SEO, Websites, and Google, What’s The Big Deal?
SEO, Websites, and Google, What’s The Big Deal?
The Journey To The First Page of Google
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is considered a “new age” marketing technique. In today’s world of increasing rivalry and competition, the fight for a website’s online visibility is at its peak. Brands are continuously engaging in their best digital efforts to land on the infamous first page of Google. The quality of your SEO will strongly influence your searchability on Google. Simply put, a well optimised website will determine how well your website will rank on Google. It’s an interconnected web.
You may be asking what is the big deal with SEO?
Having quality SEO increases page ranking, exposure and traffic to your website. Understanding the relationship between website design and SEO helps gain awareness of how they work together to help a website appear on search results. The better your SEO, the higher your chances are of getting onto the first page of Google.
On the flip side, understanding the relationship between SEO and your website will also give you an insight into how a poorly designed website can affect business performance and page ranking. A quality SEO takes patience to build but is worth the time and effort in the long run, enhancing the brand and its marketing efforts.
There are two types of SEO: on-page and off-page.
On-page SEO optimisation ensures a website page’s, posts, content, media, and links are easy to find, have a fast download speed and are clearly labelled. On-page SEO helps a website rank better on Google, while off-page optimisation refers to backlinks, reviews and social media which are also important for Google’s recognition.
What is the relationship between website design and SEO?
Google recognises and rewards websites with the best SEO optimisation by placing their listings at a higher rank on search engine results, Google picks up when:
- A website is easy to navigate on all devices (laptop, mobile and tablet)
- The pages are easy to understand, and a search engine markup is used.
- The content is relevant and useful to its readers providing them with the answers they need.
- The content is woven with targeted keywords.
- The website is optimised as a whole. For example: A higher page ranking will increase visibility which increases traffic. As Google sees more people clicking to your website (click-throughs), the website climbs in rank.
- It’s important to note that great content and keywords will not be successful if the website itself is not optimised. If the website is slow to load, this will frustrate the user who may decide to click on another website to get the information they need faster. This means the website needs to be user-friendly and built with the audience in mind.
Google makes it clear in terms of what they expect from a website. Follow their advice, and you’re on your way to success.
Here are 10 of the best Google pointers to optimise your website:
1) Quick loading speed
Large images and excessive coding increases websites download time. Pages need to load quickly. Think of users who don’t have high-speed internet. Amazing website design must be balanced with download speed. It’s tricky but can be done! It can also be useful to delete any unused plugins, images and coding that might be slowing your website down.
2) Websites need to be compatible with all devices
This means a website must be functional and aesthetically pleasing across laptops, mobiles and tablets.
3) Content is key
Make sure that your content is informative, relevant and useful to the reader. Google loves quality content woven with specific keywords, so get creative and smart!
4) Remember to create content for users, not search engines
Your content should be relevant to what the user is searching for. Always ask yourself if you are helping the person who is on your website. Golden rule- Don’t deceive!
5) Information must not be hidden
Don’t hide content behind tabs as Google considers this to be less accessible to users. Information must be accessible in a fast and clear way on the website. Don’t frustrate the user, make the information easy to find, nobody wants to waste time.
Images can expand traffic exposure, Google has specific image searches, the more traffic to your website the higher the page ranking will be. When a website is designed, Google must be given as much information as possible about an image, this can be done using the file name and ALT tags.
YouTube lists relevant video content at the top of the first page of a Google search. Be sure to include informative videos on your blog posts and pages.
8) Visually impaired users
People who are visually impaired browse the web with screen readers- these are browsers that use braille to transmit what is on screen. For this reason, links and images must be properly labelled to help users navigate easily.
9) Link all website pages
Google crawlers will find homepages but won’t find deep pages unless they are clearly linked. Each link must contain descriptive text enabling visitors and search engines to understand where to go and increase page authority. Don’t forget ALT tags on image links. It’s important to note that too many links with no content can also be seen as spam. This can crush Google page ranking, so be sure to only include relevant page links!
Target keywords with low competition should be used across the website content. The titles and descriptions of your page will appear on Google Search Result Pages. Your website content should be in depth about a topic and woven in with relevant keywords. One of the ways keywords can be researched is using Google Keyword Planner and implemented in Google AdWords.
SEO, websites and Google are an interconnected web. How your website ranks in SEO will determine how your website ranks on Google. There are two types of SEO, on-page and off-page, on page SEO helps your website rank better on Google while off-page SEO refers to backlinks, reviews and social media. Google provides specific guidelines on how to optimize your website. When your website follows these guidelines, Google recognizes and rewards your website with the highest SEO optimization, ranking your site higher towards the first page of Google.