- Write content that visitors will want to read and share.
The more visitors love your content, the more likely they will be to share it. Make it easy for them to spread the word and create the backlinks / traffic for you. Backlinks to your site from other valuable, relevant sites will help you rank higher in search.
- Make it easy to share the content.
If you are active in social media, put those buttons in a prominent place on your site.
- Find out what keywords are the most valuable in your industry and create a strategy for using them.
When Google is determining the relevancy of your site to a query, one of the factors is placement of the keyword on your site: is it in the title? The URL? Does the target page include synonyms for the word? Are keywords in the anchor text? Use your keywords naturally in your content because a keyword-stuffed page could be labeled “spammy” and can actually hurt your ranking possibilities.
- Build a responsive site with optimized code and clear navigation.
You need a site that isn’t bogged down by unnecessary code. A cleanly coded site will load faster, look better in a variety of browsers, be accessible to people with disabilities and look good on small devices like smartphones. Make your navigation “stupid” easy so your visitors don’t have to work hard to get around your site.
- Make your META data descriptive and accurate.
When Google returns results from a query, only a snippet of information is listed. Your META title is the blue header and is limited to 70 characters. The META description is the dark grey text and is limited to 150 characters.
- Have someone else double check your grammar, spelling, links and general usability.
There really is some truth to being “poster-blind.” You will be surprised at the seemingly obvious things that new eyes catch.
- Look at the site in various devices and all the major browsers.
Mobile internet usage will take over desktop usage by 2014. Now is the time to build a website that also looks good on tablets and mobile devices. The top browsers in order of greatest use are: Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer.
- Set up Google Analytics and WebMasterTools so you can follow the activity on your site.
Even if you think you don’t care about marketing, one day you will wish you had collected the data: what pages are most popular; what visitors do when they come to your site; what words your site is ranking for; what social media platform gives you the greatest traffic; how long visitors are actually staying on your site; any issues with your META tags…
Google delivers search for more than a billion queries
across 181 countries and 146 languages every day.
- When you are ready to launch, submit the URL to Google and submit an XML version of your Sitemap to Google WebmasterTools.
Submitting your site URL to Google just speeds up the process of getting your site crawled and indexed. An XML Sitemap makes it easier for Google to find all the pages on your site and not just the ones they happen to crawl.
- If you had a previous site, make sure you set up 301 redirects on any URLs that had value.
This is best done on the server side of your website.
My vision when we started Google 15 years ago was that eventually you wouldn’t have to have a search query at all. You’d just have information come to you as you needed it.
~ Sergey Brin, Google