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What You Don't Know About SEO

What You Don't Know About SEO

By Erin Weinger | Entrepreneur Magazine

Quick-Start SEO

Think of Google, Yahoo, Bing and other search engines as customers, and each page of your site as a box. Your customers want to know what’s in the box, what shelf it’s on and the address of your store. Simple, right? Google lays out the nitty-gritty on best way to do that in a downloadable Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide as well as on its Webmaster Central pages. But here are some quick-start tips.

Find it. Every page of your website has an address, or URL. When possible, keep the address short and clean—without equal signs, punctuation characters or underscores—and use detailed keywords that are relevant to the page. So example .com/buy-blue-hats-on-sale is better than example .com/cgi-bin/gen.pl?id=4&view=blue_hats_are_on_sale

Flatten it. All pages need to link to one another—but you want to keep things as “flat” as possible, meaning that each page can be accessed with only one or two mouse clicks.

Name it. You might overlook the title bar atop each browser window, but search engines don’t. Give each page a concise, unique, keyword-driven title. If you sell knit beanies, don’t title your page “Keep your head warm.”

Explain it. In the description field, enter a few sentences about the content of that page. Think of it as the text in a catalog. What makes your blue beanies special? Are they alpaca wool?

Map it. Your customers would really love to have a map to all the boxes in your store, called an XML site map. Don’t know XML from an X-Box? No worries. There are plenty of software programs that can do the job.

Tag it. You’d be confused if this article didn’t have a headline, right? Without an h1 heading tag on each page of your website, search engine crawlers have trouble understanding content, too.


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