SEO for Beginners

Posted on
15 Aug 2019
by
Jayne Tennyson

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a way to set up your website so that it appears high up in the results of search engines. Search engines such as Google and Bing use algorithms to rank websites in terms of relevance and subject matter.

The language around SEO can all get a bit technical so we have put together this blog as a glossary of SEO terms to help get you started.

Page Title

A title tag tells both users and search engines what the topic of a particular page is for example when you Google ‘The Wheel’ the title tag which appears in the results reads, ‘The Wheel: Supporting & Representing Charities’. Title tags show be 50-60 characters and it should accurately describe each page's content. Every page on your website should have a unique title tags.

Page Meta

The page meta appears under your page title and the page url in the search results. The page meta should advertise the content of that webpage. There should be a unique description for every page. Your page meta should be 100-155 characters.

In Google results your page title and page meta looks like this:

SEO Page title

Keyword

Keywords are the search that people are likely to Google. You need to think about what people will search when looking for your website and include that in the copy of your webpage. You can carry out keyword research a see which keywords people are searching for under your chosen topic. For example, if your website is about recycling you can carry out keyword research and you might find that people are searching for topics like compostable coffee cups. In this case, you would then write a content page about compostable coffee cups to help your website rank and get new users to visit your site.

To carry out Keyword research you can use tools such as Google Keyword Planner or Moz.

You can also use Google Trends to see the seasonal trends and where most searches are coming from.

Once you have found which keywords you want to include in your content, you will need to use your keyword in:

  • The webpages Title Tag
  • The webpages URL
  • The webpages Headline – using the H1 Tag
  • In the body of the text (two or three times, any more than that and you will be demoted for keyword stuffing.)

Images

If you are using images on your webpage make sure to add an Alt Tags. The Alt Tag is a description of an image and is used by people with visual impairment to understand what is in the image. Make sure you use the keyword in the Alt Tag.

Duplicate Content

It is also very important not to have duplication of text. If your content lives on multiple pages on your site or other websites, Google might get confused and won’t know what to rank first. You’ll want to prevent duplicate content as much as possible. You can check for duplicate copy on your website by running it through Siteliner.

Dead links or broken redirects

A dead link sends a visitor to a non-existent page. A broken redirect points to a resource that might no longer be there. Both provide poor user experience, make sure to delete broken url or create fresh redirects to new relevant content.  

Quality Backlinks

On your website, having quality backlinks to other reputable websites can also help gain higher ranking. If other high-quality website are linking to your website it will aid your ranking. Try to get links to your website from authoritative websites such as Governance Departments, Funders, Health Services, Local Authorities, and National Media.

Page Speed

A great user experience is an important part of getting a good ranking for your website. To create a great user experience your website should load quickly and be easy to use. You can check out your website page speed on Google Page Speed Insights.  

Credibility

Users need to trust the content on the website. To help to create credibility on your website add an SSL Certificate to your site. An SSL Certificate will protect your sensitive information such as credit card information, usernames, and passwords. If you have an SSL Certificate your website URL will start with ‘https’, if you do not have an SSL Certificate your url will start ‘http’ and will appear with a not secure message in your browser.

For more information on SEO check out the blogs on Moz, Hubspot and Yoast.