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The Printers Guide to SEO

The major search engines Google and Bing, are excellent sources of visitors to your website.

In particular, Google can provide enough visitors, inquiries, and sales to sustain most print businesses and make their website a worthwhile investment, so you must pay attention to SEO.

SEO or search engine optimization is both an art and a science. In this post, we will be outlining a few techniques, tips and general pieces of advice to help you get started with optimizing your website for the major search engines.

By and large, SEO can be divided into two categories; on-page optimization and off-page optimization. Both are required to optimize your site fully, and we will cover off the basics of each of these in this post.

On-page optimization

Optimizing the pages of your website involves the following:

  • Technical SEO
  • Keyword Research
  • Content optimization
  • User experience optimization

Technical SEO

This aspect of on-page optimization involves taking care of the technical ‘housekeeping’ on your website, which means you are ensuring the search engine spiders can access, crawl and index your website.

Keyword research

This aspect of on-page optimization involves identifying the keywords which your prospective customers are using to search and find products and services that you offer. If you can optimize your website for visibility across these keyword terms, your chances of turning visitors into customers are greatly increased.

Content optimization

Once you understand the keywords your customers are searching for, you can tweak, rewrite, and even create new content to target these terms effectively.

User experience optimization

This might sound like a job for your website designer, but ever since Google announced their Panda update, which is believed to relate to the quality and usefulness of a website, optimizing the experience for your users had become an essential and integral part of SEO.

This doesn’t mean you necessarily need to change the design of your website; it can just mean targeting the right types of keywords to ensure the visitors who use those keywords and find your site can easily find the content they are looking for.

It is also important you look at ways to reduce the bounce rate of your web pages (the number of people who arrive at your site and leave without progressing any further than the first page) as it is widely believed that Google is weaving user feedback metrics like bounce rate into how it ranks websites – with sites that have a high bounce rate dropping in the rankings in comparison to websites which are seemingly very useful for their users.

  • Off-page optimization
  • Link development
  • Social media strategies

Off-page optimization can seem like a much easier task as there are fewer things to worry about, but in fact, not only is off-page optimization more important, it is also a far more complex challenge because arguably you don’t have control over social media or which links to you.

Thankfully though, there are things you can do to encourage links and improve your social media presence.

Link development or link building

It is often easy to get sucked into the belief that more = better, but not all were created equal in the world of links. It is very much about quality and relevance rather than quantity necessarily.

You can make some quick improvements with link building such as directory submissions, article submissions, social bookmarking and proactive guest posting and content exchange for links.

Social media

Although social doesn’t directly impact rankings just yet, it is likely to have a much bigger impact as time goes by.

Looking at ways to encourage social interaction with your presences on Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, and Google+ to drive traffic in the short term and long term to ensure your rankings are secure should Google look to incorporate social media signals more heavily algorithm.