We have been receiving a lot of questions lately about how to increase website traffic and how to improve rankings on search engines for specific keywords. A better question, however, should aim at understanding what search engines are looking for and provide just that. So what really are search engines after?

1. Content

Content (mostly text, but also photos, video, and other rich media) is evaluated by search engines to determine the topic/subject of the website, if any. Content at the beginning of the page is given more consideration because it seems important because of its position on the page. Make sure that your heading and page titles contain phrases that describe what you’re offering. For example, if you have a landscaping business then your heading and title should include ‘landscaping’ keyword. Take this further by adding location to the title and this will greatly improve your rankings for local search. The title ‘Landscaping company in Oklahoma City, OK’ is certainly more useful than just ‘Landscaping Company’.

Use keywords sparingly and in a number of different ways so your content does not come across as spam. Only robots say the same things over and over again without a change in sentence structure. Writing content in a way that appears to be spam will have your website penalized or worse, removed from search engine database altogether.

2. User Experience

This is an area where people don’t pay attention. This has to do with how a user interacts with the website once they arrive on the page. One of the indicators of user experience is how easy is it to navigate through the pages of the website. If there’s no clear path from page A to page B then it appears that the website has not been well developed, and search engines do not want to send users to a broken website. You can help search engines better understand your website structure by creating a document called a sitemap. Click here to learn more about sitemaps.

3. Performance

Search engines are all about finding the most relevant information in the least amount of time. Websites with performance issues may hinder search engines from doing their work of indexing the website. Performance issues may include slow loading of pages, advertising scripts that generate unwanted pop ups, dead links (links that point to pages that no longer exist), and pages with duplicate content. We’ve written a post on low performing websites that can shed more light into this subject.

It seems like there’s a ton of information out there on search engines and what website owners need to do. Stay with the basics and you’ll be ok. At Front2Back Studio we help businesses and individuals become successful online by implementing sound principles of technology. If you’re considering hiring us, please get in touch.

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