Search Engine Optimisation For Uganda Websites
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
You would prefer to get free website traffic instead of paying for it, right? That's what Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is all about. SEO is about increasing the chances your web pages will show up as high as possible in the Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) when a user searches for a keyword related to your business.
To succeed with search engine optimization, and rank for keywords you care about, it's necessary to understand a little about how Google search works. At Burt Systems we make it our business to know how Google and other search engines work and we generously want forward this information to our customers.
Google does two basic things. First, it crawls the Internet looking for web pages, storing these pages in its index. Think of the Google index as a massive catalog (much like a supermarket would have a catalog of every item in the store). Second, it has software that processes user searches and finds the best matching web pages from its index.
In order for your web page to rank well in Google for a given keyword, two things need to happen. First, Google needs to crawl and index your web page. If your web page isn't being crawled, you're not even in the race! Then, of all the possible web pages that Google thinks is a match for the keyword being searched, your page or pages have to be considered better than the other possible candidates. And this is when Search Engine Optimisation comes in.
The process of obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine (SERPs) — including Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines — by increasing the amount of visitors to your website by applying a methodology of techniques and tactics is what is called Search Engine Optimisation.
But getting web pages indexed by Google is not the problem. Getting them to rank well is where the challenge is. To understand how to rank well, it's helpful to understand the basics of how the Google's search ranking algorithm works.
How Does Google Rank Your Website?
Let's dig into how Google's software brain works and uncover a few secrets. We promise not to make it too technical, and you'll know enough to impress your friends and family at the next holiday party.
When a user types a keyword into Google's search box, Google first looks through the billions of pages in its index and comes up with a list of results that are matches for the term. For example, if you type Search Engine Optimisation Uganda into the Google search box, there are currently about 618,000 pages that Google finds related to that term. Once Google has this list of pages, it sorts the list so the highest-quality results are at the top of the list and the lowest-quality results are at the bottom.
Ranking is based on a combination of two things, relevance and authority. The relevance is a measure of how close of a match a given web page is to the term being searched. This is based on factors such as the title tag (sometimes called the “page title”), the page content, and the anchor text of links to the page. The authority of a page is a measure of how important and authoritative that given page is in the eyes of Google.
The authority of a web page is at the heart of the Google algorithm. Google calls this authority PageRank, named for Larry Page, one of the founders of Google. The idea behind PageRank is brilliantly simple and based on work at Stanford University on how to measure the credibility and importance of academic papers. The authority of a given academic paper can be determined by the number of other papers that cite and reference it. The more citations a given paper has, the better the paper. However, not all citations are created equal. A citation from another paper that itself has a high number of citations is considered to carry more weight. High-authority papers are cited by other high-authority papers. It is this same principle that drives Google's PageRank, but instead of academic papers, it's about web pages. And instead of citations, it's about links from other web pages. The authority of a web page is calculated based on the number of inbound links from other web pages and the authority of those pages.
Burt Systems's search engine optimization strategy not only includes on-page SEO factors (techniques applied onto your website) but also Off-page factors that add significant improvement in rankings for your keywords. Off-page factors are those that are not on the pages you control but on other web pages. And the most important off-page factor is a great inbound link building strategy.
Winning SEO With Great Link Building
Let's make the SEO things a little more chewable by giving a simple example. Let's say you've created a web page about the best restaurants in Kampala. If your page is just sitting out there, and nobody is linking to it, Google assigns a relatively low authority score to your page. This is not surprising. Google has no evidence that you know what you're talking about or that your content is of high quality. Over time, a few other bloggers find your web page and link to it from their pages. This causes your authority to increase. The more powerful the web pages that link to you, the more your authority goes up. Now, if someday, Monitor.co.ug (the website for the Daily Monitor News) links to your page, your authority goes up significantly. Why? Because Monitor.co.ug itself is a high-authority website.
So, to get SEO authority, the name of the game is to perfect your link building strategy as much as we can. How do you do we perfect SEO link building strategy? By creating remarkable content.
We Nail Search Engine Optimization By Creating Remarkable Content
Search engine optimization when done well is not about tricking Google into ranking your web page with irrelevant content, black hut link practices and keyword stuffing. It's about creating content that users would want to find and helping Google deliver great search results. The best way to rank well in the Google search results is to create content that is rank-worthy. By rank-worthy, we mean content that is worthy of being ranked because it is what the user who is searching would consider to be of high quality and relevance.
We create and optimise content that your customers don't even know they're looking for, and when they find it through our intuitive search engine optimisation strategies, they're sure to make a remark about it, share it and create link network that your competitors would find hard to climb over.
