SEO for a brand new website Checklist
Are you looking to expand your audience and boost the organic search results for your site? Utilize this complete SEO checklist to improve the performance of your site. Search engine optimization is now an essential requirement for websites, and it’s no longer an option.
Alongside all of the components that make an effective site, considering SEO, also known as “organic searching,” is a must for creating a new website and is essential in all digital marketing strategies. We’re well past the time of “if you create it, people will arrive,” in terms of web design thinking.
In the same way, I’m aware that many website owners, from small businesses to startups, small firms to non-profits, and even big companies, are having trouble self-implementing SEO or are over budget for their websites that don’t have much to invest in SEO.
Due to the noise and focus, I would like to offer a single checklist that you can use as an owner of a website to understand the most important aspects of SEO you can tackle right now and build upon in the future. I have categorized the elements of SEO into the ones I typically perform in my method, which includes:
- Technical SEO
The site controls the indexing and other on-page elements, but external factors should not be ignored and should be a part of a more comprehensive SEO strategy in the future.
Technical SEO Cheat Sheet
You need to ensure that your site is crawled and indexed before you can focus on the exact web pages you intend to rank for in search engines. All of this falls under the area of technical SEO.
Free Platforms for Reporting
Begin by ensuring that you’ve got Google Search Console, Bing Webmaster Tools, Google Analytics, and Google Tag Manager tied into your website. These tools provide excellent analytical and diagnostic data to you and can assist you in your journey.
It is the table of content for your site. Sitemap files are a modern method of “submitting” your site’s content to search engines. The majority of websites come with this feature or add-ons/plugins that can generate a dynamic sitemap that remains in sync with the pages of your website. You should, at a minimum, have a static version that you can create using several free tools.
This file gives instructions to the search engines regarding which pages or areas of the site they should not index. As a default, search engines will examine all content they can discover. Even if you do not wish to prevent websites from being indexed by certain pages on your website, ensure that the file is in place. Is it accurate? Validates the validity of Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools. Be careful not to block essential web pages from indexable (or your entire website).
If you have more than the primary domain, be sure to know what each of your domain names is doing. If they’re in a park and not being used, then that’s fine. Get rid of the frustration that comes with the process of completing projects. Give your deadlines to skilled freelancers who will finish every job on time and keep your company running at its peak.
If they redirect users to your site, make sure that they turn it to yours (versus mirroring the website or executing the 302 redirects). This is a simple spot to check and then move on; however, don’t ignore this as it could lead to issues with duplicate content or confusion about which domain name is the one.
The more structure and hierarchy you can incorporate into your navigation and the sections of your website, the more effective. This will benefit both users and the search engines by presenting structured topics and information (more about that later). The goal of getting your URLs and directory structure to be consistent with the actual page structure and the file structure of your site’s content is an excellent objective.
Retrospectively creating a structure for your website or sitemap can be a good beginning point. It makes you think about your website’s content, what you consider the particular essential aspects of your site and how you intend to guide your visitors (as an engine) to it.
There are many great developers tools to assist you in identifying the best areas for optimization on your site to improve the speed of your pages to competitive levels.
It’s no surprise that websites must be mobile-friendly. But, just because you constructed your site using a framework for mobile devices, like responsive design, you must ensure that it is valid. Make sure you test it with the mobile-friendly test of Google. Also, perform as many user interfaces (UX) along with quality control (QA) tests as you can to ensure it is compatible with your users on every device that they’re likely to use.
Do not forget to create an individual 404 page and add helpful information. It isn’t a good idea to lose visitors to your website because an error message from the default browser pops up. You must create a 404 web page with helpful navigation links, navigation, search capabilities, and contact options.
Like mobile-friendly sites and speed requirements, having a secure website is essential. If your site isn’t secured with an SSL and you don’t have an SSL, you might lose visitors before they arrive at your website when they encounter a security alert in Chrome or any other browser. Create trust for your website by taking the ordinarily easy step of implementing an SSL certificate on your website. In case of new website, budget is normally a concern so, prefer to buy low cost SSL. Either it be a single domain or wildcard, you will find many cheap price SSL option. If the site runs for example, numerous subdomains then, a cheap wildcard SSL will be a budget friendly choice for a newbie business.
Add-ons, plugins, or Extensions
If your site uses a content management system, odds are you already have plugins or other extensions to code you consider reliable. Many platforms offer tools you can incorporate into your site to give you more management over analytics and SEO. Suppose it’s WordPress SEO plugins or others to work with Drupal Magento or others. It is essential to look for trusted plugins that give the most control and flexibility.
Do you have leftover content from an earlier site or old, ineffective SEO strategies? Maybe you have a valid reason to have duplicate content across your website and on the internet. Knowing the issue you’re up against is essential before optimizing your pages on the fly. If you’ve got duplicate pages with reasons that are legitimate, it’s time to think about the canonical approach or how you’d like to utilize robots’ instructions to index.
It is crucial to know about and address before you put in the time and effort to optimize your page. Copyscape is among my favorite tools, along with Screaming Frog, to find duplicate content and analyze content before diving into web-based content.
The On-Page SEO Cheat Sheet
Most people focus on the factors that affect their website (e.g., keywords, content, or title tags) when SEO comes up. The days of optimizing just a few elements of websites or pages are long gone. The search engines focus on context greater than keywords. Don’t get caught up in a rush to change Meta tags, body text, or even body content, and then move ahead.
