SEO DIY tips and SEO techniques
Getting listed on the front page of any search results engine is the ultimate goal. SEO tricks can give you high Google rankings and traffic for a short period but can get your site banned. Do not believe your SEO consultant that guarantees indexed pages and a specific ranking. There are many SEO myths that inundate the SEO industry. The only way to get a good Google rank is to optimise in ethical ways and be patient.
There are two ways of getting your site featured in search engines. The first is by paying for advertising (i.e. Google Adwords) where the site will be placed in the advertising links. The second is from organic results. This means your site is naturally placed without any advertising costs.
Organic SEO is not difficult and there shouldn’t be any SEO secrets. There are a number of SEO tips that we can suggest you consider completing to get your site better rankings and increase site traffic. If you complete these DIY SEO techniques you should hopefully see an improvement.
Keyword research – select the right keywords
Probably the most important of any SEO training. Understand what search terms or phrases your target audience might use to find you and select a balance of popularity and competitive keywords. It is important to know your market, so spend time researching this. Your ideal selection should be a balance between high volume and low competition which will make it easier to target. A tip we often tell people when they are researching key words is to speak to friends and family to ask them what key phrases they may use.
If you don’t already have a domain name then try to select a one which includes your main keyword. The domain name can have hyphens and can sometime be easier to read and remember. Short domain names are also easier to remember. One important factor to bear in mind when selecting a domain name is the extension, for example, if you were setting up a new company web site based in the UK a .co.uk domain would be the most appropriate extension for UK specific traffic. Where as a .com domain would be more appropriate for a global enterprise.
Your page content is extremely important, the saying ‘content is king’ is very true. Make sure you add new unique content that is relevant and will give people more information about your service or product. Breaking down this content into sections can make it easier for people to navigate. Remember to write your content for humans and not the search engines.
Optimise Page Titles
Your page titles are important for your SEO as they play a vital role in your search engine rankings. They should be relevant and unique in relation to other pages on the site. Your keywords should feature early in your page title.
The importance of your Meta Description (Meta Tags)
Create a unique snippet (about 20 words) that is related to the page and accurately describes the page content. The meta description is sometimes, but not always used in search engine results pages, especially Google and will affect your Google rankings.
The importance of META Keyword tags has declined however they should still be included in your page content.
Write your navigation code as a list of links. Search engines seem to place more weight on text contained in a bulleted or numbered list. You can then use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to style them how you like and even use images, so long as the links are text for the search engines to read. Use keywords in the title attribute to describe these links.
Image ALT Tags
Use ALT tags (alternative text) for images that helps your readers understand the content which helps with accessibility. Alt tags are the descriptions which appear as you hover over an image. Keep alt tags unique where possible.
Use H1 for the short main page header which describes the page content. Use H2, H3 etc tags for the sub categories within the content.
Use relevant keywords in your filenames and folders that are unique. Make them easy to read and simple. It is a good idea use SEO friendly URLs as Google does recognise them and highlights them by making them bold in the search engine results. People are much more likely to click on these links as they stand out.
Clean and correct code
Make sure your site is well designed, has clean code and validates. Make sure your site doesn’t contain any broken links otherwise robots might reach this broken link and stop crawling your site. The speed of your site is also important for SEO and clean, correct code will help with this along with compressed images.
The site should conform to the W3C standards but it is not essential. Try to validate as close as possible. Validating your code to these standards make sure that the site is structurally correct, improving the chances that the search engine crawlers will be able to read the site correctly.
Internal and incoming links or back links
Link to your important pages internally with targeted keywords in the navigation and the page content. Keep your page navigation simple but relevant. Secure one way homepage and deep links (more specific pages) into your site by using free directories, forums, blogs and social bookmarking and networking. Do not use link farms.
Use keyword text in the links also. Try to avoid using ‘read more’ or ‘click here’.
Submit a XML sitemap to search engines
A XML sitemap is an easy way for robots to find all your pages. Generate the .xml sitemap and submit it to Google, Yahoo, Bing and any other search engines you wish. You can do this by getting a Google Account and use Webmaster Tools. Yahoo has a site explorer you can sign up to and Bing has Webmaster Center.
Don’t forget to create a sitemap for your website for humans to visit. Again, on the sitemap page, list all the pages as search engines seem to place more weight on text contained in a bulleted or numbered list.
Add your company information to Google Local Business Center
Your company name, address and keywords will be added to Google and Google Maps for free. You can also control the details entered and you can add your logo or images. Google will ask you to verify the listing by calling the number you have given. You will then need to validate the listing by entering the PIN.