People Optimisation, not Search Engine Optimisation
I watched a great video on HTML 5 by Jeremy Kieth recently. At the end while responding to a question raised by someone in the audience about HTML 5 and SEO he said “I’ll tell you what improves your position in search engines – write good content! It’s crazy but it’ll work!”, “…if you’re thinking in terms of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) you’re doing it wrong.
“I’ll tell you what improves your position in search engines – write good content! It’s crazy but it’ll work!”
You want to be thinking in terms of people optimisation because Google practices people optimisation.”
I quote Jeremy here because I really couldn’t say it any better myself. If your website is not performing as well as you would like in search engines the first thing you need to look at is your content. Is your content any good? Is it really going to be of any use to anyone at all? If the answer is “no” or “not sure”, then before you do anything else, address this issue. Review your content and if you can afford it hire a copywriter to help you get the most out of what you want to say. After all, this is why you originally started your website… isn’t it?
Only after you’ve finished making your content the best it can be can you move onto optimising your website to be easily spidered by search engines. This is the point where a good web designer can come in handy. Amongst other things they can ensure:
- That your pages are structured properly with the most important information near the top of the document.
- That you use relevant keywords in your headings, link text and page titles.
- That your webpages are marked up using standards based, semantic code.
- That you have a sitemap which has been submitted to search engines
These things will be futile if you haven’t sorted your content first. If you spend 99% of your efforts safisfying your users’ needs and providing them with the best service and best information possible, search engines will find you eventually all by themselves. After all that is what they are designed to do - provide the most relevant information to users based on their search queries. Make your content relevant!