Search engine optimization (SEO) is a broad topic. SEO for beginners looking to optimize their websites and blogs, the amount of information out there can be overwhelming. Search engines are built with very complex algorithms that require special knowledge to be able to get around. Getting your content noticed requires a lot of effort by someone who knows what they are doing.
Despite being such a broad topic, there are some simple, easy to implement techniques for beginner that provide amazing results. Without proper search engine optimization, your amazing content might remain unnoticed. This articles covers some of those basic techniques that are a must do for anyone serious about having a noticeable online presence. The techniques discussed do not require special technical experience and can be set up by absolute beginners so that their websites can reap the benefits of being search engine optimized.
1. Internal Linking
Internal linking is a very important aspect for any website’s search engine optimization.
Internal linking is the process of adding links to a web page that point to other pages on the same website. It is important when you add internal links to your website that you don’t do it purely for SEO’s sake. Search engines’ algorithms can tell the difference between genuine internal linking and links thrown in purely for SEO purpose. Add internal links that are relevant, really matter to readers and most importantly, don’t overdo it. A few, well integrated internal links on every page will do the trick.
2. External Linking
As the name suggests, external links connect your website with other websites. Now, this is one tricky topic. At the beginning, external linking was all about quantity. People started to have many websites pointing to their own to increase its ranking. As a result, the quality of Google’s search results began to deteriorate. To deal with this linking abuse, Google upgraded its search algorithm to be able to distinguish the difference between genuine links and SEO fillers (spammy links). To get the best results out of link building, remember that quality beats quantity. Try creating good content and have it linked naturally to relevant websites. Avoid any of the pay to link services as they will probably yield some very negative results.
3. Page Titles and Description Tags
Proper page titles and page description Meta tags are essential for a properly search engine optimized websites. Page titles have to be simple and descriptive of the actual content of the web page. Stuffing titles with too many keywords will give the very opposite result of what you are trying to achieve. Keep it simple and to the point.
Page description Meta tags are very important for a website’s SEO and the amount of visits it gets. A well-written page description can simply mean the difference between clicking on your website or a competitor’s. The rule for a good page description is similar to that of the title. Keep it reasonably short (try not to exceed 150 words) and add a unique description for every page and avoid keyword stuffing.
4. Adding Breadcrumbs
Breadcrumbs are a set of navigational links on the top of a page that helps users understand where exactly they are on the website. They give the users the ability to go back to previously visited pages and thus the name, breadcrumbs. In addition to contributing to a website’s overall user experience, breadcrumbs can also improve a website’s search engine optimization.
Using breadcrumbs is an easy way to reduce your website’s bounce rate and improve its SEO. If you are using WordPress, there are plenty of plugins that can help you achieve that with relative ease.
5. Text Formatting
Text formatting is another thing that can be done to improve both the user experience and SEO results. Before you publish some text, make sure to modify it for good readability. Keep the paragraphs small, the font size easy to read and make sure to bold or italic the parts you need to emphasize. Also, make sure to properly use the header tags (h1, h2, h3, etc.) Properly using header tags can improve an article’s readability and improve its search engine ranking.
6. Page Loading Time
Page loading time affects its SEO. Google has stated this fact so many times. High loading time also affects the overall website’s user experience. Optimally, the loading time of a page shouldn’t exceed 4 seconds. The lower the loading time of a page, the better it is for its ranking. Beside solutions that go into deep technical details, there are some actions that can be taken by normal users to improve page load times. Those include removing any unnecessary plugins and optimizing images on the webpage. Doing so will help reduce the bloat of the web page and as a result, make it load faster. You can test you website’s loading time using tools like Google’s PageSpeed Tool.
A Simple Recipe for SEO Success
Search engine optimization is not magic. Despite all of the above SEO tweaks, nobody would like to visit a website with poor content. Content is king and will always be. Without good content, all the previous SEO techniques are as good as useless. SEO can help the good content out there be found, but cannot help bad content be desirable. With decent, high quality content, some basic SEO tweaking can take you a long way.