SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is important when you’d like to improve your website. Through the use of SEO you can optimize your website by implementing certain technical elements, by writing stronger content and by building some authority across your site.
All those actions will help you to then reach a better ranking in search engines such as Google or Bing.
Would you like to find out how you can optimize your website through SEO? Then check out our full list of tips & tricks down below!
1. Use the correct keywords!
Before you start writing your page or blog post, make sure you do sufficient research about your topic. What’s it about? How would you like people to find you?
Next, be very concrete in your messaging, because if you come across as too vague, then your readers won’t appreciate your content much.
For example: say you’re a hairdresser and you’d like to rank better on a search engine like Google? Don’t put all your efforts towards ranking for a term like “hair” or “hairdresser”, both of which are pretty generic. Instead, be more specific with terms like “hairstyle wedding”, or “cool hairstyle man”…
The difference between “hair” and “hairstyle wedding women” isn’t just the terminology, but it’s also the number of words put together. We call this a “long-tail keyword”, which will start a far more specific search than if you were to simply google “hair”.
Try it out yourself: open up Google and type in a single word. Immediately you’ll see a ton of suggestions to add to this first word, all of which are examples of long-tail keywords.
Anyone who uses such a long-tail keyword is clearly also looking for something very specific and concrete. Because they’re not “just browsing”, they’re exactly the kind of people you’ll want to target. They’re much more likely to convert into a customer or, in the case of the hairdresser example, make an appointment.
If you’d like to get started with your own keywords and which are relevant to your website, then try the next couple of tools:
- Google Keyword Planner:
You’ll get access to this tool if you have a Google Ads account. All you have to do is enter a keyword and you’ll immediately get a bunch of synonyms or related words with the search volume for each word attached. That’s useful to check which keywords are entered most often to find something specific.
- Bold Wordsmith:
This is our very own tool, which we’ve proudly introduced recently. You simply enter in a keyword and you’ll receive a bunch of other ideas. A nice benefit of this tool is that you can explicitly exclude or include certain words in your search term.
Once we’ve reached sufficient results, then we enter those keywords into the Google Keyword Planner to check the search volume.
- Uber Suggest:
This tool has been created by marketing guru Neil Patel, which you may use for free to get your list of keywords!
We’ve mentioned before in a previous blog post what LSI-keywords are: they’re keywords that are related to your main keywords, i.e. the words you would like to rank for.
An example at the time was this: say you’re writing an article about cars, then your main keyword is “car” and your LSI-keywords are terms like “Audi”, “BMW” or “vehicle”. Even if you wouldn’t mention the word “car” specifically in your text, then Google will still know that the article is about cars, thanks to your use of the LSI-keywords.
2. Create relevant content and keep it up-to-date
To achieve a high SEO score, it’s imperative that you create quality content! People are looking for information and if your website offers them the answers to their questions, then of course they’ll “hang around” on your website and continue reading. That “hang around”-bit is actually quite important, as it makes Google believe that your content is indeed relevant, and therefore your website can be “trusted”! Because of that, Google will raise your domain authority, which in turn will improve your ranking in the search results.
So clearly, having the right content is important, but it’s equally crucial that your content remains up-to-date. Make sure that you renew your blog posts on a regular basis, such as those tips you posted in 2021? Check them again to see if they’re still relevant in 2022 and if needed, make the necessary adjustments. Articles that are regularly renewed are also considered to be more interesting by Google.
By the way, do you have some older blog posts that didn’t perform that well? You don’t have to delete them necessarily. Just make some small adjustments, like improving the content and adding links, because those can already have a large impact on your performance!
3. Metadata & ALTs
This is a title that you’ll have to create for each page. It’s also the title that people see in the search results when they are looking for something, so make sure your title isn’t longer than 70 characters. Longer titles will be shortened, which is not a good look.
You’ll also see this meta-title at the top of your browser screen.
Underneath the titel of your blog post or page, Google also shows a description, which is called the “meta-description. Make sure you add this for each page: simply write a short summary (between 120 and 155 characters) about the page’s content, so you can convince people to click on your link.
If you don’t add this information yourself, then Google will automatically show the first couple of sentences from your page, which rarely works out well.
If you have images on your website – and let’s be honest, who doesn’t have them? – then Google can’t simply “read” them as easily. By adding an ALT-tag – literally: “alternative tag” – to your image, Google will know exactly what’s represented by the image.
