Everyone knows at this point that SEO is important. In fact, it’s one of the most important steps to consider when putting your business on the map. SEO maintenance is just as important as website maintenance, which is something you should always pay attention to. Whether it’s a local SEO in Vancouver or globally, any business that depends on lead generation to drum up interest won’t get too far without having search engines bringing these leads to them.
Clever people might already know to add all the meta tags possible, engage in social media, and use proper backlinking, along with all the other SEO tricks available. We all strive to get to the top page on Google, Yahoo, Bing, and all of the other available search engines. Once we get there, we can just leave it and move on, right? Wrong. SEO, just like anything in life, dies with time and needs constant attention.
SEO Maintenance is Important
Once you finally get your website up and running on the web, all the fancy code and dynamic database that is built into your pages become pure static html. This allows the search engine to be able to send “spider bots” to crawl your website’s skeleton from top to bottom. By doing this, these spiders collect the necessary data for the algorithms companies have developed.
These companies then use this data to assign a rating to your website, which determines how well it ranks in search results. Each company has its own focus, but the highlights you should pay attention to are pretty much all the same. Here’s a list of some of the things that search engine spiders look for:
– Is your website’s code written using the latest HTML5 language?
– Does it follow the schema rules?
– Is the code optimized?
– Has anything changed in the past few days/months?
– Is there any dead links?
– Is there any authoritative link?
– Are there dead pages that did not load?
– How slow did the website load?
This is just a brief summary of what search engines look for. If any of these is not done correctly, your competitors will put themselves on top of you on the search rankings if they did their homework and nailed their SEO. In order to help you make the most of your SEO and rank higher than the competition, we’ve put together a few key tips that you should always keep in mind when tackling your website’s SEO setup.
1. Constantly Update Your Website
When your site is constantly updated, search engines tend to like it more. This is because search engines tend to look unfavourably on stagnant websites. These companies strive to always provide the most relevant information for its users.
If search engine spiders notice that you routinely update your pages, they assume that you’re constantly providing relevant, up-to-date information. They then treat these pages more favourably than pages that have remained the same for long periods of time. Content ‘freshness’ is a big factor that search engines pay attention to, so keeping things fresh will always help to get you ahead.
2. Improve Site Loading Speed
One of the most important things that search engines look for is how long it takes the pages on your site to load. A page that loads faster will generally end up ranking higher in results. You should also try to ensure that your site is optimized for – and loads quickly on – mobile devices.
Search engines focus on this because they assume that if your site takes a long time to load, users will end up going elsewhere. And they’re right about that. Using a content delivery network helps speed things up, as does using smaller images or minimizing your code. You can also try switching to another hosting service, which can have a major impact, believe it or not.
3. Fine-Tune Your Link Building
Ensuring that your inbound links point to all your pages equally is important. When you spread your focus out and link to more than just a few key pages, search engines will rank your website better overall. Too many inbound links that only highlight a few pages can also trigger red flags, especially if the number suddenly explodes in a short span of time. This sort of tactic will hurt you more in the long run.
Some search engines can even measure how quickly links a site is gaining and automatically blacklist it if the rate is too high. This is done specifically to stop people gaming the system. Instead of getting yourself in trouble, try expanding inbound links to cover a wide variety of pages on your site. This will not only help increase your site’s overall authority, but will also improve your backlink profile in its entirety.
4. Don’t Forget Internal and Outbound Links
Outbound links are a huge benefit to SEO if done right. You need to ensure, however, that you link to other sites that provide quality and relevant content for your website’s visitors. Simply linking to a site that doesn’t relate to your content will only drag you further down in the rankings. Search engines seem to really like .edu site links, but they should still be implemented organically.
As for internal links, they are just as important as outbound links and backlinks. Linking relevant pages to each other within your own site is a key factor that can help with SEO keyword rankings. These links help search engines better understand the focus and content of each page. This, in turn, will allow search engines to categorize and rank your pages more appropriately. If you implement these links properly, you will be able to boost or maintain your ranking more easily.
5. The Importance of Social Media
Another thing you should keep in mind as far as SEO maintenance is concerned is your social media presence. Search engines tend to view the big social platforms as ‘authority figures’. This means that search engines use links from social media websites to help determine your website’s relevancy and ranking.
Social media backlinking is more of a long-term goal that slowly helps to improve your ranking. With this in mind, you should try to add a social media share bar to your articles, allowing your visitors to show off your article with their social networks. You should also include calls to action that prompt people to share your content if they like it. Every share you get helps to maintain – and even improve – your ranking.
Other Factors for Local SEO in Vancouver
Now that you know the basics of SEO maintenance, you’re not out of the woods just yet; there are many other factors to watch out for. One of these potentially troublesome factors is running out of ‘SEO juice’. Even if you have a professional website with the most extensive SEO done, any change to your website can potentially harm your performance in search results.
Even small changes can have big repercussions when it comes to SEO. These changes can add up, leading to your site slowly losing more of its strength each time. These changes include redesigning your website, changing a domain, or editing certain parts of your website.
For example, if your website, for the last 10 years, used to have a ‘Contact Us’ page URL that looked like this –
But now, with the redesigned website it becomes –
That URL looks much better, right? Unfortunately, this is bound to cause some issues if you don’t pay enough attention to the SEO considerations involved in the URL change. The problem here is that these are viewed by search engines as two completely different URLs, even though they link to the same page. Let’s break down the problem that this type of website change causes:
While the first link gained a lot of recognition from search engines over the years, this recognition doesn’t automatically transfer to the new link you created simply because it is the same page inside. The search engines actually treat the new modified link as though it a completely new website page address and you guessed it, it starts the SEO all over from scratch.
Can this issue be fixed? Of course. A talented SEO professional knows exactly how to fix this and any other SEO issues you might run into. Leave a comment below and subscribe to our newsletter to find out how!