SEO Requirements

Page Text (Copy), H1 Tag, Meta Descriptions, Title, Image Name (File Name), Alt Text (Images), File Name


SEO Requirements


Search Engine Optimization can be rather complicated when you’re first starting out. There are a number of components that can seem downright intimidating for beginners, but once you become more familiar with the best practices involved in all aspects of SEO, you’ll be much better off. Soon, you’ll be able to think about your SEO process as just a basic maintenance activity for your website and business.

To get to that point, there are a few criteria you should focus on meeting when crafting your SEO process, including the length of your HTML codes, characters used and keyword density. These guidelines will help ensure that your attempts to increase your traffic and click-throughs will be effective.

Page Text (Copy)


Page text (or the web copy) is the meat and potatoes of your website. Without, you really have no way of keeping people interested. This includes the various articles or blogs you’ve posted, the About Us page, the product descriptions or whatever it is that your specific website provides to visitors. To have proper page text for your SEO campaign, you need to make sure that the content is:

SEO Requirements

Quality

SEO Requirements

Current

SEO Requirements

Quick

SEO Requirements

Useful

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SEO Requirements

H1 Tag

If you’re entirely new to the SEO game, it’s important to note that the terminology used for the many different facets of your campaign are important to pay attention to. The H1 tag essentially allows you to create the header for your website. This is demarcated by <h1> in your actual HTML code, and is used to increase your keyword exposure in a search engine’s algorithm.

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SEO Requirements

Meta Descriptions

You know that little blurb of information found under a search engine’s result links on Google or Bing? It tells you a little bit about what the website contains, and generally has your search words in bold to help you see if the content is actually relevant in the context that you need it. That’s the meta description.

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SEO Requirements

Page Title

Page title is defined as a specific HTML code that is arguably the most crucial aspect of your website’s HTML. Even if you have no interest in understanding how HTML works or the unique language involved, you have to know that without a <title> section in your page’s code, you will not have a page title. When someone looks for your information, they may see your meta description, but that link will read “Untitled.” That’s not a great way to get clicks, right?

SEO Requirements

Image Name (File Name)

 

SEO Requirements

Alt Text (Images)

 

Page File Name (URL)


Page file names are very important for both maintaining the organization and maintenance of your site, as well as crucial to your SEO results. What is most important here is that your page file name essentially matches up with your URL and contains keywords. It’s much more appealing to have a cohesive page file name process, so that all of your webpages end in a similar fashion, i.e. www.books.com/about-us, www.books.com/blog, etc. Whatever your keyword analysis indicates, you should incorporate as many keywords as you can while also explain what the page is about.

Page Text (Copy)

Page text (or the web copy) is the meat and potatoes of your website. Without, you really have no way of keeping people interested. This includes the various articles or blogs you’ve posted, the About Us page, the product descriptions or whatever it is that your specific website provides to visitors. To have proper page text for your SEO campaign, you need to make sure that the content is:

  • Quality
  • Current
  • Quick
  • Useful

Your SEO efforts will be entirely useless if your web copy is subpar. People don’t want to read poorly written filler text; they want text that will answer their questions and give them something to think about in a quick and concise way. This is also the most important place to use your keywords (as needed). What you should focus on, however, is providing the right content that just so happens to contain keywords, rather than fitting your content around as many keywords as possible. Both Google (and other search engines) and your site visitors can tell when you’re trying too hard.

Length

At least 1,000 words are optimal for the best SEO results, but sometimes less is best to accommodate keywords and to convey the necessary message.

Keyword Density (KD)

3% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. 1% KD is the minimum.

H1 Tag

If you’re entirely new to the SEO game, it’s important to note that the terminology used for the many different facets of your campaign are important to pay attention to. The H1 tag essentially allows you to create the header for your website. This is demarcated by <h1> in your actual HTML code, and is used to increase your keyword exposure in a search engine’s algorithm.

It’s important to remember that the title tag of your page is entirely different. Web developers use H1 tags to ensure that keywords are placed in every possible facet of the HTML code, and also because Google and other search engines are notorious for not using the specified title tags. Making sure you have a great H1 tag means that search engines are more likely to use what you want them to use as your headline in the results pages. To create an appropriate H1 tag, keep in mind the following:

  • Make sure there is only one H1 tag per page
  • Keep it short and simple
  • Keywords always go first!

Second to the <title> tag, the <h1> tag is where Google and other search engines will scan the most to find out exactly what content the website holds. If you want to attract attention, use a proper <h1> tag that both attracts the reader and the search engine. If you can please both, you’ll experience an increase in click-throughs.

Length

Most search engines cut you off at 55 to 65 characters. Just make sure to use good web design so that it looks good.

Keyword Density

100% keyword density is optimal.

