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10 Basic SEO Tips Build Search Rankings

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Basic SEO tips
Basic SEO tips. © 2017 Scott Bateman

Basic SEO tips are handy for anyone who doesn’t have much time to spend on the subject.

Anyone looking for SEO tips about organic search will find an overwhelming number of suggestions online. Just a few guidelines are a good start for a busy business owner or a small online staff.

Effective search engine optimization (SEO) is not a one-time effort, especially if a website has frequent updates over time. Site owners need to spend as much time as necessary to get the maximum amount of audience from search engines.

For a big site that generates much business, a publisher or site manager should take SEO steps every day with each content activity on the site. Even for small sites that don’t update as often, SEO should be part of any content change.

Site owners and managers should review results at least monthly if not weekly by reviewing analytic reports. The following 10 SEO tips are the result of experience, research and some widely accepted industry standards.

First 5 SEO Tips

If nothing else, busy people who manage websites in their spare time should focus on the following five basic SEO tips as a starting point. If they have time, they should then move on to the second five tips.

1) Page title

Search engines use an HTML tag called the title to display in their search results. In content management systems such as WordPress, the page title is the same as the headline that appears to searchers who visit the website page.

Publishers should of course use specific keywords and phrases that accurately describe the topic of the page. But they also might use the site name (a branding opportunity) or even geographic location if the site is local. As a general rule, keep the title length to less than 55 characters including spaces.

In search results, search engines usually bold the keywords that appear in the title if a searcher uses those keywords to find a relevant article.

Avoid using grammar article words such as “a”, “an” and “the” because they are neither necessary or an efficient use of space. Use action verbs and put the topic and relevant keywords as close to the start of the title as possible.

2) Meta Description

The meta description is a summary of the article that appears in search engine results with the title. The summary often appears as an abstract on a website via the content management system.

Publishers should describe in less than 160 characters the content on the page. This is mainly useful to attract searchers to click on the link when they see it in the search results. Use the subject keywords again. Search engines usually bold them, which is another chance to attract a click.

3) Page Headline

A title appears in the page’s HTML source code and is viewable by the search engines. The headline appears at top of the article and is viewable by the public.

Titles and headlines are sometimes the same and sometimes not depending on the situation. If the CMS allows it, the headline is another opportunity to use relevant keywords or variations on them.

4) Quality of Content Keywords

Do match the content on the page to the keywords and vice versa. Don’t try to capture traffic with inaccurate keywords. Search engines may suspect manipulation and level a penalty on the page or even on the entire site.

Use tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner to find good keywords to use on a site or page. Try to strike a balance between writing for a human audience and writing for a search engine.

5) Anchor Text

Links fill a website. The words that entice people to click on the links can impact how often people click on them.

Anchor text is the words containing the links that go to a landing page. Think of the link not just as a link but another opportunity to use keywords. Shoot for variety. Make them human friendly and search engine friendly.

5 More SEO Tips

6) Global and Topical Site Popularity

The more outside sites link to a site, the higher the ranking if those backlinks are relevant come from high-quality sites. The faster the links are added, the higher still. Links from other sites on the same topic will increase rankings.

7) Content Quantity and Quality

The length of an article is a sign of its depth and authority. The quality of the article includes good grammar and credible information sources.

Try to balance good, objective writing with intentional keywords in the content. But make sure the keywords accurately reflect the article content. Don’t use too many of them.

Likewise, write long articles that hold reader attention. If readers exit after 100 words on a 1,500 word article, search engines will suspect low quality.

8) Quantity and Quality of Internal Links

On-site or internal links make it easier for search engines to find a page. If the content is important and well done, it will result in higher engagement and more social shares, which are positive signals to search engines.

9) Quantity and Quality of External Links

Linking out to high-quality sites that are relevant is a signal that the article is the result of good research and contains quality information.

Besides, a useful external link adds value to a visitor’s experience, enhances the brand and may entice that visitor to return.

10) Age of Site, Link and Document

All three add authority to search results. Search engines are in no hurry to index temporary content.

Focus on building evergreen content whenever possible. Grow total pages. Ensure that visitors can reach all site content, so beware deleting links that may bury some content where people and search engines can’t find it.

2 Responses to “10 Basic SEO Tips Build Search Rankings”

  1. Tyson F. Gautreaux Says:

    Thanks for such a informative post! Great writing and information! I will bookmark your site.

  2. 10seos Says:

    I know this is very old, but the tips are so helpful now also. Thanks for sharing and helping people who are in your field!

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