If you are planning on setting up your first website or creating an additional site, you should seriously consider its search engine compatibility.
Whether you are a business owner, web designer or marketing manager, here are some tips for ensuring that your website design allows you to implement a successful search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy.
1. Decide on the SEO keywords that you want to focus on first and use these throughout the site, both in the hidden content (coding) and in the visible on page content. This includes the metatags, page titles, navigation as well as keyword rich urls.
2. On site content should include these keywords. Try and focus on just one or two keywords per page. When your content is well-written, informed and relevant, you will find that you start receiving a significant number of organic links coming in from other websites, particularly social media sites, which will naturally help the ranking of your pages.
3. Avoid using Adobe Flash on your website. Although it can add some impressive graphics, it makes the load times of your pages much longer and the usability decreases. The search engines spiders can not access Flash content when they trawl websites and therefore sites that are built entirely with Flash are never going to be found high in the search engine rankings.
4. Ensure that you include ‘Alt’ tags on images on your site. This is because search engines obviously cannot interpret the content of images so the ‘Alt’ tag is the only way that they can index that content and, if relevant, use the search engine keywords for these tags.
5. Creating a sitemap not only helps visitors to your site find the content that they are looking for more easily, it also helps your search engine ranking. When you submit your sitemap to Google Webmaster Central the search bots can more easily find pages of your site will have a lower number of links and see less traffic, which gives these pages a boost in the rankings.