Wouldn’t it be great if your website was easily found on Google? For near instant results (at a cost) talk to us about PPC. However, for those with a little more time on their hands, let’s consider some practical tips on how you can improve your SEO ranking....for FREE.

Step 1: Put yourself in the shoes of your ‘best’ customer. You know the one, the sort of customer that you would like many, many more of. Yes, please!! What sorts of phrases would they type into Google to find your product/service? These will be your keywords. Note: Keywords don’t need to be a single word like: 'finance' or 'jacket', in fact, it is easier to optimise your website to longer phrases because the competition is likely to be lower. Action: Put together a list of your top keywords and make sure your team is aligned.

Step 2: Consider the content on your website in relation to your keyword list. Ideally, each of your keywords should be written in HTML text as a headline on a page, then again in the body copy. Furthermore, the URL of the page should also feature the most relevant keyword. Take this example: http://www.digitalwillow.biz/work/retargeting-for-the-perfect-advertising-frequency/. Retargeting is a topic we are often asked to assist with here at Digital Willow. Thus, it is one of our keywords and this page includes a case study describing one of the ways we have used retargeting in the past. Action: Make a note of which keywords are missing relevant content and put together your own action plan.

Step 3: They say that every picture tells a story. However, in the land of search engines, this isn’t quite true. Spiders, (the bots that identify web page content and then index it) – can’t read images! So, whilst including images is beautiful for the design of your page, a quick trick is to include some alt text. Coming back to step 1, this text would ideally be one of your keywords. Similarly, a video is also difficult for bots to read. We suggest providing a transcript for video and audio content especially if the words and phrases used would be useful for indexing on search engines.

Step 4: Partnership links. Just like you would in the real world, think about who your key partners are and consider how you can create win/win solutions. Google awards ‘quality links’. How can you create popular links that bring traffic to your site, but also links that direct traffic to other sites? Are there companies that you work with that would be reciprocal to allow links shared? If not, at the very least do your social media pages include links to your site? Action: create a list of partners and links to gather.

Step 5: Register your company on free business directories. There are hundreds of free business directories around the world that allow you to list your business for free. We have put together a list including links of over 40 places where you can register your business today.