Sam Gooch - The fundamentals of a healthy website


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No matter what your business, a healthy website is vital for users to be able to find you, and convert into customers. Sam Gooch takes a look at the three fundamental areas you need to be thinking of.

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  • No matter what your business, a healthy website is a must when it comes to driving in potential traffic
  • I’m going to take a look at the three fundamental areas that you need to be thinking about when building your SEO strategy:Technical SEO – Making the search engines’ lives easier when crawling and indexing On-Site SEO– This is everything that can be done on your siteAndOff-Site SEO – this is the activity that happens outside of your website
  • But first – what is SEO?
  • SEO – whichstands for “search engine optimization”, process of improving the visibility of a website in the search engines’ organic results. organic = referring to the non-paid results that appear below sponsored ads. A good SEO strategy will help to drive relevant traffic to the right parts of your website.
  • There are three main pillars that support any successful SEO campaign – these areTechnical - making your website ‘search engine friendly’Content – gives the search engines something to feed onLinks – act like votes - the more reputable sites that link to you, the more authority you will gain
  • Google is miles ahead the other search engines – 89% uk searchaim for Google – if you’re lucky you will also appear in the other search enginesSo I’ll base this talk on Google.When you Search in Google - not actually searching the web, but Google’s index of the web, snapshot of every page that they can find.Google builds its index using software programs called spiders-Start by crawling a few web pages – and follow the links on those pages to find other pages, -then follow the pages that they link to, and so on, -making up an index of around 35 billion pagesFrequency of the crawls differs depending on a number of factors:- how much authority the page has and how often it is updated- you would expect the BBC News homepage to be crawled several times a day, - where as an article from 2010 may not have been crawled for some time
  • Huge number of potential technical issues can’t cover them all - talk about the ones that I see most often
  • Google good at finding out about your pages by itselfXML sitemap supplement their data to give them a better understanding of your site. Similar to HTML sitemap: list of your URLs -additional information:when it was last updatedhow often it is updatedhow important it is
  • Provide instructions to web robots Block pages, file types, entire folders - prevent them from being crawled. Example: /register /forgot-passwordReference location of your sitemap
  • It can be benefitial to keep the structure as flat as possibleRequires less clicks, reducing user drop-off rate increase indexation - Google less likely to follow pages buried deep under multiple levels.
  • update or remove a page URL, Google won’t know. Old URL will live on in Google’s index - causing a 404 page not foundPage value will be lostSolution - 301 redirect redirects users and robots to the new URLCheck crawl errors in Google Webmaster Tools to find 404s
  • Duplicate content is a huge topic in the SEO spaceSearch engines try to ignore duplicate versions of pages – they choose one – may not be the right onePeople may link to different versionsCauses value is diluted rather than going to one place, causes rankings and traffic to sufferDuplicate content - not always as straightforward as using the same content in more than one placeNumber of situations - may not even be aware of it - caused by technical issuesSome of the most common causes -URL Parameters – common with sites that use filters – content stays the sameTailing slash - very commonPrinter Friendly pages – same contentwww vs non www – usually loads the same page - Google treats them as two separate pages - this can be fixed in Google webmaster tools by selecting your preferred domain.Canonical tag solves all – place on duplicate page, point to preferred URL – Google treats it as the same page
  • Google and Bing Webmaster Tools both free services extremely useful information - performance of your siteinfluence how they interact with it
  • Some of the tasks you can carry out include:List of links pointing to your site Submitting and testing your XML sitemapHTML Improvements – this highlights a range of issues including duplicate or missing meta tagsCrawl errors - Identifies broken pages such as 404 errors – sometimes caused by deleted pages that weren’t redirected Find out if Google has penalised your siteDisavow – links that may be harming your site
  • On-site Optimisation – everything you can change on a sitevery important part of any SEO campaign
  • There are many benefits of having a single domainsearch engines treat subdomains as separate domainsIf you place blog on subdomain, not helping your main siteGoogle recommends link-worthy content is placed in subfolders - /blog
  • Important to use a simple URL structureBoth the same page – bottom one easy to rememberEasier for Google to crawl Try to keep URL structure flatKeyword in URL - makes it more relevant Make sure you have done some keyword researchMap your keywords to each of your pages then, optimise
  • Meta Title - still one of the main ranking factorsInclude one or two keywords – plus brandunder 70 charactersMeta Description – not a ranking factor but helps with click-through rateUnder 156 charactersInclude keywords – these appear in bold when they match the search query used
  • Add mapped keywords to the contentExample: Vacuum cleaners category page use the term ‘vacuum cleaners’ naturally to describe the category
  • Add your keyword to the page title and within your breadcrumbs
  • Add your keyword to the product titles and in the alternative text on product images
  • Which all makes up a page that looks like this
  • Off-site SEO is more about how other websites interact with your site,till mainly about links, which can pass link-juice from the linking source.
  • Links have been an important part of SEO for many yearsThey help search engines to gauge site popularityLink building has changed as google has evolved Panda & Penguin – tackle spam
  • Forum and blog comments – linking from name using keywords as name
  • Article submission – submitting articles with to several article sites
  • Adding details of a site to low quality directories
  • Create the best content on your site and other relevant sitesCompetitor research - You can learn a lot from your competitorsUseful to understand who is linking to them - for what reasonsLink Reclamation – process of finding broken links to your site and updating or redirecting
  • Sam Gooch - The fundamentals of a healthy website

