Does Your Site Need Optimizing?

Posted on December 12, 2011 • Written by Brad Anderson

Running a website is a big job for anyone. Between keeping content up to date, managing programming tasks and just making sure everything works, you can easily devote your whole week to basic website maintenance. But even with everything that’s on a webmaster’s to-do list it’s important to take the time to get your website configured for optimal performance in search engines.

Is My Website Optimized?

Some people think that just having a website up and out in the virtual world means it’s optimized, but that’s just not the case. More and more websites come out every day, and if yours isn’t putting its best foot forward it won’t have a chance at showing up in search engine results.

So if you want to find out if you should be in the market for some SEO, do a quick scan of your website and ask yourself these basic questions:

  • Does each page focus on 2-3 key words or phrases? These phrases should appear in meta titles (check out the very top of your browser for a quick look at your page’s meta title), meta descriptions (view your page’s source code to see if this tag is in place) and throughout the content. Optimizing a page for specific terms makes it far easier for it to show up in search engine results.
  • Are there h1 and h2 tags on each page? Do they include key words/phrases? These tags help break up content to make it more reader-friendly, and they also serve as sign posts to help search engines learn what your content is primarily about. Make sure that your design hasn’t used these header tags in sidebars or as part of the design so that you can use them in your content freely.
  • Does my site load as quickly as possible? Page load times are becoming more and more important both for users, who will leave a site that takes too long to show up, and search engines, which don’t want to waste their crawlers’ time and resources on slow sites.
  • Do my URLs contain keywords, and are they simple to read? Looking at a page’s address is one of the easiest ways for search engines to decide what that page is about, and if a URL is full of question marks, dashes, and irrelevant words (category, type, etc.) it’s not fully optimized.

Serious search engine optimization involves quite a bit more than making changes to these few on page areas, but reviewing them can reveal how much work is ahead of you before you can claim an optimized page or site.

Why Should I Care If My Site is Optimized?

The time, money and effort you devote to SEO can reap benefits for months or years to come. Organic search traffic is free, stable and usually very consistent, so you’ll see improved traffic and very often much happier users too. Website reviews for SEO can also turn up issues on your site that you might not have otherwise considered, such as conversion optimization and other design flaws, that will give you benefits outside of ranking higher in search results.

Brad Anderson

Written by Brad Anderson

Brad Anderson is the Executive Director and Founder of Fruition. Brad’s focus is supporting Fruition’s team to enable sustainable growth and excellent client satisfaction (EBITDA growth). With a strong statistical background, Brad built Fruition’s in-house software that is used to manage client success.

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