Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the method used to increase a website's position on search engine results pages (SERPs) on sites such as Google, Yahoo or Bing.
A SEO-friendly website is one that allows search engines to explore and read pages efficiently, interpret the content effectively and index it in their database. If you use SEO correctly, you can improve your search engine ranking and drive more traffic to your website.
Can I do SEO for myself?
Free SEO education is widely available on the web, including short guides like this or more extensive ones e.g. books, seminars etc. To begin with, familiarise yourself with the following terms which will point you in the right direction.
Content is King
High-quality, unique content has a significant impact on SEO and search engine rankings for a number of reasons. To begin with, unduplicated content published consistently (200-250 words) with internal links to related content and naturally placed keywords help a website rank organically for relevant keywords & search terms. Try to write naturally, using synonyms and natural language; make sure your content is of high quality and engaging.
Moreover, regularly publishing great content creates authority for your domain and opens up opportunities to enhance your backlink profile.
Make sure the context of your website is clear. Page titles & headers, navigation menus & URLs and so on should all help here.
Considerations for page content:
Keywords in content (but don’t overdo it - keyword stuffing)
Position of keywords - key phrases in the content - earlier is always better
Use synonyms & alternatives
Avoid inputting duplicate content
Search engines do not only crawl the text on each website, they also crawl the file names and the alt text of your images; therefore, it is important to use relevant keywords to help your website rank better on image searches. Create descriptive, keyword-rich file names & understandable alt texts, avoid keyword stuffing and seek to describe the image concisely.
Keeping URLs simple, compelling and relevant to each page's content is the key to get both your visitors and search engines to understand them. Make sure to include words that people can read and easily understand. By seeing your URL, visitors should have a good idea about what it is included on the page. Therefore make sure to use hyphens to separate words and avoid underscores, spaces or any other characters to separate words.
For example, the following URL, "my-website.com/services/item7?=9856" is not an SEO friendly one. It does not help the search engines determine what that specific page is about. Instead, it should be something like, "my-website.com/products/mobile-apps".
Keyword-rich Metadata Tags
Meta tags are snippets of text that describe a page's content; they don't appear on the page itself but they are visible on search engines search results, browser pages titles and on each user's bookmarks bar. Meta elements are typically used to specify page description, title, keywords, OG meta or meta robots and they help tell search engines & users what a web page is about.
Keep in mind that metadata tags must:
include keywords & key phrases
describe the page's content
advertise the page and improve click-through rates
consider the user’s thought process and why they will click on this page
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