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SEO For New Websites: First Steps To Take

How does your newly launched website rank in Google?

As soon as you’ve launched your new website, you are eager to welcome a ton of fresh, organic traffic. But take our word for it: getting your new site to rank in Google doesn’t happen in a blink. Nor is it a one-time thing. SEO is a long-term process and should be part of your ongoing marketing plan.

But the first SEO steps you take after launching your website have a great impact on your Google rankings and can make a big difference in terms of traffic.

So in this blog, we’re sharing the first things we do when optimising our clients’ newly launched websites for search engines.

First: Is your website designed for SEO?

While your website looks attractive, it also has to be structured correctly. At Brand Shack, we constantly rave about how amazing WordPress is and one reason we love this platform is it allows us to easily break down the content of your websites into keyword-friendly pages, sub pages, posts, categories, and—for ecommerce websites—product categories.

Structuring your website this way will help you set clear target keywords for each webpage and give you more chances of ranking in search engines.

Second: Set up Google Analytics and Google Search Console accounts

Google Analytics and Google Search Console are our non-negotiables. Google Analytics will let you monitor your website’s traffic, track sales, and provide insight on what types of content interest your audience the most and how your visitors find you. You might need some help getting around Google Analytics if it’s your first time, but WordPress offers tools that allow you to navigate through Google Analytics easily. If you need help tracking visitor/customer activity, we have this simple Google Analytics guide you can follow.

Google Search Console is another free tool that can help you monitor and optimise your website for Google. Search Console can also pinpoint some issues in your site that might be interfering with Google’s crawlers, provides valuable data about how your site performs in search results, keywords that rank and other insights.

To add your website to Google Search Console, go to google.com/webmasters. If your site is already connected with Google Analytics, you can start using Google Search Console. Otherwise, you will need to undergo the verification process specified in the platform.

Third: Keyword Research

This is a critical step in SEO any website owner shouldn’t miss. Most SEO campaigns typically start with keyword research—knowing what your audience is searching for, what words/language they speak, what your business is all about. Some keyword research strategies:

  • Use your USP statement to come up with primary keywords. Break down all your products and services and come up with keywords related to your offerings.
  • If you have Google Search Console, you can find keyword ideas for free
  • Use online tools like Ubersuggest, Keyword Tool or SEMRush, which is a premium subscription tool.

Fourth: Install relevant tools

For websites running on WordPress, we recommend installing the Yoast plugin. This tool is greatly helpful in planning your keywords and easily optimise your webpages for search engines.

Fifth: On-page SEO

Once you have a list of keywords, it’s time to optimise your existing webpages. On-page SEO is one of the areas you have the most control over so it’s important not to skip this step. The key is to have webpages that provide search users with relevant information or answers to their search queries. Make sure that you do the following:

  • Title tags – Your title tags should include your keywords while describing the content on your page
  • Meta descriptions – These are the snippets of information that appear below your site’s title tag and URL in search engine results pages. While meta descriptions have no real impact on your search rankings, they can greatly influence search users to click.
  • URL – Your webpage URLs should be short, readable and keyword rich
  • Images – Make sure your images are not too big so they won’t slow down your site. Use descriptive file names and provide descriptive texts in all image alt tags.
  • Headings – Have clear headings across your webpages. H1, h2, h3 tags and so on mark up your headings and sub-headings and tell your visitors and search engines what the page is all about.

Sixth: Create and improve content

Read through your website content and find out if they answer your audience’s questions. Are they written well? Do they have all the relevant keywords? Do they influence customers to take action? Take time to work on improving your content.

Use your keywords list and turn these into blog topics. Write blogs that provide helpful answers to your target customers. Remember, Google wants to see quality content that can provide value to its massive searching population. This blog can help your write blogs that Google will love.

Seventh: Build links

Links are important to Google. So once your website is up and running, get the word out and ask people to share your link. Reach out to other site owners and ask them to write about your new website.

Are you ready?

Just following the seven steps above can set you up for SEO success. If your website is struggling to rank in Google, we can help you! We offer basic SEO services that will help increase your website’s visibility on Google.