Many of you already know that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is essential to the success of your website and brand online. However, achieving SEO is not an easy feat. How do you know exactly what to optimise?
Well, when web-crawlers cruise through your website pages they are looking for anything that can be indexed in the search engine database. We optimise our websites to make it easier and faster for web-crawlers to find the relevant pieces of information to get our sites out there. This means focusing on titles, description text, links, images etc. But don’t worry, we have some sure fire tips to help you with this.
Create a Sitemap
A sitemap serves two purposes.
Firstly, it can help users find their way around your website, although with a simple website design and a good navigation bar there should be no need for them to resort to the site map for help.
Secondly, and most importantly, it lists all of your pages and files found within your website that are available to be indexed by the search engine. It basically makes it easier for a search engine web crawler to explore your website.
To keep your sitemap optimised, it is important to keep them up to date with new changes. This makes it easier for you as the web designer as well as improving the effect of the sitemap for optimisation purposes. You can do his by using a dynamic sitemap which can be set up to update itself every time changes are made to your website.
Also, sitemaps need to comply with specific rules depending on your company, so make sure you are up to date with the protocols whilst designing your sitemap.
Keep your web design simple, your images clean and your use of images and media varied and interesting, without going over the top. A website that is overloaded with stock images and heavy background content will take a long time to load, and search engines are reluctant to recommend sites with long loading times. Ranking algorithms used by major search engines take into consideration the load time of a page and the longer your page takes to load, the lower it will rank.
Linking internally within your own website is not a new thing, but using text links effectively can improve your SEO.
Anchor text is the text that is used to name the link and it is not only good web design practice to maintain your anchor text and keep things logical, but it also critical for effective SEO. Using text anchors that most effectively sum up your products or range will help the search engine to index you (along with other providers) and so not just your website name will be SEO but also the products you link to.
We hope this article has helped make it clear what should be optimised to help you take your first steps into search engine optimisation.