20 Sep How to improve your Google ranking
In part one of our SEO blog series, we looked at why SEO matters for your business (click here if you missed it). In a nutshell, SEO matters because without it, your website visibility is severely impaired, meaning you’re not only missing out on new business, but you’re also probably passing the business to your competitors.
Think of your website as the face of your business, it’s probably the first thing a customer looks at and ultimately, it will shape their buying decision. However, if your website is listed after page three on Google, it’s unlikely to even get found. You need to position your website in the best spot and to do that, you need good SEO.
We’ve put together some tips to guide you on your goal to reach page one!
The words you put on your website influence how you are found. When creating content, ask yourself; is this information helpful for your customer? Does it answer a question? Is the content relevant and beneficial? Google will analyse and subsequently prioritise websites that are helpful to consumers and that serve a specific purpose.
You should also think about publishing a blog so that you can easily update your website with new, fresh and relevant content. For instance, if there is a ‘hot topic’ trending in your industry, it’s worth talking about. If a customer searches online for that topic, and their search matches words used in your blog (keywords), then you’ve hit the jackpot! You’ve been found!
Create a list of terms or words you want to be found for online. For example, if you are a marketing agency in Bromley, like us, then you might want to be found for ‘marketing agency in Bromley’. These words need to match content on your website, both on your live site and in your CMS. It’s worth bearing in mind that there might be variations of terms you want to be found for, or other alternatives that people are searching. There are tools available to find out what people are searching for and how popular they are to help determine what fits best with your content, but these do require certain skills to effectively navigate.
Search engines will not only crawl (trawl) through the words you put on your website, but they’ll also analyse your images. If these don’t fit the criteria, that’s another black mark against your name. Before you upload images, you need to name the files correctly based on their location on your site and use keywords to describe the image. You’ll also need to reduce the file size of your image, especially if the resolution is high. The bigger the image, the more it could slow down your website – a big no-no. Once uploaded, you also need to fill out the alt text – a description of the image, which will replace the image if the file can’t be loaded, as well as being used for visually impaired users.
Your website needs to offer a good user experience, otherwise a user will leave your website quicker than a blink of the eye. When we refer to usability, a number of factors need to be taken into consideration, such as if your website has been designed for different device types and sizes, such as desktops, tablets and smartphones. It also takes into account page loading time – the faster the better. Other factors include whether your website navigation is clear and simple for the user; can they find what they are looking for quickly? The content you’re presenting should also be clear, concise and look appealing. All of this will affect usability and will be analysed by Google.
Although these tips will help you improve your Google ranking, this blog is far from exhaustive of all the criteria you need to meet for good SEO. It’s a tricky area to master and with Google changing their algorithms all the time, you have to be constantly on the ball with your website SEO – you might even say it’s a full-time job.