Website Promotion And Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
The Essential Elements of SEO
The Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) involves the promotion of a Website by improving Rankings in the Search Engine Results Page. The techniques used should only be White-Hat practices – that is ethical Website optimisation.
The optimisation should attempt to achieve top Rankings in the search engines without recourse to paid listings or pay per clicks.
Ignore the dubious claims as to the levels of traffic and top page Rankings that can be achieved overnight. It takes time and a lot of effort to climb up the Rankings.
Search Engine Optimisation Strategies
The main factors include:
- Targeted Keyword research
- Search Engine friendly Website design
- Visitor friendly navigation and content
- Good Website page response times
- Copy-writing based on Keyword phrases
- Tracking Website visitors
- Competition Analysis
Having a good Search Engine placement is only the first objective. The good SERP Ranking must also result in increased targeted Website traffic. And the more targeted the traffic, the more visits will be converted into sales.
To start the Website creation process, you will need to build a collection of pertinent copy text. For some ideas and guidance, see Writing Effective Website Content and Rankings And Website Content
Keywords research is required on the most relevant words or phrases Visitors will use to find your Website. These Keywords need to be embedded into the content of your Website to ensure that the pages rank high enough in the Search Engine listings. See Keywords and Keyword Phrases
Research is also needed to see how the Competition ranks for your selected Keywords.
A Keyword Density analysis will ensure that no Keyword is used excessively or too infrequently.
The Page Title and Meta Description
The Page Title and Meta Description must be well chosen, as these two tags determine the success of the Website. See The HTML Title Tag and the Meta Tags
Knowing the target audience and their requirements is essential in building a Website. The more the content is persuasive, appealing and tailored to the desired visitor, the more likely that the visitor will be converted to a customer.
Is the Target Audience computer illiterate or technical? What jargon will be best understood?
When subsequent traffic is low, the SEO for the Target Audience may need to be rethought.
Keeping to HTML standards and validation will ensure the best quality for the Search Engines. Web page layout design, content and information will then be optimally displayed for the best Rankings.
Note that Google mostly uses A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) to assess the quality of the content of the billions of Pages.
Page Download time
Download times should be kept to a maximum of 2 seconds. Large Images are usually the biggest factor with slow Websites. Images must be sparsely used and must be optimally compressed. See Optimising Website Images
Other Ranking Factors
As well as researched Keywords in the page content, good Rankings depend upon the Trust, Authority and Competition:
- Trust is related to the age of the Website. A new Website will be put into a “Sandbox” – a probation period with very low Rankings for selected Keywords. After 6 to 12 months, Rankings will improve.
- Authority depends upon the number of quality links from well known Websites or Directories, pointing to your Website. Submission to these Websites must be done manually.
- Achieving a good Ranking is also related to the number of Websites competing for a placing.
Incoming links to your Website are referred to as Backlinks. Search Engine listing placement is very much related to the number and quality of Backlinks.
The Website should be submitted to free directories that do not require reciprocal links. These include:
- The Open Directory Project
Then the Website should be submitted to about two dozen local Australian directories to improve visibility. These will include:
- Google Local Business Centre
- AussieWeb Local Search
The Website may be submitted by you to the Yellow Pages (paid or free) for a boost in exposure.
Social Media Marketing
The Social Sites are an easy way of promoting a Website. The most important Social Sites are:
Writing for Article Submission Websites used to be helpful, in increasing the number and quality of Backlinks. These days an Article Submission Website is only of marginal value.
It is better to try attract visitors to your own Website, rather than hope to get them from an Article Submission Website. Visitors to such a Website are likely to read your article, then move to the next article. You will seldom get traffic resulting from your contribution.
Ongoing Monitoring and Analysis
Every few months you will need a review of the number of Visitors, the Rankings for Keywords and the number of Backlinks. It is important to keep tweaking the Content, Headings and Titles for optimal results.
And of course, in the mean time, the competition will not have been idle!
Migrate Your Website to HTTPS
HTTPS is a secure, encrypted protocol for communication over a network. It prevents a third-party from listening in on the communication. It helps protect your site against injections of malicious code. It prevents collection of your visitors behaviour.
Google uses HTTPS as a positive ranking signal. This signal is one amongst many others, and currently carries less weight than high-quality site content; you should not expect a major SEO advantage for moving to HTTPS in the short term. In the longer term, Google may increase the strength of the HTTPS boost.
The Benefits of using HTTPS are:
- Security: Makes your website more secure from hacking.
- SEO: Will improve website rankings
- Brand Trust: Builds trust with visitors
- Google Analytics: A must as HTTP data is blocked