Last week in SEO for Busy People, we reviewed the top five tactics you should use to increase your search rankings.
This week, SEO for Busy People Part Two, we conclude our series with the next five tactics. Again, use these tactics as you have time. It’s best to reserve time for every tactic each week or month, but reality dictates that some months will be tighter for time than others. Prioritize your SEO work by always ensuring your lower priority tactics are handled first.
Go to last week’s tactics to review the first five SEO tactics in our list, like writing new content, building links and checking your site statistics regularly.
Here are the next five tactics, in order of importance:
- Check and Correct Site Structure
Estimated Time: 5 minutes to an hour
Your site structure is set in your Sitemap.xml file and your robots.txt file. Every site needs these two files to quickly communicate site structure and page priority to Google and Bing. Weekly, make sure these two files are updated to display new pages and to ensure there are no mistakes. To check for errors, look at the “sitemap” sections on Google and Bing’s webmaster tools.Most content management solutions automate the creation of these pages, but automation is not foolproof. It’s always wise to check for errors.
- Review and Re-align Site Pages
Estimated Time: 5 Minutes to an Hour
Take the time to ensure each page on your site is aligned for search engines. Page alignment means that there is a two-to-three word keyword set that defines the page content and that this keyword set is in the body content, the page header, the H2 tag, and the “alt” tag of any photos. This keyword set should then represent at least 1% of all words in the content. For instance, if you have a 300 word blog entry, make sure your keyword set repeats four to five times. This makes it easy for Google to understand your topic.
- Review and Update Social and Search Tags
Estimated Time: 15 minutes to an Hour
Just like Google and Bing, your website should make it easy for social sites to figure out your website content. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Plus and Yelp, among others, work best when you define your website content using special tags in pages intended for those services.Facebook has Social Graph and Twitter has Twitter Cards. Other social sites have their own tagging system. Make sure you understand these tags for the social sites where you want to align. Then, ensure each page has the appropriate tags for your content.
- Update Older Pages
Estimated Time: 15 minutes to an Hour
Just like Google wants to see new content, it also wants to see updates to old content. With just a 15 minute rewrite and a check on your keywords, you can get a large bump in readership for content you already have. As in earlier steps, review your keywords, rewrite your body copy and then realign your content.The one thing you need to ensure is that your page change doesn’t break the links incoming to your site. Doing this generates an error within Google and harms your ranking. Correct this by including a 301 Redirect to any revised pages. This teaches Google to point traffic to the new page and keeps any incoming links from breaking.
- Update Your Home Page, Website Content
Estimated Time: Four to Eight hours a month
No one likes stale content, especially Google. Change the front page of your website based on the metrics coming off you front page links. If you’re getting great clicks on some links, leave them alone, redesign them for more emphasis or raise them higher on the page. If you’re getting poor clicks, then remove that content or place it lower on the page. Eventually, this process will align your front page to current user demand and increase the value of you website. Greater rankings with ensue.