Posted: Mon 6th Dec 2021
If you look after your own website – and particularly if you're producing fresh content – it helps to have a basic knowledge of search engine optimisation (SEO).
That way, you know about what techniques are needed to help search engines, and eventually users and customers, to find your website.
Without getting technical or over-complicated, here are five quick and easy tips for how to boost your business website's organic traffic.
Readability is everything, so pick the right keywords
While it's tempting to stuff your website's content with keywords and headings so you can rank on Google for as many queries as possible, making the copy readable and valuable to the user is still absolutely crucial.
A blog post jam-packed with irrelevant and unhelpful keywords that are only there to make the page appear in numerous search results will generally backfire. These days, search engines are more than sophisticated enough to differentiate between and good and bad user experiences.
By all means, include relevant keywords in your title and headings to create a sensible and logical structure. But always make sure the content is useful to the reader and not designed to 'trick' the search engine.
Internal links are your friend
Simply put, internal links are hyperlinks you place within a piece of content to direct the user to another page on your website.
Not only do internal links do a job of keeping users within your domain with signposts to other useful topics, but they do a good job from a technical standpoint as well: they allow your site to gain more authority.
If users are regularly clicking on internal links, it tells Google those pages are also valuable pieces of content. That will slowly spread ranking power across several pages.
Once again, going the extra mile and providing value to the reader by internally linking to other useful pages will benefit everyone involved.
Harness the power of analytics
There are two types of website tracking tools that all business owners should be comfortable with.
First, the likes of Google Analytics and Search Console. These are fairly user-friendly and will give you a really good idea of how different pages are performing – whether it's for traffic, acquisition or conversion.
It's also crucial to have some sort of SEO-specific software in place. Ahrefs and SEMrush are examples of tools which allow you to really dig into specifics. These tools measure elements such as website health, competitor analysis and keyword tracking, but can also provide more sophisticated keyword research capabilities to identify areas of opportunity going forward.
Improve site speed
A slow website is an absolute killer when it comes to SEO. While slow loading times will affect on-page users and likely reduce conversions, they'll also increase the likelihood of your content ranking poorly.
Large image sizes, unnecessary widgets and defunct plugins can all cripple a site's speed. Most SEO tools will have site speed analytics built in, so be sure to use this information.
Be on the lookout for Google algorithm updates
Google is always evolving and improving, with updates rolled out on a regular basis to make it the search engine as smart as possible. However, these algorithm changes can end up helping some sites and seriously penalising others.
The changes range from minuscule to fundamental, so following Google SearchLiaison and Danny Sullivan on Twitter is a good place to start if you want to keep up with these updates and how you can tweak your SEO strategy to stay ahead of the competition.
Photo credit: Danny Sullivan