One of the most common questions asked by clients when we are planning a new web site or a re-design is "How can I place higher on Google than my business competitors". This article will detail five easy ways to improve your web site design and improve your position in results on search engines.
These changes will organically improve your search engine visibility. The term "organic" refers to a strategy that incorporates code changes, content improvement and connecting with other web sites on the internet. Organic is most often used when referring to "non-paid" strategies to improve search engine results.
I am going to detail these 5 steps in a series of screencasts in the coming weeks. These screencasts will show you how to make changes to your web site so as to achieve these 5 easy ways to improve your search engine results position. These screencasts will be released on Apple podcasts and you can also find them on Youtube. Search for Woolston Web Design and you should find them.
Here are the 5 ways to improve your search engine results position:
- Make your site faster - a fast web site keeps a person's attention for longer. You can show a person more things in a shorter amount of time because the content is on front of their eyes quicker. Plus, people are naturely impatient and will not wait 5 seconds or longer for a page to load. So what can you do to make your pages load faster? Here are some points to consider.
- Optimise your images - there are WordPress plugins that actively optimise your images as you upload them. And some of these plugins get amazing results. Let's say you have 3 images on your page and they are all 500kb in size. That is 1.5Mb for the browser to download. More often than not, a 500kb image can be optimised down to 100-150kb which is a considerable difference. It can mean up to 3 seconds of difference in time to download
- Use a CDN - there are many, many content delivery networks available and some of them are free. I wrote a blog post about why content delivery networks are necessary so be sure to read this article
- Design your site for mobile devices - Google has been talking about this for a long time now. Statica says that 47.19% of all internet browsing was done on a mobile device. A desktop web site design takes advantage of the wide and tall screen size available but a mobile device has much less real estate to present your content in. Therefore, if you expect people to browse your site on their phone by looking at content that is designed to be seen on a desktop computer, they will leave very quickly. I am sure you have been to one of these sites. You have to scroll left and right to see all of the content. You have to zoom the screen so you can read the content because it shrinks down on a mobile device. And images may take up the entire screen with just a sliver of text down the left or right hand side. This is not going to attract your viewers to read your content - no matter how great it might be
- Update your content regularly - search engine robots are continually crawling the internet. They use links to go from page to page and web site to web site. It might be some weeks or months between robot crawls on your site. If the robot crawls your site after 2 months and your content has not changed, the search engine is not going to prioritise your site in search results. There is no new content for people to see so why present your site in search results
- Write content that is interesting and attention grabbing - further to point 3, your content not only needs to be updated regularly - it should be valuable to your readers. For example, if a person comes to my site expecting to see content about web site design and they find articles about diesel mechanical techniques, they will be confused and probably move on to another site for their information. Part of your SEO strategy should be to decide who your target audience is. Once you make that decision, write content that those people are looking for and are interested in reading about. A good SEO expert can help you make this decision based on reports of web search results and they can advise you which keywords to use, what kind of content to write and whether organic or paid content is going to work
- Use SSL - if you are not using SSL on your web site, you are going to be punished by search engines in your results performance. People are submitting content via web sites more often than ever and Google recognise this. So now that are saying that your web site needs to be secure to protect those people and their information. It seems like every month there is a new scandal about personal information being exploited and shared illegally. SSL goes a long way towards stopping that, so make sure you get on board. And it does not have to cost a lot of money. Contact us today to find out how you can get both a CDN and SSL for less than $10/month.
So there are 5 ways to improve your search engine results position. They really are not that difficult and some of them can be out-sourced to people like me.
If you want more information about any of these things, please contact us today for a discussion. We can do some or all of them for you and will tailor a package just for you and your needs to achieve your SEO targets.
Til next time ...