This week we read about search engine optimization and the ways you can use Google to work for you. As we discussed earlier in the term, authorship is an important way of making yourself “official” on Google searches, but there are many other things you can do to improve your search engine optimization. Having a good SEO allows your articles to be read more often as some of the readings discussed. In fact, one of the articles said that the first link on a Google search receives 33% of the traffic and that number drops to 18% for the second position. As you can see, this drop off illustrates the point that it is very important to be as highly ranked in a search as possible.
One way to do this is through the use of a Google index or sitemap. I was not previously aware of this before, but in my readings this week, I came to the conclusion that this is a lot like a table of contents for a book. I can see how this might be helpful for Google in that if your sight is more organized, Google can feel confident giving out your links because they know that they are pointing the user in the right direction. Further, a sitemap allows you to host videos directly from your site and have Google link the video from your site rather than from YouTube or wherever you got the information. In fact, many of the skills from this reading discuss the need to make sure that your site is “neat and clean.” This could be through the use of better titles or resolving any issues that Google finds with your content. Speaking of titles, they can also be very important and should contain the appropriate keywords that are found using Google analytics before or during the content creation process.
We discussed a few other ways to optimize your search including the way that you label photos on your blog. This one was particularly interesting to me because I did not think much about the potential traffic associated with a Google image search. Everyone has made an image search at least once in their lives and what I didn’t realize was how much this could help with engagement to your site. As one of the articles pointed out, this is definitely an effective tool for creating engagement. Finally, having an overall understanding of Google analytics can be one of the most basic ways for increasing your SEO.
What keywords would you like to be at the top of the list for?
Have you done anything different to your blog since the readings this week?
What will you try differently going forward?