SEO or Search Engine Optimisation (Or Optimization for the Americans) is the act of improving a website’s chances of showing up when somebody searches for a given word or phrase. This blog post aims to outline what is involved in the process.
First we need to work out what keywords and phrases people are searching for who is likely to buy your products and services. There is no point in ranking number 1 for “bespoke bridal boutique in Macclesfield” if your customers are searching for “cheap wedding dresses”.
Based on the selected keywords and phrases we then put together a content strategy. This helps to plan which pages the site needs, what blog posts to create, what case studies you need etc. In simple terms if you sell “blue widgets” your website needs to talk about “blue widgets”.
Following on from the the Content Strategy, content will need to be created to fill any gaps in your existing content. This could be by adding new pages or blog posts that directly target the keywords and phrases outlined in the Keyword Strategy.
Auditing the website and individual pages allows us to bring the site more inline with the search engines’ guidelines, this creates a list of actions to perform, such as fixing broken links or making the site load quicker. By addressing these issues you make your site more accessible to both the search engines’ spiders and your potential customers and as a result are likely to rank higher.
The search engines change their guidance on a regular basis so its important to audit the site on a regular basis.
Each of the pages on your site will need to be optimised, not only to make them rank better but also to ensure they convert visitors into enquiries. On-page optimisation includes adding appropriate H1, H2, & H3 tags, ensuring images have alt tags that describe the pictures both to the search engines and to visually impaired visitors and adjusting the content to have good keyword usage and density.
Off-page optimisation is the creation of valuable backlinks, these are links from other websites to yours and can come from a wide variety of sources including Social Media Marketing, Guest Content in other peoples blogs, Forum Posting, Local Directory Listings and more.
This involves looking at who ranks above you for a given keyword or phrase and developing an understanding of why they are ranking where they are. Do they have more back links, blog more often, or better content? Comparison of those above you can help guide the next steps with your site.