SEO Checklist - 5 Critical Elements
Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the single-most important ways to draw quality traffic to your website. Up to 95 percent of your site traffic may come directly from the major search engines, so it is important to do everything you can to get to the top of search engine page results. By implementing a few essential SEO techniques, you can dramatically improve your search placement and generate more traffic for your site.
Always check to be sure that you are following standard SEO practices before publishing any new page. The following SEO checklist can help you identify five of the critical elements in successful search optimization.
1. Are you using keywords in your META title?
META titles are the first things that both readers and search engines will see. In order to make the most of them, you need to be sure that you are using keywords wisely in your META title. Focus on only one keyword on each page and always be sure to include this target search term in your META title.
2. Is your META description brief, descriptive and keyword-friendly?
One important element that many websites overlook is the page META description. Not only is this a great place to repeat your keywords; the META description is an excellent way to hook the attention of your readers. This description will appear in search engine results, so it's important to write a brief, but clear, description of what a reader will find when they click your link. Be creative, consider what your readers are looking, and always remember to include your keyword or keyword phrase.
3. Is your content written for the Web?
Writing for the Web isn't the same as writing for print. In order to achieve the greatest SEO success, you need to learn how to write and format your content for an online audience. Well-written content is easy to read, uses short paragraphs, and breaks up block of information using bulleted lists and subheadings.
How exactly does writing for the Web help your SEO efforts? By including your keyword phrase in subheadings and at the beginning of paragraphs, you can dramatically improve your changes for ranking well for that chosen search term. In many cases, it pays to reformat old content that you already have on your site in order to make it more SEO-friendly.
4. Are you using keywords in link anchor text?
Your SEO checklist should always look at whether or not you are using your keywords and phrases in link anchor text. These links can help increase your rank for key search terms and can improve the rank of the pages to which you are linking. Avoid using generic link text, such as "Read More" and "Click Here." Instead, focus on utilizing keywords to let both users and search engines know exactly what they will find behind your links.
5. Is your page title keyword rich?
Your page title is another important place to utilize your target search terms. Try to create a solid title that accurately describes what the page is about. While catchy titles are often useful for attracting readers, these titles tend to perform poorly in search. Your goal should be to strike a balance between crafting an intriguing title and a SEO-friendly title. In the best case, your title should be both interesting to readers and appealing to search engines.
While some website publishers worry that SEO is too difficult and complex to learn, this is simply not the case. By teaching yourself just a few of the proven and effective search optimization strategies, you can achieve significant results and ensure that your content will be visible to both search engines and online viewers.
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