Unfortunately there is no magic switch or simple method to be first page - Simulant do daily SEO work for our clients and we know just how hard it is to get good results for a site and then even harder, keep the site ranked well! That said, we always find ways to improve a client's website to give them a better search presence. That's why we don't mind publishing some of the basic checks we do first on a website, as well as some of the changes we make to improve SEO initially. There is always more to do than what follows, but it's a great start. If you are interested in improving your website Search Engine Optimisation please contact Simulant Yorkshire SEO consultants now for more information.
Good SEO is a massive combination of factors and it all depends on what your competitors and other websites are also doing. If you do 8 out of 10 things right, who's to say a rival website won't be doing 9 out of 10 things right; and even if you're both doing everything right, there may also be other sites out there with bigger budgets, a lot more backlinks (and popularity such as lots of Social signals) or that are simply more reputable in Google's eyes...
Whatever your approach though, if you start off with the following SEO check-list and work through these SEO tips, you have a much better chance of getting those first page Google results you want to achieve:
Website SEO Check-list
Your domain name(s) should be as short as possible.
Search engines and visitors can interact with your website more affectively when you use URLs that describe the pages content (for example: http://www.company.co.uk/companyinformation).
URLs are extremely vital to your SEO campaign. Be sure to use URLs that make it easy for Google to index your site. Try to make each page's URL match the Meta Title and H1 Title of that specific page.
Each page should have its own exclusive Meta Title (the title shown at the top of your browser). Keep them individual to the page.
The most effective browser Meta Titles are about 10-70 characters long, including spaces.
Keep your titles concise and make sure they contain your best keywords.
Useful because they often dictate how your pages are shown in search results.
For optimum effectiveness, Meta Descriptions should be 70-160 characters long.
Your Meta Descriptions should be concise and contain your best keywords.
Make sure each page of your website has its own unique Meta Description.
H1-H3 Page Titles
Pages should implement HTML headings (<H1> through <H3>) and only one <H1> heading should be used. You should include keywords in your headings.
The initial heading (<H1>) should include your best keywords.
Using only one <H1> heading per page will strengthen your SEO.
Images & ALT Text
ALT text should be added to your images so that it's easier for search engines to index them.
Don't use the same Alt Text or Keyphrases for different images. Google ranks repeated content lower on searches.
Search engines don't physically see images the way people do. ALT text is an option that allows you to specifically describe the image.
ALT text attaches a description to your pictures so that they show up in Google and other search engine's image results.
Make sure your website images have their own specific ALT text.
Keep in mind that your pages load time will vary based on the number and size of your images which also impacts on SEO. Try your best to keep image file-sizes low.
Landing Pages / Categories
Pages that only cover one subject, product or service are more effective than pages attempting to target visitors searching for lots of Keyphrases. Landing Pages or Category Pages should be created which focus on one main service or area of work. More pages will also allow more content and specific search Keyphrase targeting.
Each page should have a Text/HTML Ratio close to 50% as possible. Text is always better for SEO than images – if a page has a lot of images then a lot of text should be added to even out the ratio.
SEO can be strengthened by increasing the recurrence of keywords on your page and adding more text that pertains to your website's content. This also strengthens your Keyword Density. Page text should always be originally written and worded - not copied or duplicated.
This file restricts the activity of search engine crawlers and stops them from accessing certain pages and directories.
A robots.txt file also locates the XML sitemap.
An XML sitemap lists URLs that can be crawled and may offer other information such as how often you update, when your last update occurred and importance.
With an XML sitemap, search engines can index your website more accurately.
Regional/local target GB English should be declared in HTML head section or by CMS rather than USA English (usually the default) to help local search results.
A Document Type should be included. Specifying a Doctype assists your web browser in correctly rendering your content.
UTF-8 or correct character encoding should be declared. Declaring a character/language encoding will significantly strengthen your SEO.
We recommend adding Google Analytics to your site. It won't help your SEO by just adding it but it is a very powerful monitoring tool to allow tracking of who is visiting the site, how they are finding the pages and which advertisers (or referrers) are working best.
Microformats and Structured Data should be added to pages especially with contact information. This way Search Engines can read addresses, phone numbers and emails to place you locally to those searching for your services.
Microformat is a markup that is used to structure the data that is being sent to search engines more effectively. The presentation of Google's search results is always improving due to Microformats.
Google Plus & Maps
A Google Plus listing and Maps submission works independently of your website. In many ways it is a website in its own right and places you on Google whether you have your own website or not. With this in mind listings should be added to also included text with keyphrases throughout and images renamed to use keyphrases and give targeted descriptions.
We also recommend adding Dublin Core to your website pages. Dublin Core is a set of metadata standards that describe your websites content and will further strengthen SEO.
Geo Meta Tags
The search engine Bing utilizes Geo-Meta Tags even though Google doesn't.
RSS / Feeds
Blogs and news websites depend on feeds.
Your websites visibility improves when subscribers to your feed are alerted of content updates.
Although debated as to whether SEO is effected, adding a Favicon may help. Favicons also strengthen brand identity and provide a user-friendly experiencing when adding Bookmarks.
Serverside Compression & CDN
Gzip Server compression helps speed up page load time. Content Delivery Networks are also worth adding to improve performance and security.
Local hosting can improve SEO through local search IP address priority and improved page load speed. If you're based in Yorkshire like us, why not switch to Simulant Systems Ltd?!
Social Networking & Blog Posts
Facebook Likes, Twitter mentions, Google Plus/Pinterest interactions and Blog posts etc all add to search presence and count as Backlinks to your site. Links to specific pages, products and offers should be included in Social Posts.
Backlinks, PR & Domain Authority
Links to your site and specific products and pages should be built up. The more quality Backlinks generated the higher your Page Rank and Website Authority will be.
Links to your site should be from other companies and websites your business deals with, as well as Directories and sites relating to your types of services and geographic location. (For example adding a listing to www.insideyorkshire.uk – an online directory to support Yorkshire businesses.)
Links from sites that are illegitimate, illegal, spam-filled or that are in no way related to your website, service area or products provided can have a negative effect on SEO.
Mobile Responsive Design or Mobile Site
Google now favours sites that are Mobile and Tablet compatible, in some cases showing sites that are Mobile Friendly above sites that are not when searching on a Mobile or Smart device.
All of the above will help make sure your website has a great foundation and the basis of a great start to good SEO. Your link building, blogging, Social Network posts and website news updates should be ongoing. And remember using local hosting providers such as Simulant SEO hosting and building links with your partners and local suppliers from your area is always the best way to make sure you have a great local search ranking.
If you would like us to help with any of the above SEO tips, extra website SEO or would like to host your Yorkshire-based business with Simulant SEO hosting to help your local search rankings, then please visit www.yorkshire.hosting and we'll be glad to help.