9 Factors That Affect Your Website SEO
Is your SEO spooky?
OK, so Search Engine Optimization (SEO) sounds kind of scary to a lot of people! Like many of our clients, you may be afraid that changes in Google algorithms (the way websites are "found") will lead to you losing control of your website(s).
Don’t worry! Knowledge is power. Learn what is behind the basic concepts of SEO in this article, where we answer questions that our clients often ask us.
What is SEO?
What is involved in search engine optimization or SEO? Well, a lot of good stuff. Here are a few factors that come into play:
- Your website domain name
- The way HTML code is written by a website developer setting up your website
- The files and folders structure of your site
- The site navigation (viewer’s path to get around on your site)
- Metatags and descriptors embedded on your website
- The content (actual text)
- Meaningful image names and images optimized for the web
- Website download time (how long it takes the viewer to see your pages and images)
- Analytics and overall user experience
In short, "optimized for search engines" (or SEO) means that the website has been correctly done.
Build your website by the rules
Think of it this way. If you want to build a house that would last for a long time, you need to follow a specific building code or set of rules. Likewise, if you want your website to be found on the Internet, the site also has to follow a particular system or set of rules.
Who sets the rules?
Most of these rules on the Internet are set by search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, and others. These rules are not exactly a secret. Typically, the SEO changes are all published and explained on the Google Webmasters Blog and Bing Webmasters Blog.
Most of us who work in the SEO field, read every post. Also, webmasters usually have a Google Webmasters account. This is where they can find a lot of statistical data that shows the "health" of any website they maintain. Plus, we have data from Google Analytics.
Somebody once said, "Data is the new oil." It is true when you talk about search engine optimization or SEO. Learn to love your Google statistical data!
If the website was created based on the best current trends and practices, search engines are your friends; every time they run a big update, they clean out low quality or fraudulent websites from their databases. By doing that, they open the doors to many good quality sites that otherwise would have simply remained buried deep in the search results.
From Panda 1.0 to Bert
And those updates all sound so cuddly! In the last ten years we watched the Panda 1.0 update (2011), then the Penguin update (2012), Panda 2.0 (2013), the Hummingbird update (2013), Panda 5.0 (2015), Possum (2016), Penquin (2016), Fred (2017), Medic (2018), Maveric (2019), and most recent Bert (2019) update.
And after every update, the amount of traffic on our websites doubled, so we are doing something right (well, a lot of things actually), and we are proud of it!
Static mobile-friendly website
Search engines are not gods and not police; even so, they do set the rules for finding websites.
Still, search engines have their limitations too! They can only optimize static websites and have problems optimizing dynamic websites like blogs and content management systems.
So, if you want your website to be displayed in organic or natural search results, if you know that you have a tiny budget for the Pay-Per-Click advertising, create a static mobile-friendly website.
The three pillars of SEO
Also, there are three essential things which affect SEO today:
Web Responsive Design. Because most local searches today are done on mobile devices, having a website that can adjust itself to different screen sizes (responsive web design is the official term) is a big plus in the eyes of search engines.
Download speed. Don't put too many graphics and images on your website – they slow the download time. Search engines downgrade websites with slow download times, and in some instances, stop displaying it. Instead of searching for the most spectacular image that covers the whole screen or the cutest possible animation, concentrate on the website content or text, which brings us to the next topic.
Content. Content is the King. Internet users (and search engines) are looking for very unique, original, and frequently updated content. So, give it to them. Allocate time to write your content – who better than you know your business?
Don't have time to write your content? Don't worry. We will connect you with a freelance content writer, or we will write the text for your website.
Last updated on March 23, 2020.
NEXT, read our article "Writing for SEO: 10 Tips for Writing Awesome Website Content."
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