Seo content

SEO: Content Optimization Checklist – Practical Ecommerce

Content helps consumers find your pages in search results. But all the compelling content that your team spends so much time planning, designing, writing, and developing might be invisible to consumers who are searching without optimization this.

Content optimization is simply changing textual content to include concepts and keywords that searchers ask Google, Bing, and other search engines to find for them.

Every page that you want to show in the rankings should have its content optimized for search engines. The optimization tactics checklist below can help you remember all the different ways to do this, in order to communicate maximum relevance to search engines.

Using keywords – the ones that consumers search for – in certain places on the page gets more weight with search engines. This is called keyword prominence: making keywords and concepts important to search engines.

The following areas increase the importance of keywords. Using the keywords you want to rank for in these important areas increases the likelihood that you can rank for a particular keyword or phrase.

SEO content optimization checklist

  • Title tag. The title tag is a short piece of metadata that consumers don’t see on the page itself, but that search engines use as a signal to determine the page’s contextual and keyword relevance. If you had to choose one element of content optimization that was most important, it is the title tag. Looking through the HTML of a page, this is what a title tag looks like.

    The title tag of the Practical Ecommerce home page.

    Search engines typically use title tags as a link in their search results as shown below with the red arrow.

    title tag as search results link

    The Practical Ecommerce homepage title tag, used as a link for Google search results.

    Since consumers see the title tag in search results, you want it to be read well instead of just listing the keywords you want to rank for. Only the first 60 or so characters of a title tag will be displayed and considered important, so keep the tags short. Note that every punctuation mark and every space counts towards this 60 character guideline. Write your title tags so that they contain the keywords you want to rank for as close to the start of the tag as possible. Place your branding image or your site name at the end of the title tag.

  • Meta Description. The meta description is a longer piece of metadata, and also one that is not visible on the page itself. Looking through the HTML of a page, this is what a meta description looks like.
    The meta description of the Practical Ecommerce homepage.

    The meta description of the Practical Ecommerce home page.

    Search engines typically use meta descriptions in search results to help searchers understand the purpose of a site.

    Meta description used in the search result

    The meta description of the Practical Ecommerce homepage, used as the description for Google search results.

    The meta description won’t influence your ranking, but it can influence the decision of people to click on your site from the search results page instead of your competition. The words that the searcher used in their query will be in bold in the description box of the search result, as shown above with the word “ecommerce”, so it is important to use the relevant keywords in your meta descriptions.

    Like title tags, they should be read carefully because they can be displayed in search results that consumers see. Only the first 130 to 150 characters of a title tag will be displayed and considered important. Write your meta descriptions so that they contain the keywords you want to rank for and contain a call to action.

  • Meta-keywords. This meta data no longer positively influences search rankings in Google, Yahoo and Bing, and has been for several years. In fact, Bing has stated that excessive or irrelevant use of meta keywords can actually be seen as a spam signal in their algorithm. Also, since anyone can view the source HTML for any web page, using the keywords you are optimizing a page for in meta descriptions helps any competitor who is keen on understanding keywords. that you are targeting. Leave this field blank.
  • Title / Heading H1. As with the previous SEO elements, the H1 header is also a markup element within the page. A page’s template determines which field is marked as H1, so you might not have the ability to influence it. If you do, use the keyword, if possible. The length of the text or the location on the page that the template dictates can make this inconvenient, so don’t force the keyword if it doesn’t read well or make sense on the page.
  • Body of the text. The hardest part to optimize well is body content, as there are so many potential ways to use keywords right or wrong. In general, make sure you use keywords naturally, in language that reads well. The beginning of the copy is more valuable than the end. So try using the first instance of the keyword in the first sentence of short text or the first paragraph of longer text.

In addition to keyword prominence, optimizers tend to cling to the idea of ​​keyword density: the number of times a keyword is used versus the number of words on the page. Once upon a time, when keyword usage was everything in SEO, optimizers would recommend 3% or 5% or some other specific percentage of keyword usage. Keyword density is no longer a valid concept.

The first SEO priority regarding the number of times a keyword is used in a body text is to use the keyword once. The second SEO priority is natural readability. In fact, the first and second priorities must be accomplished together. Stuffed copy that reads poorly won’t achieve your SEO goals. But talented copywriters can always find a way to fit just one use of the keyword into the messaging. The third SEO priority is to repeat the keyword several times while maintaining readability. Never force repetition of keywords.

  • Internal link: Linking from body text, if done right, sends a stronger signal than an individual site navigation link, as search engines place a higher value on editorial content in determining the relevance and context of the pages. If possible, include text links to truly related pages in the body of the text. The link text should be a keyword or keyword phrase, as this will both increase the relevance of the page you are optimizing and send a keyword relevance signal to the page the link is linked to.

Beware of adding a long list of links or exaggerating the number of links, as this can both annoy consumers and be interpreted as over-optimization of search engines. Link to pages that are really relevant and that might help consumers navigate to related areas that might be of interest to them when reading the content of the page you are optimizing.

  • Name of the page: If you are able to influence the name of the page at any time, this aspect will generally help optimize other elements. The title tag and the H1 header in particular are usually influenced by the name of the page. For more on this topic, see “SEO depends on page names.”