Meta Descriptions

You know that little blurb of information found under a search engine’s result links on Google or Bing? It tells you a little bit about what the website contains, and generally has your search words in bold to help you see if the content is actually relevant in the context that you need it. That’s the meta description. While many web developers don’t think it’s necessarily relevant to your SEO because it doesn’t contain many keywords (because search engines highlight only what the user searches for), it is still a vital aspect to the whole SEO picture. It’s important to note that you need a meta description for every page on your website that is different in some way. Always use your keywords, but only as necessary and don’t overfill it just to get more hits. Meta descriptions are more for the user than for the search engine, so keep in mind the many ways you can attract a visitor, including:

  • Highlighting what your site offers (a solution, an action, etc.)
  • Being descriptive (allowing users to decide if the content is relevant)
  • Using your words (don’t just keyword stuff it)

Give your website the best chance of being found by using the meta description (within the recommend bounds below) to increase your chances that a user will find your content relevant to their search. Your meta description is still your best bet to winning over a user after they’ve reached your link on the results page.

Length

150 characters maximum because, generally, search engines ignore anything over that.

Keyword Density

50% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. 30% KD is the minimum.

Page Title

As mentioned before, titles are entirely different from headers and H1 tags. While, in most circles, headers and titles are nearly synonymous, this is not the case in SEO practice. Page title is defined as a specific HTML code that is arguably the most crucial aspect of your website’s HTML. Even if you have no interest in understanding how HTML works or the unique language involved, you have to know that without a <title> section in your page’s code, you will not have a page title. When someone looks for your information, they may see your meta description, but that link will read “Untitled.” That’s not a great way to get clicks, right? When crafting the perfect <title> tag, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

  • The most important keywords go first
  • Avoiding keyword repetition
  • It is helpful to include your business name at the end (if it’s for your business)
  • Use only text characters, not symbols like ! or & or ;
  • Use only unique page titles for each page

You can’t underestimate the importance of a <title> tag. While obviously having great content and a beautifully laid out website is crucial to your success, the reality is that if you forget a well-written <title> tag, you’re not going to get click-throughs.

Length

65 characters are the stated maximum, but some sources show a maximum of 55 characters.

Keyword Density

50% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. 30% KD is the minimum. 40% KD is also acceptable.

Image Name (File Name)

As you begin to get more comfortable with your SEO practices, you will also come to understand that File Naming Convention (FNC) is something with which you will become intimately familiar. This is the system by which you name files for your website is also an important way to increase your SEO. By using keywords in your filenames when naming your images, you increase your SEO yet again. Basically, having a specific system for your image names will help increase your SEO and your efficiency in updating content on your website. You want to use keywords and descriptive words, and eliminate the fluff, like “the” and “a.” There are a couple of other things you should keep in mind as you’re developing a process for image names:

  • Do not shorten or abbreviate words, use only the full term (“dem” instead of “democratic”)
  • Do not date your files, as that pushes them back in search engine results
  • Use hyphens (-) instead of underscores (_)
  • Be short and concise while also being thorough
  • It is great to have matching filenames and URLs (or at least coordinating ones)

Once you develop a process for naming your files, it will become a lot easier to keep track of your pages, your images, and the general file flood that comes with running a website. Not only will you be well organized, but you’ll also be boosting your SEO as well.

Length

150 characters are maximum that should be used (as parsed by Google), but that is very high and should only be used in limited circumstances. For SEO purposes, we should limit length to the number of keywords needed to minimize character use in image names.

Keyword Density

100% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. In cases of technical limitations, 50% KD can be used.

Alt Text (Images)

Alt text is basically the process of fitting the most description of an image as is physically possible. Note: It’s about fitting the most description in, not about stuffing the filename full of keywords. Alt text is used to increase SEO, obviously, as it can include keywords and crucial descriptors that search engines can “crawl” and use in their algorithms. However, alt text is also used to describe an image in the event that a page doesn’t load, or if a person is visually impaired. It’s a great way to ensure that at least someone knows the context of an image on your website. This is also probably one of the longest descriptions in SEO because it is so incredibly important to make sure that it describes exactly what the image is. This is also a way of keeping you honest; you don’t want to lie about your image (of pumpkins) by saying it’s something that gets more hits (like kittens) just to get click-throughs. When you’re crafting your alt text, consider the following:

  • Short descriptions are best, so cut out fillers like “the” and “and”
  • Use proper keyword density, beware to not overstuff it
  • Use the page name or website name in there if you can
  • If you’re filling in a product image, describe it as accurately as possible (and be honest)

Length

200 characters is the maximum that should be used (as parsed by Google), but that is very high and should only be used in limited circumstances. For our SEO purposes, we should limit length to the number of keywords needed to minimize character use in image alt text.

Keyword Density

100% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. In cases of technical limitations, 50% KD can be used.

Page File Name (URL)

Page file names are very important for both maintaining the organization and maintenance of your site, as well as crucial to your SEO results. What is most important here is that your page file name essentially matches up with your URL and contains keywords. It’s much more appealing to have a cohesive page file name process, so that all of your webpages end in a similar fashion, i.e. www.books.com/about-us, www.books.com/blog, etc. Whatever your keyword analysis indicates, you should incorporate as many keywords as you can while also explain what the page is about. Keep the following in mind as you decide on your FNC for your page names and URLs:

  • Keep it as short as possible
  • Use keywords at the beginning
  • URLs need to match up with your page name
  • Separate words with hyphens (-) not underscores (_)

Length

Character limit is not important as long as the entire file name is a keyword phrase that is being targeted, with individual words separated by hyphens.

Keyword Density

100% KD is optimal to get enough keywords for Google to parse. In cases of technical limitations, 50% KD can be used.

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