How Your Website Should Be Designed To Deliver Good Results
Organic listings refer to Search Engines naturally discovering your site and giving it a ranking according to how well it stands up as a good information source. If your site is regarded as a good and relevant information source, the search engine may display you in its search results.
How Search Engines Work
When people use search engines (Google, NineMSN, Yahoo etc), they type in a 'search term' (or 'query'). The search engine looks through its listings and spits back the most appropriate web content to the search engine user (with a link to the sourced website). Your goal is to have the search engine list your site highly in its results for relevant searches.
Search engines regularly crawl the internet for all types of content - they will eventually arrive at your site and "take notes", you could say. They'll observe your content and website structure. They may make a note of visiting your site again. On return they may get more information about your site. Ideally, they will start 'crawling' your site regularly.
When considering what results to give the searcher, the search engine will review the websites that it has visited and provide results according to a number of factors. These factors are raised below.
How Search Engines Rank Websites
The ways that search engines rank websites have always been evolving. Search Engines and Website Designers have played cat and mouse for a number of years now. However, the points below indicate where search engines now place their focus. These points incorporate factors that are difficult for Web Designers to manipulate or 'cheat', and as such Search Engine Optimisation is tending to 'settle down' in it's evolving nature, providing a fairer assessment of 'good website content'. These points are not in order of importance.
- how long this website has existed
- the amount of quality content found on the site
- how well the website content matches the search terms
- the presence of keywords in appropriate places
- how well the site conforms to SEO expectations, standards and regulations
- the number of external websites that link to your site
- how long users stay on your site
- the number of users that visit your site
- the reputation of the website
- competition for your keywords
How Your Website Should Address These Factors
Ref: 1 How long this website has existed
Over time your website will receive more weighting in search results.
Ref: 2 The amount of quality content found on the site
As a general rule the more content, the better. Your website will employ easy-to-follow links and an XML Site Map that search engines use to find pages of content in your site. But there's a balance: content should relate to your keywords to a degree, and you don't want to provide content that is obtrusive or overwhelming for site visitors (do what's best for your visitors first and foremost). It's wise to place large amounts of content out of the main way, but in a way that it can be found if desired. Your website menu can be categorised to several levels, giving you you the opportunity to subtely provide larger content areas if you wish - without overloading the visitor. Search engines find these links easy to follow. The supplied menus in your site have been selected specifically for their 'friendliness' with search engines.
The idea of 'quality content' refers to content that doesn't consent to Black Hat SEO tactics.
Ref: 3 How well the website content matches the search terms, and
Ref: 4 The presence of Keywords in appropriate places
These two points were placed in bold in the list above because your website will focus on several features that address these factors. Websites designed for good SEO results will provide strong support for these two factors.
When assessing how well somebody's search terms match a website's content, search engines place weighting on different aspects.
Search engines value keywords in the following ways (roughly in order of importance).
1 Presence of keywords In your domain name
www.estuaryfishing.com will be given priority when users are searching for information related to 'fishing'. Acquiring a domain name that is directly related to your keywords is difficult today. Many of the popular domain names are taken.
2 Presence of keywords in your URLs
www.yourdomain.com/estuary-fishing.htm may also be given priority in search results when users are searching for 'fishing'. Creating URLs that reflect the content of a page is not often easy for website owners. Keywords appearing in URLs often reflect the content in the page and are, therefore, weighted highly. Your website will automatically display the name of your page, the name of the product or product category in its URL, saving you time while delivering great SEO results.
3 Presence of keywords in your "page titles"
The page titles refers to hidden code that tells your browser what title to use for a page's title. Search engines look at the keywords in the page title. Page titles in your website are automated and editable.
4 Presence of keywords in your "page description"
Page description refers to hidden code that tells your browser what title to use for a page's description. Search engines look at the keywords in the page description. Page descriptions in your website are automated and editable.
