This is everything we do from implementing Meta Tags to enriching content and providing an overall better user experience to our current and potential clients. Not only does SEO bring them to our site but it keeps them on it as well. The following tips are things you can do right now to enhance your search engine visibility.
Steps you can take right now?
“Localize” Your Chapter Site
One of the most important things you need to do right now on your chapter site is MAKE IT YOUR OWN. There is plenty of default text that national has put in your website but it is a national message, not a “your chapter” message. Your website is to bring local traffic in. Your site will not challenge for a broad search term such as “small business advice” (the SCORE.org national site will draw this traffic) but it can for “small business advice New York.” That is why this is VERY important. If your chapter is New York then you need to tell the search engines you are New York SCORE. Take a look at Pittsburgh (http://pittsburgh.score.org) or Youngstown (http://youngstown.score.org) sites to see how they are doing it.
Meta Data is essential to SEO success. The Page Title Meta Tag is the most important. It needs to be clean and have rich keyword content. Put whatever you can at up to 70 characters as that is all that Google will “read.” Below is an example:
SCORE New York | Free Small Business Advice | Plans | Workshops | Tools
Yes, that is 71 characters but this is just an example.
The second most important Meta Tag is the Meta Description. This needs to be a summary of what your page is about. Keep this to around 170 characters as that is all Google will “read.” Below is an example.
SCORE New York helps Small Business Start and Grow. We offer free counseling, business plans, tools, resources, workshops, and more. Grow YOUR small business with SCORE New York.
The third most important is Meta keywords. Now, these are becoming less and less important as SEO is everchanging but if it can help us in any fashion, then we must take action. We have prepopulated keywords in your Meta Data section. Make them your own though by adding geographic terms to them (i.e., New York, DC, Chicago….)
Special note: a “keyword” can be one word or a group of words, i.e. “small business advice San Diego” is a keyword.
How-to: Meta Tag Descriptions & Keywords
Chapter webmasters can add Meta Tag keywords and descriptions to any piece of editable content on their chapter website. This allows chapter webmasters to control search engine keyword matches for their website. This will help chapters generate more traffic to their site. There are default keywords in the field but chapters are encouraged to customize them to their chapter. One great way of doing this is by adding your city or town. There is no default for the Meta Tag description so webmasters will need to add this themselves. Webmasters can edit these by going to the page they would like to add keywords or a description to, clicking “Meta Tags,” editing their tags and clicking “Save” at the bottom of the page.
How-to: Meta Tag Page Titles
To edit Page Titles, webmasters must go to the page they would like to add a title. Click “Edit” at the top of the page and scroll down to the field, “Page Title.” Provide a description of this page to appear in the tab which search engines can use in search result listings. This field is optional. It is generally accepted that this field should be less than 70 characters.
After you have finished adding a Page Title, click “Save” at the bottom of the page. The tab of the internet browser will now change to the text listed in the Page Title field.
Backlinking is very important when it comes to SEO. Anyone who links to your site from theirs is a backlink. It is as simple as that.
Where to get backlinks?
Do not go out and just post to every URL directory on the web as the quality of the backlink will be low. The best place to start is to get businesses that you have helped succeed to backlink to you. You are backlinking to them with your success stories so why not return the favor, right? Any other local businesses that you have partnerships with are a great place and it does not hurt to ask.
Link Within Your Site
What does this mean?
Let me start by saying DON’T overuse this but DO use it….If we go to the Youngstown Home Page (http://youngstown.score.org), we can see a good use of linking within a site. If you use the word mentoring, then link it to the mentoring Page. Try to avoid, saying “Click Here” in links as it is becoming more and more important for SEO to link the proper word to the proper page as it is more relevant. It is possible to overdo this so please use common sense, if it looks like you have too many links in your text…than you probably do.