We are all interested in having our website optimised so that it is found by the right people. However, this can be quite a time-consuming task, especially for small businesses who might not have the staff or time to do it.
Thankfully there are some quick, simple things you can do to help things along, they are not a trade off for an actual marketing plan, but can help push your website in the right direction. We are going to look at a few quick things you can do, and show you how to do these on a Procredible website.
Meta details are the title and description of the page that shows when your website appears in search engine search results. They are made up of two parts:
- Page title – the title that shows for the page, this is not the same as the title you will see on the page and can be different. You get around 70 characters to use before it truncates.
- Meta description – the description that shows underneath the page title. You have around 300 characters you can use before it truncates it.
Though these don’t directly affect rankings, it is where you first get people looking at you and the first chance to convince them to click on your result. The more people you get clicking on yours over the websites that rank above, the more positive signals this sends to search engines that your website is worth looking at, the higher chance you can get bumped up the results.
On a Procredible website these are simple to change, first, you need to log in to the system. From the left menu, select the page menu item, from here, choose click the settings (cog wheel) icon, this will bring up a submenu for the page, choose SEO from there.
You will get a new section show up. The Page Title can be changed under the Page Title heading, the Page Description will let you change the meta description. Changing these will have no effect on the title or description that shows on the web page, only the ones in the search results.
Once you’ve updated them, hit the republish button at the top right of the page and these will then go live. Please note, that it might take a few days for search engines to see the changes and ti then reflect in the search results.
Page titles & sub-headings
The titles on your page give weight to how your page is optimised and for people who skip through a page and don’t read all the content, they provide an idea of what the page is about.
This is similar for search engines as well as they use the headings and structure of the page to understand what it is about. So it’s important to ensure they reflect the content on the page.
To update these in Procredible, you need to log in to the admin area, from the left menu select Pages and click on the one you want to update.
When you are looking at the text you want to change, click on the text and you should be able to enter it as you wish using the editor. Once you’ve finished, remember to hit the republish button in the top right.
Image alt texts
Optimising images is an important part of helping search engines understand what your image is. Though they are improving image recognition, search engines can’t understand what an image is, which is why there are ways to help them.
The first is the file name, if you have an image of a dog for example, making sure it is labelled dog.jpg helps them understand what the image is of, rather than something DCM18272.jpg, which could be anything.
The second is the image alt text, this is a little section in the code that describes what the image is. This is used for helping search engines understand the image and for accessibility, for those who might be hard of sight, this description can tell them what the image is, so it’s useful to add to your images.
On a Procredible website, to add the alt text to an image, once you’ve logged into the system, navigate to the page from the left menu.
Once on the page, click on the image, this will bring a pop-up next to it. Scroll down this pop up to the bottom, and you will see an entry box for alt text. Quick note, avoid trying to stuff multiple words or phrases you’re interested in ranking for, this could not only hinder the optimisation, but this is also there to improve the accessibility of your website.
Once you’ve finished, remember to hit the republish button in the top right.
An XML sitemap is an overview of the make up of your website. It lets search engines know how your website is structured, how often pages should be checked for changes as well as more.
Having one of these on your website and submitting it to search engines like Google and Bing can help them find your website and understand it more easily. Once you have your XML sitemap, you will need to sign up and submit it to the search engines respective webmaster tools, for Google that’s Search Console, for Bing it would be their webmaster tools.
For Procredible websites, we create an XML sitemap, which can be found by appending your web address with sitemap.xml, so if your website was example.co.uk, you would find the sitemap at example.co.uk/sitemap.xml
If you have a Procredible website, once it goes live, we create a Google Search Console account for you and submit the XML sitemap.