The Best SEO Checklist for 2020
How do you optimize your site for the Search Engines?
SEO & Search Engine Optimization is a term many of you are familiar with but may not fully understand it. Some of you do understand it and are always looking for things you can learn to incorporate into your own marketing strategy. This article isn’t about beating any algorithms, as they are consistently changing their own rules, this is about understanding the foundation and fundamentals of data. And this is evergreen.
This guide will give you the perfect foundation for all things SEO. Make these things below part of your website maintenance plan and you will be ahead of the game in your niche.
This article contains the Best Practices every website owner must incorporate today into their SEO Strategy.
Please don’t forget to give this article a love or a like and a comment and let me know how you feel about it.
SEO Terms & Definitions
What is Meta Data? – Meta data is a set of data that describes and gives information about other data.
What is SEO? Search Engine Optimization is a term used for ways to better optimize your sites so that the search engines can deliver you to those looking for you…fast.
SEO Checklist for Businesses & Personal Brands
- Keyword Research. If you want your site to come up for something, you have to do some keyword research and get an idea of different ways people search for what you offer. You will be able to use that research to develop content and develop the structure of your site. One simple Free keyword research tool to use is simply Google auto-suggest. But there are so many, I will link an article I did that includes some.
- Google My Business – If you are a business, whether brick and mortar or online, if you want google to rank you, you have to get on the map. Setting up your Google my business listing is the way. Not the best way, not one of the ways…. THE Way. Google is king because over 75% of online searches are run through their search engine, that’s why it has become a VERB.
- SEO Title – The Linked Title is what users see in the search results if your page comes up in a search. This also appears on your top tab. Answer this, What is your site about?, What benefit does it offer?, What “Answer” does it give? Think about those questions and along with keyword research you have done and you can be more intentional with your page titles.
- SEO Page Description – This is the description that tells google what that page is about and is what users will see in the search results when your page comes up.
- Permalink – a short and simple permalink which search engines can use to index your site can help maximize your SEO, aka the page’s URL.
- Load time -Part of your SEO strategy needs to incorporate load time. Ideal load time on mobile devices is 1-2 seconds… If your site takes longer than 3-5 seconds to load, you will lose people and have a large drop off rate. In today’s world, people want speed and if your site takes long to load.. They are out.
- Image File Sizes – What affects load time the most? The size of your file. High resolution images use a lot of bandwidth. The size of the images you are uploading to it needs to be as small as you can without losing quality. No images should be greater than 1 meg. So you need to make that you make and save a smaller file version of your images for your website.
- File Types: Save your files as JPEGs instead of PNG, they are smaller in file size.
- Image File Name: The name of the file is just as important. Name the file something relevant to the image and what your context is about. If you have some unnamed images on your site, go back when you can and re-upload or rename them.
- Image Meta Description: Most people skip this, but it should be part of your strategy. Don’t just upload your images, take a few seconds to put in a description for them. This really is important and helps your SEO.
- Relevant Images – Make sure that part of your strategy includes using good images, preferably unique images that you took to depict the story, message and the solution you solve for people. If they are stock, just make sure they make sense in the context you are using them.
- Clean Up Un-needed Plugins. If you downloaded plugins into your site and don’t use them anymore, don’t just deactivate them, delete them out. This is taking up space and can cost you load time.
- Clean Out Old Site Copies, if you have made 80 updates & changes to your site, and you already have a clean backup. Delete the old copies and free up resources for faster load time.
- Site Pages & SERPS can be their own landing pages when created and optimized properly. Don’t just think about driving people to the front page, people may find your site through SERPS, or other optimized pages on your site. You can create quality content to answer specific questions and needs for your clients and just like the main page of your site; the title, description, permalink and load time matter on every page including blog posts.
- Site Copy Plugin: Like a Yoast SEO – This can remind you that you can go back and tweak your content. Improve your writing and it’s understandability. And also interlink New or other articles that can expand on or is related to that article.
- Internal linking: Getting Backlinks is something that should also be part of your SEO Strategy, however they are not so simple & quick to get. Backlinks are when other sites are linking back to you. The more credible the site that is linking to you the higher google thinks of you too. And google will assume that article you wrote is valuable. But getting backlinks isn’t a small feat and it’s not always easy. Interlinking is what I’d like to talk about here, Interlinking keeps people on your site. Interlinking is linking one article within another when you need to expand on something or want to the reader to have more content to expand on their insight and stay on your website longer. Which tells google you must be saying some good stuff.
- Clean Code – Make sure there are no extra spaces or gaps in your code. If you are not familiar with code, you may need a professional here so you don’t screw anything up.
- Quality Content. Making sure that you are writing quality content that is written in a way that your audience understands it. Let it be informative, educational and written well.
- Update frequently. Considering also that you should have new content coming into your website consistently, your front page vibe should be refreshed every few-ish.
It’s not always easy to create a perfect article or site the first time around. So don’t beat yourself. But do understand the importance of putting out quality content that is relevant to your brand message and can answer the call to what your audience is searching for. Remember it’s always a great idea to go back into your old content and optimize it with some of these things.
I call this a website maintenance plan because this is never a 1 and done. These things need to constantly be monitored, massaged and updated as needed. Which is why many Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses hire a local Marketing Agency like myself.
But if you do enjoy doing this kind of stuff, I hope you learned some new ideas and tips you can do for your own site or client’s site today.
Let me know your thoughts on this SEO article and if you found it valuable please leave a Love or a comment.
Here’s to business and to our success,
Sandra Noemi Torres
Marketing & Business Strategist, Technology Coach and empty nester.
Text your name & “SEO” to 954-676-4046 to receive invites on Digital Marketing, and Virtual events you can join online.
Please Follow me at Sandra Noemi Torres