It doesn’t matter if you’re running an e-shop, an online magazine or just a personal blog, your ultimate goal is always the same – get more people to visit your website.
Since the Internet first went live, people have been doing their best to get everyone they could interested in what they have to offer on their web pages. Some of them succeed, some of them didn’t. Those who did, are probably now enjoying the fruits of their labor.
As I already wrote dozens of times before, there are many benefits to starting an online business today.
Apart from the obvious ones, like working from home whenever you feel like it, and cutting down on extra expenses by working and living a single real estate, you can also reach a much bigger network of clients and buyers online, increase your earning potential and really get to know your audience on a more personal level.
If you truly apply yourself, you can actually see your brand grow to such heights you never even thought possible. You can see who your customers or targeted potential clients are, what they like and what they dislike, how can you reconnect with them on a more personal level.
Why is this important? – Well, because it lets you figure out how to up your marketing game and conversion rates by feeding your potential customers with data, products and offers that actually suit their interests.
Although this all sounds fine and dandy, running a successful online business isn’t really that easy. In order to make your crowd speak to you, before you start to segment your audience, you first need to develop one.
The only way you can do that, is by generating traffic to your website.
There are only two ways to get traffic online:
1. Ranking for it organically;
2. Paying for clicks.
If you are interested in acquiring instant and fast traffic for the right keyword, then paid traffic is the way to go. But, if you’re not made out of money, and you’re looking to build your brand and stimulate people to organically and frequently visit your website – then you need to learn a thing or two about SEO.
To most people, SEO is this mythical creature that lives in SERP and helps you get more traffic, or maybe doesn’t? If you don’t obey it, it will eat you alive and spit you out like a day-old lunch. Basically, in plebs circles, it’s a taboo subject that causes headaches and suck your wallet dry. Of course, that is not true. Everyone who knows anything about “search engine optimization”, knows that SEO basically means “Google optimization”.
Google was, is and will be for a long time the undisputed leader in the realm of online search marketing. It offers the most sophisticated technology, hosts the largest user base, and introduces all the trends and features that make other search engines look obsolete.
Although content plays the biggest part here, people often forget the importance of good web design and how greatly it affects SEO.
Visual appeal plays an important part in your website’s success. Great web design establishes trust, engages people to click on your content, but above – communicates well with search engines.
When choosing a for their website, most people go with WordPress. Why? – Well, because, straight out of box and wrapping paper, it comes ready to embrace Google.
For those who are not familiar with the brand, WordPress is software that allows you to create a website of your own, from scratch. Originally known as a blogging software, over the years, WP has evolved into a full Content Management System, allowing you to build a simple blog website or a fully functioning ecommerce site, with tons of sophisticated and advanced selections.
As written on their blog, WordPress comes with several built in search optimization tools, including the ability to use .htaccess to create apparently static URLs called permalinks, blogrolling, and pinging. There are also a number of third party plugins and hacks which can be used for search engine optimization (SEO).
Apropos to all that, this system can easily be turned into an extremely powerful SEO machine that will allow you to easily rank for all your desired keywords and get as many clicks and conversions as you want to. And the best thing of all? – You don’t have to spend a fortune to make it work for you. No. All you need to do is follow these few steps:
Get Your Hands On A SEO-Friendly Theme
Before you can even think about the details, you first need to build a solid foundation for your website. Since the recent Google changes, having a responsive, mobile-friendly website layout has become a necessity.
Running on neat and well-optimized code, these themes give your website faster load times, built-in security, HTML5 support, mobile responsiveness, rich snippets, and cross-browser compatibility – basically all things that affect your SEO.
You can basically get one of those themes everywhere online. The important thing to have in mind, before actually committing to a specific solution, is to double check if all the above mentioned details are mentioned in the description.
Learn The Basics About Producing SEO-Friendly Content
Whether you like to admit it or not, the Internet is basically all about content. It’s the only thing that makes any website worth visiting. It doesn’t matter if you’re looking to read something, watch a video or like a photo – it’s all content. Good content ensures that you get all the attention you need, and help you increase your traffic. Apart from that, it also stimulates people to stick around and look at more stuff on your website, which automatically decreases your bounce rates which are, as you know, a serious ranking factor. It’s no secret that Google favors sites that produce a lot of 1000+ word-long content pieces. The only problem with it, it’s everywhere and nowhere at the same time. If your text, image or video isn’t properly optimised, it won’t end up in front of your targeted audience’s eyes. If you fail to deliver what you’ve created, then basically all your efforts will instantly become pointless.
In order to prevent that from happening, we must play by Google’s rules and produce content that can easily be crawlable by search engine spiders and distributed to users who are looking for what you’re offering.
This goes beyond just underlining words, adding title tags and headings to your work, and hyperlinking to other internal or external web pages. If you’re interested in learning more on how to tailor great texts for your website’s audience, be sure to read my older blog post, titled “6 Golden Rules For Writing Killer Content For The Web”. I guarantee you’ll find everything you need there.
Install the Yoast SEO Plugin
Yoast is probably the most popular plugin for SEO. It covers so much ground, and is so thorough, that you can forget other SEO plugins. It’s great for on-site optimization.
Yoast gives you the ability to focus on keywords, create SEO titles for your articles, meta descriptions. Apart from that comes with built-in features like PermaLink cleanup, XML sitemaps, RSS, etc. The Permalink part is especially great because it makes it possible for you insert actual words in links, instead of those random-looking numbers. A clean and optimized URL structure will help you communicate better with people who are looking for information that you’re offering.
Improve Your Load Time And Don’t Gamble When it Comes to Choosing Your Hosting Provider
If you want to improve your website’s speed, I suggest you start using tools like W3 Total Cache, WP Smush it, WP-Optimize, CloudFlare, MaxCDN, etc.
If you’ve been following this blog for more than a month or two you have probably read my thoughts on how hosting affects SEO. When it comes to search engine optimization, it’s recommendable that you keep your servers close. Google ranks on loads of different factors. The geo-IP location of your servers is one of them, but it’s certainly not the most important one. Believe it or not, site speed is also a crucial SEO factor, and it’s almost entirely dependent on the quality of your hosting. A slow website might lead to fewer shares and backlinks, which is also something that affects your ranking.
A slow site is more likely to affect how deeply Google will crawl your website, and like we already mentioned above, it won’t rank your new content, if it faces difficulty finding it.
Load speed can make or break your website, so it’s quite important that you don’t gamble with it, and invest in a proper hosting solution.
Thank you so much for sticking around long enough to read this text from top to bottom. I hope I helped you see what you need to do in order to better optimize your site for search engines.
That’s it for now,
See you soon again,
Goran @ AltusHost B.V.