24 Mar SEO Basics
Basic checklist for SEO
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of gaining traffic to your website through organic search engine results. For instance, when you search for something online, you will input the words or phrases into a search engine. Then the majority of people will either click one of the top three links at the top of the search list.
SEO is important for companies as it will help increase their Google rankings. SEO has two different aspects to increase search engine rankings, these being onpage and offpage.
Onpage: Ranking factors updated March 2018
Onpage SEO is everything that deals within your own website, to boost your search engine rankings.
Assess your own website
Making sure your website is performing to the best of its ability is the first thing to establish within your website. For this to be successful, you will need to perform an SEO audit of your website. Either done by yourself online or a professional.
Optimisation of your website
For you to gain good SEO, your website needs to be user-friendly and the design needs to be easy for all to read, providing a stress-free user experience (also known as UX). Therefore the site needs to have a good sitemap to ensure your site is easy to follow. Google uses the process of crawling, which retrieves all information from your website, so if your website is in an easy format, Google will prefer this to other sites, showing the importance of a good sitemap.
Content of page
When creating content for your website, making sure you are using the right keywords is important for your rankings and SEO to increase. The content of the page is what makes the reader initially come to your site. So, the content not only has to have the right keywords, but needs to interest your target audience to initially bring them to the website.
Another way to increase the SEO of a website is to input internal links from reliable and trustworthy sources in pages such as blogs. Therefore, linking to other reliable/trusted pages is important for Google to increase their rankings as this is something that they look for in order to decide whether your site is reliable or not, ultimately ranking your site higher.
Creating an SEO-friendly URL is important and will help with the overall optimisation of your website. This is often an overlooked factor but nevertheless an increasingly important one. Recent ranking results show that having a shorter URL may have an edge in the search results. Every time you launch a new page on your website it will have a purpose, attracting your intended audience to this page is crucial. Therefore, it is essential that you incorporate a key word in your URL. The most descriptive keyword that summarises what the page is about should be included directly in the URL.
On-page SEO and off-page SEO have changed over the years, however voice search is a new aspect in itself. Voice search is set to massively influence search engine optimisation and is projected to be greater than 50% of all searches by 2020. Because we can speak faster than we can type, voice searches will eventually become more natural and part of consumer’s daily search routines. In terms of how this will affect SEO is due to the difference in what consumer’s type when they search vs what they say when they search. Text searches are generally much shorter whereas spoken searches will typically be questions in a longer form. Tailoring your optimisation strategy for voice searches will be important in the future and websites will potentially have to implement a question and answer approach to maximise search visibility.
Currently, about 55% of all Google search results contain at least one video. Just over half of the page results you see when searching on Google have at least on video embedded within their page. This could be due to the fact that people are using and engaging with video content more often, or Google could potentially now be prioritising pages with video content. Because Google owns YouTube it is generally likely that they will want to promote video content.
Mobile-first indexing taking priority
Mobile-first indexing ranks your website based on how responsive a mobile optimised site is. Initially google ranked websites based on the desktop version of the site however, as more and more consumers are now using their mobiles to look at sites and search it means that google have started basing the ranking positions based on the mobile version of the site. If your website isn’t mobile friendly, then it will automatically have an impact on the overall ranking. Take a look at our mobile-first indexing blog post which provides a more in-depth analysis.
Offpage SEO: Ranking factors updated March 2018
Offpage SEO is dealing with things that you can do outside of your own website to boost your SEO rankings.
If a quality website links to your site, this will tell Google that yours is a trustworthy site and this will create a community of trustworthy sites, enabling yours to rank higher in a search engine. A popular link building tactic is to communicate to a trustworthy site to enable them to link back to your website.
Customers are becoming more cautious when buying something from a website, therefore they need clarification from others that the product/service is one that can be trusted. So, they tend to look for customer reviews to increase your SEO as it will gain more traffic to your site.
Guest posting is the process of contributing to another person’s blog or website in order to build exposure and links which will therefore boost your SEO ranking. Guest posting establishes a relationship with the main host of the external website and therefore engages with their audiences which will inevitably create additional exposure.
If you need help on SEO, then Wriggle have the experience to help your website climb up the rankings. Click here to view our website for more information on SEO. Take a look at our SEO Newcastle microsite