Foothold and forward motion
The best way to explain SEO is to look at it as a game – each of the search engines that constitute the SERPs, or the Search Engine Results Pages, have different players who attempt to win coveted spots by formulating certain ‘rules’ or ‘tricks’.
So for example, if you wanted to rank for the term ‘ mainline train’, you would have to do lots of keyword research and a lot of onsite SEO in order to make sure that your website was optimized for that term. There are lots of things that you can do wrong, but let me cover off the most easily avoidable mistakes and the problems they bring.
So let’s assume you have your site optimized, the next biggest area that a potential visitor would look at is the title. The title tag is the words you see in the blue bar at the top of your browser on any page. Top SEO professionals use tools such as Title generators in order to optimize and create the best title tag.
Make sure your title tag is unique
Next is the H1 tag – in case you don’t know what an H1 tag is, it is the ‘header’ tag (I don’t know how else to say it, so just know that it is part of the HTML code used to create a webpage). The H1 tag needs to include the most important keyword for that page, and hopefully that is the main keyword your page is focused on.
The way many people manage this tag is by creating H1 tags for each and every page using the main keywords they are targeting in the titles and subheadings on that page. So if you have a page that is all about meetings in London, then you would want to use ‘Meeting in London’ in the H1 tag.
The meta data is the behind-the-scenes part of the web page that is not readily visible. It contains all sorts of information that is not seen by the user, but is compiled to determine how relevant your site is to the search being run. In our example, it would be useful to include a sentence or two about the meetings to help the search engines understand what the page is about. There is also likely to be some secondary keywords relevant to the Meeting and its Setting. So if you run a hotel in London, then you would want to include those.
The meta descriptions are the little blurb that appears under the Google listing with a very brief summary of the site and the time and location of the meeting. Again, there is a chance that some of the search engines will pick up on these.
But all in all, there is little to be gained by trying to fill in the meta description tag. I think that it is simply a waste of valuable online space that could be used to better effect by putting less entries or descriptions in the tag, and more focus could be placed on the page titles and the meet-ups. They are the single most important factor for getting your site on the 1st page of the search engines when your keywords are being used by prospective visitors!
So, in summary, there are 3 rules you need to follow to make sure that the metatags for the 1st page of Google are valid:
- Validate the metatags(at least on the 1st page of Google)
- Prior to uploading your site, make sure that you have made it clear to Google that the site is ready to be indexed and that there is nothing they (the search engines) would be likely to be searching for!
- Make sure that the meta description and the meta keywords are as complete as possible.
Target the keywords
If you make sure that you have used the keywords that you think that visitors are going to search for when performing a Google search, you will very likely attract the visitors you are aiming for.
Make sure the H1 tag is used once on the page
Make sure it’s used at least once deep within the page if possible. It is actually preferable to use the H2 tag as the 1st phrase of your page content – this tells the search engine that the page is primarily about the H2 tag keyword, whatever that may be!
Prior to becoming an online article writer for Technical Writers, Cooper took the opportunity to explore the digital world with a range of academic and fitness focused training courses. After taking a gap year, before acquiring a full time career in content creation, Cooper also worked as a personal trainer for his local gym where he developed his wealth of knowledge in the health and fitness industry.