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SEO Requirements for a New Website

by Soft2share.com

Whether you are a blogger or a small business owner, a website is the cornerstone of your online presence. 

While website design is important, it means nothing without SEO. 

SEO helps your pages rank higher in the SERPs, attract relevant audiences, and boost website conversions.

In this article, you will learn about the SEO fundamentals of a new website. 

Choose an SEO-Friendly Domain Name

A domain name impacts how people find, understand and memorize your website. Now, there are several rules for choosing a domain name.

Make Sure It Aligns with your Brand

A domain name should align with your brand name. When people google your brand name online, your website should be the first thing they see in search results.

Before choosing a domain name, make sure it is free. Most hosting vendors and domain registrars offer free checkers that inform you about the availability of your desired domain. 

Also, you will want to build a consistent brand across all online channels. Check whether your social media handles are free. 

Use Keywords Wisely

Your domain name should include a primary keyword you want to rank for. Together with exceptional user experiences and quality content, keywords in your domain increase your organic rankings. 

When optimizing your domain, always prioritize user experiences. Keyword stuffing may harm your site’s credibility and prevent users from clicking on it. Keep your domain name natural, memorable, and user-friendly.

Keep It Memorable

Your domain name should rank well and grab the attention of prospective visitors. Above all, you want them to recall your website and come back again. 

Keep your domain sweet and short. According to Google, a domain name should not exceed 2-3 words.

Avoid complicated domain names that are hard to remember. Do not use hyphens, numbers, and double letters since they make your website seem spammy. A short and effective domain name will build trust with users and increase brand recall. 

Conduct Keyword Research

According to a Sydney SEO company, Four Dots, 26.4% of SMB websites cannot be found in Google search. Even the most beautifully designed websites stay under searchers’ radars when they are not optimized for the right phrases. 

That is why keyword research is your top priority. 

Now, here are several keyword research tactics to apply right now:

Target Low-Volume, High-Intent Keywords

Because your site is new, you are going to have a hard time ranking for high-competition keywords. That is why you should focus on optimizing your site for low-volume phrases with high search intent. 

One such example is long-tail keywords. They are easier to rank for since they have a lower search volume and high search intent. Searchers googling them already know are readier to make a purchase.

Optimize for High-Traffic Keywords with a Low Difficulty

Optimize a website for keywords that generate high traffic and have a low keyword difficulty.

One way to do that is to analyze the keyword golden ratio. It represents the number of Google results having the keyword in the title, divided by the monthly search volume.  

To check the number of articles optimized for your keyword, use the allintitle search operator.

Target Question Keywords

Question keywords are the backbone of your keyword research strategy for several reasons. With the rise of mobile devices and voice assistants, users now communicate with search engines more naturally.  Instead of using exact-match keywords, they focus on long-tail keywords and even use entire sentences. 

Therefore, to appear in featured snippets and voice searches, focus on answering specific questions. For example, featured snippets drive 50% more clicks than traditional search results. 

For starters, understand what kind of questions users ask in your industry. AnswerThePublic may serve as your strong starting point. Use the right keywords, and you will see what questions your target audience asks. By optimizing your content for these phrases and providing relevant answers, you have a good chance of being featured in search snippets or appear in voice searches.

Improve Website Structure and Architecture

The website linking structure impacts the indexability and crawlability of your website. If there are no links to website pages, search engines cannot find and crawl them. Precisely because of that, optimize website structure right from the start. 

As your website grows, it will be easier to keep all pages organized and crawlable. Only that way can you focus on other significant SEO aspects, such as your content, keyword research, link building, and so forth.

For starters, prepare a visual foundation for your website structure. Use mind map software that will help you map out essential website elements and build the visual representation of your future website. 

Make sure your website architecture is flat, not deep, according to an Essex web design company. That means that any two pages on your website are just a few clicks away from each other.  That is vital to both your website visitors and search engine crawlers.

Optimize Website Speed

Page speed directly impacts user experience. Website pages with a long load time have a higher bounce rate and lower average time on page. Longer load times also compromise user engagement and conversion rates. 

Research studies claim the same. According to the 2019 survey, website conversion rates drop by an average of 4.42% with each additional second of load time.

Given that, it is not surprising that Google has made site speed one of the most significant ranking signals. 

There are several ways to boost website speed:

  • Use file compression tools to reduce the size of your CSS, HTML, and JS files that are larger than 150 bytes. 
  • Minify your code by removing spaces, commas, and code comments, formatting, and unused code. 
  • Reduce redirects that compromise page load.
  • Leverage browser caching. Namely, browsers cache lots of data, such as images, JS files, and stylesheets. When a visitor comes back, the browser does not have to reload the entire page.
  • Use a content distribution network (CDN). Website copies are stored at multiple, geographically diverse data centers to provide faster access to your website.
  • Optimize images by compressing their size and ensuring they are in the right file format. For example, PNGs are ideal for graphics with fewer than 16 colors, while JPEGs are better for photos.

Create the Metadata for Every Website Page

Meta tags play a vital SEO role. They help search engines classify your website’s pages. Now, there are three key meta tags you should use:

  • Title tags specify the title of a website page for both search engines and visitors. They are featured in the SERPs as clickable links.
  • Meta descriptions sum up the page content. They typically appear in the search results below the page title.
  • Alternative Text (Alt) tags help search engines understand what the image is about so they can index it. 

Create High-Quality Content

Quality content is the nerve center of your website performance. If you do not produce exceptional content, you cannot optimize your website for your hottest keywords or drive relevant traffic. 

Content impacts your SEO on multiple levels. For example, when you create high-quality content, you attract more website traffic, increase user engagement, and reduce bounce rates.

These metrics indicate your site’s relevancy, quality, and user-friendliness and help it rank higher on Google.

Now, approach your content strategically. 

Have a Content Marketing Strategy

For starters, build a detailed content marketing strategy. According to statistics, 63% of businesses don’t have a documented content marketing strategy. 

Here are several steps to take:

  • Set clear content marketing goals
  • Establish your content KPIs
  • Know your audiences
  • Decide on content types
  • Build a content calendar
  • Set content distribution steps
  • Measure content marketing results

Produce High-Quality Content

When creating website content for your website, make sure it meets the quality criteria specified on Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines. 

The content you develop should be helpful to users. It needs to have a clear beneficial purpose, deliver value to users, and provide them with a good experience. Most importantly, it is informative, up-to-date, and helpful. Ensure your content is supported by relevant statistics and link back to authoritative external sources.

Increase the Readability of Content

Creating high-quality content is not enough. You also need to make it user-friendly. Here are a few tips to apply instantly:

  • Use high-quality, original visuals. They build trust with your audience, engage them, and increase time on site.
  • Break lengthy articles into smaller, meaningful sections using H2 and H3 tags.
  • Use bulleted lists to keep crucial information easier to follow.
  • Leave a lot of white space to make it easier for readers to focus on website content.
  • Keep your sentences short and simple.

Ready to Launch an SEO-Friendly Website?

Launching a website for the first time can be daunting. Website owners often focus on UX/UI elements, forgetting about the significance of SEO. However, remember that even the most visually appealing website cannot attract visitors and drive conversions without SEO.

Even if you are just starting to learn SEO, do not worry. You do not need to be an expert to apply the tactics mentioned above. Most of them require a basic understanding of SEO and a reliable set of SEO tools to help you get started.

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