7 Tips for Better SEO
It’s probably safe to assume you are familiar with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) on some level. Even if it’s not been your focus in the past, you likely are aware you need keywords and a description for your pages and posts. You’re absolutely right! But there is so much more to great SEO. We break down 7 ways you can help your pages rank better and get more visitors to your site.
1. Page Title
Page titles matter! Especially when you are plugging them into a tool like Yoast or RankMath. These tools offer a special title field where you can easily alter how you want the page name to read. For example, on the Digitiv ‘Freebies’ page. I would enter something along the lines of ‘Digitiv – Freebies’. This way I’m entering the business name, the page title and it’s a summary of what a user can expect to find.
Working the title of your page into your keywords is a huge help when scoring well with Google and other search indexing tools. You should stick with 2 or 3 short/long tail keyword combinations. For our freebie page, we would use something like:
- Free Online Tools
- Digitiv Tools and Downloads
- Website Content Tools
Certain tools and content management systems may allow you to also enter synonyms for your keywords. This can be a huge help when focusing your content to a highly specific keyword. Your keywords should relate to the page name, meta description and ideally the page title. Your keyword(s) should also appear in your content 3-5 times, depending on the number of paragraphs on a page.
3. Meta Description
Meta descriptions are 1 or 2 short sentences (about 155 characters total) that concisely describe what is on a page. With the Digitiv Freebies page in mind, we may write: Digitiv provides free tools and downloads to help businesses improve website content. Freebies are updated each month. Again we are including the company and page name. Additionally, we are telling a user what the content is and with what frequency it changes.
4. Multiple Languages
Offering your website in multiple languages can help expand your customer reach if you do so correctly. You may be tempted to drop the Google Translate tool in your site and call it a day. DON’T DO IT! Search engines can tell the difference between a page built in a specific language, and a page that is using software to update the content. The best practice is to build your pages in each language, with their own URL to ensure they are indexed correctly. This method will help your search rankings and also avoid mistaken translations.
5. Images and Alt Text
We all like looking at pretty pictures. The good news is search engines also enjoy images being embedded on your web pages and blog posts. They scan for them, index the alt text (alternative text) name you enter and give you another positive mark in the rankings.
The alt text should relate to what the image. Say you have an image of horses running along the beach. You may use: Horses running on beach. It’s specific enough to explain the image, and for anyone using a reader to view your site, the reader can explain what image is present. Beyond being good for SEO, this is also important when it comes to ADA compliance.
Bonus tip: If you can tie your image into the page theme and use your keyword(s) in the alt text it’s a good thing!
Readability is somewhat subjective in discussion, but when it comes to search engines it’s very black and white. Firstly, scoring high in readability means you have to speak in an active voice. Secondly, you must craft shorter sentences. Run on sentences are a killer when it comes to readability rankings. Above all, be sure to use a healthy amount of transition words.
The transition words in the paragraph above are in bold blue. Want more on this topic? Yoast has an awesome blog on the topic with a number of examples.
7. Inbound Content Links
Inbound content links are simply links between your pages. On this blog, we may link out to other blog posts on our site related to website content and SEO. We may also link to our contact form for help. Having a few links guiding users between connected pages is a great way to rank higher in search results. However, you do not want to randomly link all your pages on every page if it doesn’t relate. I promise, when your site is indexed, those smart little search bots know.
BONUS 8. Outbound Content Linking
Outbound content linking is just as valuable, maybe even more so, than inbound content linking. Notice how I linked to Yoast and RankMath earlier in this post? That was for two reasons. Firstly, they relate to the content and are large players in the SEO market. Secondly, those links help make a connection from my site to theirs. This is seen by search bots when they index and helps build validity. Now, if you can get the sites or blogs you are linking to, to link back, that’s the best case scenario.