Beginner web administrators often have problems with remembering long lists of parameters search engines use to rate their websites. Although search engine algorithms are constantly changing, SEO experts determined basic criteria that is used for website ranking. In this article we shared some of the most important website elements you need to optimize in order to receive better ranking.
Anchor text is very important, especially in link building. It should tie keywords to linked websites and therefore explain to readers what type of content featured website is offering. Generic anchor text phrases like: ‘click here’ or ‘check this out’, usually don’t give any clue about linked page. That is why you need to be more creative and find keyword or key-phrase that describes website you are linking in the best way possible.
There are several important meta tags you should have in mind when building a website. These are:
- Title tags– should state website’s purpose and mission in approximately 10 words;
- Description tags– should describe website’s or company’s work in around 150 characters (including spaces);
- Keyword tags– major website keywords should be added as keyword meta tags;
Photo Alt Tags
Photo alt tags describe website’s photos and are very useful for Google or Bing Image search. These tags are also useful for describing photos to visually impaired people, and their use is recommended in American with Disabilities Act.
SEO experts still haven’t determined the best possible word count for posts and pages. Rule of the thumb here is that you should never post less than 250 words, especially if you are trying to optimize your website for keywords. Informational pages shouldn’t contain less than 450 words.
Every website should have a sitemap, and its link should be shared on every post or page (most webmasters use footer for this purpose). Your website should also have XML Sitemap, which should be submitted to search engines. On Google this can be done on Google Search Console and on Bing in Bing Webmaster Tools.
Search engine’s webmaster tools is not only used for submitting XML Sitemaps, but also for seeing how search engine crawlers view your website. These platforms alert you on all types of loading and navigation problems and provide the best possible website diagnostics.
Use Web Analytics
There are many different types of free web analytics you can use. Google Analytics is a weapon of choice for many webmasters and SEO experts, because it delivers real time information about major website parameters as well as website conversion and visitors interaction.
Homepages should contain strings of constant text. Index pages that change their content often can dilute website’s theme and kill its ratings for certain keywords.
Link building is the most important off-page SEO strategy, whose purpose is to improve website’s trust rating and bring new visitors from other popular websites in the same niche. Before your link finds its way to some popular website or blog page, you will need to write content and do elaborate link prospecting research. Luckily, today there are number of useful link prospecting tools you can use for this purpose.
Latest Google algorithm update is colloquially known as Mobilegeddon, and the reason for this is because it provides higher visibility to websites that are mobile responsive. Today more than 50% of internet users browse their favorite websites from their phones, which means that even the slightest problems with responsiveness can drastically decrease the number of visitors.
Reviews are important
If you recently searched for ’Best restaurant in NYC/LA/Philadelphia…’ you probably noticed that first few pages of search results didn’t include websites of specific restaurants, but ’10 best restaurants in…’ articles and listings on platforms like Yelp, TripAdvisor or Foursquare. Reviews of products, service companies and establishments became the most important way to present your business to internet audience. That’s why future SEO will also include review writing.
One of the most important things every SEO beginner, or even an SEO consulting agency should know, is that website content represents the most important ranking parameter for all search engines. This means that you can choose the best keywords and optimize every pixel of your website, but if you don’t regularly post good quality content, you won’t witness any increase in website’s popularity.