Wondering how to optimise your website? You’re not alone.
I think we can all agree that SEO is a minefield. Not only are there myriad factors that affect a website’s search engine rankings, but also nobody (except for certain employees at Google) knows exactly what those factors are, or how important each one is.
So, if you’re the proud new owner of a website, that bad news is that there is a lot to learn if you want to see your site reaching the dizzy heights of page 1 on Google, Bing or any of the other search engines.
The good news is that I’ve listed five quick ways to optimise your website today.
Improve your website’s loading speed
Google’s search algorithm changes regularly and we are told that these changes are driven by the search giant’s desire to always improve the search experience for end users. A huge factor in user experience (UX) is speed, so it’s no surprise that your website’s loading speed is a crucial SEO consideration.
Find out your website’s speed by using a site such as Pingdom. If it’s slow, you can install numerous plugins (I recommend Nitropack, WP Rocket and Cloudflare APO) which use various techniques to speed up page loading. You can also use an expert to do it (we offer this service for a one-off charge of £100, which is cheaper than using the paid versions of Nitropack or WP Rocket).
You could also switch to a host that provides a dedicated or managed server, as opposed to shared hosting.
Install Rank Math
Essentially, there are two types of SEO: on-site and off-site. One of the five quick ways to optimise your website for on-site SEO is to get Rank Math. This wonderful WordPress plugin will guide you in how to fill your pages and posts with SEO-friendly content. It also has a ton of other features that will improve your rankings at the touch of a button, like its instant indexing tool and its automatic redirects. Even the free version is great, so make sure you install it today!
Add images and videos
Another way to optimise your website is to add images and videos. Google loves pages that have images and videos as well as well-written and informative text. Again, this is linked to UX – people are more likely to stay on a page if it has some eye-catching images on it. And video is becoming ever-more popular, as proven by the popularity of YouTube and Tik-Tok.
Add internal links
Links are easily one of the most important SEO factors. Anyone with even a basic understanding of SEO will know that. In layman’s terms, the more relevant and authoritative websites there are that link to your site, the higher your rankings will be. But it’s hard to get those links because you have to contact the site owners and convince them to add a link to their website.
The good news is that there are links you can build right away: internal links. These are links that exist on each page of a website and link to another page on the same website. The more relevant the page is, the better. Google loves internal links because they make it easier for users to navigate a website (that UX word again!). Ergo, internal links will always help you rank higher on Google! Adding internal links is relatively easy, but you can use plugins such as Link Whisper to speed it up further.
Ensure mobile-friendliness and responsive design
Most people are now using their phones to access the internet, so it makes sense that Google prioritises mobile-friendliness in their search algorithms. If your website was created years ago then it may not be mobile-friendly. To find out how mobile-friendly site is you can use tools such as Google’s Chrome Lighthouse. In most instances it will make sense to just have your website redesigned by a web designer who can ensure that the site adjusts perfectly to any screen size. This is called responsive web design and it’s essential not just for SEO but also to avoid losing business, as nobody will stick around on your website if it looks terrible on their phone or tablet.
Now, it’s important to note that none of these quick fixes are likely to have a dramatic effect on your SEO on their own or even collectively – you will also need to play the long game and spend time writing blog posts and building a backlink profile. Or you can pay a reputable SEO company to do that for you. But by following these five steps, you will be ticking some big boxes and starting as you mean to go on. Good luck! And if you ever need any pointers, please get in touch.
Owner of GreatSite 4U
Nick is a web designer and owner of GreatSite 4U. He is also an award-winning author, publisher, editor, proofreader and copywriter. Passionate about helping small businesses grow online.