web-consultant300x200You could ask 100 average people to define SEO and you would probably get equally as many different answers. About the only thing they would agree on was that the abbreviation “SEO” stands for search engine optimization, but what does SEO really mean?

What IS SEO?

SEO is a generalized term that represents any techniques, strategies or systems designed to improve the natural/organic search engine rankings for a website. This can be as much of an art as it is a science and it changes on a weekly and sometimes even daily basis.

There are two main components in the SEO world. One factor is the on-page optimization, which refers to what exists on the website itself. The second factor is off-page optimization, which refers to other websites that either mention yours or are linked to yours. Since these are entirely different scenarios, we will only be covering the on-page elements in this article. Off-page SEO factors will be covered in another article.

The Top 5 SEO Tips for On-Page Optimization

The suggestions for optimization shown below require that you have administrative access to make those changes. If your website is built on the WordPress platform or some other popular content management system (CMS), this will be a relatively easy task. However if your site is based on HTML, you may need additional software and FTP access to make these changes. If you are not comfortable working in this environment, you should definitely contact your webmaster and let them make the changes.

You can view a short 5 minute version of this blog post below.

1 – Keyword Rich Quality Content

There is a phrase in the SEO world that states “Content is king”. It has been around for a long time and it still holds true. The content contained on your website must be unique and valuable in the sense that it answers your viewers’ questions or provides them with the help they seek. It must also be easily read by humans and the search engines. Another factor that can be evaluated is called keyword density. This relates to how many times a given phrase or variation of that phrase appears on the web page relative to the total number of words. In other words, if there are 500 words on a webpage and your keyword appears 5 times, that would be a 1% keyword density. For a long time, it was assumed that keyword density ranging from 1% to 3% is ideal; however that metric in itself is not as relevant as it once was.  I use that factor as a rough guide to help make sure the search engines understand what the main content of the page is all about.

2 – Page URL structure

It is important that the primary keyword phrase appears in the page URL, preferably at the beginning of the phrase. For example, it is preferred to have something such as MyLandscapeBusiness.com/lawn-services/lawn-fertilizing-and-pest control/ rather than MyLandscapeBusiness.com/services/. This helps categorize and organize your content better, not only for your viewers, but the search engines as well.

3 – Proper use of title tags

The title tag is the phrase that is displayed at the top of your browser window. This is not what is showing in the address bar but rather in the frame of the browser itself. If you are using Google Chrome, this phrase is not displayed, however, it is still recognized by the search engines. The structure of this title tag should be no more than 70 characters long and have your most relevant keywords at the beginning of the phrase. The pipe character (located on your keyboard along with the backslash character) is preferred for separating phrases. For example, if you had a page about lawn care tips, an appropriate title tag might be Summer Lawn Care Tips | Dallas TX | Joe’s Landscaping and Lawn Service.

4 – Meta-description

This is the verbiage that usually shows up on the search results page under your link. I recommend using no more than 150 characters including spaces and make the content descriptive and compelling so that your potential prospects will want to click on your link to learn more.

5 – Heading tags (H Tags)

These are also known as hierarchy tags and help the search engines understand the organization and structure of the page with regards to what is most relevant. For example, the main topic of the page should be an H1 tag to signify what the pages about. Other tags such as H2, H3 and so on not only help to organize the page visually for your readers but also structurally for the search engines.

This is only a brief overview and there are many other factors to be considered with regards to on-page search engine optimization. However, utilizing the few suggestions shown above and certainly help improve your search engine rankings.

If you would like a more detailed evaluation of your website and search engine rankings, contact the professionals at Your Marketing Crew. We invite you to call us today at 727-945-1175 to schedule a no-cost consultation where we can learn more about you and your business, what you would like to accomplish, and make some recommendations to see if we are good fit. We look forward to the opportunity of working with you to help you grow your business.

Your Marketing Crew works with many with local Tampa Bay businesses in cities such as Clearwater, Tampa, Dunedin, Oldsmar, St. Petersburg, Palm Harbor, Tarpon Springs, Largo and many other surrounding communities. We also work with many other small business owners located throughout the United States. Give us a call today if you would like to increase your online presence and profitability.

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