SEO (or search engine optimization) is an affordable way to get your company website included in a highly visible way in search results – without advertising or paying for sponsored content. You will notice on Google and other search engines that there is “sponsored” search content at the very top and on the sides of your screen – usually shaded — and then the remainder of the search results below that are not sponsored and link back to businesses, blogs, articles and more.
These non-sponsored results are highly coveted as they offer a certain amount of credibility to the user (since they are not paid for) as well as the chance that people will click on your website link.
But how can you make sure your website is included in searches and rank high – even first? Here are seven ways to improve your website SEO efforts so that your site is fully optimized for search engines and ready for Page 1.
1. Make sure the website is complete
Most websites these days average three or four pages (or more) and offer information about the company as well as FAQs (frequently asked questions) as well as contact information. The more complete your website is with content and photos/images about your business, the more likely you will show up in search engine results – as search engines tend to track websites that are dynamic and full of content.
2. Focus on Keywords
The term ‘keyword’ is used often and most people think they understand the concept but in actuality it can be tricky. You need to decipher what the “keyword” is for your business and how people might search for it (also see next tip for keyword phrases). You may even want to soft-sound key words by some friends or colleagues to see what they think and try searching yourself to understand what words people are using to describe your line of business and then use the keywords in your website and/or blog copy. Keyword density also matters — if you are a “NYC SEO company” you better make sure you are using that term throughout your website.
3. Focus on keyword phrases
In addition to ‘keywords,’ think about phrases that relate to your specialty. For instance, many people will type in more than one word when searching for a product or company online. If they are looking for an SEO company in New York City they may write, “best NYC SEO company” or “best New York City SEO company” rather than just “SEO company”.
4. Update your content on a regular basis
The more your content is updated (new products, sales, promotions, information, and photos) the better chances your website has in being included in online searches. This will also keep your dynamic which in turn can lead to more people visiting your site more than once if they think there may be something new in the near future. As stated above – search engines usually include sites with activity and the more you engage with your site the better your chances for high ranking results in search engines.
5. Descriptive page names
Use vivid page names that describes the content in detail and will encourage a user searching for that term to click on the page. If you are looking for an SEO company in New York City, a page title like “NYC SEO Company” will be more helpful than “SEO Company”.
6. Join social networks and promote your website on these forums
Another way to promote your website is to join social networks and reference your website in your profiles, postings and tweets. Every time you or a user links back to your site from social networks and other forums – the better optimized your website is. Be authentic and only reference your website link when appropriate so it doesn’t look too “spammy.”
7. Add a blog
The more content you have the better chance of your website showing up in search results – and putting up a blog (which you can add to your website) with liberal usage of keywords will help. A blog allows you more of an online presence and offers you another means to update your site and generate more users and readers.