Had a bit of an SEO-advice column today and figured I’d might as well scribble everything down in a blog post. Hopefully it’s of help to someone
Imagine you’re creating a site or revamping an old one. This is e the basic basics you simply have to know and do.
What is your bottom line?
The main reason for your site, what you want to accomplish. This is your keyword starting point.
For our examples we’ll use: Sharing my love for clothes (after all, I think about them every day anyway)
Build your keyword list
This is not an absolute must, but I strongly recommend it. For one you will exhaust all areas you might want to write about, and you’ll start to see patterns that can be helpful in organizing the site. A second up-side is you’ll have a long list to pick from once you start writing the content – always good when your inspiration won’t show up on time.
For our example. Clothes is the bottom line keyword. From there you go to dresses, skirts, jackets, t-shirts etc. Dresses become anything from 50′s style dress to cocktail dress and Kitty Foyles
The main keyword(s) of each page should be in the title tag.
You have 65 characters to play with, put the most important words first (but make it readable!)
Each page should have a unique title tag!
Example: “Kitty Foyle dress findings – Dolly’s Dresses” (Let’s face it, you’ll wanna stick your brand in there somewhere)
Meta description tag
Google (and any other search engine) shows a short description of each page in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Page). It’s not necessary to write one, Google will pick something from the page if you don’t – but it’s always nice to choose the wording if you can. You have about 150 characters.
Example: Searching for beautiful dresses, especially the Kitty Foyle type, is hard work. Now I think I’ve finally found one and I’ll like to give you the inside tips on finding your own.”
The first title in your actual text is the one that Google sees as most important. Its wording should be close to the Meta title, but it doesn’t have to be the same – maybe you want to make this a bit longer. You can also use title with the tags h2, h3 etc, but that mainly for the benefit of the reader.
Example: “How to find the perfect Kitty Foyle dress”
Content, content, content is one of the favorite sayings of SEO. This basically means, people like to read good content, Google likes updated content, 1 page = 1 potential hit in SERPs (500 pages= 500 potential hits), and other websites are more likely to link to qualitative content.
Example: I’ll aim to post a minimum of 2 articles per week. I’ll make it at least 300-400 words. I’ll also use different channels to spread it, hoping someone likes it enough to link to it.
Pictures and Alt-tags
Pictures are nice for the reader, that’s the bottom line. However, search engines can’t see, therefore you need to provide and alternative text that describes the picture. This is of course open to interpretation.
Example: Picture of a dress could be “Dress 1″ or “Black White Kitty Foyle dress”
Basically, don’t bother with it. Google doesn’t care, Yahoo might, but no users care about Yahoo Also it’s a dead give-away for your competition, at least let them read through the site in search of the good stuff!
both users and Google will more easily understand http://www.site.com/this-is-my-post than http://www.site.com/p134 or the even more hideous versions available. Just remember that Also, I would say avoid .htm .aspx etc at the end of a URL – not everyone would agree, but frankly, if the user ends up on a webpage, I don’t see the point for it. (.pdf has it’s advantages)