You’ve created your new website so what’s next?  SEO ‘hygiene’ is very important.  

Every click, tap, and scroll holds the potential to make or break your online presence. Mastering the art of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is akin to unlocking an abundance of online visibility and success. But amidst the algorithms and shifting online trends, mastering SEO is equally as important as maintaining its health and hygiene. But what is it?  SEO hygiene keeps your digital sphere clean—a maintenance routine for your website. It’s the behind-the-scenes work that ensures your website remains visible, accessible, and relevant to your audience. From strategic keyword research tools to mobile-friendly design and everything in between, we’ll cover all the bases to help you keep your website in peak condition and SEO ratings strong.  

Keyword Optimization Techniques: Research and Refinement 

The bread and butter of SEO: keywords. These little digital gold nuggets are what help search engines and users find their way to your corner of the internet. When a user types a query into Google (or any other search engine), it’s the keywords in your content that determine if your website shows up in the search results. But to be effective, you can’t simply sprinkle keywords randomly, you must conduct thorough research to identify the most relevant and high-performing keywords for SEO within your industry. From there, strategically weave these keywords into your website content, including headings, meta descriptions, URLs, and image alt text. It’s all about speaking the language of your audience while sending clear signals to search engine bots. 

Quality Content Creation: Valuable Content for SEO 

Next up on our SEO hygiene checklist is the cornerstone of online success: quality content. Capitalizing on valuable and unique content ideas is what keeps users coming back for more. But what does it entail? Focus on how to create high-quality content that addresses the needs and interests of your target audience like informative blog posts, engaging videos, and captivating visuals. Don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through and inject a healthy dose of creativity into everything you create. But the job doesn’t end there! Once the content is published, regular updates and refreshers are essential. For example, adding fresh insights to existing blog posts, refreshing outdated information, or repurposing content for different platforms, keeping your content up-to-date shows both users and search engines that you’re committed to providing value and authenticity.  

Mobile-Friendly Website Design: Responsive Web design Tips 

With smartphones glued to our palms and tablets never far from reach, most of the web traffic now comes from mobile devices. So, what does this mean for your website usability on mobile devices? Responsive design! In a nutshell, responsive design ensures your website functions across devices and screen sizes. Gone are the days of pinching and zooming to navigate a poorly optimized website on your mobile device. With responsive design, your website automatically adjusts its layout and content to provide users with a seamless browsing experience, no matter how they choose to access it.  

Site Speed Optimization: Improve Website Speed 

Patience may be a virtue, but it’s in short supply when using technology. Slow-loading websites are the digital equivalent of watching paint dry—an experience no user wants to endure. That’s why site speed optimization is important for users and SEO hygiene. Optimizing images, leveraging browser caching, and minimizing scripts or plugins ensures fast website loading. Google and other search engines love a speedy website, and they reward fast-loading pages with higher rankings in search results. 

Internal and External Linking Strategy   

Ever found yourself lost in the labyrinth of a website, unable to find your way back to where you started? Internal linking to the rescue! Just like a well-planned road network, internal links provide pathways for users to explore your website’s content, guiding them from one page to another with ease. Implementing a logical internal linking structure helps users navigate your site with ease.  

Now, let’s turn our attention to external linking—the practice of including outbound links to other websites within your own content. While it may seem counterintuitive to send users away from your website, external linking serves a valuable purpose in the digital ecosystem. Whether it’s citing sources, referencing studies, or linking to complementary content, external links enhance the credibility and depth of your own content.  

By including internal pathway links and relevant external links to reputable and authoritative websites, you will bolster your site’s credibility in the eyes of search engines.  

Image SEO Best Practices and Optimization 

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but in the world of SEO, images need a little extra help to speak the language of search engines. For example, instead of settling for generic filenames like “IMG_1234.jpg,” take a moment to give your images descriptive, keyword-rich filenames that provide context about the content of the image. And optimizing alt text for images? It’s that important little snippet of text that describes the content of an image for users who can’t see it (think screen readers for visually impaired users). Alt text not only improves accessibility for all users but also provides valuable context for search engines, helping them understand the image. By optimizing images with descriptive filenames and adding alt text that includes relevant keywords, you’re giving search engines valuable context to understand the content of your visuals—a small yet impactful step towards enhancing your site’s overall SEO health. 

Structured Data for Better SEO 

 Ever noticed those rich snippets in search results that pop up at the top, providing quick answers to your queries? That’s the power of structured data markup at play. What exactly is schema markup? At its core, schema markup consists of a series of tags or microdata that you can add to your website’s HTML code to provide context about the content of your page. From identifying specific entities (like products, events, or recipes) to describing relationships between them, schema markup paints a vivid picture of your website’s content in a language that search engines understand. By implementing schema markup, you’re increasing your chances of appearing in these special search result features and standing out from the crowd. 

Regular Maintenance: SEO Monitoring Tools 

Just like a car needs regular tune-ups to run smoothly, your website requires ongoing monitoring and maintenance to stay in shape. Tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console are your best friends in this regard, allowing you to keep a close eye on your website’s performance, detect crawl errors, fix broken links, and address any other technical issues that may impact your SEO efforts. Once you detect errors, be sure to swiftly resolve them to maintain your SEO ratings. By regularly monitoring your website’s performance, detecting and fixing technical issues, and optimizing your strategy based on data-driven insights, you’ll position yourself ahead of your competition.   

Backlink Profile Management: Build Quality Backlinks 

Backlinks are the lifeblood of SEO, serving as digital endorsements from other websites vouching for your content’s credibility and relevance. But not all backlinks are created equal. Start by identifying authoritative websites in your niche and reaching out to them with thoughtful pitches and collaborations. Whether it’s guest blogging, contributing to industry forums, or participating in online communities, building genuine relationships with other website owners can open doors to valuable backlink opportunities. But remember, it’s not just about getting backlinks—it’s also about giving. Be generous with your own backlinks, linking out to reputable sources and providing value to your audience through diverse and informative content. As part of your SEO hygiene routine, it’s essential to monitor and manage your backlink profile, ensuring you’re receiving quality inbound links from reputable sources.  

Compliance with SEO Best Practices: SEO Guidelines for Websites 

Last but certainly not least, staying updated with the latest SEO trends and algorithm changes is imperative for maintaining your website’s SEO health. Keep your finger on the pulse of SEO trends by hiring an SEO professional that will be your eyes and ears. Or, you can attend conferences, webinars, and engage with leaders in the SEO community. Similarly, regularly audit your website for opportunities to optimize and refine your strategy, whether it’s fine-tuning your keyword targeting, refreshing your content, or improving your website’s performance and user experience. By following industry best practices and guidelines set by search engines like Google, you can adapt your strategy accordingly and future-proof your SEO efforts for long-term success.  

So, what exactly is SEO hygiene? It’s the meticulous upkeep that ensures your digital sphere remains polished and pristine—a maintenance routine for your website’s well-being. From strategic keyword optimization to mobile-friendly design and everything in between, we’ve covered all the bases to help you keep your website in peak condition and your SEO ratings strong. But the journey doesn’t end there. SEO hygiene is an ongoing commitment—a dedication to continuous improvement and adaptation in the face of evolving trends and technologies. By adhering to the best practices outlined in this guide and staying vigilant in monitoring and updating your site, you’ll ensure ongoing success in both search rankings and user satisfaction.