SEO Considerations When Building a Website
In this blog we’ve compiled some vital SEO considerations and guidance for you to follow before hitting publish on a new website. All of which require input from your designer, developer and copywriter.
It’s pretty common knowledge that SEO is crucial to every business with an online presence. What isn’t so widely understood is that SEO considerations needed throughout the website build.
“SEO should sit at the foundation rather than be implemented after the site has gone live.”
SEO CONSIDERATIONS FROM THE FOUNDATIONS
it starts with a keyword analysis
Before kicking off with the website build, you need a plan which will eventually form your sitemap. This map needs to include keywords, features, functionality, plot user journey and required content for each page.
Tools such as WebCEO can provide an in-depth analysis on which keywords are competitive based on your target audience. Here at the Typeface Group, we can plot these for you, ensuring each page is optimised to the keyword.
optimised parent content … to an extent.
You shouldn’t sacrifice making great content just so that you can fit in a keyword. Search engines are focusing on content with ‘intent’ and recognise words out of order and synonyms. Writing content with your customers in mind, which matches both the search query and the searcher’s intent, will serve you well.
It is no longer a prominent factor how well optimised your website pages are to a particular keyword or phrase. It will be based on the content within that optimised page to how well suited it is to the searcher’s ‘intent’. When building a website, it is essential to consider this when adding the copy to your pages or posts to your blog page ahead of going live.
In regards to the way your copy looks, the layout needs to be clear, concise and easily readable for visitors. Most importantly, you need to make sure each page is unique. Duplicate text is a no-no for SEO and all search engines will mark you down.
When building pages, it is easier to plot your keywords, meta descriptions and SEO titles throughout the process, rather than rush through just before going live. That way, you will have time to check for any mistakes or missing SEO before clicking publish.
Speed and mobile searching go hand in hand. In early 2019, Google announced that it would rank websites that have a quality mobile version first. The update was known as “mobile-first indexing”, and it became a trend after noticing that over 60% of the searches done on Google came from mobile users.
In the eyes of an SEO consultant, making sure your website is performing well on mobile is key. Often there needs to be a different approach to ensure that a mobile version of a site stays user-friendly and visually attractive. This can quickly be done during the build of your website and is an essential SEO consideration with any website development.
Content layout and copy above the scroll should tell the visitor (search engines or otherwise) what they will expect to see on this page. It is the key factor that gets most of the attention of website visitors. Make it count!
Resizing, adding file names and alt tags to images is better to do during the build process rather than when you have gone live. Take our word for it!
OTHER ON-PAGE SEO CONSIDERATIONS
Small but significant differences such as adding internal links and relevant call to actions at the end of each page will help support user journey and SEO.
meta descriptions & SEO titles
These are ‘calls to actions’ from the search engines results that drags in the visitors. Make this clear, to the point and punchy. They need to entice the potential visitor but also need to be honest about what they will see/read once they click. No clickbait. This will negatively impact your bounce rate and rankings!
add an XML sitemap
The need for a sitemap is so you can tell the search engines about pages on your site that they can crawl. When all pages are indexed, it will make it much easier for users to search online using relevant keywords that are optimised to your site.
speed wins the race
Did you know, on average, 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less? More than half of all mobile site visitors will leave a page if it takes more than three seconds to finish loading. (*)
Speed is essential in our time-poor generation, and bounces will ruin your SEO progress. Ensure you choose the right hosting company for you, try not to use too many images, and speed shouldn’t be a problem for you.
What is it that you want your website to do? The more you add, the more you compromise on speed. Adding things such as excess images and videos will take effect on slowing down your site. Take a step back and consider what you really need and what your audience will prefer before making extravagant changes.
Who you host with can also affect your speed – make sure you have a good hosting company lined up before you go ahead. Once you have gone live, add google analytics and search console to monitor what is and isn’t working for your site. You must look at the stats behind the stats.
PLANNING & MEASUREMENT
plan content ahead of time
Knowing what content will go out ahead of time will ensure your hard work during the website build won’t go to waste. As we mentioned above, well optimised yet more importantly well-intended content will help your website thrive.
Having this plan will ensure your web team can cultivate the content ahead of time and ensure its fully optimised alongside visually appealing.
Start measuring from the very beginning. It is essential that you analyse your website performance regularly and right from the get-go. This is so you know exactly what works and what doesn’t and what you can change to improve it.
Install Google Analytics and Search Console once you have gone live and watch how things unfold. It’s key to remember that it takes 3 – 6 months for Google to crawl a website so don’t be disheartened at first, make sure you get it done right away to collect the data you need to improve your site.
in the long run…
While most website owners may think about SEO after the development process, the truth is you need to take SEO considerations into account at the very start. It might seem like a lengthy task, but what is worse? Getting everything done at once – or spending hours completely refreshing your SEO from scratch?
Teamwork makes the dream work. SEO consultants and website developers can work hand in hand to ensure the best possible outcome.
WE CAN HELP.
Know that you need to improve your SEO but not sure where to start?
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