    1. 1. #whiteexchange Sam Gooch Digital Consultant samgooch whitedotnet
    2. 2. #whiteexchange THE FUNDAMENTALS OF A HEALTHY WEBSITE whitedotnet
    3. 3. #whiteexchange 1.TECHNICAL 2.ON-SITE 3.OFF-SITE whitedotnet
    4. 4. #whiteexchange WHAT IS SEO? whitedotnet
    5. 5. #whiteexchange WHAT IS SEO? “SEO is the practice of building & marketing a website so that it’s discoverable and generates relevant visitors via the search engines” whitedotnet
    6. 6. #whiteexchange PILLARS OF SEO SEO Technical Content Links whitedotnet
    7. 7. #whiteexchange TECHNICAL SEO CRAWLING whitedotnet
    8. 8. #whiteexchange TECHNICAL OPTIMISATION whitedotnet
    9. 9. #whiteexchange XML SITEMAP /sitemap.xml whitedotnet
    10. 10. #whiteexchange ROBOTS.TXT Welcome to whitedotnet
    11. 11. #whiteexchange SITE ARCHITECTURE Every page should be within three clicks of the homepage. 0 Home 1 2 3 whitedotnet
    12. 12. #whiteexchange REDIRECTS whitedotnet
    13. 13. #whiteexchange DUPLICATE CONTENT Which version should be indexed? And what happens to the links pointing to non-indexed versions? URL Parameters Trailing Slash Printer Friendly URL www vs non-www whitedotnet
    14. 14. #whiteexchange WEBMASTER TOOLS whitedotnet
    15. 15. #whiteexchange WEBMASTER TOOLS       Submit and check a sitemap Links pointing to your site HTML Improvements Crawl errors Manual Actions Disavow whitedotnet
    16. 16. #whiteexchange ON-SITE OPTIMISATION whitedotnet
    17. 17. #whiteexchange DOMAIN & SUB-DOMAINS www. inside. tools. blog. whitedotnet
    18. 18. #whiteexchange URLS Single domain, no subdomains Shallow folder structure, easy to understand, and remember whitedotnet
    19. 19. #whiteexchange META TAGS Meta Title Meta Description whitedotnet
    20. 20. #whiteexchange KEYWORD TARGETED CONTENT whitedotnet
    21. 21. #whiteexchange KEYWORD IN PAGE TITLE + BREADCRUMBS whitedotnet
    22. 22. #whiteexchange KEYWORD IN PRODUCT TITLE + ALT ATTRIBUTE whitedotnet
    23. 23. #whiteexchange PRODUCT PAGES Keyword rich URL Keyword in the Breadcrumb & Page title Keyword mentioned in title tag Keyword targeted content Keyword in the product title and image alt tag whitedotnet
    24. 24. #whiteexchange OFF-SITE OPTIMISATION whitedotnet
    25. 25. #whiteexchange LINKS whitedotnet
    26. 26. #whiteexchange FORUM COMMENTS SPAMMED! whitedotnet
    27. 27. #whiteexchange ARTICLE DISTRIBUTION SPAMMED! whitedotnet
    28. 28. #whiteexchange LOW QUALITY DIRECTORIES SPAMMED! whitedotnet
    29. 29. #whiteexchange LINK BUILDING IN 2013 whitedotnet