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Cognitive Keyword Research For Winning SEO
The first step in search engine optimization is deciding which keywords to optimize your site for. Keywords are what users type into the search box for their search query. We consider a three primary criteria into selecting the right keywords to optimize your website: relevance, volume, and difficulty.
1. Relevance — You want to pick keywords related to your business. When we're crafting your list of possible keywords, we like think from your prospect's perspective. We think about what keywords your prospect looking for your product or service is likely to type into Google, and come up with many different variations.
2. Estimated Search Volume — Even if you get the number one spot in the Google search results for a keyword, it doesn't guarantee you're going to get lots of visitors to your website. The amount of traffic we will drive to your website is dependent on how many people search on that keyword. We pick great keywords by having a sense for the approximate number of times users search for that word in Google using the best keyword research tools online.
3. Difficulty — This is a measure of how hard it will be to rank for the keyword, based on the strength of the competition and your own website's authority. Ranking well in Google is a competition. Of the thousands of web pages trying to rank for a given keyword, only 10 can make it to the front page. So, if you have a new website and are trying to break in to the top 10, you'll have to displace someone else. For some keywords, this is relatively easy to do, if the existing top 10 are relatively weak. For competitive keywords, the strength of the competition may be high, and ranking on the first page may be very difficult. Burt Systems has mastered this game for more than a decade, use their resources.
Picking the best keywords is an exercise in balancing these three factors: relevance, search volume, and difficulty. We don't just solve for one factor. For example, picking a relevant keyword that has very high search volume is not going to mean much if the difficulty is so high that you'll never be able to rank. Similarly, picking very easy words that have very weak competition is not going to generate much traffic if only a few people a month use that term to search.
If your website doesn't have much authority yet in the eyes of Google, you're unlikely to rank well for a highly competitive keyword. In addition, if you don't make it into the first page of the search results, you are not likely to get much traffic from those keywords. We make sure we choose keywords that you build authority for your web pages.
Don't Get Banned by Google
In our search engine optimisation room, we have terms like "black hat" and "white hat" to describe "bad SEO practices" and "goog SEO practices" respectively. The terms “black hat” and “white hat” were derived from old western movies where the bad guys generally wore black hats and the good guys wore white hats. SEO experts constantly debate as to what practices are considered white hat versus black hat. In our mind, the big difference is that white-hat SEO helps Google deliver quality results to users by working within existing guidelines. On the other hand, black-hat SEO involves exploiting current limitations in Google's software to try and trick it into ranking a particular web page that would normally not have ranked.
Whatever you call them, we ragingly avoid SEO practices that rely on tricking Google and distorting search results like a plague. Here's our rule of thumb: If a given technique is not improving the experience for a user, and it can be detected by a human doing a manual review, then it's probably a bad idea. It's safe to assume that if you try to exploit a hole in the Google algorithm today, your advantage is going to be temporary. More importantly, you carry a significant risk of having your website penalized or banned completely from Google. In our books, the risk is not worth the reward.
Tracking Your SEO Progress
Tracking your progress in terms of rankings is an important part of SEO—and it's relatively easy considering the number of free and very affordable tools available online to help you monitor how your search engine optimization efforts are doing.
By tracking your SEO progress, we'll give you a lot of useful information, find problems, and give you suggestions to fix them. We notes of what your score is, follow the suggestions, and regularly monitor your grade over time. For example Google Analytics (free tool) looks at several different factors and gives you a higher-level view of how your website is doing.
One of the data points we check for is how many of your site's pages are in the Google index. If the number of indexed pages seems lower than we expect (or zero), there's likely some problem with your site architecture and Google is not seeing all of your web pages.
We monitor the number of inbound links you are getting to your website. As we've discussed earlier, your Google rankings depend a lot on the number and quality of links you are getting. We adjust to get this number higher and higher.
We track a list of your favorite keywords (those that have the right mix of relevance, high search volume, and low difficulty) and see how your rankings are doing for some words than others. We look for patterns. Pay particular attention to which web pages on your site are starting to rank. These pages are important assets because Google is sending you a message (by ranking those pages) that they are gaining authority.
Most importantly, we track your actual results. How many visitors are coming to your website through organic search? How many became leads? For bonus points, we implement a closed-loop reporting system and track how many of these leads converted into customers. (Closed loop means you track a new customer from initial inquiry to closed sale).
Get Started, Now!
You made it here, wow! Now cut the bullshit and get the ball rolling on your small business's website Search Engine Optimisation today!
Get a consultant on this thing NOW while you still can afford it. Start by sending us a request to take a look at your website and advise. It's completely free and the call we'll make to your phone is on us. No obligations after that. We just need three data entries from you, it'll take just 60 seconds — your mobile phone number, your name and the link to your website. If you don't have a website, no worries! We'll discuss how to get you one with minimal hustle