It is not enough nowadays to have a website that is aesthetically pleasing, informative, and easily navigated. While all of those are important characteristics when users reach the website, they have to navigate to the site first. Gaining traffic to a website comes directly from strong search engine optimization (SEO) tactics. Websites failing to take into consideration SEO struggle for space on search engine result pages (SERPs). So, making efforts to optimize a website in this aspect is a great way to improve rankings, gain more valuable real estate on SERPs, and ultimately – help more users navigate to your website.
Publish Good Content, Often
Websites with the strongest SEO publish quality content regularly. What makes content high-quality? It must be authoritative and relevant, providing readers with accurate and unique information. When considering web content, especially blog articles, ensure what you publish provides useful information relevant to your audience. This drives traffic to your site, further increasing the website’s authority. Focus on target keywords and phrases, and consider what search terms you’d like to point to the content.
The frequency of new content published also makes a difference. Post new and relevant content regularly, at least once a month. In cases where previously stated information has changed or new best practices exist, keep published content updated to ensure the information is still accurate for website visitors.
In the SEO world, the term metadata is used frequently – referring to structured reference data that helps to sort and classify various attributes of information on a webpage. On the user end, metadata often goes unnoticed. However, websites hoping to rank in search results must prioritize including metadata when creating and updating content on the site.
Title metadata refers to page titles, which are visible in bold on SERPs. Users can also see this metadata when looking at the top of their browser window once they’ve navigated to a page. Title metadata should be clear and include target keywords, so users can determine exactly what a page is meant to contain.
Description metadata is a little lengthier than the title but still needs to be clear and concise. A meta description offers those looking on search engines a summary of a specific web page and is included on SERPs with the title metadata. The goal of a meta description is to appeal to those using search engines and persuade them to click through to the page. A good meta description relates the information on the page to the user’s search query
Keyword metadata rarely (if ever) affects search engine results, mostly because for years, website creators abused keywords as ranking factors through schemes like keyword stuffing. It is still good practice to identify target keywords for each page on a website.
Use Links Wisely
Website traffic is affected by linking in a few ways, so having a clear linking strategy in place can greatly improve SEO. Organically, websites that are authoritative and contain useful and up-to-date information will generate incoming links from other websites. Going back to the strategy of publishing good content, gathering powerful incoming links is another benefit of doing so.
Gaining authority requires a strong internal linking strategy as well – both when linking to other pages on the site and when linking out to other websites. Ensure the verbiage used in these links makes sense with the page to which it links. Keep keywords in mind when linking out, as useful links that include relevant target keywords improve rankings on SERPs. Be sure that any external websites you link to are credible and authoritative as well. Providing users with directions to questionable or irrelevant other sites will hurt your site’s authority over time.
When it comes to building up links from other sites, this takes strategy AND time. Inbound links sometimes come organically, but many come through link-building efforts. These efforts vary but often include tactics like guest blog writing for other websites or creating and distributing very unique and useful content for others to use that both helps their site visitors and helps them navigate to your site in the process.
Search Engine Optimization: Not a One-Time Effort
Like most marketing efforts, SEO is an ongoing process. Even the best designed and developed SEO-optimized sites won’t continue to be so without ongoing maintenance and continued optimization. Big search engines like Google update the algorithms used on SERPs frequently, so best practices in the space also change.
A reminder – a big component of strong SEO is publishing quality content regularly. Some organizations handle this in-house, but many choose to bring in external writers to create this content. While either option can be successful, ensure the person or team creating content has the experience and expertise to produce pieces that are informative, well-researched, and keep SEO front of mind.
Link-building is also a continuous process. Both inbound and outbound links should be reviewed regularly to avoid any instances of broken links. When websites change the internal structure or rename pages of content, links to pages often must be updated as well. It’s best practice to avoid changing URLs for a page, but it does happen.
For organizations looking to develop or improve their SEO strategy, the team at Kustura Technologies is here to help. Our internet marketing experts know creating and maintaining a strong SEO strategy is critical for increasing your audience and converting more transactions. We can create an SEO strategy for your website or audit existing efforts to identify opportunities to improve and optimize the site’s content. We also offer SEO-driven website design, development, and maintenance for those starting (or restarting) from scratch. If you’re looking for peace of mind, knowing your website is optimized and driving growth for the organization, we’d love to chat. Contact our team today!