The world of search engine optimization moves very quickly. Google typically rolls out major changes to its search engine algorithm about once every 12 months or so. Their last update, titled Penguin, caused quite a bit of panic among webmasters and site owners.
However, when creating and maintaining your MSP website, there are some simple SEO principles you can adopt that are unlikely to ever change, regardless of what Google and other search engines decide to do to their algorithms.
Ensuring you are following these five golden rules will improve the quality of your site and improve your chances of rising up the search rankings.
1. Concentrate on Navigation
When you think about navigation on your MSP website, you must consider the search engine spiders that will index your site as well as the humans that will access it.
The golden rule is to remember that search engine spiders are not intelligent beings. Make sure they are not led to dead links and ensure all your images have relevant filenames and captions. Finally, ensure you have a site map page that meets the recommended guidelines produced by the search engines. Google and Yahoo both provide Webmaster tools to help you identify navigation problems.
2. Don’t Ignore Keyword Research
Keyword research is the essential first step for any website thinking about SEO. In many cases, targeting slightly different phrases can place your site in a less competitive marketplace, improving its chances of being found.
A good place to start is on Google’s Adwords Keyword Tool, which will help you get started thinking of keyword combinations and let you see how many people are searching for each term.
3. Ensure your Site is Fast and Stable
Good quality Web hosting is inexpensive, so make sure your MSP website is hosted by a reliable provider. It is widely assumed that site performance plays a part in search rankings and if your site is frequently down, it is sure to have a negative effect.
4. Build Good Quality “Hooks” Into your Site
Dedicate some regular time to commenting on technical news stories and relevant forums, including a link to your site in your signature. Every time you do this, you add an additional place on line that may lead someone to your site and help your search rankings.
Always ensure, however, that your contributions are truly useful. Find communities you enjoy belonging to and work to become a well-respected figure. This way, you can enjoy some of the SEO activities related to your MSP website and avoid filling the Web with clutter.
5. Remember Social Networking
Twitter, Facebook and other social networking channels are valuable ways to increase traffic to your site. Contributing to these should be on your list of daily / weekly duties.
As with forum contributions, always try to give something of value to these communities. Join in with discussions, make friends and try and enjoy the process. One reader or potential client who genuinely wants to arrive at your site is far more valuable than dozens who arrive and click “back” immediately.
Advanced SEO techniques are perhaps left to the experts, but these simple strategies should be part of the daily running of every MSP website. Above all, run a high quality site and make sure you have something valuable to offer those that arrive there.
If you're looking for more SEO tips, be sure to our June webinar recording "Five Surefire Ways to Rocket Your Website to the Top of Google".