9 Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for your website

Wow, I read a fantastic article on this topic that I want to share about search engine optimization.  SEO can sometimes be confusing and intimidating but it does not have to be that way.  The key is to find some key strategies and tips among the thousands that are out there.  Here’s my attempt to help you simplify SEO.

What is search engine optimization (SEO)?

Search Engine Optimization is simply the use of various techniques to improve a web site’s ranking in search engines in the hopes of attracting more visitors.

There are many Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tips that are not only good for search engines but they are very helpful for people looking for and perusing through your website. Here are nine SEO tips that can help search engines and visitors love your site.

1. Keywords and Research

If you choose the right keywords for your homepage and your internal pages, blog posts, etc., you will be helping visitors find what they are searching for easier. The best way to do this is to think of a keyword that fits your page, then a 2 – 3 word phrase that fits including that keyword. It’s really as simple as that.

Keyword Resources

2. Titles

The title tag is important because it is the heading for search engine listings and it is usually the anchor text when people bookmark your homepage, blog post, or single page on your website. The easiest way to create a title for your page is to include the keyword phrase you thought of during keyword research and include it in the up to 70 character description of your page.

Title Resources

3. Meta Descriptions

The meta description is essentially your sales pitch for your page when it comes up in search engines. It is also usually the description that is picked up when people bookmark your site socially. To create a good meta description, create a short sentence or two under 155 characters that includes the main keyword phrase for your page.

Meta Descriptions Resources

4. Header Tags

Header tags break up your page into easily digestible sections to help readability. Think of your page’s content in outline form – the header tags break up each main section of your text. Header tags should include keyword phrases you would like your page to rank for.

Also, note that the text right after your header tag can play a significant role. For example, I had an H3 header in one of my recent posts that said Most Valuable Guides (not the best keywords, but bear with me). In search results, without any other optimization, link building, etc., search engines pick up that phrase as follows:

Meta Description After Header Tag

So needless to say, header tags are valuable and need to be optimized as well as careful consideration given to the first sentence after the header tag as well.

5. Images

<img src="seo-optimized-image.jpg" alt="A SEO Optimized Image" title="A SEO Optimized Image" />

To get the most out of your keywords and help break up text for visitors with something eye catching, be sure to include an image in your post with keywords in the filename, alt text, and title.

Seagull in Flight

Where does the alt tag come into play outside of SEO? If you were visually impaired and using a screen reader, the alt text would be read to you by your program.

Image Resources

6. Internal Linking

Once people get on your site, you want them to stick around and find more relevant content. Using internal linking will help them learn more about what your site has to offer, especially if you are using the right anchor text as a guide.

Internal Linking Resources

7. Link Building

So what benefit does link building have to offer potential visitors without mentioning any SEO benefits? When I am seeking out link building opportunities, I find that pages already offering their visitors resources for a particular topic. Link building is simply offering another site’s visitors more resources to choose from for more options.

Link Building Resources

8. Social Media

Social networking allows you to really connect with your website’s audience, which helps you learn more about their needs and create content, product, and services that will really appeal to them.

In link building, even though Twitter, for example, only gives you nofollow links, someone who sees your link through Twitter may like it so much that they link to it in their blog or elsewhere on their website, which essentially means that nofollow social media link turned into a dofollow one.

Also, it’s not just the social networking you do – it’s the social sharing you make possible. Installing buttons or widgets to make your site more socially sharable makes it easier for your visitors to tell the world about you!

Social Media Resources

9. Guest Blogging

Last but not least is the ever popular guest blogging. If you have expertise that others would benefit from, then guest blogging will help you share that knowledge with an even wider audience. If your visitors are also bloggers, you can even help them by guest blogging on their site, sending some of your visitors in their direction. The benefits to doing both of these (the right way) are really exponential in helping establish yourself as an authority in your industry.

Your Thoughts on Search Optimization for Visitors

What ways do you optimize for SEO with your visitors in mind, and what tools and resources would you suggest to help other website and blog owners to do the same?

Written by Jim Yih

Jim Yih is a Fee Only Advisor, Best Selling Author, Financial Expert and a syndicated columnist. He is a sought after financial speaker on wealth, retirement and personal finance. He currently specializes in helping employers implement Group RRSP and Pension plans along with his Financial Education in the Workplace program. For more information you can visit www.retirehappy.ca. You can also follow him on TWITTER @jimyih.

2 Responses to 9 Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for your website

  1. I love to see posts like this that are clear that SEO is not some magical dark art but simply applying common sense strategies to make it easier for your potential visitors to find your Web site, blog or business in a search engine.

    Success online is much like whatever you specialize in: there are many, many factors that go into and you can’t learn them all overnight.

    Just as you may not remember how you learned to read, but now you do it well, you start where you are and you keep building and making improvements and adding more skills to grow your business.

    I like to use the analogy of planting. You have to keep planting seeds. Each seed on its own doesn’t seem all that important but the more seeds you plant the larger the harvest will be.

    Here is a tip for advisor thinkbox and guest authors. Including your Twitter username in an easy to find place o your site and in your guest posts will dramatically increase your reach.

    Make them obvious and influencers will include them when Tweeting your posts and also when reviewing them on StumbleUpon or sharing them on Facebook, Friendfeed and elsewhere.

    Few will take the time like I do to search for them. (I found Jim’s; did not find one for Advisor ThinkBox.) When I share with your username you will pick up followers and increase who hears your message and knows about you.

    When you include it in what you write, those who appreciate your post will follow you and are more likely to read other posts you contribute wherever they are.

    Twitter and Facebook are the two largest Social Networks so those are where you need to be – at least use Twitter. It is where opportunities are presented to you.

    Speaking of opportunities, I manage content across many established blogs including seven related to business, marketing and Social Media and others in niches. I am always seeking quality content and can be reached on Twitter or through the contact tab on my blog.

  2. Jim,

    These are some great tips for nailing down the basics of SEO. Having been in the SEO game for a long time, I stress the importance of focusing on not just come, but all of these. On the other hand, some are definitely more important than others. Linkbuilding and content on your site are definitely, in my opinion, the two most important.

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