WordPress SEO & Google Localisation
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Ok you can find your website by keying in the website name, so people that already know your company can find you. But how will new customers locate you? What would they enter in a search to find your website? What results would they get? Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) refers to methods used for a website to be listed early in a search. WordPress already has some built in SEO and a number of plug-ins make “on-site” WordPress SEO easy. Some are starting to lag behind and still use methods (For example Keyword tags) that have now been discredited. I found WordPress SEO by Yoast most useful.
For suppliers of common goods or services it can be very difficult to ensure they can be found in a search. Just think of how many hotels, restaurants, real estate agents or photographers there are around the world, in your country, state or city? They cannot possibly all be displayed in the first few result pages of a search.
A big problem is irrelevant results for your location. If you are looking for a restaurant in Sydney, a New York restaurant review is irrelevant. To reduce this problem Google for example have introduced Google places. You confirm your location by snail mail to a physical address. This cuts out abuse by website developers claiming to service every possible location. Google places results are listed under a heading:
PLACES FOR <Product or service> NEAR <Location>
The location of each of the websites listed is also shown on an adjacent map.
Just try it for your website. If you haven’t already done so register your location with Google Places, it is free and the siimplest way to improve the visibility of your website.
The way search results are prioritized is regularly modified, so what worked yesterday may not work today. It is the business of search engine providers like Google and Bing to ensure the search results are relevant. They would soon be out of business if the search results were not relevant. Developers test what works to ensure a better website search rating, often by methods that do not necessarily make for better user search results. The search engine algorithms are continuously reviewed and modified to reduce the impact of artificial schemes and sometimes whole portions of websites are disregarded. For example meta key words were so abused in website promotion, that they are now ignored in searches.
Rather then looking for keyword in meta tags, they are now determined from the title, description, text content, naming of pages and images.
The description setup in a website description meta tag may or may not be the description used in search results. A search engine will look at a number of possible sources: Human generated indexes like DMOZ, the user visible text on the page or the Description meta tag. So while the description should be well written to entice the user to click on the link to your site, there is no guarantee that this will be the description displayed in search results.
Website search ranking is partly determined by the number of links to your website . One way to do this is to encourage people to post comments to your website. People started abusing this mechanism by posting automated, generic comments on as many websites as possible. Most of these comments can be identified by the generic nature of the comment: ” I really like your website, you put a lot of effort in. For online socks www.oninesocks.com.”
As a consequence search algorithms started reducing the ranking of websites with such irrelevant links and the websites referenced in such links. The best WordPress plug-in to prevent such irrelevant links is Akismet.
If you find any links to your website from irrelevant websites, contact the webmaster in charge and request removal of those links. If the links are not removed, you can contact the search enigine providers to report those links so that they can ignore them.