Search Engine Tips
If you want to maximise the traffic coming from Search Engines like Google, Bing & Yahoo have a look at these tips we have put together to improve your website search engine rankings.
You may think you are following standard SEO best practices, but there may be more things you can do to get some search engine love.
1. Duplicate Content
If you are duplicating content from other sites, stop it right now. This will only negatively impact your site. For example Copying and Pasting Press Releases sent to you can actually hurt your search engine rankings – would would have thought? If you must see if the content can be reworded to make it unique. If you are a highly trusted website, eg a major News publication then often duplicate content is overlooked as syndicating, but if you are a small site the risk is too big to take in my opinion.
2. Posting Frequency
The more unique, quality content you post, the more Search Engines take notice of your site and index it. If you post lots of quality content your articles could be in the search engines within a matter of hours. If you only post a couple times per week it takes longer for Google and others to index your content.
If you are a blogger and blogging less than 2-3 times per week you should consider posting more, or get guest bloggers to help out with content creation.
3. Sitemap is crucial
Make it easy for the Search Engines to understand and read your webpages – an XML sitemap will greatly help with this.
Both Google and Bing have webmaster portals where you can submit your sitemaps and check on crawling status and errors. You should be signed up to both services and checking your stats regularly. If you ignore Bing you will miss out on free traffic.
In addition to a standard XML based sitemap, it is good to have a HTML sitemap, ie a webpage specifically with links to all your other pages. If you have a lot of links break up your HTML sitemap over several pages so there is no more than 100 links per page. You can consider a HTML sitemap as backup to your XML sitemap.
4. Fix all Broken Links promptly
Search Engines don’t like crawl errors, missing pages or 404 errors. As per point 3 make sure you constantly check your Google and Bing webmaster accounts for errors and fix them asap.
5. Heading Tags
Make use of Heading Tags for increased SEO benefit. Heading Tags range from H1 (biggest) to H6 (smallest) and you will be surprised how much they can actually effect your rankings, particularly on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS).
6. Blog Commenting
Commenting on other blogs can be a useful way for search engines to index your content, but you first need to understand the different between Nofollow links and regular links.
Most WordPress blogs by default mark all Comment Links as Nofollow – therefore not passing off any pagerank (search engine love/juice) to your site. This is still useful though in getting people clicking through to your site if you provide a useful comment.
In saying that you will find some WordPress and Blogger blogs have removed the NoFollow attribute on comment links (to encourage commenting) and therefore there is a SEO gain from attaining these links.
What I am trying to say is even if the comment links are NoFollow there is still benefit in getting them, especially on high traffic blogs.
You may be following all On-page optimisation techniques, but you need to ensure certain off-page factors (within your control) are also functioning correctly, especially making sure the search engines have no trouble indexing your site and content.