SEO is one of those things that you are constantly getting sold into from experts or ‘experts’. It requires zero qualifications and anyone can learn it starting today. The ever changing rules of SEO means that things that use to work years ago no longer work now. Obviously some of which have slightly changed and evolved.
In this post I’m going to outline the exact steps I took to making sure I rank #1 in google for some key terms in my industry including ‘freelance web designer’ in the NZ market.
All of these you can implement yourself providing you have the time and commitment to do it. A lot of SEO gurus don’t even know ‘code’ so there’s not need to worry about getting stuck with the ‘tech’ stuff.
Basic Title tags and Meta descriptions
Google search picks up these two key things when you search. They are call ‘Title tags’ and ‘Meta Descriptions’ (Meta meaning invisible). Does all of your pages have a title tag and meta description that accurately explains exactly what that page or post is about? If you’re using WordPress then you should have Yoast SEO installed which is a plugin that allows you to do this easily like in the image below.
They even have a traffic light system which tells you how well your Title and meta description will perform based off off of your Focus Keyword which you can place at the bottom.
Get a CMS that is good with SEO
I use WordPress to build most of my sites because it’s SEO friendly amongst other things. Wordpress has clean code which Google loves and each and every page is optimised with tools that allow you to optimise each page. It also gives you options to reduce the dimensions of your images when uploading which is key for page speed; AND is SEO friendly.
Make sure your Content Management System has pretty URLs that outline what the page is about and allows for a sitemap to be generated for users and robots.
Search engines love new fresh content, but that’s not the only reason to start one. Blogging allows you to generate leads when you’re sleeping by answering questions that you are often asked, and in detail. It also allows you to share specific answers and topics on social media including Facebook & Twitter. Because let’s be honest, you’re not going to shared your ‘About us’ page over and over – people want to know how you can help them.
I will also add that’s it’s key that if you decide to hire someone to write your content, be sure they understand your business. You can’t write about something you know nothing about.
Want to know how fast your current website is performing? Check out https://tools.pingdom.com/ this will tell you your page speed compared to others and what is taking the most time when it comes to loading your website. The best way to increase page speed is to make sure you’re not loading too many plugins into your website, ensure that your images are optimised by reducing the file size and to use a Content Delivery Network (CDN) which will help deliver your site to users around the world, faster.
Commit to the process
SEO isn’t an instant thing. It won’t take a day or a month to do. It’s an ongoing thing that requires maintenance and consistency so ensure that you understand the basics. Get tools that will help you automate as much as possible so that you can get back to running your business. For example, I write blog posts months in advance and schedule them to be released on a monthly basis. They are released with social media links on the day and are promoted throughout the year.
There is obviously a lot more to take in than this with SEO, but if you do just these 5 things I promise it WILL improve your ranking.