5 Easy Steps for Any Website Owner:
If you are a business owner and responsible for improving your company’s visibility online, you may know a thing or two about trying to improve your ranking on Google (e.g., trying to make your way to the top of the list in search engine result pages (SERPS) when people search for your product or service). This article will give you 5 steps you can take to help make that happen.
If you have a website that is pretty on the outside but not using website best practices on the inside, your website may not be performing well for you. It takes a person knowledgeable about web friendly techniques to help improve your rankings on Google. The problem with some websites is that they were developed with the focus on design. While design plays a large role in your completed website, in our opinion, it should be balanced with functionality.
The myth, if you build it, they will come, couldn’t be farther from the truth with websites. If you have a beautiful site, but no one knows that it’s there (and by no one, we mean Google), can you really say that your website is “working” for you?
Use SEO Friendly URLs
Have you ever seen one of those really long and difficult to understand web links (e.g., http://mybusinessname/category/07-25-18/articlesmall)? Google doesn’t like those any better than you do. Consider changing all your URLs (website page names) to something a little more friendly (e.g., mybusinessname/your-keyword-here)
Use a Heading Tag on All Of Your Pages
Just like people scan headlines for an indicator of what an article is about, so does Google. Without the proper headlines, Google can get confused as they search your site and make an index of web pages. Make sure each of your website pages uses an <h1> tag. For an example, see the title of this article “Improve Your Ranking on Google” above. The <h1> tag tells Google what your page is about which helps them properly index your site.
Keep People On Your Site
This may seem intuitive, but let’s look at it a little deeper. One of the factors that Google uses to rate your website is bounce rate. As of 2022, and Google Analytics 4, bounce rate is being deprecated. In GA4, Bounce Rate is being replaced and measured by Engagement metrics. Bounce rate is how quickly people decide to “bounce” off of your site. Sometimes, you can keep your visitors engaged visually by adding multi-media. For example, add a complementary image (see below about how to tag it properly), video, or audio. For more on bounce rate as told by Google, check out this site.
Ensure that Your Website is Mobile-Friendly
You’ve probably heard about this a time or two, and it may have you confused, or maybe you have a solid handle on it. Making sure your website is mobile-ready means that no matter what device your audience uses (e.g., desktop, smartphone, tablet) your website reformats itself to fit well within the parameters of that device’s screen size. Google doesn’t like when a website isn’t mobile ready, especially since for the first time in 2015, mobile searches surpassed desktop searches. As of May 2022, 52.79% of the total web visits are currently mobile, compared to 47.21% coming from desktops.
If your site isn’t mobile ready, it’s time to make the change. Like the evolution of VCR, to DVD, to Netflix Streaming, progress keeps happening whether you are ready or not. Just think about how you would “rate” a company that gave you a presentation these days that included using a VCR.
Properly Tag Your Images (This is SEO Gold)
Google, by default, cannot search and index an image. What Google can do, however, is search and index the information associated with an image. That means each image should be properly tagged with <alt> attributes that relate to your content and your keywords on your site.This is where many websites are missing out on some easy improvements for their Google Ranking. If you can do nothing else, start here. Roll up your sleeves and start adding <alt> text to all of your images on every page of your website.
We admit, there a far more than these 5 tips that play into your ranking on Google. These fundamentals, however, are some of the easiest and can be implemented during initial website build and well after. So, don’t worry, it’s never too late to get your site up to scratch. Improving your rankings on Google is a marathon, not a sprint.