SEO is much more than adding a few keywords here and there or publishing a new blog post every few weeks. In reality, search engine optimisation is a technical strategy that requires time, effort, patience, and knowledge.
For example, did you know that there are actually three different areas of SEO — on-page, off-page, and technical? An effective SEO strategy requires in-depth knowledge of all three and an excellent understanding of the level of interplay required to produce good results. Fortunately, as a leading SEO company in Australia, Newpath Web’s team of certified consultants are here to do the hard SEO work for you.
As the name suggests, on-page SEO is entirely concerned with aspects of your website that can be optimised to improve search engine results. On-page SEO is often thought of as the area of SEO that you have the most control over.
Examples of features that can be optimised under on-page SEO include:
The challenge of SEO is that you need to appeal to both search engines and your customers, which is trickier than it sounds. Having this dual focus is particularly important when you are writing content.
First and foremost, content should be written for human readers. There is no point getting your website to the top of the search engine rankings if it then fails to capture the interest of potential customers. Ensure that your content is informative and meets the needs of your target audience.
Once this has been achieved, you can then turn your attention to crafting keyword rich phrases that will grab the attention of search engine bots. Including keywords in your content is an art; avoid ‘keyword stuffing’ (spamming your content with keywords) and make having a natural flow and tone to your writing a priority.
A title tag is a HTML element that defines the title of a webpage. Essentially, it is the headline that appears in the search engine results page. As such, you want to be sure that your title tag is engaging and optimised from an SEO perspective (contains keywords).
Meta descriptions are another HTML element that is important for both human users and search engine bots. From a user perspective, the meta description is usually the small snippet of text that appears under a headline on the search engine results page.
While search engines don’t necessarily use the meta description directly when calculating search engine rankings, they do take note of the ‘click through rate’ or the number of users who click on a link vs the number who view a page. Meta descriptions can encourage users to visit your site, increasing your click through rate and improving your search engine ranking results.
Header tags — from H1 to H6 — provide much needed structure and organisation to your online content. They are important from a UX perspective and can also help search engine bots gain a greater understanding of what your website is about.
Finally, image optimisation. Including images and graphics on your webpage is crucial if you are hoping to engage your users.
From an on-page SEO perspective, images should be resized to ensure that they do not negatively affect load time. They should also be in the correct format, be it PNG, JPEG, or GIF. Image file names should include descriptive keywords (so that search engine bots understand what the image is conveying) and correct use of alt text will assist both bots and users who are vision impaired.
Where possible, use unique images rather than stock photos and include captions to improve the user experience.
In 2021, it’s not enough to simply focus on your own website. Effective SEO also depends on your ability to increase your brand presence via external methods.
Search engine bots scan more than your website to calculate rankings. They scan the whole internet! Which means your content, site, and brand name need to be shared as widely as possible. This can be achieved through several methods, including:
Search engines pay high attention to external links. The goal of a link building strategy is to increase the number of external websites that feature links to your site and content. Ideally, these external websites should be high quality and relevant to your products and services. If you run an eCommerce store that sells sneakers, for example, having your website linked by a prominent fashion blog can have a positive effect on your SEO rankings.
Links from quality websites can be used to increase the authority and trustworthiness of your website, which equals an increase in search result rankings.
We all understand the substantial impact that social media can have on the reputation of an online business.
Effective social media marketing can mean everything from making sure that your social media inboxes are monitored to engaging with influencers who can share your products.
Guest posting is fairly self explanatory. By crafting high quality content that is shared on trustworthy, relevant websites, you are putting your website, products, and services, straight in the hands of potential customers.
Guest posting can also be used as another link building strategy to increase search engine result rankings.
Technical SEO involves ensuring that your website is technically optimised for both search engines and human users. In order to effectively understand what your website is about, search engine bots crawl every page, word, image, and link. If these elements are not optimised correctly, the search engine is unlikely to rank your site for the keywords you are targeting.
At the same time, technical SEO has a large focus on the end user. How many times have you left a website because it was taking too long to load or had too many dead links? A technical SEO strategy focuses on fixing these problems to provide a seamless user experience.
By structuring your site correctly, you will be showing search engines which pages are most important and best reflect your business.
Content should be neatly organised, categorised, and relevant. Plan out the hierarchy of your pages, be sure that your URL structure reflects this hierarchy, and make intelligent use of internal linking to help search engine bots and humans navigate your website.
Security is a top concern for you and your users. Put simply, your website must have an SSL — secure sockets layer — certificate or you could be significantly penalised by search engines.
The proliferation of smartphone usage means that website owners need to ensure that their webpages are optimised for mobile. Websites must be ‘responsive’ — that is, they must adjust text, graphics, and structure automatically so that the site can be accessed on any size device.
Google and other search engines take this factor quite seriously when calculating rankings.
It goes without saying that internet users have a preference for sites that load quickly. Pages with a longer load time tend to have a higher bounce rate, which can negatively impact on SEO rankings. A slow page speed may also make it more difficult for bots to crawl your site.
Page speed can be improved by compressing large files, reducing the number of redirects, optimising bottlenecks, and improving your server response time.
The best SEO strategy? One that effectively combines on-page, off-page, and technical approaches for a comprehensive plan of action.
SEO is quite a technical area of marketing, which is why you are best off putting your website in the hands of Newpath Web — a leading search engine optimisation company in Australia. Our team of experienced SEO consultants understand what search engines and users are looking for and can apply their skills and knowledge to catapult your website to the top of the results page.
Contact us today to find out how our services can transform your online presence.