The old saying “Build it, and they will come” does not apply to websites. You may have made the most wonderful website, but without proper marketing or SEO, nobody will come. Perhaps you have some idea of what SEO is and you know it will make you appear in search engine result. But how does it do that?
If you are starting out and you want to make a free website, the best platform would be WordPress. There is WordPress.com that you need to pay for and there is WordPress.org that is free. The makers of WordPress suggest that you start with their free blog platform. Then, when you master the basics in posting articles, HTML, CSS and using meta tags and key words you can move on to the paid service. It takes a lot of invested time to learn to use WordPress, so go slow.
Aside from being free, the really great thing about WordPress is that Google loves it. The content of your WordPress website is crawled by Google. The free version of WordPress allows only limited tweaking of your website. You can only use template themes. When you go premium, you can upload your own theme designs and have a website name that does not have “WordPress.org” in the address. But that is still a long way off if you are still learning. Once you have managed to make the general form of your website with WordPress, learn to use SEO techniques.
It is never too early to practice SEO techniques. In fact, it is great that you use SEO techniques in the very beginning of your website creation. Websites that have been around before SEO have had to rewrite years of backlogged pages to update their content for search engine optimization. Starting a website with SEO technique already in practice will save you a lot of time editing and re-editing your web pages. You will also develop the habit of using keywords and meta tags every time you make a new post. This way the work will not accumulate. If you had to do it all at once, it can be a very tedious task.
Here are tips for SEO techniques for WordPress.
1. Key word research. Key words are words or phrases that internet users type into search engines like Google. Do some research using the Google key word research tool. It is free. Find the key words that will best describe the content of your website.
2. Open up your WordPress blog to Google. WordPress is a blog platform, but it is complex enough to look like a website and can function as a website and not just a blog. But since it is still a blog platform, Google needs permission to crawl though your website content. Go to Dashboard > Settings > Permalinks. Once you are there you can customize your WordPress to be searchable by Google.
3. Keep writing. Keep content fresh. This is how you make your website relevant for people to return to. Search engines are also more likely to find websites with more activity rather than those that are idle.
4. Make links. You want other WordPress blogs and other websites to link back to you. This increases your chances of being ranked by search engines and it also increases your traffic naturally. People who visit websites will often click on a link to other sites if it promises interest. If the link is recommended by outside websites, then that means more chances for visitors for your own website.
Now that you have the basic SEO principles, you need to adopt it to your WordPress blog. Make it a habit to consciously insert keywords into your content. This should be done in the very begging of the writing process. Your title should use the key word. You article content will use the key words in every paragraph. And your tags will use the key words. Keep it consistent. This is the proper way to make use of key words. But also remember not to over do it, because you might annoy your reader if the quality of your content fails from over used key words.
Learn to make links. Inserting links and sending links to other websites is a painful and boring task that will need a lot of patience. Be interested in other blogs and comment on their posts, they might like you and comment back. Commenting is a way to say to other websites that you exist! Every time you make a comment, you will always leave a link back to your own website. This is how you promote your own website in the blogs of other people. WordPress is really great for this because it automatically leaves your website address for you every time you comment on another blog.
Another way to increase links is by making friends with other website owners. You may be competitors but you can also be friends. That way you advertise their link on your website and they agree to do the same for you.