HIGHER THINKING BLOG
Increase SEO Value By DJ Chuang
Six Steps To Increase SEO Value Of Your Nonprofit Website
A lot has changed for the internet and search engine optimization (SEO), but there are some tried and true ways to increase your site’s rankings and bring you the traffic you need to grow.
Here are six industry-proven steps you can incorporate today.
Use Smart Links
Instead of linking phrases like “click here,” use the destination title or keywords to create a relevant link. There is no search engine value to a vague link, but a descriptive link will improve search engine rankings, and also provide clarity to anyone using a screen reader.
Clear Domain Name
In the Search Engine Journal, Gillon Hunter tells organizations that the best domain name is “unique, clear, short, meaningful, catchy and inspiring.” We couldn’t agree more!
Whether you find your digital real estate on a top-level domain (TLD) like .com, .org, or a not-com like .BIBLE, carefully curate your website name. Be consistent with the brand you’ve worked so hard to cultivate.
Updating Domain Names
If you decide to update your website URL, simply redirect your site users to your new domain name. This does not have to result in losing your search engine ranking! In our experience, our clients that have changed their top-level domain to .BIBLE, found their rankings maintained due to the relevance and ease of accessing a new direct, concise domain name.
Consider loading speed. Time to first byte (TTFB) is a measurement used as an indication of the responsiveness of a web server or other network resource. Basically, you want to give your customers what they’re looking for and do it quickly.
Alt tags are the description of a video or image file, not the file name (like image.png). This label will be displayed if a file can’t be loaded, and it’s also the content a crawler will index. For example, for an image of a black, leather Bible opened on a table:
Okay alt text: <img src=”Bible.png” alt=”Bible”>
Best alt text: <img src=”Bible.png” alt=”Open black leather Bible
SEO HACK: Speaking of visual files, do you have videos on your site? Provide a full transcript underneath to optimize indexing.
Don’t forget title tags!
Though there’s a lot of debate about how title tags are used to rank sites, we know it’s an important and user-friendly component to an online experience. Moz describes them as:
“…an HTML element that specifies the title of a web page. Title tags are displayed on search engine results pages (SERPs) as the clickable headline for a given result, and are important for usability, SEO, and social sharing.”
Give your pages great title tags, but resist the temptation to saturate them with too many keywords. Instead, focus on content.
SEO HACK: Check the title tag on your homepage. The word “home” will be mean nothing to a bot or a user. Better yet, use your organization or site name.
Content is king!
But you already knew that, right? Right now, stories are everywhere.
If you’re a nonprofit on a .org, or a parachurch organization on a .BIBLE, the objective is to create relevant content and your people will find you. The easiest way? Start a blog and start sharing your expertise. Crawlers like new content, and so do your site visitors.
These are just a few of the many methods for improving your search engine ranking. Whether you contact your host to find out about improved loading speed, or audit your site for weak links, choose an action step to take this week. And don’t forget to take a look at your analytics before and after your changes so you can celebrate your improvements.
DJ Chuang is currently working as the Registry Manager at .BIBLE Registry, a new top-level domain for all things Bible. He’s been in the business long enough to acquire experience as a published author, web developer, program director, web strategist, software developer, and pastor.
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