Are you a business owner?
If so, you’re probably getting regular calls and email from “SEO” companies offering their services. Have you received any emails like this one?
I visited your website and noticed that you are not listed in most of the major search engines and directories…”
I get them all of the time. That one was sent to Google . . .
Does your website really need SEO? Did your website designer take care of it for you? Maybe. How can you know?
When I am asked to look at a website, the first thing I do is perform a quick test to determine if any SEO at all has been done – on most sites that I look at it has not. Following is the at a glance “SEO check” that I use.
A 2 Step Do-It-Yourself SEO Test
This quick and easy test is helpful in that it will indicate if your site has undergone any optimization.
Step #1. Look at Your Title Tags
What is a Title Tag? A title tag is a word or phrase built around your industry or business keywords – those words that searchers use to find your product, service, or company.
The title tag is one of your best opportunities to tell the Search Engines what you think that your web page is about.
To Find Your Title Tag: The process of finding your title tag is different in each web browser. Firefox and Safari are typically the easiest browser for this.
- Look at the top, left-hand side of your screen
The title tag for this page is “Search Engine Marketing Consulting Services | Echelon SEO”
On Apple’s Safari web browser, it will appear on the same line that it does on Firefox, but in the middle of the screen rather than on the left side.
It is a little more difficult on Chrome or Internet Explorer.
- Open “Tools”
- Open View Source
- Identify the “Title” tag
The title tag will look like this : <title> title tag will appear here</title>
- Click on “Settings” and then “F12 Developer tools” (or just F12)
- The source code will appear at the bottom of the page. Select “script” then scroll down until you see <title>
Evaluating the Title Tag
Your homepage title tag should include a keyword or phrase, the name of your business, and if you only serve one geographic location, the name of the city and state where you work.
It is common for sites that have NOT been optimized to include only the name of the business here. This is like being in the white pages of the phonebook (remember those?), the only way someone can find you is if they already know the name of your company. This works for existing customers or maybe referrals, but completely misses anyone searching for your products or services.
If your homepage is not properly optimized, it is safe to assume that your site needs optimization. However, if it appears okay, then it’s on to Step #2.
Step #2: Look at Your “Services” Page
Most businesses have a link to their “Services” or “Products” on the navigation bar. After “clicking” on that link:
- Look at the Title Tag:
- Is it the same as the homepage title tag? If so, your site needs SEO – each page should have a unique title tag.
- Is the title tag a descriptive keyword, or is it something generic like “services”? If it is generic, your website would benefit from SEO.
- If your company offers multiple products or services, are they all listed on one page or do they each have their own page? If they are all listed on one page, your website needs to be optimized.
Word of caution – although this quick test can help you to determine that your website has NOT been optimized, passing it does not necessarily mean that your site is WELL optimized. To determine that you will need someone with more SEO experience to look at it.
Learn more about SEO by following any of these great SEO blogs!
Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave any questions or comments in the space below.
(Featured Image: photo credit: SEOPlanter)