On-site Search Engine Optimization

In our earlier post we talked about search engine optimization and how search engines are immediate elections that involve the individual search engine asking the internet as a whole to vote on what the best web page is for each specific search. Search Engine Optimization is focused on helping websites rank themselves higher for the elections they are most interested in entering. The two main tactics that can be undertaken to improve rankings are called on-site and off-site optimization; this post is focused on what we believe the majority of website owners should be focused on with on-site optimization.

What do you want to be elected for?

We mentioned this in our earlier post, but one of the most important questions website owners need to ask themselves is first what do they want to get elected for. For example if you were to own a laundromat, and you launched a website with the goal of increasing the number of customers who came by your business with the intention of using your fluff and fold laundry service which just expanded its offerings to include pick up and delivery.

While seemingly an obvious step, many business owners just “want to rank higher” without first establishing what the want to rank higher for. For the purposes of this article we will assume that the business owner has decided that the focus should be on terms related to “laundry service”, “pick up and delivery laundry”, and “fluff and fold laundry” in the Norfolk county area.

K-I-S-S

“Michael always says, ‘K-I-S-S, keep it simple, stupid.’ Great advice, hurts my feelings every time.” – Dwight K Scrute

One of the items that many website overlook is first taking care of the very basics. We’ve talked to many business owners such as our proposed laundromat owner, who once they lock in on what they want to rank for quickly find that those terms are nowhere on their website.

Once you’ve selected the terms you are most interested in ranking for it’s important to check to make sure these words are featured across the website and in additional content for your website as it is created. In addition you can use tools such as this word cloud generator, to review what words are most often mentioned on your website. If the words you are focused on, do not match to the main words seen┬áin the word cloud generator, it likely means that your website has not been optimized the searches you wish to rank for.

Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

One of the most important areas that you will want to address is ensuring that the title tags and meta descriptions have been updated and optimized for the searches that you are attempt to rank for. Once again we stress not to over think this and focus on those main searches that you have already locked in on.

For our hypothetical laundromat owner, we can not describe the number of times that in the initial examination of the website, the terms that the business most wants to gain traction on are no where to be found or are hidden deep within the page. The title and meta descriptions are your chance as the website owner to feature these terms and make it clear to the search engines what the page and your website are focused on.

Creating Content/Why Should You Rank

One question that business owners often fail to address when launching and trying to rank their website, is whether their website deserves to rank or be elected at all.

Obviously they would like it to, but as we spoke about in our earlier article, the search engines are focused on providing the “best” webpage/website for the individual’s search. While you may want it to be elected, have you delivered a website that should rank #1?

By updating and optimizing your basic site information, as well as the titles and meta descriptions you are well on your way to having explained to the search engines what you want your website to rank for. Content is the means to makes your case to the search engines that your website as a whole is a resource for individuals in their search. By adding relevant content focused around the search terminology you are most interested in ranking for, you have the ability to demonstrate that your website deserves consideration as the best landing spot for individuals searching on your desired terms.

For our laundromat owner, the type of content that they will post may originally be on the services that they offer. However as time progresses they can expand their content to include anything related to laundromat service, ideally thinking about topics that are in some way related to their ideal search. For instance a post called, “10 Reasons to consider using a Laundry Service” is content that is relevant both to the search terms they have selected (as well as potentially informative/fun enough that it will catch the interest of other bloggers and receive links/votes back – an important signal in your ability to get elected).

Continually adding content pieces such as these will provide the search engines with clear evidence that the website deserves strong consideration in any elections held on laundromat related terms.