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Short simple SEO tips

These are a list of very short and simple SEO tips.

SEO tip #1

Reduce the amount of duplicate content on your webpages. Make sure only one URL relates to one page - if you have filters and search facilities on your site, make sure that they return the correct, chosen URL. Another alternative is to add meta "noindex" to any duplicate pages. On large sites, duplicate content can cause many indexing issues.

SEO tip #2

Every page should have a descriptive title. Its the first thing users and search engines will read. Make it attractive and relevant to the page. If you were a user seeing your page in search engines, you would see the title tag listed. Would you click your link, or does it look a) pointless b) blank or c) spammy? Fix it if so.
Some people have bizarre, quasi scientific methods for choosing titles. We just say - write it for a user, and describe the page contents in 8 words or less. Dont list pointless information like your domain name.

SEO tip #3

A website menu is an important source of links between web pages. Use this to your advantage, and make all links search engine crawlable. If you use Flash for navigation, back it up with a HTML version of links placed elsewhere on page. If you use image links, include relevant ALT tags relating to the image (and target page, they should be related).

SEO tip #4

Make sure the page loads quickly by having well optimized code and image sizes. If your page code is over 100KB, not all of its content might be spidered.
Strip out useless meta tags, use PNG crush to reduce PNG image sizes losslessly, rather then 10 JS files try and add them to one JS file (to reduce HTTP requests), use CSS and combine styles effectively.

SEO tip #5

Add new content regularly. Having a content management system makes it easy to quickly add new content to your website. It attracts users and search engines to visit, and encourages buyer confidence. More content = more potential pages in search results. It also means more potential pages to aqquire natural incoming links, too.

SEO tip #6

Consider regional visitors. If you have a regional service, having well written relevant pages for each area of the UK you deal with can help business.

SEO tip #7

Build a site with a new, fresh and interesting layout. Make the content stand out - and people will link to it naturally, helping you to page one. This is true, if a bit of a catch 22. Help them discover your great new design by registering your site with CSS galleries.

SEO tip #8

People want a website that relates to what they have typed in Google. Consider each page carefully - every single page can attract potential customers. Every single page could be relevant to one or more related search terms.

SEO tip #9

Make sure your site is cross browser compatible. SEO is the process of helping your site rank in search engines, and the usual reason is to make money. If you are spending time / money on SEO, spend some time / money on making sure your site will work on every persons browser - if a site doesnt function for a user, they will probably exit right away. The decision whether you like a site or not is made in milliseconds.

SEO tip #10

Concentrating on large, competitive terms = X amount of traffic per month, if they rank highly.
The accumulated traffic from all of your long tail terms = Y amount of traffic per month, if they rank highly.

For some clients, we have noticed how Y can be:
- easier to achieve then X
- more likely to result in conversions and actual sales. Long tail keywords that return a relevant page on your website are closely tailored to what a client is searching for; if your page is constructed so that it has quality text, it might be exactly what a client wants.

So, concentrating on just highly competitive keywords (with lots of competition) is not the only way.

SEO tip #11

Think about what other related information people will search for when looking for your products - and list it on your webpages.
If you are reselling products made by another supplier, you may want to list the original manufacturer part number on your pages.
If someone is searching for a manufacturers part number, they know exactly what they want - and if your pages are easy to purchase from, they will. (I buy bike bits all the time from a netherlands retailer, because I can order online using original Suzuki part numbers).

SEO tip #12

If you rebuild your website at any time, or it has been rebuilt - check carefully for broken links. Check your server logs for 404's. Also check the pages Google lists for your site using the site:http://www.mysitedomain.com command.

Googles webmaster tools is very useful for showing missing pages on your site - they also show some very interesting information about missing pages - if they have links into them.

If you find missing pages on your site, particularly missing pages that have links - consider 301 redirecting them to existing, relevant pages on your site.

If you find a site that has been hacked around with by many SEO's / web developers, you may be stunned how many links are being lost by pages being removed. Recapture the benefit of these links.

SEO tip #13

Make sure your 404 pages return a correct 404 response header!

SEO tip #14

Make your page code W3C compliant. Search engines (and browsers) are very good at reading spaghetti HTML - garbled code.
But, why risk the chance of a search engine mis reading your code, and missing potential content / links? Also, compliant code is easier to make cross browser compatible. If its not going to help search engines - it will help users, and thats even more important then SEO.

Comments4 Comments

Website Design Kent

Use .htaccess url re-writing for updating old urls to new urls on redesigned sites. e.g. redirect 301 /old/old.htm http://www.you.com/new.htm The following .htacces is useful for making your www pages the ones indexed and transfers all pagerank from the non www urls. Options +FollowSymLinks RewriteEngine on RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^yoursite.com [NC] RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.yoursite.com/$1 [L,R=301]

14 August 2009

rob

webdesign kent - excellent tip, many thanks!

20 August 2009

Web Design Talk

Hi, One thing I've often wondered is the following. Say an old site has many links already indexed in Google and I have just redesigned a new site with a better link strcuture. My aim is obviously get all the new links indexed by Google. Is it betetr to do as above, 301 redirecting individual pages to their new page or adding the following code in my htaccess file to redirect on 404 errors E.g. RewriteEngine on RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d RewriteRule (.*) /index.php [L] I sometimes opt. for the latter as sometimes Google has indexed thousands of old urls (usually based on querystring data) and manually 301'ing these would take forever. Would love to know what your opinion on this is. Many Thanks

06 December 2009

Alec Taylor

Use friendly URL's! i.e not www.domain.com?page=webdesign but using .htaccess rewrite it too www.domain.com/webdesign.html.

19 May 2010

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