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When launching a new website, there are for sure SEO elements you need to check if you want your pages to be indexed and found in the search results. Knowing what to implement is important if you want to receive traffic and convert.
SEO is a long-run strategy but you can rank your website quickly if you master the right techniques and focus on the right elements using the right tools.
This post aims to provide a guide with the SEO basics to get your website in the SERPs. At the end of the article, you will be able to use a free 30-days trial with OnCrawl to check if those elements have been well setup.
Choosing the right domain name is an important step for a new website. You need to focus on:
Launching a new website is also about keywords and how your target is going to find you. You thus need to do some keyword research and know what your audience is typing when searching for your products or services. You need to focus on:
Moz has shared a keyword research guide to find the right ones.
Content is one of the 3 main ranking factors in 2016 and SEO elements that need a real attention. It is the meeting point with your customers and Google. Your website content includes everything from web pages to blog posts, images or FAQs.
With your list of keywords, you can start writing your content including those keywords (but wisely). Google bots crawl your website and content to understand what it is about and rank it in the SERPs regarding your keywords. Your content should:
Then, some part of your content needs extra attention.
Search engines need to quickly and easily understand your website structure and content. Your code is thus a central element in making your website understandable. You need to focus on:
The title tag is one of the SEO elements used to rank a page. It describes what your page is about in the SERPs and helps users to get a quick idea of what they are going to find. But it also helps search engines to rank your page for a search query. You title tags should:
The meta description also appears in the SERPs and summarize your page’s content. It does not have an impact on your rankings but can compel users to click on your result. It does impact your click-through rate and your traffic. Your meta description should:
Here is how our title tags and description appear in the SERPs for ‘OnCrawl’.
They organise your content in sections and tell search engines what your content is about. They go from h1 to h6 so you should not break the hierarchy and go directly from h1 to h4 for instance. You Hn should:
Alt tags are here to explain what your images are about as search engines can’t crawl them. It is a short description where you can include your keywords and increase opportunities to rank in Google image results. Your alt tags should:
Internal linking consists in linking to other pages of your website from a blog post for example. It is useful to give readers extra informations about a subject and to ease bots’ crawling job.
It also helps to reduce the bounce rate on your site as readers can keep wandering on your website if your internal linking is relevant and informative. Your interlinking should not:
How could you know if your SEO efforts are working without an analytic tool? How many visitors a month is your site receiving? Which pages are the most popular? How much time are they spending on your site? Is your bounce rate high? These are just a few metrics you can track. Google Analytics is a very good choice because it’s free, easy to set up and to use, and provides tons of useful information about your visitors’ behaviour on your site.
It allows you to get further insights about who is linking to your site, what search terms are sending visitors to your site, whether your site has any issues that need to be fixed quickly, and more. However, those data are not exhaustive and needs to be held by a SEO crawler.
If your website is running under WordPress, a SEO plugin can be a good partner to ease your SEO efforts. Some plugins like Yoast or All in one SEO are free, easy to use and packed with everything you need for on-site SEO optimizations.
Using a robots.txt helps search engines to know which parts of your website they should ignore and not crawl. It includes a list of allow and disallow commands to tell which pages can or cannot be retrieved. Pages that are excluded from your robots.txt file won’t appear in search results. Don’t fall in the trap to prevent your website to be indexed. Some webmasters are used to use the “disallow: /” command while their site is under construction but it’s crucial to remember to remove it once the site is ready to index it and receive visitors.
Links are an essential part when your are launching a new website as they can speed up your SEO. Indeed, Google considers a website with qualitative links trustworthy and qualitative. As the search engine is always looking for offering the best user experience possible to its users, being seen as qualitative will give you a little boost in the search results. Your link building strategy should:
We have recently written an article about the Ins of link building in 2016. You could have a look to know what is still working when doing link building. You can also use tools like Majestic or Ahrefs to monitor your backlinks.
Site speed also impacts your user experience and your SEO. There are a few points that can lower your page speed such as images, widgets, codes, etc. OnCrawl analyzes your page’s speed and identifies which pages are concerned.
Having a mobile version is not an option today as mobile-friendliness is an important ranking factor. Plus, mobile traffic has overtaken desktop one in 2016. You should thus test your website on every devices to be sure that there are no issues. Your analytics can tell you that: if you notice high bounce rate coming from your mobile traffic, then you should start worrying about.
OnCrawl is a SEO crawler that helps you monitor your SEO performance regarding the latest Google guidelines. When launching your new webiste, OnCrawl can help you audit your SEO performance and detect points of improvement in your HTML, your content (and especially your duplicates and near duplicates), your performance, your architecture and your links.
Start with a 30 days free trial and audit your website!