Six Keys to Successful Industrial SEO: Part 2 – Onsite SEO
Most companies with a website today understand that keywords play some role in how well their site is ranked by Google when a search is conducted for their chosen keywords. However, the people who write the programs that allow search engines to index or “crawl” your site’s pages in order to determine where it should rank in search results are continually fine tuning and changing the way a site is ranked. Remember that in this context their customers are the “searchers.” Their priority is providing a list of websites that they think will most adequately provide the type of content the searcher is looking for.
There are four main areas to consider in on-site industrial SEO:
2. Title tags
3. Meta descriptions
4. Image alt text
Years ago, web content developers simply stuffed a site’s pages with the keywords that were relevant to that page of the site and that fit the keyword list they were given. Search engines have become much sophisticated when looking at a site’s content. The keyword strategy is still important; but rather than using the same keywords over and over, it is more important to use the keywords in a variety of ways that show the value and relevance of each page of your site. Keep these things in mind:
There is now something called a “long tail search,” which is basically a longer phrase that contains one of your chosen keywords. For example:
One person searches for: “ball valve supplier”
Another person looking for the same product uses a long tail search: “corrosive environment ball valve supplier in houston tx”
Search engines are now looking for site relevancy in the context of long tail searches; so it’s important when developing your site content that you not just focus on keywords; but also be sure to include uses of the keyword in “long tail” versions of how someone may search for that product or service.
It is also important that rather than using the exact same keyword over and over that you use related keywords. You have to put yourself in the minds of your potential customers. Different people refer to products, services, markets, and operating environments in different ways. Here are some examples:
[list style=”circle”]refining AND petrochem[/list]
[list style=”circle”]pump engineer AND rotating equipment engineer[/list]
[list style=”circle”]field services AND onsite services[/list]
[list style=”circle”]turnaround AND shutdown[/list]
[list style=”circle”]pre-engineering AND application engineering[/list]
[list style=”circle”]R&D AND pilot testing[/list]
[list style=”circle”]high temp application AND high temperature environment[/list]
When you start to think about all the possible variations, the task of writing content can seem overwhelming. The best approach is to write about each page’s topic in a natural way, letting keyword variations fall into place naturally. You can always go back do some tweaking in order to insert more variations on your keyword phrases.
The other 3 areas of importance in on-site SEO could be the responsibility of the web developer OR the content developer for the site. Meta tags are the broad term for all of the html tags contained in the invisible, coded areas of your website. Some are meant to draw the attention of search engine crawlers, while others are targeted more toward the searcher so he/she will click on the link to your website.
A title tag is exactly what you might think: a sentence of text that describes or “titles” each page of your website. It is the first thing a search engine looks at when analyzing your site’s content. Title tags should be approximately 70 characters, so make each character count!
For each page of your website, think about the most perfect keywords you can use to describe the content on that page, again, putting yourself in the shoes of the person who may be doing the searching.
Meta descriptions are not related to the content the search engines index. They are the text that appears underneath your link when your site is shown in search results. Writing good meta descriptions is critical. When was the last time you clicked on a site without reading the description beneath the link?
When writing meta descriptions for your page of content, think about what you need to say to entice a searcher to click over to your site. Again, consider keywords, but also make the text compelling, and if possible, include a call to action.
Another thing to keep In mind is that meta descriptions should not be more than 160 characters. Otherwise, your text will be cut off leaving an incomplete description.
IMAGE ALT TEXT
Image alt text is to be an “alternative” line of text for people who have either disabled images in their browsers, or for some other reason the image doesn’t appear when the page loads. It should describe the image and should also be compelling so that the user will be enticed to want to see it.
Without alt text, an image will be displayed as an empty icon in most browsers. Alt text also pops up when you hover over an image. Google looks at an image’s alt text when trying to understand its relevance to the page. As with all other meta tags, alt text should contain relevant keywords, but not excessively so.
If you are meticulous about each aspect of your on-site SEO, you will have laid the foundation for the next key component for successful industrial SEO: off-site SEO, or link building. That will be the topic of our next article!