key SEO Points for content management

Last week I had a lot of questions about website design and search engine optimization. I guess it’s because it’s a new year and all those resolutions are coming into play. Much like committing to health and the gym, folks are committing to their marketing and website traffic.  If SEO has you mystified, here are a few key points (and explanations of those points in real life language) to keep in mind when you are creating content - either writing web copy or planning photography or graphics - for your website or blog:

1. USE TAGS.  Tags will add a specificity to images and to your blog posts that will help search engines and people find info on your page. Each time you write a new post make sure to add specific tags in the tag field. These tags ideally should be keyword rich.  Keywords are the words and phrases in your content that help people find your site via search engines. You can use generic keywords like “digital marketing” or you can use long tail SEO which is just a phrase that targets a niche - for example: “cattle marketing services Arkansas” or “websites for ranchers.” Also, use high-quality images on your website and use tags on them to optimize them as well.

2. SITEMAPS. A sitemap is literally just a list of pages on your website. The map will make it easier for search engines to scroll through your website and discover your posts and pages. It’ll also tell search engines when you have a new post on your blog. Since I love anything automated (I don’t use anything in the kitchen that has to be hand washed) I have two favorite website “tools” that automate site mapping.

  • Squarespace. My website is built in Squarespace and they provide the sitemap automatically so you don’t have to do it manually. And they automatically update it with any pages that are added or removed.

  • Yoast SEO plugin. If you have a Wordpress site Yoast is a great tool. They have a sitemap feature you can turn on and it, too, will automatically create and add and remove content to your map.

3. OPTIMIZE POSTS. Optimize posts in the key locations which are: the post title (h1 and h2 tags are searched), post heading and anchor text in the post (anchor text is simply the clickable text in a link).

4. LINK INTERNALLY. Link to other posts and information in your website (using keyword rich anchor text). This will lead visitors to explore other parts of your website and help search engines find related pages too.

5. POST. Post and update consistently. This helps search engines view your site as active and helps you rank higher with them. 

These are just a few key points but are a good place to start. Remember that SEO takes time and is a continuous process. And it’s January…. ’tis the season to commit and begin!