SEO Basics For Business Owners
10 Nov 2015
Who is this SEO article for?
This article is for companies that have less than 50 pages of content on their site.
Sites looking to rank for a lot of unrelated keywords, for example if you have an e-commerce site then you’ll definitely want to get yourself a professional to optimize your content.
Objective of this SEO Guide
My objective for this blog is to provide you with the basics in a clear and concise manner, so that you know for certain you’re not doing something wrong when setting up your site for search engines.
Step 1: Choose www or non-www
It’s very common for big organizations to keep both versions and you can certainly do whatever you feel is right for your brand.
The reason for “301” redirect versus a “302” redirect is simply because a “301” is permanent so it signals to any application trying to access your site that this redirect permanent and can be used for indexing in search engines.
A ”301” informs applications that all indexing properties should be transferred from the source to the target.
Step 2: Verify Ownership
- Malware being hosted
- your site may have been hacked
- Google-bot is having problems crawling and indexing your site
Step 3: Research Your Domain Name
It’s a good idea to do a some due diligence on your domain name.
If it was previously owned by spammers or hackers your domain may rank very poorly or may not rank at all.
One easy way to check is by using Google Webmaster tools. Check your sites domain and see if you see any unwanted words associated.
You can see if your site is currently indexed by doing a site:example.com search with your domain.
If you identify any issues check this URL: Google Webmaster Guidelines for possible resolutions.
If you are concerned with penalties and wondering how to go about having your domain re-considered by Google, Watch this interview with Tiffany Oberoi: New Clarity on Reconsideration Requests
Step 4: Fetch as Googlebot
Fetch as google bot is a feature in Google Webmaster Tools that gives you the ability to perform a crawl as Google-bot.
This crawl allows you to see if your site is being redirected appropriately as well as review the content that is gathered by Google during the crawl.
You can also trigger the indexing process so that your pages will be available for search sooner by those using search engines.
Step 5: Install Google Analytics
I would advise using Google Analytics or some other analytic data provider.
You should begin collecting data about your visitors immediately, even if you are not sure what to do with that data just yet.
If you decide at some point to hire someone to assist with marketing your site, you’ll have some historical site data for comparison.
Step 6: Website Design Strategy
Next you want to focus on the design and functionality of your website.
You want to create a wonderful experience for everyone that visits your website. Consider the experience of your customers, and think about other visitors such as investors or press outlets. Be strategic in providing appropriate content to each persona.
Step 7: Planning Your Site Design
Here’s a few questions to ask yourself when planning your site design:
Usability – Does your site meet the needs and expectations of each persona, also will each of these personas have a great experience?
Often when businesses are just getting started they will lump information and resources onto one page.
As your site grows you’ll want to break up that information and present it on individual pages so that your visitors are not scrolling endlessly.
Step 8: Identify a Conversion
This step is extremely important for new businesses, you want to define what a conversion is for your business.
Now that maybe someone signing up for your company’s email list, creating a lead for your sales team, or purchasing a product or service.
You want to have some conversion or call-to-actions on each page if possible.
There should be some call to action, but you don’t want to force users to do a lot of unnecessary clicking.
Step 9: Create Relevant Content
You want to make sure that your content includes relevant keywords to those you are trying to be ranked for or that visitors may use to search for your product or service.
You also want to make a habit of answering questions that a visitor to a site like yours might have.
For example, is this product suitable for the issue I have?
And to answer that question you may want to let other users review your product or service, and have those reviews posted on that product or service page.
Another suggestion would be ask a question such as what if this product doesn’t meet my needs?
And you can answer that question with your Customer Satisfaction Policy.
Step 10: Each Page Needs...
Each page of your site should have a original content, a unique title (because that can be Scene by the box and index fit in search engines).
You also want to have a unique meta description of your site (because that may be displayed in the search engine result snippets).
If your website is dynamic, you’ll want to have relevant keywords in the file name (those keywords should all be lower-case and comma separated).
Lastly you want to have informative anchor text for every link on your site whether you’re linking internally or externally.
Take away for this post
No matter how much advertising and marketing you do, valuable conversions still occur on you website. Spend the extra time on the front-end and it will definitely improve your chances of being successful.
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