This article will describe how any Nonprofit organization can use a few quick and easy SEO fixes to get more visitors to their websites.
Before we get into how you can improve your SEO, let’s just have a quick look at what it is and why you need to improve it.
What is SEO?
In its simplest form Search Engine Optimisation (or SEO for short) is when you design your website in such a way that search engines (like Google, Bing and Yahoo) can accurately assess your website and show it to users when they are searching for websites like yours.
Let’s say you are a Nonprofit in Colorado and someone (who may be located anywhere in the world) goes onto Google and searches for Nonprofits in Colorado. If your website has good SEO you will appear in the top search results. If your website has no SEO you are unlikely to even appear on the first page of the Google search results, if at all.
By the way, there was no particular reason I chose Colorado other than the fact that many years ago I spent 6 months in a tiny town in the Rockies and I love the place! Here is a picture of the town I lived in. Bonus points for anyone who can guess the name of the town….
So why is SEO important?
I think the guys at Business Marketing Intelligence sum it up nicely. You need good SEO so that you can provide search engines (like Google, Bing, and Yahoo) critical information so they will place your site in the top 5 spots on the returns page.
People trust search engines. If google ranks you highly, it seems likely that you are a trustworthy organization. On top of that, there is the customer reach. If you don’t rank on page 1 of a Google search who is going to find you? When was the last time you went to page 3 or 4 of a Google search result?
5 SEO tips you can implement now
SEO can get complex and highly technical, there is no doubt about that. Luckily the basics of SEO are relatively easy to understand and implement and with just a basic knowledge of your website you will be able to action them.
1. Page Titles
A page title, or title tag, are what shows up in the search engine results. As you can see in the image, the page title is the first thing potential customers are going to see.
Unless your non-profit organization has an amazing brand, like UNICEF, then you don’t need it at the start of your page title. Your homepage is probably already ranking for your site name, so you don’t need to rank for it more than once. Every page on your website should have a unique page title.
Note, your page title should consist of the key words you are trying to rank for, not buzzwords.
2. Meta Descriptions
When you search for a website in Google, you’ll see a snippet of content under the page link. There is a bit of a debate surrounding the value of this in terms of SEO, but regardless of this, it is a great way to give your potential customers a snap shot of your business. In the image below you can see the descriptions I have given.
This is called the ‘meta description tag’. For these descriptions, try to put yourself in the shoes of your potential customers. Think about what sort of description would help them gain insight into what you are about.
To keep it simple, HTTPS is a certificate that makes your website more secure. It is shown by a padlock in the browser window to show a secure connection as can be seen in the image below.
The guys at Pickaweb explain that it used to be used by eCommerce retailers or anyone else accepting online payments to ensure that sensitive, confidential payment details were sent securely to prevent them being stolen by malicious hacking activities.
However, improving online security is becoming more and more important and Google has been quick to recognize this. So if you want to rank higher, make your site more secure and switch to HTTPS.
Permalinks are the URL’s for your websites pages. By default, page titles tend to look like fairangle.com/?p=7 but if you look at the URL for this post you will see https://www.fairangle.com/blog_5 easy SEO steps an Nonprofit can use to boost their website.
The nice thing about this format is that if someone comes across your page on Google, they can get an idea what it is about without having to click on it. The other benefit is that the words in the URL will also give the search engines a better idea of what your page is about and it helps them determine if your page is relevant to the search query.
When save down your images be sure to include your keywords. But as always with keywords, make sure they are natural sounding. Don’t just say “best Nonprofit”, say something like “the best Nonprofit for helping stray dogs”.
When you upload you images to your website you will see the option to add an ‘alt attribute’. This is where you should place your keywords. This gives search engines a better chance to understand what the image is about and asses its relevance when potential customers are searching on Google.
So those are my top 5 easy to implant tips for SEO. As with everything SEO related, people have their disagreements over what does and does not work. But for me, these are a few of the things that have worked!
I hope you manage to find some success with these tips. If you have any questions I’d love to hear from you, so please flick me a message.