All leading search engines (think Google, Bing and Yahoo) aim to provide search results that are the most relevant for its users outside of its paid search advertisements. Increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website from free or organic searches is known as Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO. Mastering the art of SEO is an invaluable way to drive traffic to your business and should form a key part of your long term digital marketing strategy. Leaving it to the experts is your best bet when the budget allows, but there are some ways you can help it along in the meantime. Get started with our top three tips to organically increase your SEO now.
Invest in a good website.
It’s not just about a striking design, the structure and coding of your website is where it all starts. Choose a main focus for your website, research keywords around that topic and be sure to include these terms regularly throughout. Getting a professional copywriter to help here is a great choice.
Including a sitemap or a page listing and linking to all other major pages on your site is very important. The fewer clicks required to navigate from page to page, the better. It’s all about being user friendly! Google rewards you for it and your viewer appreciates it. The more you optimise your site for user experience, the more time users will spend on it and thus the higher the chance they will return. Website speed is also a consideration as taking longer than 5 seconds for a website to load can be labeled as slow by Google. Bonus points if your website is compatible across multiple devices.
Ensure all your URL’s or web addresses contain main keywords but don’t make them too long. Similarly, create unique titles for your pages that include primary keywords and are relevant to the content you are sharing. While we’re on the topic of links, share links to other websites and have them do the same to you to position your site as a trusted authority.
The key takeaway here is that investing in a great website rather than a DIY or cheap, templated job, is worth every penny. Your website is at the heart of your marketing strategy, so spend here and cut budget elsewhere if you need to. If in doubt, seek help from a professional for a search engine optimisation audit on your website to know where it stands.
Update your blog posts regularly
Without high quality, regular content it’s impossible to rank high for any search engine. If you publish new articles regularly, search engines will trawl your website more often and give you more authority thus increasing your SEO. Copying articles off other sites or covering the same topic repeatedly is not the answer either, it is original content that reigns supreme when it comes to increasing SEO. Think about including your keywords but write like a human with the intent to add real value to your readers. More credit is given to longer articles (this is a fine line – too long and you’ve erred towards boring so aim for about 400 words) and posts that generate high engagement, so consider what will prompt your readers to comment or share their thoughts.
Set up Google reviews
Online reviews are a strong signal to search engines that your website is trustworthy, communicating authority and bumping up your SEO. Essentially, Google trusts your customers and considers a review an endorsement of trust, rewarding you with better visibility. Whether the reviews are bad or good, Google considers it a sign that your business is a real, legitimate operation that other people have interacted with. These reviews also bump up your content and entice more clicks to your website which will likely result in boosted rankings too.
Setting the foundations for good SEO practices can be daunting and with an endless amount of ever-changing information on the topic, it’s important for us to clarify a few misconceptions about best practice.
- It’s a marathon not a sprint: It’s important to remember these tips won’t work overnight. Good SEO practice needs to be applied long term for you to see real, effective results.
- Doing it yourself only takes you so far: Stay away from backlink websites that ‘do it for you’ or claim to transform your SEO scores, these are quick fixes and Google’s technology rejects highly finessed strategies around this. SEO is complicated and the above techniques are great to give you a leg up, but to make a real difference you need to hire a professional to advise you on the appropriate search engine optimisation packages.
- Know your terminology: SEO and Google Ads are different things. Google Ads is an advertising platform owned by Google that allows businesses to position their ads on search pages, Google owned platforms like YouTube and thousands of other participating sites. SEO applies to all search engines and is generated organically, hence taking longer to see results then with immediate return from Google Ads investments. There are times when you should use them together and separately depending on your business needs.
It will be invaluable to your business, not just in terms of SEO to keep your website efficient, your content valuable and your audience engaged. Do your research and keep on top of Google’s evolving SEO preferred practices. These tips are certainly a starting point but for ultimate SEO optimisation it is worth having a professional analyse your current website and provide recommendations for increased SEO and as a result, digital marketing success.
Want to know more? Ven are offering complimentary initial SEO reports for your website, for RBK clients & friends. Understand the key words you’re ranking for, competitor analysis, where your traffic is coming from, and recommendations to boost your SEO success.
Have a chat to Ven about anything website, SEO, Vietnamese food or technology related.