We’ve created an SEO checklist ready to get you to the top! The top meaning ranking in search engines, or even better sitting on the first page on Google …all, for free. We’ll give you some tips on how to start utilising SEO best practices so that your business is getting the web time it deserves.
1. Have you signed up to Google Business (formerly known as Google My Business)? It’s free (always a good start!) and a way to advertise using photos, your logo, updates, open and closing times, business phone numbers and emails, keywords, etc. If you’re a bricks and mortar business you can add your physical address, but if you work from home, or own an online business you have the opportunity to hide your address once confirmed. Google prefers those businesses that have a Google Business listing above others that don’t. They kind of trust that you are a real business and you do exist!
2. Start reading and understanding your website’s data. Set up tools such as Google Analytics, Google Search Console or HotJar and start reading (and viewing) how your website is performing. Where is your audience going, are there opportunities to improve and optimise the navigation of your website to ensure it’s user-friendly? Which links, buttons and pages are the best performers and why.
3. Check your site speed, is it loading slowly? Ideally, your website should load within three seconds, or two seconds if it’s an ecommerce site. The two-to-three second mark is the turning point where bounce rates skyrocket – in fact, 40% of consumers will wait no more than three seconds before abandoning a site. We’re an impatient lot, so check your website is lazy loading images, optimised and performing at its peak performance. Some of the updates you may be able to implement yourself, Use a free tool, such as Site Audit from Semrush to look for ways of improving.
4. Get keyword searching. What keywords best suit your business? Is there an opportunity to tap into unutilised keywords or write blogs on topics missing in the market. Alternatively you can use this free keyword tool, Keyword Sheeter to discover new keywords and start planning. You might want to (smartly) plug some of these keywords throughout your website and ensure they’re sitting in all the right places. I.e meta descriptions and title tags.
5. That leads us to our next tip on the list! Fiill in your meta descriptions and title tags. Title tags are critical to giving users a quick insight into the content of a result and why it’s relevant to their query. A meta description is a meta tag used to describe the content
of a page. Both equally important; use them to tell the search engine crawlers what they’re ‘reading’.
6. Find and fix website errors. Do you have redundant website pages that can be redirected or removed? The last thing you want is the dreaded 404 page putting off a potential customer. This will greatly affect your SEO ranking if you’re bumping people to pages that no longer exist.
7. Use your alt descriptions for images. When adding an image onto your website, simply describe it in the alt box provided. Tell Google what the image is! Google is very (very) smart, however it doesn’t have eyes, tell it what it needs to know. Whilst we’re on the topic of imagery, make sure they’re optimised. Ensure they’re saved as PNG or JPEG and they’re not too large for your website. If they’re not compressed, your website will be slow to load. Use programs such as the below to easily and efficiently compress your images. Alternatively you can use plugins to automatically reduce the size of your files when you upload them to your site.
● TinyPNG: uses smart lossy compression techniques to reduce the file size of your PNG and JPEG files
● ImageOptim: by far the best tool for compressing images on a Mac
● ShortPixel: a great WordPress plugin for automatically compressing images
8. Keep your content updated, relevant and consistent. Build out a content plan and post regularly. Be realistic, how much time do you have to create and schedule social media posts, produce eDM’s and write blogs. Pick one, and do it well.
9. Utilise backlinks. Are you able to write a guest blog post for a website that is relevant to your business? Often this is a win-win, as another business is receiving free content, and you have the opportunity to place your URL on their website. Read more about how
and why to use backlinks.
10. Keep your website in a healthy condition. Check for updates, improvements and capitalise on what is working. Don’t expect your website to function properly without regular health checks. 🙂