When you want facts, you go to the Horse’s Mouth
When you want to know about SEO, Google Webmasters is your source. In the first episode of a brand new series, on the Google Webmaster’s Youtube Channel, we sit down with Google WebMaster Trends Analyst
Martin Splitt and Web Developer Juan Herrera as they talk about
SEO Mythbusting; the fundamentals of search engines and how to get to the top of search result pages.
You Already Know That It Is Important For Your Website To Appear In The Top Search Results
Everyone knows they need to rank well in search engine results pages (SERP’s), but honestly, how do you reach that goal?
A search engine works like a giant library card catalog. There are three steps. Search engines crawl the entire internet; link by link, page by page. Once the search engine maps out pages and link structure, the next step is indexing. This is where search engines try to interpret what your site is about. The third step is make matches between your content and user’s searches.
Google uses over two hundred factors to determine how well your content matches with user’s search queries. Factors like internal and external links, use of formatting elements like headings, lists, and boldface type. Even the images you use and keyword frequency go into Google’s ranking process.
As companies like Google try to improve user experience, they make adjustments to those algorithms. If someone does find a back door to the top of search results, chances are, it won’t last long.
Three Tips to Making Your Site More Discoverable
High Quality Content is still King
Bringing your viewers solutions through well written content is still the foundation of your SEO plan for 2019.
Your content must serve a purpose. Think needs and wants. If your content says who you are, what you do, and how you help visitors solve their problems you’re on the right path.
Remember to think about how your visitors search. Speak the language your audience would use. Don’t use overly technical jargon. This is where keyword research pays off.
Your site content is like your foot in the door. Your website is your opportunity to make a quick elevator pitch to your potential customers. You want to start the conversation that builds trust and nurtures the relationship that leads to a sale.
MetaData is defined as Data about Data
That makes perfect sense, right? It’s like saying a dictionary is book about words… MetaData helps search engines and crawler bots to understand what your website is about.
Well written Titles and Meta Descriptions are key to helping Google and the other search engines to classify your content in their indexes.
Your page and post titles should be unique to the content on that page. Don’t reuse titles. Search Engines Frown on that. You’ve spent too much time and energy producing well written content. Don’t let this cheap grab at Keywords influence your strategies.
The meta description field is your opportunity to set the hook with a snippet that helps build an interest in what else they may learn from your page.
If your WordPress site is on my network, Meta Data is easy to manage via the WordPress All In One SEO Plugin that is already active on your site.
The internet is old news. We as web surfers stopped having patience for slow loading pages over a decade ago. Some studies show that if your site takes more than a second to load a page, your visitor is already loosing interest in your site. Too many bounces and the search engines see your content as irrelevant.
Your site must be Optimized for Performance.
Sites on my WordPress network load fast because of a caching plugin that creates static html versions of your content.
Fast loading pages helps improve user experience. Providing top-quality user experience helps to get your get your content in front of more users.
In the video, Martin talks briefly about Hybrid and Dynamic Rendering as a way to improve UX by generating faster page loads. I’ll admit, these are terms that I need to do more research on.
Rendering is probably beyond the technical scope of most bloggers. That’s OK.
Most of the time, WordPress content is generated on demand. A user visits your site, and WordPress uses the most recent information available to generate a brand new web page for each visitor. If your site is thousands of pages, with hundreds of thousands of users, this is good. Users can see brand new comments and page updates.
A caching plugin generates a static HTML version of your site. This is good, because static pages can load very quickly because there are no PHP commands to execute.
You can surf around your own site, and see how page load times are. That’s the simple solution. The right way about it is to make sure you are using Google Analytics and Search Console. Search Console can tell you to the fraction of a second how long your pages take to load.
My wordpress network runs the
WP Super Cache Caching plugin, which generates HTML pages for fast page loads, and generates new static pages automatically if you make updates or when users post comments on your content.
There’s no magic. There’s no secret to page rank. Build well written content that brings your visitors what they need or want. Optimize your MetaData, and make sure your site loads laser fast.
You build content because you want people to read and benefit from it. Take the time to make sure you are following these simple fundamentals of SEO to help boost your page rank and get your content in front of users that will benefit from it.
Don’t Take My Word For It
Martin and Juan have probably forgotten more about SEO than I will ever know. I’m not the expert. I’m just the network to the solutions you need.