If you’ve gone to the trouble of creating a wealth of useful content, but nobody actually knows about it, the website isn’t reaching its full potential. Offpage tips have been stated elsewhere in the blog but it you fail to optimise ompage elements too, then you on’t receive the full benefit of your promotional efforts.
Here’s a quick run through of the most basic elements that need to be in place:
H1 tags – The index page and preferably every page should have a H1 Tag. This, along with the page title <title></title> and URL helps google to asscertain the meaning of the document. Of course it must relate to the main text of the document. Having the title “James Bond” on a page about industrial drills, probably won’t do you any favours.
Keywords Density – If you’re looking to rank for a specific keyword or key phrase in google, you will need to include the key phrase within the document a number of times. Also words related to the keyword topic should feature too. This will hopefully demonstrate to google that your article is very much on topic and not ambiguous in nature. Overkill can be a problem though. If your document lacks meaning and is stuffed with keywords and lacks depth, this may count against you. It will also be less likely to be linked to by others too if it’s gibberish.
URL – If your document about popular horror movies is at the document is at http:///www.yourdomain.com/?p=258 you’ll receive less credit from the search engines than if the document is titled http:///www.yourdomain.com/top_horror_movies.html . Basically it’s just another indicator to google that the document relates to the topic in question. It’d be silly not to take advantage of this. Again though, overkill is to be avoided. If your URL is “top ten horror movies” , the H1 title is “top ten horror movies” and the document includes that term numerous times, beyond a point you may be penalised. Mix it up a bit and use slight variations on these phrases and keywords.
Meta Tags – All pages can feature a title tag, meta description tag, and meta content tag. Not only do these tags once again help google to categorise your content, but in the case of the meta title and description tags, they are used by google/yahoo etc within the search listings so are the first thing that a potential visitor will see in relation to your site. Keep it on topic, short, snappy and descriptive, else users may pass by your site and visit a rival instead. Many search engines now auto extract meta info from the page, so it’s not essential but is still good practice.
Image Tags – Adding ALT tags on images is quick, easy and good practice. It allows your site to be more accessible to the visually impaired and can be used to reinforce keywords within the content. It terms of SEO iimportance, it’s not very high up on the list, but for the time it takes to do it’s well worth the effort.
Should you run a static html site, all of these changes can be hand coded. If you run a blog there are various plugins to help you feel with these issues. It’s best to start as you mean to go on, rather than try to correct sloppy habits at a later date, so don’t delay.