For example, say you sell cameras and you have an image of one specific camera on your website, then you could add an alt-tag to that image detailing the make and model of that specific camera. In doing so, Google can display the image correctly in the search results!
4. Make your website outrun Usain Bolt
One of the things that matters for a good ranking in the search results is the speed of your website. If it takes forever for your website to load, then there’s a good chance that your visitors leave as quickly as they came.
That’s not just an issue because it’s a missed opportunity to turn a visitor into a customer, but Google will also think that your content isn’t relevant to visitors. And that means Google will punish you and downgrade your authority!
Clearly, a fast website is pretty important, but luckily there’s a ton of different ways to improve the loading speed. Especially WordPress users have a bunch of plugins available: W3 Total Cache, WP Super Cache…
Another thing that can inadvertently slow down your website is your use of large images on your website. Larger and/or heavier files will take longer to load, so make sure that you make the necessary adjustments. For example, try to use JPG or JPEG instead of PNG. Also, compress your images by using tools like Photoshop or use a free tool like Online JPEG compressor. Again: WordPress users have a ton of plugins at their disposal that can help out!
5. Outgoing links
If you’d like to make your content even more compelling, then try linking to other websites that are considered to be authorities on the subject of your choice. In doing so, Google will believe your website can be trusted. Just make sure that you don’t put in too many links, because then it may be viewed as SPAM.
6. Broken links
Something that really irks people, is when they click on a search result and the page they are directed to is a 404-error page, meaning “page not found”. When that happens, it’s kind of logical that those visitors immediately leave your website.
Because visitors leave so quickly, Google again thinks that your website must not be very relevant and you’ll be punished for it. In addition, if it’s a problem that you have often with many pages giving the 404 error, then eventually your ranking in the search engines will severely decrease!
Luckily, there’s lots of ways to fix this issue. You can keep an eye on broken links in the Google Search Console: you’ll receive a notification every time something isn’t working as it should. Another way to check if you have broken links, is to type in Google “Site:example.com” (please use your own domain name) and you’ll immediately get a full overview. Good luck!
Like the previous items in this list, it’s imperative that your content is easy to read. If it’s not, then visitors will quickly lose interest, stop reading and even leave your website. Naturally, that’s a missed opportunity to engage your customer!
In addition, it’s even speculated that search engines read in the same way, so when your website isn’t easy to read, then your ranking will go down accordingly. So, if you notice that visitors quickly leave your website and you’ve addressed all other issues, then think about how easy your article is to read…
8. Mobile optimization
It probably doesn’t come as a surprise, but more and more people use their smartphone to buy things online, to look up information, to share messages online… So if your website isn’t optimized for a mobile experience, then you’re losing out on a ton of potential customers! In addition, your ranking in the search engine results will suffer from the fact that your website doesn’t work on mobile devices, like a smartphone or tablet.
Make sure your website is mobile optimized, which means that all content is as easy to read on a tiny screen as it is on a desktop screen.
9. Sharing on social media
The number of shares on social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, can have a massive impact on your SEO ranking.
As you can see at the bottom of this page, you have the possibility to easily and immediately share this blog post on your favourite social media platform thanks to our clickable share buttons. Thanks to those buttons, it’s much more user-friendly to share a piece of content, which results in more people making use of the feature to re-post content.
10. Look at me I’m a blogger now
As we explained before in the article about how to increase your website traffic, it’s definitely worth starting a blog. At least, if you have the time to maintain it, then we sure recommend it. Why? Because when you regularly post new and exciting content, then you’ll increase your website traffic.
Once those blog posts start scoring better in search engines, then your website will start to see an increase in website visitors. In turn, that will gift your website with more authority, which also helps improve your ranking in the search engine results.
11. Website where ya at?
In order to help out Google read and analyze your website correctly, we advise you to add a sitemap to your website, which should also be linked to the Google Search Console. In doing so, Google will know exactly which pages your website consists of and what each page is about. In addition, you can use the Search Console to check whether Google is “crawling” your website correctly, i.e. reading your website and then displaying it correctly in the search results.
Once you’ve done all that, we also advise you to search for robots.txt, because that will show you which pages are being indexed by Google and which ones are being excluded. In our experience, it happens a lot that when a new website is launched, the robots.txt still has a command that says the website should not be indexed. Unfortunately, that means that the results in Google don’t look too good. And guess what that does to your ranking? Right, you don’t need us to explain anymore. So make sure you take care of it! 😉
Would you like to get started with these tips to improve your SEO, but can you use some support? Our experts will be happy to help you!