Simple SEO Checks to Boost Your Website

November 15th 2011       Sally Ormond       copywriting tips, Keyword research, link building, search engine optimisation, SEO copywriter, Website copywriting

Search engine optimisation doesn’t have to be scary.

Despite the claims of some, anyone can make simple SEO checks on their website that will make a difference to their rankings. Of course, you must have a strategy in place (and stick to it) if you want to be really successful.

So, if you’re ready, let’s get to it with check number 1.

1. Design

For most companies (yes, you too), the look of their site is everything. They invest vast amounts of money on the design of their site because they want it to look ‘nice’. Well looking nice is all well and good, but if it doesn’t appear in the search results no one is going to see it.

Custom built websites are great if you work with a team that are as good with SEO as they are with their creativity (a rare combination). Whether you like them or not, template websites tend to be more SEO friendly. Your site has to welcome the search engine spiders with open arms, tell them what your site is about and convince them you’re the bee’s knees. And the only way that’s going to happen is through a simple design and easy navigation.  But all that can only be achieved once your designer knows  what keywords you’re going to target.

2. Keywords

Keeping the ‘simple’ theme going, we’ll briefly look at a very easy way to come up with a keywords list (depending on your market sector, you may need to be slightly more sophisticated in your approach).

First, write down the 3 or 4 top words you want to rank for (be specific, don’t just say TVs).

For example, my choice could be copywriter, freelance copywriter, SEO Copywriter and Suffolk Copywriter to get a location in there.

The next step would be to ask a colleague to do the same, then another, and another…until you’ve got a fairly comprehensive list of real keywords that people will search for.

Now comes the hard bit – working out which are too competitive and which ones are worth a punt. You can use Google’s free keyword tool for this and the chart below will help you work out which keywords are the ones for you.

 

Keyword selection chart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The only way to make sure your keyword choice is effective is to monitor your site’s performance through analytics.

3. Copy

The next stage is your SEO copywriting. Rather than cramming your keywords into your text as many times as you can, write your text for your reader in a natural style. Your keywords should be reserved for:

  • Title tags
  • H1 and H2 headings
  • ALT tags for your images

Of course, that’s not to say you mustn’t have any keywords in your copy. If you write about your subject naturally, the keywords will automatically appear, but in a way that is not forced.

4. Link gathering

This is where the hard work starts.

By blogging and writing articles, you will start to build links to your website. Every link is seen as a vote for your site by the search engines. You guessed it, the more votes you have, the higher you’ll appear in the search results.

Plus the better your content, the more likely you are to attract links from other sources too. And don’t forget to leverage social media to publicise your blogs, articles and content to widen your readership.

So there you go. SEO isn’t scary, but it is a process that should be on-going and constantly tweaked.

Whether you already have a website or you’re just starting out, use these 4 tips to give your website the best chance of being found.

Tags: copywriting tips, Keyword research, link building, search engine optimisation, SEO copywriter, Website copywriting
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