SEO – or search engine optimisation, is all about getting your website to the top of the search engine rankings. It’s a complicated matter (some would say dark art!) and much too technical for most business owners.
However, a good Google ranking can make or break your business so it’s not something that should be ignored. Here are our top tips for the non-technical website owner.
1. Learn the basics
Even if you are completely non-technical, it is well worth investing some time so that you understand the basics of SEO. Hiring an expert is much easier if you understand at least some of the jargon. Make sure you know the difference between SEO which is aimed at natural search results (free) and Pay-per-click advertisements which are the “sponsored” results (not free). Try Search Engine Optimization for Dummies
2. Write your website for people not google
Remember that ultimately your website is about selling your product or service. There is no point in attracting lots more visitors who never turn into customers. It’s good to include your target keywords and phrases in your website content but only where it makes sense to the visitor and adds to your sales message. Some technical experts forget this.
3. It’s not just Google
Although Google has by far the biggest share of the search market, it’s rivals are now starting to catch up. Microsoft launched it’s new search engine Bing this year and it’s share is growing rapidly. Bing is due to take over as the search engine on Yahoo so expect it’s influence to grow. Google and Bing use different criteria – and all search providers tweak their programs regularly.
4. If you are serious about SEO – use an expert
Good SEO requires a lot of knowledge, staying up to date with the latest trends and is very time consuming. As a wedding professional, it’s probably not the best use of your time.
However, if you are reasonably technical and will not be relying on search engines as your main source of business, then there are a few simple things you can do yourself.
If you do decide to use an SEO professional, personal recommendation is the best way to find one. Be aware that good SEO people are like gold dust – hard to find and not cheap. Which leads us to…….
5. Watch out for scams and incompetents
Sadly, there are an awful lot of people and companies out there in the SEO world who are at best not very good and at worst downright dishonest. Never agree to work with any company who cold calls and guarantees to get you to page 1 on Google.
Be aware that Google will blacklist any website they think is trying to cheat the search engines. Using the wrong SEO techniques can result in your website disappearing from the searches completely.