Tips to Improve Your Website’s Search Result Ranking
Today we are going to discuss some tips to improve your website’s search result ranking. Let me know if this sounds familiar. You have worked really hard on your website or maybe you paid someone a ton of money to do it for you. It’s taken weeks, maybe months, but finally your website is live, you even have a way to track visitors to your website, but after checking your visitor stats you find that nobody has found your website yet.
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What’s The Problem?
It can be pretty frustrating after you go through the hassle of launching a website only to find your website is getting little to no traffic. So what is the problem? Most likely your website has not yet been indexed in search engines. Currently Google dominates the search engine market with over 86% of searches going through the technology giant. If you are not on Google, it is very unlikely anyone will be able to find your website. Other search engines are helpful as well but Google should be your number one priority to improve your website’s search result ranking
What’s the Solution?
The first thing I would highly recommend is adding your website property to Google Search Console. Google Search Console is a tool that helps track and manage your Google search results. In order to add your website you will need to prove you own the domain. Click the link above for instructions on how to add your website and verify ownership.
Submit Your Sitemap
Once you have access to your property on Google Search Console, you will want to add a sitemap. If you do not have a sitemap your web developer may be able to help, alternatively there are several options to have one created.
If you use WordPress, you can install a free SEO plugin like Yoast. You can buy the premium if you like, but they also have a free version that will work just fine.
If you use Wix, Squarespace, or Shopify, or pretty much any other CMS. your sitemap is usually located here: yourwebsite.com/sitemap.xml .
If you cannot find your sitemap you may need to create it manually. You can also use websites like XML Sitemaps to generate one for you. You will need your sitemap in XML format.
Once you have your XML sitemap, log in to your Google Search Console account, go to your property, click “sitemaps” on the left menu and paste in your sitemap URL.
Then click “Submit”
Once your sitemap is submitted, it will be queued to be crawled by Googles spider bots. Once it is crawled it will be indexed in Google Search and people will be able to find your website.
So now will I get traffic to my website?
Your traffic may improve once it is indexed. But there are still some important tips to improve your website’s search result ranking. I’m sure you have used Google to search for something before. Think about what you typed in the search field to find it. These words or phrases are what Google refers to as keywords or keyphrases. Keywords are the terms used to find something specific in a search engine. Groups of keywords are called a keyphrase. When Google crawls your website it scans the text and code looking for keywords and other indicators as to what your website or webpage is about. These keywords determine how your website is indexed and what keywords or keyphrase will produce your page. The trick to getting relevant traffic to your website is called SEO or Search Engine Optimization.
What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search Engine Optimization is the process of optimizing your website so that it improves your website’s search result ranking. The key is to know what keywords your visitors will use to search for your website. You just have to think of relevant keywords or phrases. For example if you are a dog walker in New York City, your keyphrase could be “dog walker New York”, or “dog walker NYC”. If you are a business consultant specializing in the restaurant industry, your keyphrase might be “restaurant business consultant”.
There are over 1.6 billion websites online, and all of them want to be on the first page of a Google search. So you have to get crafty in order to compete with other websites, especially the ones that have similar content as yours. The more specific you can get the easier it will be to optimize your website for those terms. For example instead of “dog walker NYC”, get more specific. Perhaps something like, “dog walker in queens” or “Pittsburg restaurant business consultant”. You want to be specific enough to narrow the competition, but not so much as to eliminate everyone. You have to keep in mind that some keywords will be harder to target than others. There are several keyword tools you can use to help research keywords to determine which ones are best for you.
How to I Optimize my Site?
There are several ways to optimize your site. As mentioned earlier if you are using WordPress or another CMS, there is likely a plugin that will help quite a bit. I am actually using Yoast SEO right now. These plugins help you with several things from sitemaps to writing content. The content tool is probably the best feature, when it comes to writing your websites content. It lets you know what your page is missing. It’s pretty easy to use, you just input your keyphrase and it tells you what you need to do to optimize that page.
If you do not have access to one of these plugins, don’t worry. We will go over some of the key things you should be doing in order to optimize your website for your targeted keywords. Even if you do have the plugin, you should read on as the plugins do not do everything that needs to be done.
On-Page SEO Tips
On-page SEO is the optimization you do on your web page. This is things like including keywords in your headings, using alt text for images or adding a meta description. When it comes to tips to improve your website’s search result ranking, this is where the magic happens.
Page Title Tips
Every web page has a title. This is the text that is displayed on the tab of a browser. It’s also usually at the top of the web page. CMS’s like WordPress usually have a field to put in your title. If your website is in HTML you will need to use the title tag. This is placed within the head tag. it should look like this.
<head> <title>Tips to Improve Your Website’s Search Result Ranking</title> </head>
It is important to include your keywords or keyphrase within the page title.
Meta Description Tips
The meta description is a short excerpt that describes what your website is about. If you do not include one Google will automatically use the first paragraph. Again plugins usually have a place to insert this. If you are using an HTML website the meta tag should also be within the head tag. It should look like this
<head> <meta name="description" content="Today we are going to discuss some tips to improve your website’s search result ranking. Let me know if this sounds familiar."> </head>
Again, you will want to include your keywords or phrase in your meta description.
Image ALT Text Tips
It’s not just your websites copy that can generate web traffic, your images can as well. It is important to add alt text to all of your images. It is even more important that you include images relevant to your keywords and use your keywords or keyphrase in the alt text. The image name should also include your keywords. Most CMS’s will have a place in the image settings to add the alt text. Again HTML websites will have to add the code. It will look something like this.
<img src="improve_search.jpg" alt="Tips to Improve Your Website’s Search Result Ranking" width="500" height="600">
In order to compete with websites that offer similar content as yours, you will need to strengthen your websites authority. This is done with backlinks. Backlinks are when another website links back to you. This helps most when the link is from an authoritative website. Authoritative websites are usually websites that are trusted and receive a lot of traffic. While all backlinks offer some help, one backlink from an authoritative website is worth thousands of less popular websites. It is also best that the website linking to you is topically related to your website. You will want to make sure the anchor text of the backlink includes your targeted keywords. For example this is what I use for my own website. Affordable Branding and Identity Design. Notice the text “Affordable Branding and Identity Design”, these are my targeted keywords.
I’ll be honest with you. Backlinks are difficult to obtain, especially from authoritative websites, but here are some tips to help you achieve backlinks.
Technical SEO Tips
Technical SEO is the behind the scenes things that make your website more search engine friendly. Some of this we talked about earlier involving your sitemap. Other technical SEO tips include things like optimizing website loading speed, SSL (Https), making sure your website is mobile friendly etc.. Check out this site for more tips on technical SEO
One important thing to remember when doing all of these optimization tips, is to make sure your content is user friendly and makes sense. If it doesn’t make sense, it doesn’t matter how much effort you put into optimizations, the visitor will not stay on your website. Most visitors determine whether they want to continue reading within just a few seconds of opening the page. You want to make sure your website is designed well and appeals to the visitors. Otherwise if you have done these optimizations properly you will be getting some web traffic in no time. Keep an eye on your Google Search Console account. It is a great tool to determine how visitors are finding your website. I hope these tips to improve your website’s search result ranking was helpful, and wish you the best of luck!