We were recently asked to help a company with their SEO. Their site had been ranking well but had then bombed, this rang an alarm bell. Furthermore, they stipulated that we needed to get them back onto page one for several competitive terms within one month of starting work......
Needless to say we politely turned down this opportunity but I fear their unrealistic expectations are not that unusual. Most days we receive at least one request for a free SEO review from a company with a new site who want to simply leapfrog everyone and sit at the top of Google as if it's their right to do so.
The problem with many of these sites is they've only considered SEO as an afterthought, this is not the best approach to web development. So what is?
Well in true web style here's a 'How to Build a Search Engine Friendly Website' list complete with a guide as to what's going to take the most effort, you might be surprised.
- Develop an understanding of your market and what people search for - Very Easy.
Do some keyword research and make use of the many free keyword tools.
- Develop a website the search engines can spider and index - Very easy.
There really is no reason not to build your site using technology the search engines can spider and index or put more simply, understand! This SEO check list should help you choose a system or ask your developer the right questions.
- Create content that's useful - Not so easy.
If you develop content that's useful people will link to you - probably - and your users will tell others about your site - very probably. Think about adding value to your online offering and differentiate yourself from the crowd.
- Secure meaningful links from quality resources - Hard.
Link building is a minefield and getting it right is hard. There are companies who will offer to secure x thousand links for a fixed fee and although I wouldn't advise using them sadly they do seem to work. When link building try and add value to the users of the sites from which you want links, that way the site owners may play ball.
- Keep doing it forever! - Very hard.
The online game isn't a set it and forget it environment. Get set for a long haul!