Wednesday, May 6, 2015

SEO Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a list of questions I received from a new client today, mostly regarding SEO, that I thought I would share.
  1. How do you select what keywords to code in ?
    • We aren't going to "code in" keywords - we want text on the website that people will be searching for. Have to think as if you are a prospective customer searching for a business like yours - what would they type into the Google search box? Obvious phrases are stuff like "your product or service" words like "your location" etc. The more times "search phrases" appear on your website (naturally, can't "keyword stuff") the better chance they will be picked up in searches
  2. Can we code in the name of a local competitor as well?
    • Again - we aren't "hiding text" in the code (with the exception of describing pictures - we need to provide a hidden "title" and "ALT" text that describes what is in the picture)
  3. You said SEO is not a one time fix. What is the ongoing process after this?
    • there are basically 2 pieces to SEO - 
      1. On page website fixes so that the search engines like Google can find and properly index your website 
      2. and ongoing promotion and new content. Generally people don't "find" your website first - they go there to get more information about your company once they already know about it (so a website is really a "brochure" about your company) They are going to "find" you through other channels, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, your blog, etc. The more content you keep adding to the internet, the more places Google has to index your information, and the more that regular people can "share" as well (Like, link to, etc.)
  4. Will you need any of my login information such as go daddy or to link my facebook, twitter, linkedin etc. 
    • If you are going to host your website yourself, I will need the login information for that, so i can upload the files.
  5. I have a Google plus page that I have no idea how to use. Can you help me with that? Does it really matter?
    • Yes I can, and yes it does. Don't think of Google+ like it is Facebook, it's not. Think of it as a central place that Google has access to all your info - your address, (Google Maps) links to all your social channels, links to basically anything you put on the web. Google+ is very important for SEO and search results.
  6. I talked to another SEO guy previous and he stated a blog would really help my SEO. If  so, I'd like to add that. 
    • No problem! I recommend them as well.
  7. I would also like an employment application linked to my site. Any ideas?
    • Easily done - we can either have them download a pdf, or have them fill out a form on the website, or both.
  8. After an amount of time will I appear on the first page of results?
    • Tricky question -first of all, nobody can guarantee first page results, and if they do, RUN! (Insert scam warning here...) But it depends - first page for what search phrase? Your company name? You should always be on the first page for that. But which search terms would you like to rank for? Need to build content on your website that contains those phrases, AND keep building content in your blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. for those search phrases as well. That's how you get better rankings.
  9. Is there anything I can do to help this along Example: go to my site several times a day.
    • Traffic does help - however, Google is tracking "unique visits" more than just the same person returning over and over... AND time on site is important - if you keep returning, and just "bounce" quickly off the website, you are actually not helping...
  10. Sometimes I come up on Google maps in the top ten results, sometimes I dont. Why is this?
    • A lot of reasons (mostly covered above) Which search term? You said your Google+ page is incomplete, etc. But one thing I haven't mentioned, search results are different for everybody, and which device you use. Desktop results are different from mobile results. And Google stores "cookies" in your browser and uses your past searches to influence future ones... Geography also matters, where are you searching from? Google will always try to pull up the closest results first.
  11. It is my understanding the more links you have the better. Is this Correct? I have read you can put hidden links in a period or exclamation point, is this true? 
    • Quality inbound links matter - a review from a respected website, a link from your chamber of commerce, etc. Think of them as "votes" for your website.
    • Proper link structure on your website is also important - can Google crawl it easily?
    • Google takes a very dim view of "spam" and "hidden" links - this was a trick that "black hat" SEO's were doing a few years ago, and Google now punishes websites that create bad links, or allow low quality inbound links. Stay far away!
  12. Would it make a difference if certain words are bold, capital, itlized, etc.
    • It does to a degree. But it really comes down to making your website easy for a human to read - nice bold headlines, bullet points, etc. We will code headlines on your pages as to which are the most important, so Google knows which ones you want to highlight on each page (geekery here, we will be using "h" tags, I will explain some other time)