Since the rollout of Google’s Hummingbird search algorithm, search ain’t what it used to be. Black-hat SEO hoodlums are on the run, keyword stuffing comes off as too transparent a trick, and the good guys are left scrambling to produce authoritative, high-quality content that will rank strongly with Hummingbird. Lots of us have a stake in the SEO game – social media marketers and bloggers, content managers and web marketing consultants. We all look at search through the lens of our own experience and purpose. All that most of us have to know is that SEO works, that it does what we need it to do. How it works, and why it works, we tend to leave to the (internet guru, tech guy, geek, nerd) in our lives.
Ever ask your web expert about SEO? Don’t ignore the unique point of view on search that they offer you. Our guy goes by Senior Web Developer, and he’s got some simple, practical tips on making SEO work for your business. Edd Twilbeck of Marketing In Color weighs in here, in language palatable to mere earthlings:
Use Google Analytics
It’s silly, and a waste of time and resources, to implement SEO strategies and tactics without bothering to measure the results. Edd says, “You really need to have, at the very least, a basic idea of the traffic coming to your site. Google Analytics is great at keeping track of all that data for you, and you only need a Google account to get started. To get the most out of it, you should use GA from the beginning. Adding it late in the game isn’t as beneficial as using it from the get-go. While it can get complicated and seems a bit hard to get your head around at first, it might help newcomers to think of GA as simply a status report for their website. It’s a way to see what is going on today, which lets you compare with yesterday and plan for tomorrow.”
Choose the right content management system for your website
Like WordPress. There, we said it. “A good content management system keeps the programming out of your way, behind the scenes, and allows you to focus on what YOU know best – the information about your company or service that you want to share with visitors,” says Edd. “A good CMS, such as WordPress, will stay out of your way and let you do your job of managing and maintaining that information.” Which leads to…
Keep your site simple.
A cluttered, hard-to-read-and-navigate website is an excellent way to drive traffic….away from your site. According to Edd, “One way to help people get to the information they’re looking for on your site is to keep your site shallow. Don’t bury your product or service details in submenu after submenu that require the user to dig 5 or 6 pages deep to get at the information they need. Instead, try to design your site to keep the salient points just a few clicks away from the home page, and keep the site easy to navigate and come back to. Your customers will thank you, and you’ll thank them for coming back.”