SEO: Our To-Dos and Not To-Dos!

28 Feb 2017

In this day and age, a big chunk of consumers and businesses search the internet to find the perfect product or service. They submit their search terms (or ‘keywords’) into a search engine and get a list of relevant websites in return. People tend to visit websites that are top of this list because they appear to be more relevant to their search. Most businesses will find their competitors at the top of these lists, and if your website is not up there with them, it’ll be incredibly difficult to reach your customers online.

If you’ve ever wondered why your competitors rank is higher than yours, it’s probably because they’re a bit more clued-up on SEO (search engine optimisation) than you are, or have someone who is an SEO specialist doing it for them!

This technique helps your site rank higher than the millions of other sites on the internet, in response to certain keywords when searched. The search engine (*cough* Google) collects information about every page on the web and can help people find exactly what they’re looking for. It’s easier for users to find you, the higher you are on the search page. To get higher rankings your website must have all the ingredients that search engines look for. This is where SEO can help.

SEO looks for text, content, links, page titles and other pieces of relevant information contained in the HTML code of your website. So, when someone searches for ‘hats’, the search engine will narrow the results to show pages that contain the word searched for; the more relevant the information is that you provide, and the more descriptive you make your metadata, the higher chance you have of ranking higher in the SERPs (search engine result pages).

To pull in the most business, your website must be as high as possible on the first page of all the major search engines, for the specific keywords that are relevant to your target demographic and their search query. Without SEO, your site will struggle to be found online by your customers.

Sound simple enough? If only. With search engines like Google constantly updating the way webpages are found and ranked, you need to make sure that you stay up-to-date with these changes.

So what’s changing?

Google recently made a shift in its local search algorithm. This update has been called Possum, and any time Google makes a shift in the way that they rank and display search results, there is usually a lot of confusion and uncertainty in the SEO community. It’s easy to get wrapped up in the changes, but the best thing for everyone to do is to just sit back and wait to see what actually happens.

Possum is targeted at local search results, so if you’re trying to get your local services a #1 ranking position, then you need to know what’s changed with the Possum update.

So in a nutshell, the Possum update:

So what can I do?

With the way we search on the internet constantly changing, the best thing for you to do is to keep up with the search engines. This means forgetting all the ways that we used to know were the way to top because, with all the changes Google is making, it’s most likely that these techniques aren’t effective anymore, and could actually lower your SEO ranking. Basically, what used to be considered ‘White Hat SEO’ may now be considered ‘Black Hat SEO’… so if you’re returning to the world of the web after hibernation, we’d recommend you do your research first. Here are a few SEO ‘No No’s’ to help you stay on top of the Search Engine rankings.

Don’t Keep It Short & Sweet

Google (and other search engines) are always looking for pages with relevant information, so low-quality content can damage your SEO. If Google thinks your site or web page is a bit short on content or find more of similar content elsewhere, it’s not considered as valuable to searchers and will be placed further down the list.

Keyword Overload

More of one thing is not always better, especially when it comes to SEO keywords. Keywords used to be one of the main factors of SEO rankings, but since then Google has evolved to see these overused keywords as spam, resulting in the position of the page on the SERP being lowered and replaced with another page that appears more reliable for searchers.

A Successful Landing

While it is important to have the right SEO techniques, it is also very important to make the landing page relevant to the keywords searched by your potential customers. If a link leads to a page that has very little content linking to the information expected from specific keywords, this will only lead to a high bounce rate. So make sure your content links to the keywords used, to help sway your readers to become more engaged in your website.

SEO Darlington (and beyond!)

In today’s super competitive world you need solid SEO techniques to get your site to the top of the search results. We are experts in SEO, and help many businesses become more visible on the internet, so if you’ve been hunting recently for a company who can help get you to the top, we’d love to hear from you. 

Get in touch with the HushBots on 01325 361 729 or shoot across an email with your details and initial ideas to [email protected] and we’ll be in touch!