As any small business website owner will tell you, SEO is one of the biggest challenges you will face when you work on your own website. Modern search engines have had to make it incredibly difficult to get into the top spots in searches, with people abusing their systems in the past. This means that you need to take all of the right steps to get the best out of your website when you first start working on it. To help you out with this, this article will be exploring all of the steps that you will need to take when building an SEO-friendly website for the first time.
Choosing The Right Platform
This process will start when you first pick the platform that you will use for your website. Modern DIY website builders are very good at providing good SEO services, and services like Shopify, Squarespace, and Wix can be ideal for those who want a relatively simple SEO experience. Platforms like WordPress give you more freedom with your SEO, enabling to you achieve more complex methods. Of course, though, this also means that you will have more work to do and more learning that will be essential as you go through the process.
Building An SEO-Friendly Website
Once you have the platform you want in mind, it will be time to start building your website. SEO should factor into your decisions throughout this stage in the process, and you need to make sure that you cover every area as well as possible. You can find a breakdown of the different areas that you will need to work on below, but we will also cover them in more detail later in the article.
- Page Structure: Search engines like Google attempt to read your website as a human would. This means that your pages need to be set up in a way that they understand. This can be a complex process, but it will be easy once you get hang of it.
- Site Speed: Many of the world’s internet users rely on smartphones to do their browsing, and this means that your website needs to load fast on a range of devices. This is so important that search engines rank faster websites higher.
- Content Creation: The content you create for your site helps search engines to figure out which searches you should appear in. Content needs to be regular, but it also needs to meet the right standards.
- Connected Platforms: There are loads of great tools and platforms to connect to your website to help with SEO.
- Website Maintenance: Your website should be kept in good shape to rank well on search engines. This means that you need to perform regular maintenance to keep the site in a good spot.
- Local SEO: Search engines like Google offer local SEO tools to businesses that want to rank well without having to do all of the work that national and global companies have to do.
Search engines use a number of elements to dictate your search positions. The content on your website is a big part of this, but you need to make sure that Google, Bing, and other websites are able to read the content you post. This makes site structure extremely important.
This all starts with your navigation. Search engines can use menus to determine how your site is built, with the hierarchy that you provide giving a good sense of the content you have on your platform. You should make sure sub-pages have the correct parents, while also taking the time to add breadcrumbs to your pages to make it easier for your site to be indexed.
You also need to think about how to structure the content on your pages. Search engines are able to read title tags, and this means that you can use H1, H2, H3, etc to prioritize the titles and headings you have on your pages. Learning a little bit of HTML can help you with this process, enabling you to alter tags and page structure with ease.
Many website owners completely ignore speed when they are building their platform. This is crucial, though, with search engines prioritizing sites that are able to load nice and quickly on smartphones and mobile networks. Thankfully, DIY website platforms handle a lot of the work for you when you are doing this.
Those using tools like WordPress will need to implement caching as one of their first steps. Following this, you can connect a CDN service like Cloudflare to your website to lower its loading times. Those on DIY platforms will only really have to consider optimizing and compressing images and videos to make sure that they don’t take a long time to load.
There are loads of tools around the web that make it possible to test your website. GTMetrix is a great example of this, offering both speed ratings and advice that will help you to achieve the very best results with your SEO. It will be worth testing your website on a regular basis, with many websites changing over time.
Creating content is one of the biggest challenges a website owner faces. Not only do you need to make sure that your website performs well, but you also need to make sure that all of the content calling it home is relevant to your service and able to push search engines in your direction.
Keyword research is a crucial element of this process. You need to make sure that you know your market and the things that people search for, leveraging the content production work you do by including the right search terms.
Other websites can be a good guide when you are going through this. By searching for your competition, you can use websites like SEObility to scan them and see what they are doing to achieve their results. This can give you good keywords to target, though you should keep in mind that you should also be looking for unique search terms to approach.
Content creation should be regular, with many websites posting new copies each and every day. This may not be achievable for your business, but you can still post a couple of blogs each week if you have an hour or two for this work. It is absolutely crucial that the content you produce is original, as search engines will punish your website if they think that you have stolen content from others.
Connecting To Platforms
There are a lot of tools and platforms available on the web that can be used to measure your SEO success and performance. It is crucial that you make use of tools like this, but you will need to connect your website up to them before you can get started. You can find some of the most important platforms to connect to below.
- Google Analytics/Search Console: Google offers search tools that enable you to monitor your search performance, along with loads of other information about your website. These tools are essential for those competing in the world of modern SEO.
- Keyword Monitoring Tools: Keyword popularity can change over time, and this can make it worth editing old content to approach new keywords from time to time. Using a keyword monitoring service like Ubersuggest will help with this.
- Uptime Monitors: Search engines don’t like it when websites go down, and this means that sites with a lot of downtimes will usually struggle to get good results. Uptime monitors can help you to keep on top of your website.
Local SEO tools make it much easier to market your website to people in your local area. Google My Business is a good example of this, giving you the chance to get your website into the world without having to pay anything in the process. You can optimize this part of your SEO, adding location-based keywords to your website to improve your rankings with very little effort.
Reading guides like this What is orthodontist SEO? Data-Driven Marketing Guide to Orthodontist SEO in 2021 can be a great way to learn about marketing a local business. This process is easier than you might expect when you put the work into it. Of course, though, you need to make sure that you are taking all of the right steps along the way.
As you can see, marketing a new website is a challenging process. SEO will be crucial in this journey, but you will also need to consider other types of marketing to get the best results. This is something that you will get used to overtime, providing you with the means to improve your SEO in new and creative ways.