Getting Started with EverWeb 4: Learning About SEOSunday, April 24th, 2016
When you start using EverWeb your focus will most likely be on learning the product as quickly as you can so you can get down to the task of creating the web pages you want for your website. One thing you may not immediately think of is how to attract visitors to your web pages once you have published your website to the Internet. This is where Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, comes in as it is the process by which you make your website as visible as possible to Internet search engines. EverWeb lets you easily add SEO in to your web pages but knowing what SEO is and where to use it effectively in EverWeb is essential. Once you have this knowledge you will vastly improve the likelihood of having your web pages found by potential visitors.
When talking about SEO we typically think of Google which is natural as it’s the world’s most popular web search engine with 67% of the US search market according to Search Engine Journal. However, Google is not alone as the Microsoft’s Bing/Yahoo! search engine alliance also has a strong presence with a 29% market share. SEO applies to all search engines, although their approaches towards implementing SEO strategies may differ.
In addition to the sometimes differing SEO approaches of the search engine giants, SEO itself is constantly evolving as our needs and requirements change. Today we use mobile devices more than desktop ones and so perform more search on mobile devices then we did ten years ago so all mobile websites need to have SEO. Google has even prioritised SEO for mobile over SEO for desktop devices. Social media is also more in our lives than ever before and Microsoft’s Bing search engine weighs this factor moe in it’s search results than it used to. Such factors as these, driven by advances in technology, influence how search engines need to rank search results when you are looking for something on the Internet. For example, Google uses over 200 factors to determine how a web page is ranked and these factors are constantly in flux due to the factors outlined above. The ever increasing paced complexity of change can make SEO appear to be a minefield to navigate.
Making A Complex Problem Simpler
The ever changing dynamics of SEO can be bewildering when starting to work with it. However, successful SEO can be achieved once we realise that SEO is a just a process that helps improve websites and/or web page visibility in search engine results page rankings. There are good and bad practices to be aware of that will either help promote, or penalise, your page rankings. There are also no guarantees either with SEO as to the results rankings you will achieve. As mentioned earlier, the science behind SEO is constantly evolving so the best you can do is to stay up to date with SEO developments from Google and Microsoft/Yahoo! and the possible effects of such developments on your website’s page rankings.
Doing Your SEO Homework
SEO works by looking for ‘Keywords’ to help search engines find your website’s pages using specialist software known as web ‘crawlers’ or ‘spiders’. These software tools keep search engines indexed and web content up to date.
As such, using the right kind of Keywords will benefit your website as search engines will find your web pages more easily. So you will need to take some time to do your homework by researching what Keywords are best to use. Using generic words for your Keywords, e.g ’software’, will result in your website never being found. Google ‘software’ and you will get over 2,350,000,000 results. So be specific with your Keywords e.g. if you are a software vendor you may sell specific software, e.g. EverWeb, so use ‘EverWeb’ rather than ‘Software’ as a Keyword. This approach helps narrow the search focus and increases the chances of potential visitors finding your website. When thinking about Keywords for your own web pages, try to think about the words you would type in to find your own website quickly.
As Keywords are important it’s necessary to choose the best words to help your website stand out from the rest. Both Google and Microsoft have Keyword Planning tools for just this purpose.
When you have found your list of Keywords, select just a few of them to actually use. If you have too many Keywords you will probably lower the impact of your SEO. Google, for example, penalises websites that use ‘Keyword Stuffing’. It’s also good to remember that too many Keywords may impact your visitor experience in a negative way. Always prioritise your website content over the need for SEO.
Putting It All Together In EverWeb
When you have done all of your SEO homework, how do you translate it into practical use in EverWeb? There are a number of places to target for your SEO, most of which you can find on the Page tab of the Inspector Window.
1. File Name: Each web page has a file name which you can use to act as a Keyword.
2. Navigation Menu Display Name: SEO likes to find links to other pages so this is a good place to use your Keywords. Remember not to sacrifice the usability of your website for the sake of SEO.
3. Web Page Title: This is the text at the top of the browser window which is an ideal place to add in Keywords. Again, remember prioritise your visitor experience over better SEO.
4. Web Page Description: Although not directly used in SEO it’s a good idea to include some Keywords in your Page Description if it is relevant and appropriate to do so.
SEO Good Practices
When using SEO remembering to follow a few good practices will help promote your web pages…
1. Your Website Content
Your web page should contain original, good quality content. Both Google and Microsoft’s Bing look for fresh, quality content that is well written and easy to search for by their web crawlers. Your page content should be relevant to what web page, and website, is aiming to achieve. Always focus on good content rather than on SEO. Whilst SEO is important, the content and visitor perception of your website is more important.
2. Use Images Effectively
Use images properly in your website. Using appropriate quality images can instantly convey your meaning, or message, better than words can. When using images remember to add in some text describing the image in the Alt-Text section of the Shape Options Tab. The description should be brief but descriptive of the image itself. The Alt-Text function is also useful if an image does not appear on the page as it will be replaced by the descriptive text you have added in. Using Alt Text in your website may help search engines find and promote your website better.
3. Use Hyperlinks
Web crawlers like to see links in your pages to other pages within your website or to pages on other websites. So, use EverWeb’s Hyperlinking to do this. When you create a Hyperlink try to make the linking words something that is unique. Many websites say things like ‘click HERE’ where ‘HERE’ is the linking text. However, as we mentioned earlier, ‘HERE’ is used everywhere on the Internet! So if I want to take you to a video tutorial on Hyperlinking I could say click on the link here or I could say look at the Video Tutorial on Hyperlinking in EverWeb. For SEO, the second approach is much better.
4. The Heading Tags Widget
The Heading Tags Widget can be used to explicitly draw search engine attention to specific title text and headings in your web page. Whilst it may be useful to your SEO, it is something for advanced EverWeb users some HTML to use. The Heading Tags Widget video tutorial will get you acquainted and we will discuss the use of this Widget in a specific blog in the near future.
Useful Resources for SEO in EverWeb
In addition to the Good Practices outlined above, you can find out more about using SEO in EverWeb using the following resources:
How To Use EverWeb’s SEO Features
Video Tutorial Content
Adding Alt Text, or Alternative Text to Images in EverWeb
SEO For EverWeb – Heading Tags
Meta Keywords – SEO For EverWeb Video Course
Webpage Content – SEO For EverWeb Video Course
Using SEO in EverWeb is easy to implement using the above guidelines. Creating and maintaining good practices will help you successfully optimise your website to achieve the best search page rankings possible. Keeping abreast of Google and Microsoft/Yahoo!’s developments in SEO will also help you, and your website, up to date in the future. And remember, as always, to always keep your visitor experience as your number one concern over SEO rankings.
Next Time: In our next instalment we will look at the Web Page List and build navigation menus for your website.
As always let us know if you have any comments and questions. We’re happy to help. You can also find EverWeb on the following social media platforms:
Twitter handle @ragesw