You’ve had a great new business idea, registered your domain name, and started to build your website.
How can you make sure it’s easy for Google and other search engines to discover and rank?SEO is a long-term process and results are rarely immediate, but the first steps you take after you launch a new website can have a big impact on the website’s potential to rank in Google search for its target keywords and start bringing in traffic, leads and sales.
Get things right at the beginning, from an SEO perspective, and you’ll save yourself hours and hours of work further down the line fixing a website that wasn’t originally built with SEO in mind. Below, we’ve listed some first steps that you should take whenever you launch a new website to make sure it’s designed from the very beginning to rank for its target keywords and attract as much traffic as possible from organic search.
The First Steps to SEO Your New Website Effectively
In order to rank effectively for your target keywords, you need to structure your website so that each page targets its own set of closely related, highly relevant keywords. For example, pretend you’re launching a website for a men’s shoe shop. You sell a variety of different men’s shoes, from leather shoes and boots to sports shoes.
Below, we’ve included an example site structure, with the homepage targeting the main keyword (“Men’s shoes”) and subpages for each secondary keyword: Structuring your website like this has several benefits. First, it creates a clear theme and target keyword for each page on the website, instead of having one-page target multiple keywords.
For example, if our example website sold several different types of men’s leather shoes, we could further break it down to target additional keywords with subpages: This structure lets each page target its own primary keyword, as well as a set of secondary keywords. A website structure like this, with each page dedicated to its own set of keywords, gives each page greater relevance and improves its potential organic search visibility. Make sure each page of your website targets one primary search keyword and several secondary keywords.
Avoid optimizing one page for too many keywords. It’s better to have several pages, each extremely relevant, than one page covering multiple topics poorly. In the world of SEO in 2016, content is one of the most important on-page factors for helping your website rank. Before you start any active SEO efforts, it’s important to make sure your website has content that engages and helps its users. Data shows that pages with 2,000+ words of content typically rank higher in Google search than pages with short, light content.
As time-consuming as it might be to develop long-form content for each of your pages as you build your website, doing so can pay for itself in a greater number of inbound links to each page. A great way to think about your content is as a solution to someone’s need.
If you can solve a crucial need, your on-page content is far more likely to attract valuable links. For optimal on-page SEO, include your target keywords in your content occasionally, but don’t overdo it. Google’s algorithm is smart enough to detect keyword stuffing, and it will usually lead to your website being penalized in the rankings for its target keywords.
First Seo Steps To Take After You Launch A New Website
Add your keywords to H1 and H2 tags on your page. Add long-tail keywords to H3 and H4 subheadings. Once you finish writing each page, double-check it to make sure your keywords fit naturally into the content. Try to write at least 2,000 words of content for each page, using your keywords when relevant without overusing them or “stuffing” them into the content.
Don’t just write for writing’s sake — try to answer questions your users might have and solve their problems in your on-page content. Your title tag is the text that Google will display as your page title for every search result, as well as the text that will display in the user’s browser when they visit your page.
For example, the “Men’s Leather Oxfords” page on our shoe website above would benefit from a title tag like this: Men’s Leather Oxfords – Browse Shoes and Buy Online This title accurately describes the content of the page (after all, it’s a list of men’s leather Oxford shoes) and tells users what to expect after they click through from Google’s search page.
Since our site is structured with each page targeting a specific keyword, “men’s leather oxford” is also highlighted in the page URL. Google will crop your title tag if it’s longer than 60 characters, so make sure you keep your page titles brief and simple. It’s best to use your target keyword as close to the start of the title tag as possible for optimal SEO.
Avoid stuffing keywords into your title tag. Use your primary keyword once, then add relevant information about your page. Keep your title tag under 60 characters (55 is recommended) so that Google doesn’t truncate it due to excessive length. The meta description is the short snippet of information that appears below your website’s title and URL in Google’s search engine results.
A detailed meta description will encourage users to click your result instead of a competing website, increasing your total share of search impressions. Below, we’ve added a meta description to our example page on men’s leather Oxfords. You can see that the listing now offers much more detail about what users can expect to see, as well as a compelling reason to click through in the form of our free shipping offer.
If you’re using WordPress, you can quickly add unique meta descriptions using a plugin like Yoast SEO or SEO Ultimate. To enter your title tag and meta description, just scroll down to below your page’s content-box and find the SEO settings area. Enter your title and meta description into the data entry boxes shown below: Make sure each page of your website has its own meta description since it makes a big difference to your organic search clickthrough rate.
Make Sure You’re Keeping Google Happy
Google can see when you’re overusing keywords, and they might penalize your website. Focus on encouraging the user to click, since the goal of a meta description is to “sell” your website to its target audience. Once you’ve built your website, developed content, and given each page a unique title tag and meta description, it’s time to install Google Analytics.The Steps To Proper New Website Seo
From an SEO perspective, Google Analytics is a great tool for spotting opportunities to further optimize your website for specific keywords. Installing Google Analytics as soon as you launch your website gives you data right from the beginning, helping you further optimize later. Installing Google Analytics is simple. Just visit Google.com/Analytics and sign up using your Google account.
Google can see when you’re overusing keywords, and they might penalize your website. Focus on encouraging the user to click, since the goal of a meta description is to “sell” your website to its target audience. Once you’ve built your website, developed content, and given each page a unique title tag and meta description, it’s time to install Google Analytics.
The Steps To Proper New Website Seo
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