“Where do I rank?” isn’t the most important question anymore…
Search engine optimization (SEO) has seen many changes over the years. Once upon a time, the question “Where do I rank?” was very important to businesses. We all want to be #1 in a Google search, right? “Where do I rank?” is still an important thing to think about, but it has been trumped by a more important question: “How many people are finding my website through search engines?”
Links and keywords continue to be important factors to incorporate into your website, but there are also other factors to take into consideration:
A well-designed website
Visual appeal makes a big difference for visitors to your website. The ability to find your page is the first step, but it is far more important for visitors to stay on your site and explore it. A website that is easy to navigate and offers plenty of information will help retain visitors.
Additionally, an easily recalled domain name will help these visitors find your site once again. Once upon a time, it was considered important for websites to incorporate keywords into their domain names. Search engines are now more concerned with the site’s content than whether there are keywords in the URL. For example, www.facebook.com doesn’t have any reference to social media in its domain name. However, everyone recognizes it as the most popular social media site in the world because it is the name of the site and it is easy to remember.
Engaging content that naturally incorporates your keywords,
It is important to use keyword-rich content on your website, but it is essential that the words read easily. Repeating the same keywords can only take you so far; in fact, overusing these words may get you into trouble with what’s called “keyword stuffing.” Keyword stuffing is a poor way to optimize your website and can result in Google penalizing your site by not showing it in search results.
Use language that reads normally and authentically, incorporating keywords naturally, and use your company’s voice to communicate information to your visitors. Your voice, after all, is unique to you and your business, and it’s one thing that sets you apart from your competitors.
A company blog
Blogging makes a huge difference for search rankings. Many companies use their blog to answer common questions they hear about their industry: “How to cook a Maine lobster” might be a great topic for a restaurant in Maine to cover on its blog. It establishes the restaurant as an expert and could set them higher in search results when people search for things related to Maine, lobster and cooking lobster.
A blog allows you to create fresh content on a regular basis. Whenever a new post is created, new keywords in the post can be crawled by search engines. Promoting the post on your social media channels drives even more traffic to your blog and to your website.
Remember that many people use mobile devices to surf the Web and search. According to a study done by the Pew Research Center, approximately 55% of American adults own Smartphones, 32% own e-readers, and 42% own tablet computers. Since we always seem to be “on the go,” many users use these portable devices to access the Internet. As a result, it is important for businesses to be mobile-friendly by developing websites that appear across all devices.
Today, it’s a lot more than just sticking as many keywords as possible into your site. It’s about creating a place on the Web that offers information about your industry and helps your visitors understand what your business can do for them.