Directory Maximizer

Small SEO Tips That Can Make A Big Difference

While we know that the algorithms of the big search engines take into account hundreds of factors when giving a web page a specific ranking, no one knows exactly what all of them are (and those who do, will never tell).

search engine optimization

However, with the help of experiments carried out by several SEO experts, a few of the most important factors have been exposed.

This post will be about the elements that we have control over (it would be useless to have a post about the factors that we can’t do anything about, right?)

Web content

You won’t rank without content. Period. A little over 3 years ago, it was possible to rank with a “single-page website”. Now it’s very hard to rank well with even a 5-page website.

If you are relying on organic search traffic, you will need more quality content.

Specify your preferred page

You can do that by using Google’s rel=”canonical” link element on pages that have the same content, but that you do not want indexed.

For example, you may have 3 different versions of a page: 1 “normal”, 1 for mobile devices, and 1 that is “printer friendly”. You would then have the canonical link element on the mobile and printer friendly versions to “tell” Google that you only want the desktop-version indexed.

Improve your internal linking structure

A lot of people underestimate the power of internal linking. I always use Wikipedia as an example of how powerful internal linking can be. There are a few reasons why its pages ranks #1 or #2 for a lot of terms, and internal linking is definitely one of the major reasons!

Post new content regularly

For one, it shows that you update your site (keeping it fresh). Secondly, it increases your chances of ranking for long-tail keywords (which is where 80% of the traffic comes from for small to medium sized websites). Thirdly, it increases the likelihood of being “Liked” or “Shared”.

Plus regular content updates encourages engagement on the website (comments). This can only be good for SEO!

Decrease page load time

It’s not a factor that’s going to bring you #1 rankings overnight, but Google said it themselves that the faster your pages load, the more likely they are to be ranked higher, as this is what users want.

Most people use broadband or cable, so we don’t need to go crazy trying to create 30 KB pages. But let’s not go overboard either with heavy flash animations all over the place.

Tip: Losslessly compress your images before uploading them to your server. It’s especially effective when you have multiple images loading on a single page.

Image ALT tags

These were meant for 2 reasons:

  • To help people who have a hard time identifying images
  • To help people who have “load images disabled” in their browser settings (This made sense back in the 56kb age)

Instead of not using it at all, use it to describe your image with a keyword you are targeting. Spiders/Crawlers can read that.

Set up a custom 404 error page

Instead of the default (and ugly!) 404 error message, create a custom error page. This does 2 things:

  • Attempts to get the person to stay on your site, perhaps by suggesting to “Click to go to the homepage” (You don’t lose the visitor)
  • Gets the spiders to keep crawling your website by going to the other links

To improve your odds, have a nice navigation menu on the error page. I have even seen some error pages with links to their most popular posts on them.

A good meta description

A lot of SEOs say that meta descriptions do not do anything in terms of SEO. And they are right! However, it does have an important role to play. When I see the list of results after performing a search, I see 2 things per listing. The page title, and the meta description.

If I like the meta description doesn’t inspire me, I often move on to the next listing.

A good meta description can improve your CTR.

The title tag

The real title length that Google shows on its results page depends on the overall pixel width of the characters in the title.

However, we don’t need to complicate our lives with that. Optimize your title tags so that they are under 69 characters long for pages that we want to look good on the results page.

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  • F A Q

    Nicely Said, all webmasters know these tips but they forget about the implementation of ALt Tags & Page Load Time