10 Oct Content and Usability are the Pillars of Every Website
Every website owner wants their site to do well. They want a high rank, a lot of visitors, and a good conversion. Achieving these things is hard work, and it takes a lot of time.
There are a lot of rules and algorithms that make search engine optimization (SEO) confusing and even frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be difficult or turn into a fulltime job. You can master SEO in less time than you think. You just need to know the pillars of content and have a good strategy.
A good content plan should include these things:
You won’t rank well with Google or any other search engine if the content on your site is not unique. You need to be picky about the content you add. If you hire a writer for your website, insist that the work they provide be their own and use tools like Copyscape or another plagiarism checker to make sure that it is indeed original before adding it to your website. If your content is copied from other sources or too much like another article, it will negatively affect the way you rank.
Besides providing unique content, you also need to make sure the content is informative and useful. Don’t fill up pages and pages of your site with useless content. It needs to be something people want to read and something that adds value to the site. If your content is not interesting or beneficial, people will stop visiting your site. Be sure to deliver the information in a simple and easy way for your readers.
Social media is an essential tool for any website or blog owners. This is how you will learn about the market, find new readers and then reach out to and interact with them. Social media makes it easy to share links to your website. When you have a large social media following, others will share your links, too. That means more exposure and more readers. If your content is good, readers who find your website through social media links are likely to return and also to share it so others can easily find it.
Don’t just limit yourself to obvious social media sites like Twitter and Facebook. If you add video content to your site you can build a following on Youtube as well.
Don’t just use social media to share your links; use it to get feedback from your readers. Ask them what they want to see added to your site, and read their comments and posts. This is an easy way to plan for more content that will add to the value of your site and help it rank better.
Link building is important if you want to improve your rank, but you want to build good links. Do this by linking to reputable websites as well as links back to other pages on your own website. You need to have a good combination of both, links to your own content and links to other destination sites.
Keep in mind that the quality of the links is more important than the quantity. High-quality links are ideal, of course, but don’t oversaturate your content. One good quality link is better than multiple links that are not to or from reputable sites.
One good way to improve your link penetration is to try guest-blogging. As a contributor, most will allow you to post links to your site on their websites and blogs. Be picky about the sites for whom you choose to write guest blogs. If they feature similar or related content as your own site, the links will make sense.
Many website owners make the mistake of not adding metadata to their content: a title, a brief description of the item or its author, when it was posted, even its length. Titles and descriptions are essential, as they can play a role in how your website ranks and whether people even bother to read the content. The meta information is how Google and other search engines know what your website is about.
Metadata also can help readers find the site much more easily. When writing your metadata, be sure to use brands and keywords that you know your targeted readers will know or recognize, but also be sure to choose generic words that apply to the content, but may not be well-known to all readers. This will help your website seem more appealing to a wider swath of readers.
People won’t spend time on a website that is confusing, busy, or hard to navigate. While you may want to make your website stand out a little more, you still need to keep usability in mind. How do you navigate your favorite sites? What is it you like and don’t like about them? Make sure your site is easy to use so people will actually use it.
Some tips for accessibility include:
- Keep your content and images sorted and easy to find.
- Have a search option.
- Don’t overdo it with fancy text or too many images.
People won’t return to your site if it took them too long to find the information they were looking for or if they were overwhelmed by the layout. Take your time and make sure your website is simple and convenient for your readers.
Image Alt Tags
Google doesn’t only rank websites based on their written content but also considers the images on the site as well. That is why it is important to tag and name your images. You may be tempted to give them short names and tags that are easy for you to remember and organize, but this won’t help your site rank any better.
Tag your images just as you would tag the content. Use names that apply to the content and make sense. Don’t make them too long, but also don’t cut them off and make them too short. You can use keywords and be a little descriptive to help keep your images relevant to the content and improve the rank.
Take It Slow
When you are trying to improve the rank of your website, it’s easy to become frustrated and overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done. There are a lot of things that go into a website to help it rank well. Understand that even if you are making positive changes to improve your rank, it won’t happen overnight.
Don’t be in a hurry and don’t try to do everything at once. Focus on one pillar at a time. When you have mastered that aspect of SEO, move onto another one.
It’s okay to ask for help and take a break from it all if it gets too much for you. The most important part of having a successful website is to enjoy it. If you don’t love what you do and what you produce, it will show. If you lose interest, it will reflect on the content. Your readers will notice it quickly and stop visiting your site and Google will rank it lower.
Some examples of content pillars include:
- Blog posts
- Social media updates
SEO isn’t necessarily easy, and you won’t always notice fast results. However, if you put in the time and energy to make your site successful, your rank will eventually improve. You will see an increase in traffic and ultimately make more money.