Guest post by Cory Tyner
SEO is a critical component to getting traffic on your website. SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s all about using techniques to get your website to show up on search engines.
Contrary to the popular myth, you can’t build a website and expect people to come to it. The adage “build it and they’ll come” went out a long time ago. These days, you have to strategically build websites and create content that encourages Google (and other search engines) to list your website on the first page of organic search results.
Getting on that first page is essential since 75% of searchers won’t ever click beyond the first page of results, but it takes a bit of work to get there. Here are five tips for creating an SEO-optimized website.
Tip #1: Make Sure Your Website is Mobile-Friendly
52% of all website traffic comes from phones, so your website must be mobile-friendly. These days, you want to ensure that your website is responsive. In other words, you want to ensure that your website adapts to whatever device a user is viewing on. For instance, if they’re on a phone, the mobile version of your site should show. If they’re on a desktop, then your desktop version should show.
However, mobile optimization goes beyond user experience. It plays a critical role in search engine rankings, too. Google loves mobile. They love it so much that it’s the third most important ranking factor when determining search engine rank.
Beyond that, Google crawls the mobile version of your site before it crawls the desktop version. So, it’s critical to have a responsive design from the jump.
Tip #2: Increase Your Page Loading Speed
Google also loves fast websites. In fact, they use page load times as a factor in determining who should go on that first page. So, you must ensure that your website loads quickly.
There are several ways to speed up a site, but here are a few quick tips:
- Decrease and compress images.
- Remove any unnecessary or unused plugins.
- Be sure to cache. (Note, for CTM, it’s important that you don’t cache our tracking script because it’s dynamic and it will break number swapping.)
- Embed or link to big files instead of loading them into your site.
- Keep all your themes, plugins, and scripts up to date.
There are several sites around the web to quickly analyze your site’s load times. Be sure that you aren’t unintentionally sabotaging your SEO work with a slow website.
Tip #3: Be Smart About Your Keywords
Keywords are the backbone of SEO. When you first begin to optimize your website, you’ll want to do extensive keyword research to determine which keywords you want to aim for. You want to find keywords that encompass your niche and what you have to offer.
Keywords are another way of saying “search terms.” What search terms do you want to trigger your site to show up?
For instance, if you sell sneakers, you want your website to come up every time someone uses the search term “sneakers.”
However, as with all things SEO, it’s a bit more complicated than just choosing keywords that make sense. You also have to find keywords that don’t have too much competition but also have a decent amount of traffic.
There are three main keyword types: short-tail, medium-tail, and long-tail.
- Short tail keywords are typically one or two words and highly competitive (i.e., “sneakers”).
- Long-tail keywords are long strings of text (i.e., “white and black running sneakers size 10 men’s US”). They’re hyper-specific and easy to rank for, but they don’t have a lot of traffic.
- Medium-tail keywords are right in between, and they’re the ideal place to start.
So, be smart about your keywords. Research to find medium-tail keywords that have plenty of traffic without too much competition.
Learn More: Why Bidding on Branded Terms is Necessary
Tip #4: Optimize Everything
Once you’ve picked your keywords, you need to make sure that you’ve optimized every part of your website. This means putting that keyword in strategic places throughout your website so that Google recognizes that you are trying to show up for that keyword.
These places include:
- Meta descriptions
- Title Tags
- Header Tags
- Alt Image Text
- Website Body Text
However, word to the wise, don’t oversaturate your website with your keywords. Unnaturally placing your keywords all over the place is called “keyword stuffing,” and search engines don’t like that. Make sure that you write content for humans first and search engines second.
Tip #5: Create High-Quality Content
On the note of creating content for humans, it’s vital to have high-quality content on your website. The most straightforward way to do that is with a blog. Blogs allow plenty of room for new keywords and an opportunity to engage with your website visitors.
In recent years, Google has put a lot of energy into ranking websites that have quality content. Their biggest piece of SEO advice is to write impactful, useful articles, and content that your target demographic will appreciate, and you’ll have a much easier time getting on that first page.
So, no keyword stuffing or boring articles that don’t provide value. Aim to create content that appeals to your target demographic, and Google will reward you for that.
Optimize Your Website to Start Seeing More Traffic
Search engine optimization can be overwhelming. It’s a lot to take in and learn. Start by optimizing your website using these five tips, and then keep researching. The work you put in today with SEO will pay off for you in the long run.
The key with SEO is to get started as soon as possible because it takes time for your work to pay off. So, don’t wait to optimize your website. Start today.
Corey Tyner is a writer and business owner who helps sell your house fast. He is the founder of Arizona Land Buyers. As one of the top real estate investors in Arizona with over a decade of experience, his work has been featured on Bigger Pockets, Real Estate Agent Magazine, and several other mainstream real estate investor publications.