SEO Best Practice
Optimising your site
Everyone is talking about Search Engine Optimisation or SEO nowadays. It as become one area in which the modern ‘Snake Oil Salemen’ operate. It is not the easiest thing to do, not because it is particularly difficult, but because it is time consuming and heavily detailed.
So how can you do this yourself? Let us start with things you can do quickly and easily. There are approx. 80 different elements that we think are included in the search engine algorithms. Unfortunately, these algorithms are trade secrets so we can only guess what is included and how they are prioritised. To complicate things, the search engines change them regularly too!
Select a keyword or keyphrase that you think your customers will use to find each particular page. A common error is to try to optimise for too many words or phrases. Ideally your domain name will contain this word or phrase, but failing that, you can use folders and document names to fulfil this.
In the coding of the page – the meta information as it is called, provides a description of the page. This description provides an advert for people searching for the keyword – if your description is good, it will attract visitors. Try to include your keyword or phrase in the description, but as part of natural language, not as a list of keywords or phrases.
You do, however, have an opportunity to list the relevant keywords or phrases within the meta information. It is said that this is no longer important in SEO, but it is good practice to use your keywords tag to list the important words and phrases – you can double check what is happening on your page this way.
The meta information is hidden within the code – only the description can be seen in search engine results. One of the most important factors is your content. If your keywords or phrases are included in your content you will score highly with the search engines. Use emphasis to highlight the keywords you want to stand out to your visitors and the search engines.
Make use of headings – again if your keyword is included, you will benefit from being ‘relevant’.
There are so many other factors that will help you increase your search engine rankings, and you can contact professionals to help you (not all are bad), but by following these techniques, you can do a lot yourself. Remember though, each page is different, and you have different customers for each page, so do not fall into the trap of copying the code of one page into all others – spread your net wider!