50 Tips to better optimise your website
50 Tips to better optimise your website
The role of an SEO agency in London is never complete. Whether it’s gathering new backlinks to stay relevant and competitive, making use of new features or plugins, or editing content to meet the latest digital marketing trends, the process is never-ending.
1 – Check for internal broken links and dofollow.
Make sure all broken internal links are removed or fixed. They can…
2 – Make sure your title tags describe the content with the keyword at the beginning.
Keywords are essential for search engines to show your website to those searching for what you are offering. Optimising your title tags is one of the quickest changes you can make to boost your website traffic!
3 – Link your more authoritative pages to your key landing pages.
Authoritative pages pointing towards your key landing pages will boost rankings and traffic on your desired landing pages.
4- Review your Google Search Console coverage errors .
Try to minimise the number of errors in the Google Search Console ‘coverage’ report. Fixing coverage errors is quite important as otherwise, these pages won’t appear in Google which can mean a loss of traffic to your site. The tool will give you some indications on how to fix each error.
5 – Fix all of your 404 errors.
‘Error 404 not found’ will often lead to the user leaving your website altogether as it weakens their trust and would consume their time trying to find what they originally wanted. They typically come about when content has been deleted, in which case the link should be removed, or moved to another URL, in which case the link should be edited.
6 – Fix all of your internal redirects, redirect chains and redirect loops.
Redirects add an extra ‘hop’ for both users and search engine crawlers. Where these are internal redirects, you can easily fix these so don’t give bots extra work! Use ScreaingFrog.com to check your websites redirects using their SEO Spider.
7 – Review your website indexation using site:domain.com
…and make sure all your content is indexed!
8 – Review your website speed with Google’s Lighthouse.
Google’s Lighthouse is a great tool for auditing your website’s “performance, accessibility, progressive web apps, SEO and more”.
9 – Write your content for users, not for bots.
Writing your content targeted towards bots will make it less enjoyable to read for users leading to decreased session time and an increase in bounce rate, ultimately decreasing SEO.
10 – Include outbound links to authoritative websites.
Outbound links help search engines better understand the content on your page and can help increase your relevance, reputation and value scores while also encouraging backlinks.
11 – Avoid so many 301 redirects in your website.
This will affect your website speed and consume crawl budget.
12 – Don’t underestimate meta descriptions.
Strong meta descriptions will improve your CTR (Click-Through Rate) as users are better informed about the contents of your page, making them more likely to click onto it.
13 – Remember that a 302 redirect does not send link equity.
If you have implemented 302 redirects, remember these are temporary redirects. 301 redirects are preferable for both users and search engines and will carry any link weighting from the original page to the new URL.
14 – Include LSI keywords in your content. Google will love it!
Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords are “conceptually related terms that search engines use to deeply understand the content on a webpage”.
Back in the day, the density of keywords was hugely important as if a word wasn’t used multiple times search engines would struggle to understand that that’s what the page is about. But now, Google can also search for semantically related words and better understand the page through them.
15 – Double check your website is mobile friendly and responsive.
It’s now essential to consider how your website both looks and works on mobile as much as, if not more so, than on a desktop or laptop. With people constantly on the go, we are living in a mobile-first era where people are using their phones more and more to view websites and buy online.
Here’s 6 simple website simplification tips from Adom Enfroy via SEW:
- Reduce the number of pages on your site
- Add an improved search feature so users can still find what they need
- Increase white space to reduce the appearance of clutter
- Use clean lines and wide borders
- Use a simple font and make it larger
- Keep a maximum of two columns on mobile
16 – Update your WordPress plugins regularly to avoid security issues.
Over 80% of websites being hacked is due to updates not taking place. Don ‘t put your website at risk! Make sure any custom WordPress Plugin Development are up to date
17 – Perform A/B testing using Google Optimize to improve the UX.
“A/B testing is a simple and cost-effective method for any aspect of your business. It provides you with insightful analysis and a profound look at the performance of your tested elements,” says Jade Nguyen.
The process is useful to all businesses, big or small, to help determine the right options for your website which drive the desired action the most. It essentially eliminates any guesswork and pre-conceptions on what you believe your audience will like and respond to the most, and instead puts it to the test.
18 – Contextual internal links have way more SEO value than navigational internal links.
A contextual link is one that is found within the body text of your page and its anchor text surrounds the idea of the link itself as opposed to a navigational internal link which may be found, for example, in the page header to lead you back to the home page or other key landing pages. They give greater SEO value as these contextual links offer more value and insight to a particular section included on that page.
19 – Avoid changing the URL structure of your website.
Changing your URL can lead to a lot of internal redirects and all posts previously posted will be pointing to the wrong URL.
20 – Review the keywords your competitors are ranking and you are not.
Review where your competition is succeeding but you are not. Maybe you’re missing a trick which can easily be pointed out by them!
21 – Remember to include the tag ‘sponsored’ to affiliate links.
The ‘sponsored’ tag can represent the involvement and support of another company, giving authority to your post. This is recognised by both bots and users. However, dependent on the circumstance be careful where you seek these out. For instance, many social media users show distrust to ‘sponsored’ posts from influencers as they are aware they are being paid to publish the post and are not posting purely from a pleasant experience of a product or service.
22 – Keep up to date with Google Webmaster Central Blog reviews.
Is there any other more reliable source to keep yourself up to date with the latest SEO news? As digital marketers to should keep a constant eye to this blog. If you don’t have time, don’t worry, we have you covered with MintTwist Google News Roundups. Check the latest one in December here.
23 – Use a concise keyword strategy in your website mapping keywords to URLs.
Make sure you don’t incur in keyword cannibalisation by mapping out keywords to URLs. In the end, what you need is to have unique content in each page and not having the same set of keywords competing each other in the SERP.
