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Search Engine Optimization Basics Reviewed

Looking at essential SEO ranking tips …

The length of time that a visitor spends on your pages is vital. Everything that you do to improve your SEO should push towards LONGER average user visits. Aim for at least four minutes for a new user and do so by using good navigation, nice design and content that is created with LOVE. Of all the proposed steps, the one that, in my view, really matters the most is increasing the amount of TIME SPENT by users on your site so that the search engines will view your site as an AUTHORITY on the given topic that people searched for!

Note: Ever since the web has become a central means of communication I have heard everyone and their gardener tell me how many “hits” they get per hour. Sure – traffic in high numbers is a means to generate revenue with things like Adsense and goes a long way in making someone seem like they have a serious website. But ask them “HOW LONG DO PEOPLE STAY?” and the “230 hits per hour” tune changes to a bashful (often surprised and bashful) look. “Time?” they will say. “Yes … How long does your site retain people?” I will ask. Well – there is actually no reason to torment people with such questions.  The answer is knownMedium and Upworthy are eschewing “pageviews” in favor of developing their own attention-focused metrics. And right they are.

MORE: TIME AS A RANKING FACTOR


2) Your site MUST provide ORIGINAL and quality content.   The VOLUME of this content must EXPAND on a weekly basis and should be updated over the years. Make sure to have at least 800 words (per post or new page) with the aim of becoming an authority on the given topic and/or keywords that you are aiming to rank for. NOTE: This is not a “rule for all situations.” Rather, it is the standard way to rank well and HOLD your ranking over time. There are some cases where what is needed is NOT so much to expand your work but rather to UPDATE and IMPROVE your existing work. Examples include GOING BACK to a page and correcting typos, adding good PDF Google Scholar sourced links that validate what you are saying, and any other tweak that is useful for the overall quality of your content.

NEW: AUTORITY AS RANKING FACTOR


3) Make accessibility-friendly image descriptions.

SEE: IMAGE DESCRIPTION TAGS AS A RANKING FACTOR


4) If you want to get your blog indexed and ranking well, make sure to have a working sitemap and robot.txt commands. Use Google Search Console and update your sitemap manually after every new post. Learn how Google discovers, crawls, and serves web pages.

Further reading on: searchenginewatch.com

NEW: RANKING TIPS: UPDATE SITEMAP.XML AND ROBOTS.TXT


5) Disavow bad backlinks  (a lot of cowardly, low level, non-creative, bored humans spend time making link building from poor quality sites their lifelong routine. This CAN and COULD damage your ranking if not checked).


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6) Work on your title and description (and, optionally, keyword meta tag). To do this well, STUDY what other quality, high ranking sites do. See WHICH keywords they target. Think of HOW their work compares to your goals and optimize your content for CLICKS by using good sentence structure and not stuffing keywords.

7) Use keywords that are actually searched for. See >  https://trends.google.com/trends/  and https://adwords.google.com/KeywordPlanner

8) Make sure that your site has mostly correct markupValidate the CSS and the HTML via W3C.

9) Create a folder structure of AT MOST 3 folders deep. And use MORE than just keywords – use DESCRIPTIONS and DATE structure in your folder naming!

10) Think of your website or blog as a CONSTANT WORK IN PROGRESS and never stop adding content. And CHECK your old posts and old pages to make sure that the outbound links you chose are still online. At time of writing a good tool for this is: https://www.drlinkcheck.com/

11)  Optimize for mobile view and touch.

12) Get a coffee and visit one of my other projects, such as Offline Education Guide or check out a website I made for one of my local Palo Alto SEO and Social Media clients: Palo Alto Rentals

13) Use Pinterest. But do not optimize Pinterest too well as Pinterest will rank above your actual site!

14) Seek out newspapers and university websites that might wish to speak about your projects or products. Get them to link to your home page using the name of the product, not the site name.

15) Keep up to date with SEO NEWS.

16) Set canonical URLs for your pages.

17) Check the page loading speed.

19) Re-check your sites for good meta tags.

20) Structure your text to have ONE H1 tag and make sure that H1 tag contains your keyword. Use anchor tags, comment tags, and most of all good sub-header (H2 and H3) tags. You should also use BOLD and write in bullet lists whenever possible.

– Do not assume that this is a full list. It is not.


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