Blogger conferences have been a great resource for me as an entrepreneur. In July, New York City was host to two huge blogger events, BlogHer and Blogger Bash, where more than 5,000 bloggers gathered to meet with brand representatives and attend sessions to hone their online skills.
Sheryl Simonitis, vice president of marketing at Noodle, a destination education website, shared a few SEO tips that any entrepreneur can use. The startup allows parents and students to make better education decisions in an environment that is completely unbiased so that a child and parent can find the best resources for their needs. Parents need to be able to find the company in an online search, so Noodle is well versed in SEO and are always producing with the consumer in mind. This is an idea every businessperson should follow.
I followed up with Simonitis after the conference to find out the basic SEO principles that make a difference and increase any business's website traffic.
When you think about creating content, know the words that people are using to search. Every page should be built around keywords that are most important to you and your company. Do your homework. When you are producing pages for your website, use the best keywords on every post.
Google helps you with your keywords. When you start to type into the search bar on Google, it gives you suggestions of popular words or phrases that people use in a search. If you want to take it one step further, you can use a tool called Google Keyword Planner that will tell you popular keywords. It will tell you true numbers of how many average monthly searches are occurring with those keywords.
2. Image tags
People have images all over their websites, and I am always surprised when bloggers don't identify the images. Google indexing sites need to understand what the image is and when it should be served up. You must tag your images. If there are none, Google does not know how to identify the image.
In WordPress, Yoast is a plugin that reminds you to label your images. With tags, Google will know what the image is, how to index it, where to store it and when to bring it up in a search.
3. Meta description
Right below your URL on the search page is a sentence that serves as the meta description. This is an important summary that tells people what they will learn on the page. You want it to be engaging and truthful and prompt people to click and learn more. Use call-to-action words such as "learn" and "visit" to engage people and encourage them to find out why the information on your page is important to them.
One of the things that is highly valued in SEO are backlinks. Backlinks are incoming hyperlinks from one webpage to another -- in other words, people linking to your website because they found value in what you're saying. In addition, you'll want to include hyperlinks to give your readers more useful information and to help build relationships with other bloggers.
Make sure that the links add value to your readers' lives. You can never have too many backlinks for an article. You will build high traffic that will help you rise up in the results.
These are tips you can implement with your next blog post to potentially increase your website's traffic and gain new followers or customers. Give them a try and see what they can do for your business.