The way we construct context is through all of the elements of an article and contemplating how pages are connected in sections and the website’s navigation.
Keywords and Topics
Before you can build context, you must determine what you’re going to create it for. Suppose you’ve never conducted search engine optimization or a more in-depth analysis of your intended audience. In that case, You’ll need to stop now and take a moment to find out what keywords and terms your target audience is likely to use to discover your site. Be aware that the days of cramming words into tags or pages are over.
It is essential to utilize SEO tools to identify the correct phrases, terms, and topics that match our goals. Then, we can go into the specific words to use within the site’s structure. In essence, you must be aware of the essential terms, map them to your website, and then create the other factors that appear on your page.
Content is crucial to prove relevance. If you’ve got only a few words and elements on your site, it won’t be easy to compete with websites that are solid and packed with content. It’s not always the case that more is better since high-quality outperforms the quantities. If you can attain both, you’ll be in a better position.
Content that users can relate to and easily understand by engines is how you will win. Beware of old-fashioned methods that can hurt users’ experience, and put you in danger to your search engines.
This is the essential element of a website and is often ignored. Search engines can index ugly web pages with faceted URLs perfectly. But, the URL provides an opportunity to display an uncluttered directory structure with keywords and a description of what the site is about. Do not miss the chance of your website’s ability to alter the URL paths.
The title tag by itself isn’t likely to help you. But, you must include a unique, relevant tag for every page.
Be aware of the good practices regarding length and the keywords that are relevant to your topic and create and apply static tags, or make sure that you have dynamic formulas to fill in the title.
Like the title tag, we must have a unique and relevant meta description for every page. It doesn’t matter if it’s static or dynamic ensures that it is beneficial to the user, includes keywords that relate to the page’s content, and helps build an understanding of title tags.
Headings and “H” tags have been debated about their importance to SEO. However, I’m not focusing on one aspect but on how all elements work in harmony to create the context.
If you can utilize heading tags, do it systematically and make sure that they are using appropriate keywords. Make sure you use only one H1 title and let this be the primary tag.
Many developers or platforms for websites employ these tags to achieve CSS purposes, which means you could be using no H1 tags on your page, but an array of H6 titles. Be aware of these tags and how they are integrated within your program and the content.
While a lot of the emphasis on latent semantic indexing the concept of keyword density and formulas for calculating the number of instances words must appear on a webpage are outdated, it’s not impossible to overlook the fact that the body copy on the page is often the most significant chunk of indexable content.
Do not forget to include your keywords in the body copy, as you’ll tie them into the context you’ve created in other areas before this point. But don’t get caught up in using the word 37 times. Focus on the larger picture, and you’ll be fine.
Image Alt Attributes
One of the most significant warning signs I see in the results of accessibility and other on-page auditing tools is the absence of alt-text. Alt-text can help search engines to comprehend the meaning behind an image. Another chance to incorporate keywords into your website. Additionally, it would help if you considered the users who may use screensaver devices and ensured your website is accessible to all users.
Although it is not a definitive ranking factor, Schema.org markup gets right to the very core of constructing the context. Utilizing the appropriately structured data markups to your web page’s content could aid in providing a further clue to search engines about the area or the category your content is placed in.
If your platform for the website does not provide a method of adding this feature and it’s an expensive cost item, either in price or time, place it in the middle of the list behind the other things mentioned above. But, make sure to keep it in mind.
External SEO Factors
This is the bonus area.
External factors don’t influence your site and do not necessarily fit into a plan. But, I’d be remiss in assuming that all you have to accomplish is indexing and on-page elements and that you’ll climb to the top of search engines.
The factors on the page affect the relevancy and trustworthiness of your site to search engines. External factors affect your “authority” position and confirm your website as the subject of expertise.
Inbound hyperlinks (a.k.a. links) to your site from trusted and trustworthy websites play a significant impact on SEO. Additionally, it would help to consider brands that have no mentions (a.k.a. or citations) and how often your site is mentioned on the internet.
There’s much to say about making great content that people are eager to share. To enhance your content, don’t hesitate to find great sources of high-quality links via natural connections, accreditations, and other traffic sources that could be in your field.
It is essential to concentrate your efforts on trusted sources related to your topic. Don’t pay for an online link in a manner that violates the rules of the search engines.
Search website citations are crucial if you own an office in a physical location local directory.
While properly claiming and claiming your listing is a way to safeguard your brand on an initial level, it is essential to ensure that your address, name, and telephone number (NAP information) are consistent and accurate across all social and local listing websites relevant to.
There’s a whole local directory system, and if you’re able to begin at least to tackle NAP details, you’ll have solid foundations.
Social media may also help SEO (and other marketing) efforts, even though it doesn’t directly impact your ranking.
Ensure that your website’s links are to your own and active social media accounts, and the reverse is a crucial first step. In addition, you must make sure that your engagement is in line with the most popular colleagues. It’s a relative thing; however, by knowing the activities of your competitors, you can make sure that SEO aspects of social media are taken care of.
Optimizing your site isn’t simple or an overnight task, and it’s important to begin somewhere.
If you’re able to master your SEO technical skills and on-page optimization and influence the relevant external elements, you’ll set your site up to be successful. Additional Web Optimization Resources. This is the Ultimate SEO Checklist.