24 – Double check in GSC keywords with lots of impressions and few clicks.
If you identify keywords with lots of impressions and just a few clicks, you might want to identify the reason. Try to change the Title Tag or Meta Description for a more engaging text to encourage users to click. Your CTR should increase and so your rankings.
25 – Make sure you don’t have duplicate content.
Having duplicate content will lead to confusion for Google in what version you should be ranked for. Not only this but, if picked up by users they’ll perceive it as a low level of effort and time has gone into the website, decreasing their trust in the website and potentially overall perception of your brand.
Use Siteliner.com to check your website for duplicate content.
26 – Review the search intent of the keyword you want to optimise before writing your article.
Not understanding why a keyword receives high searches may lead to you writing irrelevant content that users are uninterested in reading or will make you target the wrong keywords altogether.
27 – Use heatmaps to improve the website usability.
Website heatmaps aggregate data to visually show user behaviour on a webpage. They vary in colour to represent different levels of engagement and can help identify areas which you’d like to see high engagement but currently are not. Maybe you need to move it or highlight it in some way in order to increase engagement with the feature.
28 – Each webpage should have different Title Tags.
Duplicate title tags will lead to search engines only ranking you for a 1 page on your website. Essentially, avoid becoming your own competition. Check Screaming Frog to find duplicate titles.
29 – Sync GSC, Analytics and Ahrefs with Screaming Frog to make better decisions.
We love data, don’t we?
30 – Find out the links your competitors have in common and try to get them.
Similarly to reviewing what your competitors are ranking for, you can also review their backlinks. This may find authoritative websites with a strong affiliation to your pages. Gaining these will detract from the competitive advantage they might hold over you.
31 – Review unused plugins and delete them to save space.
Many plugins may actually slow down your site speed. Therefore, if they are not being used, delete them!
Click here for a WordPress specific test to see if your plugins are slowing down your site.
32 – Set up website goals on Google Analytics using Google Tag Manager and identify underperforming landing pages.
Whether it’s converting to submit a form, watch a video or make a purchase, your web pages have a purpose and the desired action. Track them to better understand how users are navigating your website and which pages are generating less positive leads than others in order to improve them.
33 – Compress all images above 100kb to improve website load time.
Images can be compressed via websites such as TinyPNG.com. This is a very quick process that can improve your website loading speed dramatically!
34 – Create a xml sitemap and upload it to Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools to improve indexability.
Sitemaps are a powerful way to make your pages indexed on Google. This is exceptionally important for websites with a high number of pages to make it easier for Googlebot to find your content and index your pages.
35 – Review your Robots.txt file and make sure you are not disallowing unnecessary pages.
You might want to block certain pages to be crawled by Google e.g.: thank you pages, WordPress admin page, parameter URLs, etc. There are certain times you might want Google to block a complete directory and block by mistake importat pages or important resources. Also you or your website developers wanted temporarily to block the whole domain and forget to enable it again.
To avoid this mistake, check the status of your robots.txt from time to time or check Google Search Console for Robots.txt errors.
36 – Only build links from industry-related websites with a low spam score.
Search engines use links on your website to better understand its contents. Therefore, only link to those in a related field. Your website will be leveraged through strong affiliation and authoritative links.
37 – Include your sitemap URL in Robots.txt for Googlebot to find it more easily.
Help Google to find your sitemap by including the URL at the end of your Robots.txt file. Follow the below steps:
38 – Make sure the number of URLs match approximately with the indexed URLs in the SERP.
Use the site:domain.com operator to identify how many URLs have been indexed in your preferred search engine and compare it with the URLs your crawler tool has found. If the numbers differ from each other significantly, you probably have an indexation issue.
39 – Get a ‘https’ certificate if you haven’t already.
“84% of online shoppers say they abandon a purchase when they realise the website is insecure.” SSL gives your website that little padlock in the browser bar and can benefit your site dramatically.
40 – Include descriptive Alt Text in your images.
This helps Google understand what the image is about in order to serve it in search results.
41 – Try to get local citations from trusted directories with NAP (Number, Address, Phone) consistency.
This is a great way to provide your key information to local individuals as well as helping you rank well locally.
42 – Ask your clients, colleagues and providers to leave you a positive review on Google, Yelp, Trustpilot and Glassdoor.
People value other people’s opinions and reviews. A statement is much more reliable if it hasn’t come directly from the brand. Not only that but individuals will often view brands/websites in order of their average review score. So ensuring you have plenty of positive reviews will help drive more traffic to your website.
43 – Don’t overuse exact anchor text.
Too many inbound links with the exact same anchor text can actually make it look suspicious and spammy so make sure it’s different each time.
44 – Review all your webpages provide value to the user and have enough content.
Strong content will encourage higher levels of engagement which has become increasingly powerful in pushing pages up the ranks.
45 – Make sure you don’t have duplicate versions of your website (www, non-www, http and https).
A quick look using the site:domain.com operator can tell you if you have duplicate versions of the website. If that’s the case, choose one version and redirect the rest to the chosen one.
46 – Create a Google My Business account and optimise it to improve your Local SEO.
Optimising a Google My Business account will help Google understand what your business offers and therefore rank you more highly for related searches in your local area.
47 – Include real authors for your content with a link to a profile page with biography.
Real authors give your content authority. People are much more likely to engage with and trust a piece of writing if it’s written by an expert in the field.
48 – Include client’s testimonials on your website to provide trust.
49 – Include your most important keyword in the page title of the homepage.
Help bots and users understand what your website is about by including your most important keyword in your homepage title.
50 – Handle parameter URLs with canonical tags pointing to the primary source of content.
This trick will sort out your duplicate content issues and pass authority to your main content.
If you need help optimising your website, don’t hesitate to get in contact with our team!