A good SEO checklist to follow for beginners.

by Koree S. Monteloyola

  1. Avoid Meta Keyword stuffing.
  2. Create unique content.
  3. Think of the keywords that your users would type on a search engine to reach your site.
  4. Use Google Adwords's keyword tool to find the appropriate keyword/s (to target) for your site.
  5. Take advantage of the concept of "user generated content" by implementing user reviews or comments and sharing tools for social media websites. User generated content helps to emphasize the title/content of the page without much effort from the web developer or web master (Look mom no hands!) [Read my reflection paper and know the impact of user generated content.]
  6. If you're using a content management system (CMS) like Wordpress, Joomla or Drupal, make sure to upgrade to the latest version, as soon as possible, otherwise your site would be a candidate for hacks.
  7. The main content should be in a good position on your page. Avoid putting ads, widgets, clickable thumbnails before or at the top of the content. These objects should be at the sidebar.
  8. A matching URL and title makes a big difference. Make sure it is not spammy. Keep it simple.
  9. Make your site unique. You don't have to worry in getting a domain that contains a piece of your keyword/s. It's all about the content.
  10. Make people want to link to your site. Create a content that has value, unique, exciting or cool.
  11. Use Google Webmasters tools.
  12. Copied content does not rank highly.
  13. Original content makes people want to return to your site.
  14. Don't use images where text should be in.
  15. Don't give your rankings to others - be careful with web developers / web companies that create your website and put their links at the bottom/footer of your web pages (ex. "Powered by Company Here"). Give value to your site.
  16. Use Google Maps for every content when appropriate.
  17. Observe the keywords that lead your users to your website. Utilize these keywords/web pages to attract more audience.
  18. Make sure that your hosting provider is reliable and has good up-time.
  19. For URLs use dash (-) or periods (.) as separators.
  20. Find ways to make users busy on your site. Post related content in between paragraphs or images, especially on the sidebars. A 5 minute video is short and attractive to a busy person - then multiply that thought to 5 for each person (for another 5 video clips) who visits your site, and you'll know what I mean.
  21. Shorten the meta description. Make sure that it is not cut-off abruptly in the search results.
  22. Implement properly structured and clear breadcrumbs.
  23. Make sure that the character encoding used renders all the special characters correctly.
  24. Avoid rendering inorganic content. Focus on what users/humans like.
  25. Don't put too much text on your site, especially if it's unrelated/spam content.
  26. Don't sweat on creating a good URL. Unique and valuable content is the key. 
  27. Be consistent with the links of each page. Use canonical tags.
  28. Fix broken links and make sure links point to the correct destination.
  29. Track your backlinks. Make sure that your backlinks are not coming from spam sites.
  30. Use valid and appropriate HTML tags.

I am in the process of redesigning my own site, and I think this list is a good guideline for search engine optimization to help me get a higher rank in Google search engine results.

By the way, thanks to Adrian for the Google IO video.

Category: SEO, Web
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