SEO Checklist for New Websites
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Own a business? Then you must have a website.
Own a website? Then you must get the SEO done, so as to drive maximum traffic to your website.
Before you take your next step, pause for a moment. Do you have the knowledge and experience to pursue the SEO of your website?
You are struggling with the know-how of website SEO, aren’t you?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has become a hygiene factor today when it comes to building websites because the ultimate aim of any and every website is to generate maximum traffic.
But this basic SEO checklist is going to pave the way for your brilliant search engine performance. It is for the new website owners and also for those who want to watch their brand climb the rungs of the search page dramatically!
But before we deep dive into the checklist, let’s have some basics in place.
1. Not everything can be applied at one-go
2. Prioritizing the action items is the key
3. Define SMART goals at specific intervals of time and execute it 100%
4. Most important- BE PATIENT. Things will fall in place slowly and steadily.
Time to begin now!
1. The Prerequisites
Getting the sitemap created is important because it’s the sitemaps that instruct the search engines where to find the crucial content on
Apart from that having the Robots.txt file is important. It is a plain text file
that tells the search engine where they can and cannot visit on the website.
It is an amazing free tool offered to us by Google. All you have to do is, sign up and paste the code into the website.
Google Search Console
It is a powerful tool that allows us to track the performance in the search results. It also finds out the keywords ranking and guides us for further site-improvements.
2. Keyword Research Checklist
This is a target keyword whose selection is crucial.
The primary keyword is that keyword that has to appear on every single page of your website.
What is it for you? Invest time to choose the rightmost one for yourself.
Every person thinks and searches in a different fashion. But Google… It has always been a step forward for us all. Google ensures that 15% of the searches done by people are new and never searched before. This is where long-tail keywords come into the picture. Google autocomplete is where you can find these keywords based on your primary keyword.
Understanding the Search Intent
The user asks questions or searches for specific information. It rarely happens that we don’t get answered by Google. Understanding the user intent helps you rank your keywords the best.
Explore the questions people are asking
The specific questions that people have, must determine what information you are including in your content.
The “People also ask” section in the search results can be your primary guide.
Ensure that the ranking of your chosen keyword is an achievable goal
Initially you must target easier keywords which are practically in your reach. But how do you know if the key word is difficult to crack? It may include-
a) Several referring domains to the top-ranking pages
b) High URL Rating to the top pages
c) Big brand names that are in the top 10
3. On-Page SEO checklist
Keep them as short and as descriptive as possible. This is important because when the users come across this URL, they must get a clear picture of what they should be expecting to get once they click on it.
The Title Tag
Google judges click through rates on the search results to determine the ranking. Hence, for maximum people to click on your title, making the title attractive is mandatory.
Use of Primary Keyword in the Tags
If your tags have the keyword that the user has googled, it’s obvious that they are on the right page. This also helps increase your website’s chances of receiving links that people link to your page with the target keyword.
Linking to High Authoritative Sites
Web Pages that are linked to high authoritative websites rank higher because you are actually utilizing their traffic.
Linking to pages with SEO Anchor Text
Google considers the language used in the hyperlink. By internal linking with anchor text to a similar or relatable page, you are directing Google about the content.
Images with Alt Tags
By including target keywords in the image alt tags help the website visitors to understand what the image is about just in case the image fails to load.
The Schema Markup
It helps the search engines to understand the content and affects the display look in the search results
4. Website Content Checklist
The Home page
Making your reader fall in love with your first page is like winning half the battle. Keep the introduction content crisp and convincing.
Using long-tail keywords gives remarkable SEO results. But make sure you are not overusing them.
Your website should have the content that your reader might be looking for, not the content that you want your readers to read. You just can stop your users from leaving your page if they don’t get what they are looking for.
5. Technical SEO checklist
Fix the Crawl Errors
Are you making Google’s life difficult by not being visible? If Google finds it difficult to view your content, gone is your SEO rank! Finding it at the right time and fixing it by using Google Search Console should be useful.
Speed and Quality
The loading time of your website needs to be as little as possible so as to keep your user engaged.
Because mobile phones are handy these days, most searches happen on mobile phones. Having your website pages mobile-optimized is hence highly essential.
Fix the Mess
Does your website have broken links, duplicate content, and bad redirects? It’s high time that you fix it.
There is a high risk for your website if it shows the ‘Not-Secured’ label before the URL of the website.
6. Off-Page SEO Checklist
Your competitors may have some back-linking done. It is a good thing for your website, because, if a particular site is linking to your competitor’s site chances are that it would link to yours as well.
Find out Unlinked mentions- Unlinked mentions are mere words, hence finding them and converting them to linked mentions is important.
7. Miscellaneous SEO Checklist
Mentioning or highlighting your brand page on your social media platforms works wonders.
SEO Audit and Re-audit
Conducting a manual audit every time is next to impossible. Using SEO audit tools is recommended if hiring an SEO professional to audit your website seems to be crucial.
This SEO audit checklist shall definitely help you in the long run. But, it is equally important to understand that optimizing your website isn’t a quick and easy task. It is an on-going process that lasts for a longer time span. However, what matters the most is to actually start the process somewhere.
If you can master your technical SEO checklist and on-page optimization, and make a difference to the right audience, you will win this game someday soon!
For a free Audit Report of your website, or any assistance related to your website SEO do get in touch with us today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I start SEO before my website is built or should I start it later?
It is recommended that the parameters of SEO should be included during the design phase of the website. A few key indicators for a high performing website are load speed, navigation, etc.
Is WordPress the best fit for SEO?
WordPress goes well with not only Google but all other search engines. Armed with several themes and plugins for SEO, it is also very fast. Also, it is easy to learn, secure and mobile-friendly.
How should I do the keyword research?
It has to begin with creating a list of relevant topics to your business. Further, you must identify keywords for the listed topics based on the research of search results. You must also check for longtail keyword variations. Ultimately, narrowing down your keyword list using Google AdWords Keyword Planner would play a vital role.