When it comes to SEO, there are many different factors that go into how search engines rank webpages and ultimately decide which sites to show first in a search. Google looks at over 200 different factors when ranking web pages, so having as many of your bases covered as possible is best. To help you out, we’ve compiled an SEO checklist for you to use as a guide to make every page on your site search-engine friendly.
Produce High Quality Content.
The first, and most important, piece of SEO is that your content is high quality and relevant to readers. The more relevant and useful visitors find your content, the more likely they are to share it and link to it themselves. If a search engine sees users spending time pouring over your content, returning to it, and even sharing it, they assume it must be worth the read and will rank you higher.
Choose Strong Target Keywords.
We recommend selecting one or two target keywords per webpage at the most. Once you have an idea of what you would like to write about, research and brainstorm multiple similar phrases to come up with the keywords you would like to go after. Consider the competitiveness of the keyword, how many people are searching for it, and try to find a sweet spot. The ideal keyword has a high search volume and not a lot of competition.
Use Your Target Keyword in All of These Places:
Shorter URLs have been shown to do better than their longer counterparts. We suggest simply using just your keyword as the page URL.
This is your first chance to get visitors to click on your page and the first factor search engines use to decide what your web page is about. Make the title compelling and relevant to the content on that page.
While this isn’t used directly as a ranking tool, the more relevant and compelling your meta description is, the higher click-through rate you’ll likely have. Describe in under 160 characters what your page is about and compel visitors to click onto your website. If a search contains your target keyword, it will be displayed in bold in the meta description.
Image ALT text.
Search engines cannot “see” images but read their descriptions, or ALT tag, to determine their relevancy. Being as descriptive as possible while also working in your target keyword will let search engines know that the image is relevant.
The H1 tag is your primary heading, or page title. Use your target keyword here and in a sub-heading too, if possible.
You should aim to use your target keyword 3-10 times within the text body, while still making the content reader friendly. Don’t over-do it here, as your page could be flagged as spam if you use it too many times.
Optimize Crawlable Content.
As a rule of thumb, you should have a minimum of 300 words on each unique page. More is always better as it gives the search engine bots more content to crawl to determine relevancy.
Link to Internal Pages.
Link to other relevant pages on your site that tie together similar content. This will not only tell Google more about the linked page, but will help the bots navigate and categorize your site.
Check for Duplicate Content.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but you don’t want duplicate content on your website. It will cause you to lose creditability with visitors and be penalized by Google if you simply copy and paste to fill in text.
Install the Yoast SEO Plugin on WordPress.
In short, Yoast optimizes parts of your page like canonical tags, no index tags, and sitemaps, so you don’t have to. And the basic version is free for WordPress users!
Make Your Site Mobile Friendly.
People are using their mobile devices more and more when searching online. If your page cannot adapt to various screen sizes, visitors will leave.
By following this SEO checklist your website will rank better in search engine results and attract more visitors.
While optimizing your site’s pages should become a standard practice, we understand that it’s not easy and can be time consuming, especially if you are new to SEO. Lucky for you, Red Egg Marketing has an expert SEO team to help you optimize your site and rank higher in search engine results. Contact us for more information about how we can help your site get found!