January 25, 2010 – Everyone makes mistakes; even the pros. Sometimes, we get swept up in a big idea, only to overlook the small details that really make a huge impact. Say for instance, that you have developed a strong concept for a blog that will really highlight the strengths of your firm or small business and will serve to convert your readers.
Once you’ve created the content, how do you ensure that it nets the results that you desire? If that great web content isn’t presented in a well-crafted SEO package, it may not get picked up by the search engines, meaning you – and your message – won’t be found.
Even those of us who are skilled at writing and creating compelling web content can benefit from an occasional brush-up on basic SEO skills. In keeping with that idea, let’s take a look at some ways to avoid basic, but critical, SEO mistakes.
The Basic SEO Checklist
As you prepare to post that original and keyword-rich content, take a moment to review this quick SEO checklist, double-checking each of these basic page components:
- Title tag optimization for your homepage
- Meta tags and description
- Original title tags for every page
Write an Optimized Title For Your Homepage
The page title is one of the most critical pieces to being found by search engine. Every page on your blog or Website should have its own title tag, including your homepage.
You want the page title to use several of the key phrases that a web user might use when searching for information on your topic. For instance, let’s say that you are a Personal Injury attorney in Texas who specializes in child injuries and the page title for your blog’s homepage is “Personal Injury.” This is far too broad and unlikely to return the results that you want.
Likewise, avoid creative, but nonspecific title tags for your blog – for instance, “Facing The Challenges Of Injury.” These types of titles don’t tell the search engines, or your readers, if the content really relates to their search. Be specific in your page titles – for instance; “Texas Personal Injury – Child Injury Lawyers.”
Write Powerful Meta Tags
Does your meta tag for each page – including your homepage – give a succinct, optimized overview of what’s contained on the page? If not, rewrite it until it does. A meta tag needs to be short and sweet, typically no more than 160-200 characters. Anything beyond that is unlikely to be displayed on search pages.
A powerful meta tag should compel your reader to click on the link, so it needs to be focused and compelling. Think of the meta tag as the first opportunity to point quality users to your page. Grab their attention and convince them that useful content is just a click away.
Unique Page Titles or Headings for Every Page
Always give each new page, whether it is a blog or article, an original, unique page title. Every page on your site should have a title tag that clearly relates to the topic on that page. Again, avoid broad generalizations. If the topic at hand is “How to file a personal injury lawsuit after a child gets bitten by a dog,” don’t use a nonspecific title, such as “Types of Child Injuries.” Instead, use your selected keywords to clearly tell the search engines and reader what the page is about – for instance; “What if my child was bitten by a dog – Child Injury Lawyer.”
While this is by no-means an exhaustive list the SEO mistakes to avoid, think of it as a reminder to always consider how you can get the most SEO opportunity out of every page or blog post that you create.