Top 10 SEO Tips for New Websites

seo_tips

Just a quick post today. One of the most common questions I get asked is how to maximise your chances of getting to the top of Google’s organic search results pages with a new website. While there isn’t a one size fits all approach, below are my ‘Top 10 SEO Tips for New Websites’ for  ensuring strong ranking in Google and other search engines when building a new site from scratch:

Tip #1

Choose a ‘keyword rich’ domain name. If you’re a landscape gardener, servicing clients in the Limerick City/County area, a domain name such as “landscapinglimerick.com” would be perfect.

Tip #2

Choose an Irish web hosting company, such as Blacknight. If you’re focusing on the Irish market, it’s essential that your hosting server has an Irish geographic IP address.

Tip #3

Build your website on the WordPress CMS platform. Very user friendly, some great integrated SEO functionality and plenty of themes & plugins available to create a professional looking site.

Tip #4

Make sure you activate SEO friendly permalink settings in WordPress admin. I adopt the custom structure “/%postname%/” on virtually all my websites.

Tip #5

Install the WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast and follow the plugin configuration instructions here

Tip #6

Write optimised meta titles & descriptions for each of your pages & posts.

Tip #7

Optimise each of your pages & posts for a specific keyword/search phrase. Include the main phrase you’re targetting in the meta title & description and also the first paragraph of your content. Don’t use the keyword too often within the content as Google may interpret this as ‘keyword-stuffing’ which could result in a penalty.

Tip #8

Set up a blog page within your WordPress website and publish relevant, informative articles regularly. Using our landscape gardener example, you could post articles about common landscaping/gardening problems such as ‘best time to sow a lawn’ or ‘best bedding plants for cold weather’. The trick is to publish content which mirrors the information your prospective customers/clients are searching for online. By doing this, you will gain traffic from the SEO pull of your content and, perhaps more importantly, your content has a good chance of being shared and linked to across social networks which will establish you as the ‘go to’ person in your particualr industry and location.

Tip #9

landscaping_limerick_annotated

Set up a Google Places for Business listing. Online searches for services are often appended with a geographical location, e.g. ‘landscaping limerick’. If there are relatively few suppliers of these services in your area, there’s a good chance you will get a fairly high listing within Google’s geographic search results. As these appear above the organic results, this is a great way of getting near the top of Google even if your website is relatively new.

Tip #10

Install Google Analytics tracking code to monitor your traffic and enable you to gauge where your visitors are coming from and how they are engaging with your site.

 

Comments

  1. says

    Am sure these SEO Tips can easily help in getting top ranking on search engine. One must need to maintain quality of their work for making sure that his website rank on top page of search engine.

  2. says

    All really good pieces of advice! I actually was not aware of the geographic IP thing. Do search engines like Google actually downgrade you specifically for foreign hosting, or is this just a side effect of trying to prioritize websites that are near to the person searching?

    I really appreciate all of your recommendations for WordPress stuff. Not that I’m associated with the company, just a fan of the platform. The fact of the matter is that it’s incredibly flexible, and so far it’s been able to handle everything I’ve needed to do with a blog. More people should take advantage of it.

    • William Jones says

      Hi Andrew, thanks for the comment. In relation to SEO importance of geographic IP address, various studies have shown there is a very high probability that this is something Google factors in to its ranking algorithm. How important it is in relation to other factors is a little more tricky to determine. I suppose with Google’s recent emphasis on delivering hyper targetted results depending on location, browsing history, interests etc. it’s only logical to surmise that this may well grow in importance over time.

      • James Foley says

        Hi William , some good points . I just wanted to ask you about tip 8 in terms of setting up a blog on your WordPress . Could you elaborate on this please ? I’m using WordPress for my website , how would I incorporate this into my website ?

        • William Jones says

          James – if you’re already using WordPress then it will have the blogging functionality built in. Most website themes are set up to display excerpts of blog posts on the home page. But it is possible to have a “static” home page and select an interior page to display blog posts via the WordPress admin Settings>Reading screen.

  3. says

    Amazing blog……..
    It was really informative, i am working on some local projects and i was looking for some Local SEO tip that can improve ranking of keywords for local searches, this blog was helped me. Thank you for sharing such great information.

  4. says

    Excellent tips. A very helpful tips for the newbies. These things are must to do SEO. You just wrapped all the necessary check list in this post. In SEO, it is needed to provide original content in page. And Blogging also helps to drive traffic to your site. Thank you William for such a great post.

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