Business Tip: Observing Best SEO Practices When Designing Your Website
Often we get asked to do search engine optimization for various clients who have existing websites. We will review the websites, and we are amazed at the blatant mistakes made by the previous webmasters. Some of those mistakes are;
- Using images in place of text.
- No use of alt text in value added images.
- Over use of images.
- Lack of headings tags.
- Poorly written title and description tags.
What do these all mean?
Using Images in Place of Text – Often, you will see a logo in the corner of a website with a company slogan, or a bulleted list of services on a website that are no more than an image. A search engine spider can not read the text in an image, it sees it as nothing more than an image. To see what your website looks like to a search engine spider, go to seochat.com/seo-tools/spider-simulator/
No Use of Alt Text – When writing your html and inserting images, you will probably enter code that looks something like this… img src=”images/website_hosting2.gif” alt=”website hosting” width=”16? height=”16? border=”0?
Notice the alt= part. This is an opportunity to associate the image with a valuable keyword, but be aware of keyword stuffing as alt tags are intended for ease of navigation for individuals with disabilities.
OverUse of Images – This has more of an impact on the visitors browsing experience and has an impact on load time of your website. Overuse of images can dilute your keyword density as well. Remember, content is king.
Missing Heading Tags – Headings tags are used to give emphasis to certain words or paragraphs within the context of your website. This is typically done by using a H1, H2, H3 or other H tag. These tags tell the search engine spiders that particular emphasis should be put on this term when evaluating what the website is about.
Poorly Written Title and Description – This is just what it implies. A poorly written title or description of your site can have a devastating effect on your seo efforts.
Additional on page factors that impact SEO that are not as obvious are;
- Poor code to text ratio.
- Content too far down in the code.
- Low or excessive keyword ratios.
- Low keyword prominence.
- Excessive use of tables.
- Use of frames.
- URL Structuring for dynamic websites.
- Duplicate Content/Canonical Issues.
- No Site Map
- Excessive Use of Java or other scripting.
The lists above do not address all potential SEO killers. Addressing these items alone does not guarantee successful placement in SERPS (Search Engine Placement Results), but one can not have a successful seo campaign by ignoring these. When designing your website, make sure that you are observing SEO Best Practices. Doing so will make your seo campaign much easier in the long run.
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