How to improve SEO on your website

Search engine optimisation - or SEO - should be a vital part of running your website, regardless of its function. Without checking if your site is optimised, then you may be missing out on some potential sales or clients because you won't be ranking quite as well on search results.

It might sound like it could be a complicated set of tasks to carry out, but there are a few simple things you can do to boost your rankings. Here's how you can get a better search result for your small business or personal portfolio website by boosting SEO.

Know your keywords

You may have added several relevant keywords or phrases to your website during the development process, but they have a significant effect on its ranking. So, you should still go through your pages to see how and where they're being used.

Create a list of terms that are relevant to your brand - if you have a pizza restaurant, for example, these could include 'pizza', 'pizzeria', 'restaurant' and 'pepperoni' - then expand on them, so they're questions or phrases. Put these keywords into a search engine to see their related terms and select a combination of both shorter and longer keywords. Also check how your competitors are ranked for keywords, too.

Learn how to use links

There are two functions that links have: to direct to new pages and to help search engines assess where a page will be in its rankings. So quality is critical here, as search engines' algorithms favour high-quality links. Start by removing any low-quality ones you have.

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You should also think about how linking can help you connect to other sites, get popular pages to link to yours, and boost your reputation within your industry. Backlinking is when other sites link to your page and is a powerful strategy to use here because it says to the search engine that your site is a credible source. You may wish to consider working with a link building service to help you with this task.

Use titles and descriptions

These brief texts for your pages will clearly describe what your business does. They should have some of your keywords and phrases in them, too. The titles will appear when you hover over the tabs and, although the description won't be seen on your page, they're essential for search engines - both elements will be the first components these engines will track to determine your ranking. The title and description will appear on search engine result pages.

Choose the correct URL

Your domain name is the address users will put in to find your website. Not only is it one of the first things they will see when they come across your site, but also the first area search engines will look at to understand what it's about and how it should be ranked.

This means that your URLs should be clean: without special characters and no page IDs. The ideal domain should include your business name and maybe a relevant keyword.

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