Thursday July 27th, 2017

SEO Basics: Plan For Successful Content

Search engine optimization (SEO) is its own full-time job these days. Companies big and small are all looking to maximize the number of visitors coming to their website(s) and the quickest way to do so is by appearing high on the list of results returned by search engines. There is no “magic button” to get you to the top of page one. The algorithms that govern these results are constantly evolving and being altered through new complexly knit criteria, but the basics still hold true.

  • You’re a human being, so write like one.
    Search engines are continuously trying to be more human. That means the search engines algorithm respects content that is written more like a human would write instead of a machine. By using common, simple to understand words in accepted writing styles the search engine will give your content higher priority. A good practice is to read your content aloud. If it feels like a robot speaking more than conversationalist, it probably needs to be revised.

  • Have a list of important keywords in mind and use them.
    Finding the best keywords for your content is all about research. You want to find keywords that your site visitors are going to be typing into search engines so that you appear higher in terms of relevance to their search terms. You can use tools like Google AdWords Keyword Planner Tool and Moz Keyword Explorer to better research your keywords, as well as find new suggestions that may not have come to mind.

  • Pay attention to page titles.
    The page title is the clickable title of a web page that appears with the result on the SERP (search engine results page). Some best practices when writing your page title are:

    • Describe your page content as clearly as possible; keep it simple.

    • Make it unique. Don’t duplicate your page titles between pages.

    • Use titles that focus on your targeted keywords.

    • Keep your titles to no more than 60 characters in length. This is especially important when thinking about your mobile users.

  • Don’t duplicate your pages.
    Users don’t like duplicated pages and search engines feel the same. Search engines don’t know which version to rank among search results and they don’t know whether to direct the link metrics to one page or keep it separated between the multiple pages. Overall it’s a big no-no so just don’t do it.

  • Use the appropriate tags for your content.
    This often happens due to poor planning early on in the content development process.

    It’s important to highlight your major content points with an H1 tag as it is the most important heading on your page. It should highlight exactly what your page is about because it’s given the highest level of value in search engine among your headings. Any sub-headings should utilize your H2, H3, H4, H5, H6 heading tags appropriately.

  • Search doesn’t understand your images.
    Images should use the ALT tag 100% of the time. The reason being is because search engine crawlers don’t know what your images are without it. Crawlers can’t see images, so they rely on your image titles and ALT tags to comprehend what they’re looking at.

  • Open graph and social sharing.
    Open graph protocols (OG) are META helpful tags when a user shares your website onto a social media network. The OG META will give you the opportunity to define things such as the shared page’s title, image, description, URL and in defining a specific format.

In combination, these basic best practices can greatly benefit you in organic search results among engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. If you’re interested in learning about how incorporating a bit of motion into your static media would impact your return on investment, please feel free to contact us. Or you’re always welcome to continue the conversation in the comments below.

J.D. Cutter,

Senior Front-End Web Developer

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