subject. From your point of view, simply linking to a variety of pages without thinking carefully about it isn’t going to work. Ensure there are plenty of links to commercial pages and calls to action; otherwise, you’ll be wasting much of your internal link potential.
Search engine spiders look at code, and therefore don’t see what a human user will when looking at your site. If you’ve taken the wise step of breaking up the written content on your website by using images, you need to tag them with keywords so you can rank for them. It is also worth implementing schema coding to increase your SEO potential with images.
Many factors can slow down your page loading times. If you’re focused on simply getting a website up and running or on publishing content as quickly as possible, then you might not stop to think about the impact you’re having on loading times. You can use our very own website speed test tool to check out the loading time of your website; remember that most visitors will only hang around for a matter of seconds before they grow impatient and look elsewhere.
These four points are the most common to be ignored by business website owners who are short on time and resources. However, understand that dedicating even an hour or two a day over the course of a month to putting all of these elements right on your site can have a dramatic impact on your SEO potential.
If you’re unsure of where to begin, you can contact us at Bough Digital and discuss your SEO requirements, whether you’re looking at simply improving your on-site SEO or want to take a detailed look at your overall strategy and performance.
Image Author: Go Local Search