Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Simple SEO - What your Title Tags Say About You

There are many out there who say that there’s no such thing as simple SEO, that SEO is a kind of dark art (and when you take into account the term ‘black hat SEO’) you might well think it is, and that unless you’re paying a fortune to have your Search Engine Optimisation done for you, you won’t get it right.

On some levels SEO can be complicated, but the groundwork is simple, and you can choose to have the work done by someone else, or do it yourself, but the most basic part of optimisation should be well known by all – that of making sure your title tags work correctly, as without this you are limiting the possiblity of being found in Search – or you’ll be paying another fortune for Adwords, thinking it’s the only option.

There are many aspects to simple SEO – and for those who are currently talking to a developer or considering a new website design, make sure that you will have control over the meta data (your title tags and descriptions) that go into the back end of your website.  Too often I find that developers set up new sites without considering the ongoing keyword research and writing of meta data that will need to be carried out and making it easy for the client to have access and update. Or they’re looking for extra work after the site is completed – please don’t get me on that one.

If you have not yet tackled your on-site SEO and you’re not sure how, please contact me at phd@thesiteguide.com for questions to ask your developer and a few simple tips.

Back to what your Title Tags say about you.  Well written title tags make sense to browser and search engine alike.  They need to be relevant, unique and readable, and they will contain no more than two, most probably one, well researched keyword or phrases.

It’s easy to spot well optimised websites from the basic title tag construction which should follow through from categories to sub categories to products and other landing pages.  Well written title tags say that you understand the basics of SEO (and what Google, putting the rest aside for a moment, is looking for).  Title tags that are not well constructed indicate a lack of understanding of their importance.  But listen up…

A website without well written title tags is like a closed door.  It will not be found in Search without large amounts of money being spent on advertising.  And then it will not be found in natural Search, which is free.  And most likely, if you don’t have well written title tags you won’t have optimised the rest of  your website.  There’s a simple hierarchy to SEO.  Start with your title tags first and then work through the rest and  you’ll start to see results.

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