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SEO Guide

 

The goal of search engine optimization is to create a page with a specific content focus, then describe the content so accurately that search engines know exactly what your page is about.

When people look for what your page is about, the search engine is more likely to return your page as a search result.

Meta tags are small pieces of data that tell search engines and searchers what a page is about. The text in these tags is not displayed on the page itself, but does show up in the search results listing about the page.

Page Title, URL Page Name, and Page Description – Each of these elements plays a role to help search engines find your page, or help a searcher decide whether to view your page.

The page title tells search engines what the page is about, and is the first line in the search result. A well-written title will help a page rank better and increase the click-through rate.  Ideally it will:

  • Be fewer than 65 characters and spaces
  • Include the keyword, starting within the first 10 characters
  • Use all of the words in the keyword in exactly the same order as used in the keyword

It is important to use your keyword in the URL. Searchers are far more likely to click on your listing if they see the keyword in the URL. Best practices include:

  • Between 30 and 115 characters and spaces
  • Use the keyword once
  • Use the words in the same order as in the keyword

The page description is what searchers see in the search results when your page is shown in the listings. It doesn’t impact the ranking itself, but a well-written description is extremely important in convincing searchers to choose your listing over others.

  • Up to 150 characters and spaces
  • Use the keyword just once
  • Use the words in the same order as in the keyword

A keyword is the word (or phrase) you want searchers to use to find your page. It should clearly identify what your page is about.

  • Choose a keyword that:
    • Represents your content well
    • A majority of searchers are likely to use
  • Your keyword can contain more than one word
  • If your keyword contains several words, the order in which you use the words matters. For example, 'symptoms of diabetes' is not the same as 'diabetes symptoms', and returns different rankings
  • Do the research to discover likely keywords. Drill down in social media, do a survey, and/or use a keyword research tool such as the Google Adwords Keyword Planner.
  • Understand who your ideal reader is, and use the same natural language and terms as they do
  • Don’t use more than one keyword (or phrase)
  • For more background on keywords, visit this Google page.
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