This week marks the 10th year I’ve been doing this show. For some reason, no one has brought cake.
I’ve been working with a blogger and we’ve gotten her site to the first page of Google. Our new challenge is to get her to the number one spot. She’s already put a lot of work into cleaning up the site. I suggested she clean up her index, since she found hundreds of pages indexed that didn’t need to be. When you do this, look for duplicate categories, duplicate pages, plugins that aren’t working right, or pages that lead away from your site (hacked pages). Once you find them, either remove these pages or block the links.
The next step is to make sure your key phrase is positioned correctly. It has to be in the title, in the URL, and in the H1 title (make this the only H1 on the page). All of these spots should be as early as possible on the page.
After you’ve cleaned up your site as much as possible, it’s the little tweaks that propel it to the top. Write blog posts, but with an eye toward SEO. Use two H2 headings with the key phrase in each. Each post should run around 500 words. Add the key phrase from three to five times in the text. Sometimes it’s hard to put the exact keyword in while making sense, so use logical variations if you need to. Add a photo to each post, and use the key phrase in the alt tag. Link your key phrase a few times to other pages on the site.
After that, use the Google search console to check internal and external links. Clean those up if need be. The result should be a rise up the ranks, but it won’t be overnight. Watch for about a week, then do more work to tweak it if necessary.
Jim Stewart is a leading expert in search engine optimisation. His business StewArt Media has worked with clients including Mars, M2 and the City of Melbourne.