Google SEO – There Are No No Short-Cuts
Businesses in Liverpool (and around the UK for that matter) often ask us about Google SEO (optimising your website to rank on the front page of Google). Many seem to think there is some magic formula or special code that clever it gurus can apply to their websites which would get them listed at the top of search engines like Google. Many believe promises from unethical operators that they can get their website listed on page one of Google within weeks or days.
Google SEO Is Doing Some Common Sense Things Correctly
The fact of the matter is that there is no magic formula or secret codes that get inserted into your web site to get in ranking. First and foremost your web site needs to be optimised for what is best for your visitors. They are your consumers and your content should reflect that.
If your web site is built according to the correct HTML specifications, has easy to follow navigation, and is unique and has content that your potential clients will be seeking, you are well on the way to having the type of website that Google loves. This is far more important for ranking factors than doing tweaks, “black hat SEO” and other similar tricks to snare the search engine spiders.
When creating a page give some thought to the TITLE and DESCRIPTION of the content.
Again, this comes back to creating useful content for the user. Your title must be unique as well as accurate. For the description, try to sum up the page content concisely, using phrases that appear in the page content.
Make sure that your page title and description is clearly indicated within the proper HTML tags in the <head> tag of the HTML document. Ensure that you name each page distinctly and accurately, whilst at the same time using important keyword phrases that clearly identify the page content. These tags makes guide the the spiders and this is what will appear in the search engine results. Most often, the description will also be shown below the title. The description tells both google and your potential clients in summary, what your page is all about.
Another important point to consider is the STRUCTURE of your web site. Keep those urls simple. Ensure the filenames are as descriptive as possible, using no more than three to four words. The easier it is for a human being to navigate to all the important pages, the easier it will be for googlebot to crawl and index your pages.
Web Site Content
The content of each page should provide unique and appropriate content to the page title and headings. Do not employ “keyword stuffing” techniques. By this I mean using a sought after keyword multiple times, in multiple paragraphs. By all means, make use of the keyword phrase you are targeting, but use it in a “natural” manner.
If you have named the file correctly, used a keyword rich phrase in the title and description, simply using the phrase in the first and last paragraphs will make that page relevant for the phrase in googlebot’s eyes.
The Importance Of Using Sensible Anchor Text
What the h%!&^ is anchor text? Anchor text is a link that is clickable, which makes it easy for your visitors to find your other pages (obviously Google loves text links as well!). A text link to another page on your site is also a vote for that site using the text used in the anchor text. i.e. If you have a link on your page which is clickable, and it reads BLUE WIDGETS, your user (and Google) will rightly assume that the page is about blue widgets.
The steps outlined may seem like really simple navigation, but it is of paramount importance to Google! That is how it gathers it’s data about BLUE WIDGETS.
Make use of a regular HTML, text based sitemap. For maximum “spiderability” it is also a good idea to generate an XML sitemap, specifically for googlebot’s ease of use. This makes it far more simple for Google to discover and index all of your pages.
Information regarding XML sitemap creation
End of part one.