While the world of SEO has changed dramatically in recent years thanks to Google’s modifications to their algorithm, optimization still plays a vital role in your online success. The industry continues to advance and things are becoming more and more consumer friendly, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be concerned with SEO for your site. Here are some creative tips to help ensure that you see the success you need in the online environment.
Know Your Keywords
More than ever, accurate keyword research is vital. Not only must you know the specific keywords that apply to your company – product names and types, for example – but you need to know derivative keywords. These will help boost your traffic through related keyword searches. For instance, suppose you operated a company that sold athletic shoes. Your keywords would be things like “running shoes” or “cross-trainers” coupled with brand names (think Nike, Reebok, Adidas, etc.).
However, your related keywords might be things like “athletic footwear”, or “best shoes for new runners”. These are all keywords that don’t necessarily apply directly to your products, but do apply directly to your company as a whole. Spend some time determining what your related keywords are and then optimize for them by adding relevant content to your site (or on your blog).
Flash navigation solutions have remained popular for a long time with a variety of different businesses. While search engines can index these to an extent (which is more than they once could offer), it’s actually better to maintain your HTML navigation to maximize SEO. You’ll find a wide range of high quality WordPress templates out there that offer simple, elegant, effective HTML navigation solutions to enhance both SEO and your visitors’ experience while browsing your site.
Don’t Neglect Offsite SEO
When most business owners think about SEO, they think about embedding keywords within their website, optimizing image ALT tags and the like. However, you cannot afford to forget about offsite optimization. If you’re not familiar with this, it’s pretty simple. One way you can do this is by posting interesting, sharable content on your website and blog that your visitors want to share with others (and then adding tools to make that content sharable). The more your content is shared off your site, the more back links you gain and the better your offsite optimization will be.
Another option in offsite optimization is to blog in other places than just your own site or blog. Guest blogging on other authority sites will give you access to an entirely new audience and help drive traffic where you want it.
Add Content to Your Site/Blog
One of the key elements in Google’s new SEO algorithm is that content is more important than ever before. If your site is nothing more than a collection of product descriptions, then chances are good that Google doesn’t rank you very highly. In order to rank in search engine results, you need to add quality content on a regular basis. What is “quality content”, though? Essentially, it should offer your visitors:
- Relevant information concerning the topic of their search
- Original information not copied from elsewhere
- Interesting content that offers value to your readers
If you can add content like this on a regular basis, your ranking will increase. Of course, you need to ensure that you optimize that content with your keywords, but don’t go too crazy. Keep your keyword density within the bounds of sanity. In the past, it was common to see pages with 5, 6 or even 10% keywords density, which is just ridiculous. Keep your density around 1%, or one use of your keyword or keyword phrase per 100 words. And always remember – your content should be about more than just having somewhere else to use your keywords. It must offer real value to your visitors or you’ll be penalized.
One of the most important tips for SEO success is that everything you do should be done for your users first, with search engines coming in second. In the past, the situation was reversed. Most businesses focused on creating sites and content that worked for search engine spiders and really never gave much thought to what human visitors would experience. Today, that’s a quick route to disaster. Make sure that every element of your site is designed with human visitors in mind. Moreover, they should be your priority. Search engines are important, but real people are vital.
These simple, effective tips will help ensure that you are able to build the most successful website possible and enjoy optimization in the modern world. Always remember – human visitors come first. Optimize for search engines second. Build a quality site, regularly add valuable content and don’t neglect offsite optimization.