When people hear of an SEO audit, they usually think of online tools that analyze how well a website is working. Think Raventools, Moz, and SpyFu to name a few. I’m here to say these types of tools are important after you build a website.
Ahh, caught you attention, have I? Good. After a website is up and running using an SEO audit will evaluate a website’s dominance. The key phrase is… “after a website is built.”
What we are going to talk about today is our process to build your website with an SEO focus. Now that you see the difference, let’s get into the specifics.
First thing we do at Full Scope Creative is to work up a competitive analysis.
Thinking strategically with the above questions is a great starting point. It does require time spent researching your competition. For those of you not in the research mode, this could be painful. But it is part of understanding the overall picture. If you spend time on the competition’s website, it will show you…wait for it…their keywords.
Once you define the competitor’s keywords then it’s a matter of enhancing them on the website you’re building. This is something we have discussed in earlier blog. If the competition uses a main keyword 15 times, then you use it 25 to 30 times.
Another thing you need to pay attention to is, how lucrative is each keyword? Understanding this will help determine keyword use. A more profitable way to think about keywords would be: are the keywords difficult to search? According to Databox, “If you don’t make the effort to check the difficulty of the search term you’re trying to rank for, your SEO strategy is missing a major step.” https://databox.com/keyword-difficulty
Looking further at keyword difficulty is kind of like baking a cake. You can’t bake the cake without first gathering all the ingredients. If one ingredient is missing this could set off the whole consistency, texture, and taste. Keyword competition or SEO difficulty is technically the same. You want your keywords to consistently have great texture and taste.
Your keyword difficulty, (beyond cake baking), is determined by how hard it is to rank each keyword. Remember rankings run from 0 to 100. The lower the number shows how easy it is to rank for, and the higher scoring symbolizes more difficult keywords.
Uh-oh, now there’s a new term, keyword volume? What the heck?
If you have a keyword that is generic, then it will usually have a remarkably high search volume. A few blogs ago, we discussed search and ranking. If you plug in “pizza” hundreds of pizza stores will emerge. However, if you plug in, “Pizza in Green Bay,” the number drops by half. If you plug in “best pizza in Green Bay,” you’ll get the top 10 to 15.So, as you become more specific in naming the “right” keyword, it can be low search volume but a search volume that is worthwhile targeting.
This can be a good/bad thing. On the one hand if the short keyword is generic, it’s viewed thousands of times (or more). As you rein in the details, (i.e., medium, or long-tailed keywords), then the number of hits go down, but you have a more select group really wanting the “thing” you are offering.
The importance of keyword volume indicates its popularity. In fact, according to Ceralytics, (What is Keyword Volume and How is it Calculated? (ceralytics.com) They have a different take on keyword volume, they believe if “the keyword you pick doesn’t help you to understand the user’s problem, it may not be worth pursuing.”
The point is, if you want to hit high in the rankings, a “key” question is do/does your keyword(s) solve someone’s actual problem? I want pizza, not just any pizza, but the best pizza in Green Bay. Get me that, and I’m a happy camper and ready to recommend that product.
I could go on and on about this stuff, but by now your eyes are either glazing over or you are reaching for the phone to order up a pizza. So, let’s move on…
At Full Scope Creative we want to make sure we’ve done our homework before getting down to the coordination of the website. We become detectives and are look to see how the competition ranks in the following areas:
How many words? Our belief is if our competitors use X- number of words, we will double that amount.
How many images? The same is true here. If the competitor uses 10 images, we will double that and make sure the quality of the image is top-notch (We don’t believe in photo stock).
How many videos? Videos are always a wonderful way to sell a website. You need to think about video use as a marketing technique that takes it up a notch. Also, realize a video can be as little as 45 seconds, to get a point across.
How many testimonials? Testimonials are an excellent way to show your companies strength. As you include more endorsements into the website, you are building a trust-factor with the reader.
What about contact forms? It’s imperative to have a contact form on the home page. It will help to build your email audience. Once gathered you can easily turn this into a series of email sequences for sales, one-time-offers, etc.
Placement of contact forms. Are you putting your contact information into the header of the website? Where and how you use the placement of contact info, it extremely important. Remember, this is a gathering of information that will help you down the road.
Headings. This is a big one. Your main headline is also known as H1. It’s bigger in font and needs to grab attention. It should be descriptive enough to entice the reader to keep reading. It’s also your main theme. It will show how important it is, not only your reader, but for Google analytics. They love this stuff. Plus, if you use a keyword in an H1, Voila! You get a rankings boost. How cool is that?
Additional Heading tags. If Headlines are important then so are the subheads that follow. Appropriately assigned H2, H3, etc. For clarification, all heading tags have an HTML purpose. It’s that behind-the-scenes stuff that thankfully you don’t need to worry about but as a web developer something we pay attention to.
How many strong tags are used? First, you need to understand what we mean by tags. From the above reading you have already figured out that tags are related to headlines. A tag is a fancy way or “coding” which tells the SEO how to read your content.
A better way to explain what I am saying came from a GreenGeeks blog on html -tags-for-seo. In this article they explain: “When a search engine’s crawler comes across your content, it takes a look at the HTML tags of the site. This information helps engines like Google determine what your content is about and how to categorize the material.”
Think of it this way it’s the HTML way of tagging for SEO that determines how well your website will perform.
And there you have it. This is a basic starting point for you to understand what we, at Full Scope Creative, can and do for you and your business.
It’s our business to make you shine. Our belief is that if you don’t shine, we won’t either. Here’s to shiny beginnings.