Here at Oast House Media we build SEO into all of our web pages as part of the price, but…
What is SEO?
SEO means Search Engine Optimisation, the process of optimising a web page to mazimise it’s impact on search engine results pages (SERPs).
There are many areas within a website that Google identifies and actively seeks to cache and then use the data as a search element. Imagine your website is a jigsaw and each piece of your jigsaw is an SEO element. Some are easy to find (like the jigsaw corners or edges). Some are much harder to locate like the centre or large colour area jigsaw pieces.
In SEO terms the edges and corners are the text and images you see in each page. So if you had a one page website with a few words and a pic describing what you do and nothing else, you have already partly optimised your website.
But there are a lot more pieces to the puzzle that must be completed before you can see the full picture.
How does SEO work on a web page?
Search engines use a web crawling program called a ‘bot’ (or web crawler) that visits and collects (caches) the SEO elements that it’s pre-programmed to find and add to it’s database. The process can take several visits, and the ‘bot’ visits can be spread over several days. If your SEO elements (jigsaw pieces) are missing, the ‘bot’ will return with an unfinished picture of your web page therefore you could list lower than a possible competitor.
With this in mind, you can increase ‘bot’ interest by continually updating web content with blogs (like this), more active web pages tend to perform better than dormant web pages. The ‘bot’ is also crawling web pages that may have links to your website, typically a trade or area directory so adding links to other websites can help the overall performance.
How can you measure ‘performance’ on a search engine?
If you’re adding and refreshing your web pages you will need to know if all your hard work is working. This is a simple process that needs to be completed weekly against a benchmark set of ‘keyword phrases’. The checking process also has to be completed using a web browser that is not influenced by past searching, ie: cookie free (also called ‘private browsing’ or ‘incognito browsing’).
Here’s a guide to SEO performance checking
- select a list of keyword phrases relevant to your website including geographical areas
- complete a weekly search and note the page/position of that phrase
- at the end of the month calculate the average position
If at any time you change phrases or complete some on page edits (ie: blog, text edits, add pages/images etc) or add links from others web pages (ie: directories) make a note of the change and date as these will influence the search engine. Always allow the ‘bot’ to find your changes before you note what affect it has made to your web page.Keyword phrase density
The home page of your website is usually an overview of your products/services. Although very important as search engines will see this page first, the keyword density will be diluted. A solution is a page that concentrates dedicated keyword phrases.
Going back to the jigsaw scenario, the home page is like a cropped black and white picture, a dedicated web page within the website gives you the opportunity to create a bespoke full colour picture with less pieces of the jigsaw.
This is an example of a builders website page plan (site map) showing how this can work with the % of average keyword density:
- Home (20%)
- Contact (5%)
- Services (30%)
- New builds (100%)
- Extensions (100%)
- Roofing (100%)
- Plumbing (100%)
- Electrical (100%)
- Bathrooms (100%)
- Kitchens (100%)
As you can see, if you tried to put all [services] onto one page, the search engine ‘bot’ will get a blurred view of what you do. Also, some trade keywords are not related to each other, ie: a person searching for ‘kitchens’ is not looking for a ‘bathroom’. If you create an individual web page for each service you can concentrate keyword phrases.
Where do keyword phrases go?
There are many areas within a web page keyword phrases can be placed. Knowing where and how to do this has become an elite skill in its own right. Search Engine Optimisers pride themselves on their tried and tested ‘best practices’ that have in the past brought SEO success. In short, it’s confidential! But here are some top tips
- website must be designed on an optimisable platform like WordPress
- website must be mobile friendly
- web pages must fast loading
- source code head content must be optimised
- images optimised
- H tags optimised
- links optimised
- external inks restricted
- back links from legitimated directories
- phrases bench marked and managed
…there are many more attributes but this gives you an idea of some of the key areas
What is the UK’s top search engine?
Over 90% of UK web searches are completed using Google.co.uk.
This helps search engine optimisers like Oast House Medias target a single search platform and monitor how it works. Google (worldwide) influences local, national and international markets and can even affect stock market values. Understanding Google and keeping in tune with its ever changing requirements is vital for SEO web page performance success.
DiY or Specialist SEO
Everything you need to know is already on Google, you just have to find it so you can DiY SEO if you have the time. But most businesses do not have time or energy to dedicate to in-house search engine optimisation.
Oast House Media have partnered with GoTopSEO.co.uk based in Kent, a specialist Google SEO company with a proven track record and years of experience working in search engine optimisation. GoTopSEO offer an affordable success led SEO campaign management with transparent reporting and qualified phrase targeting advice.
What happens to a website that’s not optimised?
Most websites are not optimised correctly, the web pages that have not got the correct elements in place will never profile on page 1 of any search engine. Unless there is something very unique on an un-optimised web page it’s not going to be found.
We’ve noticed that many larger web design services like Wix and GoDaddy do not have the SEO editing facilities required for successful SEO, the elements required are simply not there to create a search engine cache. OHM use WordPress for all web page design, recognised by Google and many other search engines as the premier web design tool.
Contact us for more about search engine optimisation and make your web pages work for you.