Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an extremely critical practice is Web Development that should be taken seriously if a website is to be successful. However, SEO in Zimbabwe has not been taken seriously for some time now. That has to change for your website.
Here are 6 very useful steps to creating a killer campaign for SEO in Zimbabwe;
1. Keyword research
The most important thing in building a website and making it successful is understanding the business behind the website. Understanding the organization and its products. Ask yourself what your business is about? What is your product or service? This applies to every entity whether profit-making or not. This is so critical because it helps you find the perfect 'keywords' to optimize the website around.
One of the most important factors when choosing keywords around which a website is to be optimized is the relevance of the keyword. Do not ever optimize for irrelevant keywords. If you sell maputi, do not try and cheat Google by optimizing for 'presidential elections' just because it will get more traffic. It will hurt you, and you do not want to get hurt.
Popular keywords always win. Find out what exactly people are looking for and how they are looking for it on Google. When you know what people want and how they want it then you are on the verge of keyword success!
Here are a few useful tools that you can use for your keyword research:
- Google AdWords
- Google Trends
- SEMRush, Keyword Discovery, Yandex Wordstat,
- Google Search Console
- Google Analytics
2. Check your current website rankings
Before you take off check where you actually are. This helps in checking and evaluating campaign progress. Use your keyword research results to check how you fare up in the internet jungle. You might already be ranking high for some keywords. You will have to give focus and effort to the keywords for which your website does not do so well.
Now checking how you rank may seem like the simplest task but you have to be extremely careful not to oversimplify things. Ensure you are tracking for the right location, keywords, and the right search engines.
There is a host of both free and premium tools that can be used for rank tracking out there. Find one that works for you. A few examples of google ranking tools include Alexa, Page Rank Checker, and SEO PowerSuite just to name a few.
3. Find and fix issues
Onsite website issues like broken links or huge images are not good for your website. Optimize your site for great user experience, google keeps a close eye for the sort of user experience that you are offering. This is one of their ranking criteria and you need to take advantage of it.
There are a whole lot of issues that can easily escalate to SEO issues if not handled properly. Here are are some of the things to look out for;
- Meta tags
4. Clean landing pages improve visibility
Whenever google crawls a web page it tries to find out what that page is all about. In the same manner visitors to a particular web page do not want to second guess what a page is all about. It becomes extremely important that all landing pages on a site have to be as clean as can be. Let it be instantly clear what the page is all about.
- Determine what the page is about
- Create a relevant title tag
- Create a very clear meta description
- Create killer content, because the content is King!
- Ensure all images have the correct alt text
5. Kill Harmful links
Backlinks to your site signify your website's popularity and importance on the web. The more the merrier right? Wrong. A lot of junk links are everything else but useful. What your website needs is quality relevant links (please do not buy links, you will pay for it!). Get a complete list of all links to your website to find out how your site is interacting with the internet and other web pages.
A few steps to link auditing include:
- Find links to your site
- Assess the quality of links
- Get rid of dangerous links
6. Build new clean links
This is probably one of the hardest things to do and yet is totally worth it. Why is it worth it? Because backlinks remain one of the heaviest ranking factors in google.
Below are some steps to perform in building links:
- Adopt a link building strategy
- Find linking opportunities
- Get in touch with site with prospective links
Because SEO is an ongoing thing, it is important that you always keep an eye out for any development or changes. Keep up to date with what search engines are doing and what ranking factors changes are taking.
Just to sum it off, while this is a great guide you can follow always remember how easy it is to mess up your website's SEO. Make sure you know the technical implications of every single action you take when running and SEO campaign. If you are not sure alway remember to higher youself a professional.