Search engine optimization is a marketing discipline that concentrates efforts to improve visibility in organic search engine results. We know that, isn't it? It tries to understand the patterns presented by search engines and users like you and me.
Why? To build efficient websites that can have better opportunities when a user is looking for something related to your product or service. Stop it! We know that too.
Good. Here is the problem. Think about what happens when this discipline becomes the dark side of your strategy, seriously affecting the ranking of your website on search engines.
It is amazing the number of websites that do not follow the most basic SEO techniques and strategies without knowing the negative impact that it has on their performance and owner’s income.
I am not talking about subject mastery or complicated procedures. It just about has a title tag, a meta description, headings, and keywords consistency. Those four elements have a huge impact on how search engines understand and rank every web page.
Today, the remarkable content we build for our users is the most important part of our marketing strategy. At the same time, it is crucial that we help search engines to understand the message we want to communicate to users.
There are hundreds of factors that Google considers when assigning a ranking to a specific web page and it could be hard to take care of each one. But, how we are going to have a good start if we do not consider the most basic factors.
Let us look at the 5 elements that every web page should include. We have selected Teeth Whitening Savannah as a keyword for the following examples.
Your HTML title tag appears in browser tabs, bookmarks and in search result pages. Make your title tags clear and concise (50-60 characters). The closer to the start of the title tag of any given keyword, the more likely it will be to rank for that keyword-based query.
If your company name is not part of the important keyword phrases, put it at the end of the title tag. They must be written differently for every page. Don’t duplicate your title tags because it will negatively affect your search visibility.
2. Meta Description
A meta description can influence the decision of the searcher as to whether they want to click through on your content from search results or not. The more descriptive, provocative, and relevant the description, the more likely someone will click through.
Ensure that all your web pages have a unique meta description that is explicit and contains your keywords (these appear in bold when they match part or all of the user’s search query).
The meta description will then appear under your page’s URL in the search results.
Make sure your most important keywords for the webpage show up in the meta description. By ordinary, search engines will highlight in bold where it finds the searchers query in your snippet.
A meta description should be no longer than 135 – 160 characters long.
HTML header tags (H1 - H6) are used to differentiate the headings and sub-headings of a page from the rest of the content.
The most important heading tag is the H1 tag and the least important is the H6 tag. In HTML coding, heading tags from h1 to h6 form a top-down hierarchy. This means that if you skip any of the tag numbers the heading structure will be broken, which is not ideal for on-page SEO.
For example, if your site is introduced with an h1 tag followed by an h3 tag, the hierarchy will be broken, meaning the heading structure is not as SEO-friendly. This doesn't apply, however, to the bottom-up structure, which could jump from an H4 to H2 without issue.
It is important to ensure every page has one H1 tag.
It is crucial to include the keywords you wish to target in the header tags, with your primary keyword in the H1 tag. Search engines compare the words in the header tag with the associated section content to establish relevancy.
Search engine spiders check for keyword consistency between the header tags and other parts of the page. They pay attention to the words used in the h1 tag as it should contain a basic description of the page content, just as the page title does it.
Heading tags give the user a clear idea of the page content. Search engines give a lot of priority to user experience on a site, meaning the presence of heading tags becomes an important component of SEO.
Use your keywords in the headings and make sure the first level H1 includes your most important keywords.
4. Keyword Consistency
Keyword consistency means having keywords or sets of keywords that you want to rank for searches that are spread over all the elements of a web page.
This strategy is the use of keywords throughout the different elements of the webpage. Consistent keyword use helps crawlers index your site and determine relevancy to search queries.
How to Maintain Keyword Consistency?
Include the keyword in the title tag, meta description and in the headings, especially in the H1 tag heading.
After checking more than 2,000 websites, 85% of those fail with keyword consistency.
5. HTTPS, SSL Certificate and HTTS
In 2014, Google announced that an HTTPS (the acronym for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) website would receive an extra boost in their ranking versus websites with the HTTP.
Modern websites, tend to be SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) secured as it provides an extra security layer while logging in to your Web Service. This is cryptography protocols that were designed to allow secure communication over a public network like the Internet.
Maybe your website is not the only one that does not follow this rule. Unbelievably but true, 79% of the web’s top 100 sites do not deploy HTTPS by default.
This new rule is having a huge impact on your web site. How do you know if your website has an SSL? It is easy, just check it out on the left side of the URL bar address. You will see a lock. Click on the lock and will pop-up the information related to the SSL certificate.
This rule will be a big issue in the short future. Right now, Google is letting users know the websites that are and not in compliance with this rule. How? In the listing, you can see the HTTPS at the beginning of the address bar.
There is no reason for most websites to make to move to an HTTPS.
At the same time, there is no excuse to not have an SSL Certificate. You can find plenty of services in the market where you can get an SSL Certificate. This product is not expensive, so there is no reason not to buy it.
Is having an HTTPS makes your site secure? No, it is not enough. You must implement an HSTS (HTTP Strict Transport Security) on your website. It is important to protect websites against protocol downgrade attacks and cookie hijacking.
Implementing basic search engine optimization practices are extremely important. It is not only how great your website looks, but how well it is planned and created. This will give your website the opportunity to have better rankings and at the same time offer the user an extraordinary experience.