5 Presence of keywords in your page headings, and appropriate use of page headings
When creating your own content, you'll be able to allocate 'heading tags' for appropriate content. Search engines favour keywords that are placed in heading tags. Heading tags force your to place text on it's own separate line, and headings are mostly larger than the surrounding text. Your products will be laid-out with this in consideration. Product titles and descriptions will use heading tags automatically.
6 Presence of keywords in your page content
You'll have control over your page content and product descriptions. You can use keywords throughout your content, and of course, this can be edited as often as you like by using the content management system.
7 Presence of keywords in the titles of images and links
Where images are present in your products and categories, they'll automatically possess extra tags related to the product or category name that can be useful for SEO. Tags contained in links will automatically be included, and again search engines value these in assessing keyword relevance.
8 How well all of these aspects raised above match each other in their keyword usage.
On individual pages, the more that there is consistency between all of the aspects raised above, the better. your website will utilise this by repeating your keywords in each of the important areas above. Of course, a website can contain many pages of unrelated pages, which is fine, even favourable. But at a page-level it can be beneficial to have consistency of keywords in all these areas.
There's a lot to consider, and potentially a lot of work involved. However, Search Engine Optimisation strategists will often point out the importance of finding a website that can automate and support these processes, and in addition to that, provide flexibility in the future should your SEO goals shift, or if you want to refine them.
Your website completely supports this. It promotes automated, intelligent and proven SEO techniques aimed at providing you with excellent results. Your website also allows for on-going changes and maintence to your SEO approach.
Ref: 5 How well the site conforms to SEO expectations, standards and regulations
There are programming and coding standards that can aid search engines when they visit your site to "take notes". Your site will use coding methods that are considerate of these standards. There aren't any techniques employed that negatively impact on search engine rankings.
Ref: 6 The number of external websites that link to your site
We can supply you a few sites initially that link to your site, but ultimately this can be pursued as a job separate from the website build.
Ref: 7 How long users stay on your site
Some search engines may gather information about how long users are spending on your site. If users are spending longer periods on your site (say more than 20 seconds), your site may receive more weighting. The implication to search engines is that your website is a good resource relative to the keywords that were used to find it. Every step we take in developing your website, from planning, to design to functionality and keyword development, are steps that are aimed simply to provide your website visitors with a good website experience. The result is that users may spend longer periods of time on your site.
Ref: 8 The number of users that visit your site
A higher rate of hits to your website may also give you a greater weighting in search engines. This is a self-perpetuating cycle. The more users you get the more weighting you may receive, resulting in higher-ranked search results, and in turn, more visitors.
Ref:9 The reputation of the website on which it found results
Ref:10 Competition for your keywords
Websites can receive a bad reputation from search engines for Black Hat SEO tactics
such as spamdexing
(attempting to redirect search results to particular pages other than what the search results imply). 'Bad' sites may also have viruses or consent to malicious practices. Your website (of course) won't employ any of these tactics, and Elure doesn't consent to such practices.
Achieving good organic listings for the search term "fishing" would be very difficult. There are an enormous amount of competitors targeting popular words like this. More specific or targeted keywords may be easier to do well in. We can engage in separate processes, outside the normal build of your site, to establish the best keywords for your business.
Investing More In SEO Services
In a content managed website with good SEO facilties, an SEO specialist's job is made a lot easier. Some of their work becomes redundant or automated (or is able to be managed by yourself). One of the areas that is still very much relevant for SEO specialists is generation of keywords and content. Even still, this type of research and its implementation can extend into the thousands of dollars; but the results often surpass the investment.
Often it's the job of SEO specialists to "renovate" websites that don't employ the methodology outlined in this document; and, just like renovating a house, it can be very time consuming and very expensive. In some circumstances it's better to knock down and rebuild.
How Long Does It Take To Get Good Results
When it comes to SEO, there aren't many guarantees; it is a finicky business. However, it is likely that your site will begin showing results for some specific terms within a month of being launched. The months beyond that may see you achieve stronger results in more varied areas that relate to your keywords. As indicated in this document, the other contributing factors may determine how highly you appear in search engine results, but your website will provide a solid platform from which to achieve excellent rankings.