Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – The honest basics!

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – The honest basics!

The world of SEO is fraught with pitfalls and it’s often hard to find unbaised advice on the internet. As someone who doesn’t sell SEO (house parties are much more exciting!) AND has fallen into numerous SEO traps, here are my thoughts.

SEO is all about getting your page/website as high as possible on search results. The higher it is, the more people will visit your site. Simple!

So, what SHOULD you do?

1. Build a GREAT WEBSITE. Great means interesting, useful and readable. A website with only pictures fails the readable test. A website with repetitive, boring text written by an overseas SEO company fails the interesting test. A completely off-topic website fails the useful test. But a site written by you, for your guests with both images and text is (a) what you’ll naturally want to do and (b) what works well for search engines too.

2. Don’t expect quick wins. Being a long-established website carries some advantage, and it will take time for yours to rise through the search engine rankings. However don’t be tempted to buy ’10 million back links for £5 a month’ or anything similar. It just doesn’t work. Backlinks (a link from someone else’s website to yours) ARE important but Google knows when you’re bluffing. 10 million links from unrelated websites are pointless. 1 link from a related site (eg Landed Houses towards one of our houses) is worth much more. Better still, a link from the BBC but they’re nigh-on impossible to gain.

3. There is some technical stuff to be mindful of. Your page title and link/URL should (a) reflect the page content and (b) contain search terms. So a page selling horse riding lessons in Hampshire would be best titled ‘Professional horse riding lessons in Hampshire’. It’s not rocket science! Calling it ‘Equine control tuition with Steve’ might be true but very few are going to be searching for it. A good page description/tag is important too as search engines display it to readers, ‘meta tags’ less so.

4. Aside from building a good website, it is also worthwhile keeping it current. A blog is a great way to add new content, and you could also try focusing on the key words (essentially search terms) that you think people might search for. I am writing this on a train which is always a great time to share thoughts!

And finally if you have any questions then do ask or post below.

Edmund

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