Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing or modifying your website's content in order to make it more relevant and appealing, thus increasing its ranking in search engines such as Google or Bing. As it relates to businesses, SEO is essential for ensuring users who are searching for information using relevant keywords find your content.

 

Set Up Google Search Console

Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools) is a free and incredibly powerful tool that allows webmasters to view their website's search performance on Google's search engine. It provides access to key analytics and data that can be used to correct errors on your website and, ultimately, make your website appear more favorable to Google. Webmasters are also able to upload sitemaps, submit URLs for indexing in the search engine, and review crawl results to identify issues, such as broken links. Utilizing this tool requires a Google account and access to either the website's source code or its DNS records to validate ownership. Feel free to consult with your web developer if you need assistance setting this service up.

 

Optimize Page Speed

Website page speed has become a very important factor for search engine rankings, as well as the overall user experience. Nowadays, having a slow website results in users closing the page and seeking answers to their questions elsewhere. Using tools such as PageSpeed Insights and WebPageTest evaluates the speed of your web page, as well as provide tips for how you can improve them. These can include leveraging browser caching, minifying your JavaScript and CSS files, optimizing images using services such as TinyPNG, and more.

Do you need help with optimizing your website? Contact us for a free consultation.

Optimize Metadata

One of the most important tasks when optimizing your website is developing the metadata for your pages, specifically the meta titles and meta descriptions. Metadata is used to rank your website for relevant keywords and phrases. Additionally, it is displayed in the results for user search queries. In essence, it is the metadata that communicates to the user what the pages are about and, more importantly, whether visiting the pages will provide them with the information that they are looking for. For successful metadata optimization, you should ensure that both the page titles and descriptions contain keywords that are relevant to the page content. You should be sure not to exceed the recommended character limitations; otherwise, parts of the metadata will not be displayed in the search results. The maximum recommended character length for meta titles is currently 60 characters and 160 characters for meta descriptions. If you use WordPress for your website platform, you can easily modify your metadata using plugins such as Yoast SEO. If your website is custom, you can contact your developer to make the changes for you.

 

Add New Content Regularly

Another method for improving your ranking is regularly updating your website with fresh content. By continuing to add content to your website, you are showing Google (and other search engines) that your website's content is up-to-date and (hopefully) relevant. One such example of this is blogging. Blogging is beneficial for several reasons including additional pages, increasing website traffic, and establishing your blog as a powerful resource and yourself as an expert in your industry. 

 

Final Thoughts

The above tasks are essential for improving the search rankings for your website. They address some of the most important ranking factors that determine your placement in the search results and can be improved fairly quickly, depending on the severity of the issues found. While they don't address all of the contributing factors of a high search ranking, it is a great place to start if hiring an SEO agency is not in your budget.