May 22, 2012
Lately lots of clients have been looking to us to guide them in the SEO process when we do their CMS Websites. SEO proposes some interesting challenges when approached creatively… there is always a fine line when it comes to marrying good creative and strategic SEO. Let SEO lead, and creative will suffer. Let creative lead at not even the depths of Google will be able to find your site. So how can both sides of the house win? Here are some tips on get your search ranks up without sacrificing your creative to the SEO gods.
1. Keywords and where to put them
When you’re writing page copy, first keep keywords in mind when writing headers and subheaders. Sprinkle keywords throughout body copy, but don’t do so heavyhandedly, or your message will get muddied and become hard to read. You’ll also have meta description and meta tags within your SEO settings (I recommend an SEO plug-in if you’re working in a CMS like WordPress) that you can work keywords into. Not sure which keywords to use? You can research keywords on Google Keyword.
2. Images are important
Every page should have an image. If you’re working in a CMS, you can upload an image even if you want only text to be viewable on the page. Upload an image, then save it as a “featured image.” It won’t appear on the page, just in search results. Add alt text to each image on your page. Make sure that includes the keywords you think people will be searching for. Also add a caption to each image, including keywords.
3. Use headers
I bet you didn’t know that formatting your header as H1, H2, H3 or H4 sends a message to Google that the content of that header is important. I didn’t know that either until I started researching SEO for our clients. You can do this easily with whatever CMS you are using. Look for a drop down menu at the top left of the format section.
4. Blog, blog, blog
Even if you’re building a Website for your small business and you think no one will care to read your blog, do it anyway. Each and every blog post gives you a chance to drop in keywords like nobody’s business and clue-in prospective clients and customers that you are the subject matter expert on your particular type of business. Don’t think your writing skills are up to par? Make it a photo blog and use the captions/alt text I mentioned in step 2 to up your search rankings.
- Sarah Toler, Creative Director
Photo credit: Flickr user Richard-G