4 Steps to Optimize Your Website
The whole point of optimizing your website is to make it easier for search engines to find it while ensuring that it makes it to the very top section of search engine results. However, once your website has been optimized, you then have to maintain and fine-tune it constantly, while monitoring its progress through relevant checks and tests so that it remains at the top.
Luckily, we’ve compiled a nice four-step strategy to help you achieve just that.
Target Market Business Analysis
Use the following three methods to perform a thorough analysis of your target market.
- Website Analysis – First, start by evaluating the amount of code, meta texts/ keywords that you have per page to gain insights on how much text you have per page when compared to code, for example.
- Competitive Analysis – Using tools such as KeywordSpy.com and SEMrush.com, select the first five sites that appear on a Google listing to determine what the most effective strategy is for search engine optimization. At the end of this process, you should know which content keywords you should use in order to improve your website’s search engine ranking.
- Keyword Nomination – Create a list of specific terms that are relevant to your particular market segment and target customers, starting with the question; what words am I likely to use when searching for my website on search engines? You can even ask your customers directly to find an effective answer to this question.
- Keyword Analysis – Consult relevant industry sources like competitive lists to pinpoint particular words and phrases to research. Then, use the list you created above to find out which keywords are websites competing over the most. Also, if there is a certain keyword that is regularly misspelt by search engine users, then you can use that to your advantage and include the misspelt version in the keywords you’ll be using to attract that segment of your customer base, but use it with the understanding that Google will also correct the term automatically.
- Baseline Ranking Valuation – To get an accurate idea of what your future rankings will be, you need to figure out what your current standing is. One of the easiest ways to do this is by checking your site’s ranking on a weekly basis, and then record your findings on a dedicated Excel spreadsheet. If traffic starts picking up on your website, that could be a sign that the keywords are indeed working, and after some time you’ll be able to check your ranking less frequently, say once every 30 to 45 days.
- Goals and Objectives – Figure out what your goals and objectives are from the start. They could be as simple as increasing website traffic by 200% in the next 30 days or improve conversion rate by 2% within a specific time frame. The important part of this step is to strip your analysis down to specific page aspects that you must focus on in order to improve your site’s performance.
Content Optimization and Submission
- Create Page Titles – Develop page titles that are based on the keywords that you’ve identified for your site while ensuring that they fit in with the theme of the page you’re posting them on.
- Create Meta Tags – Include meta tags, as they often have a noticeable influence on click-through rates.
- Include Strategic Search Phrases – Once you’ve selected the keywords you’ll be using on a particular page, try and incorporate them as much as possible into the page text, as this will make it easier for search engines to find your website.
- Develop New Sitemaps – Create sitemaps for search engines like Google and Bing, including XML and HTML versions that’ll help simplify the process of indexing your website.
- Submit Website to Directories – If you so prefer, you can also submit your website URL to relevant directories (aka search engines), which will speed up the indexing process. Keep in mind that while some directories like Yahoo and Business.com require payment, others like DMOZ are free, but like with anything else, you do get what you pay for (or don’t).
Testing and Measuring
- Test and Measure – Analyze your site’s traffic to gauge the performance of your keywords, and make sure to track all your changes in your Excel spreadsheet.
- Maintenance – Maintain your site on an ongoing basis by modifying the content as well as the keywords. Keeping your site fresh and updated will prevent it from sliding down the search engine rankings, and oftentimes incorporating a blog is the best way to do this.