There are two types of search engine optimization, onsite and offsite. Onsite SEO techniques are things you can do on your website to help search engines get noticed. The beauty of onsite SEO is that you can control it; Offsite optimization is much harder to pin down. When updating the look of a website, keep these onsite SEO tips in mind:
When search engine spiders crawl your site, they report back to the search engine with information from your site, keywords, images, and so on. Sites like Google and Yahoo like it when the spiders bring back new information. If a website isn’t updated and the spiders keep bringing back the same information, they’re not happy.
With the latest freshness updates from Google, it’s more important than ever to have fresh content on your website. Fresh content is now the key to good search engine ranking. Not only new content is important, but also unique content. Search engines are getting stricter about duplicate content. Copying and pasting old content to your blog or website will not help you, it might even harm your website. Content freshness and uniqueness is one of the most important elements of onsite SEO.
Use meta tags for titles, descriptions, keywords, author, and images and graphics, and should include targeted keywords and phrases.
Header tags are used to break up text. They make it easier for readers to find the information they are looking for, and search engines use them to gather information about a web page. Keywords should be used in the header so search engine spiders know exactly what you’re talking about.
Keywords should be used in all your meta tags and headers, but they should also be used in your website content. The keywords should be used naturally in the flow of the paragraph so that the content makes sense to the reader. Pages where more than 10% of the words are keywords or keyword phrases will hurt rather than help your rankings. You don’t want to stuff your page with keywords, that makes it difficult for a reader to understand what you’re saying, and search engines don’t like it.
Just as there are two types of SEO, there are two types of linking, onsite and offsite. Local linking is called internal linking and is a link from your domain to somewhere else in your domain. The internal link should not only be in the navigation, but also in the content of the page. When linking within content, use keywords as the anchor text for the link. This will further help the search engines index your site correctly for search rankings. Remember to use internal links in the text in moderation. Too many links reduce the link value each page receives.
An XML sitemap should be at the bottom of your website. This makes it easy for the search engine spiders to index your pages and for visitors to navigate through the pages more easily. You can also send this file to Google.
The structure of a URL plays an important role in SEO. The URL is usually made up of seemingly random numbers and characters. To make the URL more meaningful and more visible to website visitors, keywords should be used in the URL. These keyword-rich URLs are also preferred by search engines. A short URL that contains no hyphens or dashes is the easiest to remember and works best on search engines.
The best website designs are visually appealing while still incorporating all of these onsite SEO techniques. SEO strategies help user find your website more easily and find the information they are looking for at a glance, reducing bounce rate and increasing your conversion rate.