Top 10 SEO Tips When Starting a New Website

The following SEO tips are not necessarily in order of importance, but are in the order you should consider when building a new website from scratch.

  1. Know your geographic market and ensure your domain has the correct TLD.
    If your primary market is the UK it is important to use a .UK TLD and ideally have your domain hosted on UK based servers.
  2. Include keyword in Domain name (using hyphens if necessary).
    This doesn’t mean having a domain name like keyword-keyword-keyword-keyword.com try to stick to the one hyphen and not read as spammy. A good example is a site that sells wheelchair ramps with the URL of the site being www.wheelchair-ramps.co.uk
  3. Create as much content about your products or subject as you can.
    After doing this divide in to 4 or 5 sections (this will help later when creating your navigation structure)
  4. AFTER you have your site content start keyword researching
    There are tools you can use for keyword research; Wordtracker and The Google AdWords Keyword Tool to name but two. I personally use a combination of the Google Keyword Tool, Google LSI and T.J. Common Sense.
  5. Decide on 4 or 5 primary keywords to use as main sub-sections
    Ideally have an idea of 4 or 5 main keywords, call them your Primary Keywords and then try to position secondary keywords with the Primary Word most closely associated with it.
  6. Sit down and sketch out your navigation system
    Put a lot of time in to this and play around until it is right, use Primary Keyword as headers for 5 main Sub-sections and use secondary keywords as headers for content pages under each Primary Keyword

    rough sketch of SEO Tips navigation structure

    The above diagram shows the early stages of constructing a navigation system. The green section (Sub-1) shows how all other sub sections will be. The Home page, All 5 Sub-section, About us, Terms, Contact, Privacy, Resources and Sitemap pages are always interlinked with each other forming 12 strong pages (more about this later)

  7. Re-write content using knowledge previously gained about keywords and phrases
    This doesn’t mean totally re-writing and stuffing the page with keywords, it requires writing paragraphs ensuring the right phrases are in the right places but isn’t obvious that the phrases are written for the search engines. Do not write too much information on each page and do not stray of in to writing about something else.
  8. Structure each individual page
    With your content rich, keyword balanced page written, you now have to create the page structure. Each page should be seen as an individual website.Starting from the top, Page title should reflect the content of the Page ensuring you use the primary keyword for that Page Meta keyword tags, (although not overly important), should list 4 or 5 individual keywords related to the Page you have created. Meta Description tags, this should be a short concise description describing what the Page is about. This is very important as a selling point as you can manipulate the search engines in to displaying this when the person searches for the keyword used in the description. A favourite of mine is “Provides information about the latest KEYWORD now in stock and available online” or words suitable for the product. Avoid bloated code by using external style sheets and minimum coding. Main page layout was previously discussed whilst sketching the navigation system, but it is important that all links are seen by the engines and are using the correct anchor text related to the pages they are pointing too. Avoid using javascipt for links and if you have to use images ensure you use the correct alt attributes. If the page has too many links on it and looks messy this can be overcome by using a combination of css and javascript to create drop down boxes, but should only be used if you know what you are doing. If you have the opposite problem, and want to include links on the page but not necessarily have search engines follow them, this can be achieved using drop down option boxes.With your general layout and your linking structure sorted you should now sort out your headings. The main page heading of the page should use your Keywords and be in H1 Tags, this should be followed by your most important paragraph, ideally working down the page you should use secondary headers from h2 to h4 (always using the keywords if possible)

    If you have used images on your page ensure keywords in the Alt attributes, this doesn’t mean keyword stuff them but just describe the image using the keyword.

  9. Proof read your completed page and get a 2nd opinion
    With your page completed try and get someone to check it for you to see if it reads to spammy and to see if you have missed out any obvious key phrases that should be on the page.
  10. Construct your site.
    With the previous procedure completed for all pages it’s now time to put the site together. Simply use the previously devised linking structure, group similar pages together under appropriate sub headings and ensure all links are active and using correct anchor text.