I believe having a website in this time and age is paramount to building your own business. But a website sitting on the ethernet will be no use if nobody sees it and if nobody reads its content, i.e. what business you are proposing or what your opinion is on this product or that service. It is vital to the success of your business that your website attract visitors. Today I would like to talk to you about how to increase traffic on your website and how to optimize your content with search engines.
How do the search engines work
All SEOs work based on different formulas or algorithms, which scan each piece of work published on the website based on different values. Google, for argument’ sake, which is also renowned for being the most authoritative search engine on the online market, is deemed however to be rather feeble with its algorithms, which, experts say, change often and regularly. And that is why it is often very difficult – but definitely never impossible! – to hit page 1 of Google.
Other major SEOs like Bing and Yahoo work based on the same principle of using unique formulae, but they all base their calculation on the searches imputed by visitors to their search bar. So, if your preferred search bar is Google Chrome, and you set up your laptop to use Chrome as default search engine, Google will take into account which keyword you use every time that you do a search on its search bar. But there are other values that help search engines rank your content.
So, what are the essential parameters most authoritative SEOs go by in ranking your website and your content? Let me tell you.
I have already mentioned when talking about content and the importance of keywords that good and heart felt content is more valuable than the use of a thousand keywords. SEOs will value continent which is relevant to your niche, content that is unique and is well written.
But SEOs will also look favourably to content that is engaging and invites viewers to take action. You want to create content rich in:
- Pictures – 4 or 5 pictures over a 1500 word post, some even with links or internal links;
- Internal links – these are links to other pages, reviews or posts within your website. SEOs prefer that you use internal links to other parts of your website over using external links;
- Comments – when writing, encourage your readers to leave their comments and views in the comment box underneath. Search engines again reward your ranking if they pick up on activities that your readers may have taken up as a result of reading your content;
- Banners – again, add banners or ‘call for action’ buttons that will invite visitors to click or push to read another article or to link to another page or review;
- Purchases – and finally, when your website starts generating some direct sales of merchandise you sell, or through affiliate links to other sites of which you are an affiliate, that is the ultimate ‘cherry on top of the cake’ as far as search engines go!
What are you trying to deliver? – Your reader’s perspective
Stop for a minute being the author of your writing, and put the judging hat on as if you were visitor of your own website. Ask yourself the question: what would make me search for the specific niche I am in fact writing about, if I were to browse the internet? Why would I search for that niche? What would my expectations be of finding what in my website, if I were the visitor?
It is important that what you write answers questions and fulfils expectations of visitors.
So, really, if for instance you were to write advice and product reviews to keep your hair healthy, try thinking what you would expect from your website, if you came across your own website. It would be advice for all types of hair, or the difference between natural products and more chemical based ones; and how about if you have thinner hair, or long or short? And how about cost of the products? Can they be found easily worldwide or only in specific countries?
The variants are endless, if you think of it. But whatever you think to write, try to cover all angles from the perspective of your reader. If your content is relevant to your reader, you will get more hits on your posts and pages. And more hits are going to push your website up in ranking, are going to generate more traffic, and are going to generate more sales or commissions from the affiliate products you may be advertising – hence monetization. It is a circle, just not a vicious one, but rather a winning one!
Make your content legible
To an extent, yes, I am also referring to the dreaded spelling mistakes. I know, most people are not overly bothered to read a piece of writing with spelling mistakes. I am a bit of a stickler for them – which however doesn’t mean I don’t make spelling mistakes, because I do. In fact, if you find any spelling or typo mistakes anywhere in this website, by all means do let me know by leaving me a comment below or on the relevant page or post.
But, when I refer to content being legible, I’m thinking mostly to how fluent it is to the eye to read.
I’ve already mentioned how important it is to add pictures. Equally, videos definitely have great impact with visitors. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I find that a message delivered to me through a powerful picture or a video sticks in my mind more than a hundred words. It’s how our brain is build naturally.
Equally, if you break your article with headings and other word processing tricks, such as separation lines under your title, the page your visitor is about to read will appear more pleasing to the eye, and more manageable to approach.
For the same reason, you might also want to keep your paragraphs short and sweet. I know, I’m not the best example to follow on this – the fact that I like to ‘chat’ is not an acceptable excuse. My favourite motto is ‘Don’t do as I do, do as I say‘.
And finally, last but by far not least, do not forget to use your keywords wisely. Read my page on keywords if you are still unclear on what keywords are and why they are so important.
SEOs value keywords, as these are the very words used by visitors browsing on the search bar when searching for information on specific, or even more general, niches. That is why it is so important that those very same keywords are picked up at strategic points of your page or post.
- Firstly, it is advisable that you use keywords in your title.
- Use keywords also in the first couple of paragraphs of your post, as well as in the first couple of headings if you can.
- Finally, don’t forget to use the same keywords in the snippet and in the meta title and description.
I often see the same question being asked over and over: how many keywords should you use in your content? And should every post you write have different keywords?
My advice is never to over saturate your post with keywords. Ideally try not to use more than five powerful keywords, and always make sure they fit in within the context and make your writing grammatically correct.
Likewise, probably you will naturally have keywords that differ from each other for each post you publish, purely as the keywords are going to be specific to the subject you are writing or the service you are reviewing. Nevertheless, if you find that a keywords has proved particularly successful in your past articles as it has attracted a lot of traffic, that means there is a lot of interest for that particular subject out there. And then, if you can use the same keywords in such a way that it fits in nicely within the context of your new article, I don’t see why you should not use it again!
Never give in to writer’s block
When reading all of the above, you may be tempted to think: I SHALL NEVER MANAGE TO MAKE MY WEBSITE SUCCESSFUL. WRONG!!!
I will never tire to remind anybody that truly if I could do it, so can anybody else out there. When I first started my online business just over a year ago, I had no idea of what I was doing, nor what I needed to do to make it all work.
I didn’t learn overnight. And never believe those who try to persuade you of the contrary. Because it takes a lot of practice in writing, and dedication in marketing your content and your website. Writing is the delivery tool for your ideas and for your passion. Never be afraid to use this precious tool, as the more you write, the better you will get at it, the more traffic your will attract.
Have you ever been prey to ‘writer’s block’? That is the one obstacle that we always encounter every so often. You wake up one morning and do not know what to write anymore. You have run out of ideas.
Or at least that is what you believe. Start reading and researching, and avail yourself of the power of SEOs by browsing the internet. That same ranking that you work to beat, will be of endless help in refilling your creative vein of renewed energy and inspiration.
Surely you must have come across it yourselves. Do drop me a line below to share your experience of how you beat the block.
My personal advice is never stop writing. Never give in to that nasty beast called Writer’s Block!