Once you have a thorough understanding of the SEO fundamentals, you can put each element into practice and track your efforts with ongoing reviews of your analytics. Keep in mind that your SEO methods must keep up with changing user search habits and evolving ranking factors in search engine algorithms.
A good starting point is to consider the user-friendliness of your website, as usability and SEO rankings go hand in hand. Search engines not only rate the relevance of your keywords but evaluate the time users spend on your website, the number of pages viewed, the extent of interaction with your content, and repeat visits.
G&G Digital’s SEO services are geared to enrich the usability and overall user experience of your website with spot-on keywords, relevant value-add content, and overall compliance with SEO best-practices.
Here are 10 ways to boost your website usability and SEO ranking:
- Produce original high-quality content: Value-add content crafted around user needs is the most powerful driver of website rankings. By keeping content fresh and relevant, you can increase the amount of time users spend on your website and the likelihood of your site being bookmarked, which search engines use as an indicator of quality content.
- Optimise your site for mobile: Mobile is the number one go-to search device. Google rewards mobile-friendly websites with higher rankings, so be sure to offer a seamless mobile user experience. Keep in mind changing search trends, that mobile users behave differently and that mobile landing pages may require tailored strategies.
- Perfect your keyword selection and usage: Carefully consider the keywords you want your website to rank for, based on the search words or phrases (long-tail keywords) your target audience is most likely to use. Avoid overusing keywords and always write for the user by ensuring that keywords read naturally wherever they are used.
- Improve readability with layout and formatting: Improve the overall readability of your website by breaking page content into easily digestible sections. Relook the layout and formatting of each page and incorporate well-structured header tags, subheadings, read-friendly fonts and colours, short paragraphs, line spacing and bulleted lists.
- Improve your page load speed: Users have little patience for slow websites, which is why search engines place a high value on fast page loads. You can increase your website’s load speed with clean, minimal coding, optimised image and video sizes, a caching plugin, and by reducing the number of redirects and unnecessary plugins.
- Maximise every tag and meta descriptor: Search engines rely on tags and meta descriptors to read and index website content. Look at every tag and descriptor as an opportunity to reiterate your keywords and signal relevance. Be sure to write proper alt text (alternative text) to describe your images and videos as these cannot be read by search engines.
- Enrich your site with multimedia: Offer your content in diverse and compelling ways, i.e. through infographics, videos, animations, slideshows or podcasts. Search engines take into account the effort that goes into creating multimedia, particularly interactive content, and considers it an indicator of high-quality content.
- Put social sharing to work: Every Facebook share, tweet, Pinterest pin and other social media shares can drive your website up in ranking. Make it easy for users to share your content with clearly visible social sharing buttons. You can boost social sharing through social media influencers or by running campaigns designed to drive social shares.
- Include credible external links: Increase the value of your own content by including links to well-respected and highly ranked sites. By associating your site with other thought-leaders in the field, you can affirm your site’s credibility to search engines. Remember to use descriptive anchor text to describe each link, as opposed to vague “click here” links.
- Keep links and contact info up to date: Search engines associate broken links and outdated contact information with old and irrelevant websites. Make use of online tools to scan your site for broken links and become a site trusted by search engines by keeping your contact info up to date and interactive, i.e. via a “Contact us” link or convenient contact form.