Mrs. Winters, my 4th grade math teacher said, “Nine is a magic number.”
I didn’t believe her. But it’s true. Multiples of 9 always add up to 9. 9 (9+0) 18 (1+8) 27 (2+7) See?
Search Engine Optimization has magic numbers too! I’m about to let you in on the magic numbers of SEO, but before I do I have to warn you: If you don’t pay attention to SEO some of this might sound like gibberish.
That’s okay. All you really need to know is why you care.
And that’s easy. You care because SEO allows your content to be seen by the people who need it. It may be the first step to them seeking help and getting unstuck. Each person who comes into contact with your free content is impacted by it. This is your chance to create the change you want to see in the world. SEO matters. That’s why I’m taking the time to talk about it.
If something doesn’t make sense, just schedule a call with me. I’ll see if I can help you unpack it.
Here are the magic numbers for you to reach more people, make a greater impact, and grow your business.
What do you think the most important page on your website is?
It’s your home page, duh. It’s the first page people see when they click on your site. It has to be enticing and more than that it needs to give them an idea of what you can help them with.
If this is the first page people see, and the most visited page on the entire site, it’s also the biggest chance to make your website work for you. Your goal with your homepage is to suck people further into your world. There should be links throughout the homepage for them to find out more about you and your services.
The second most visited page on any website is the “About Me” page, and this is where I see people throwing away opportunities. Your about me page might be a place to talk about your favorite kitten, but it’s not a place to say, “Hi, my name is Jeni. My cat’s name is Kitty. Here’s our selfie,” and call it a day.
It needs the same care and work every other page on your site gets. It needs to be well developed, explain who you help and what you help them with, and speak to your why. Why? Why you? Why now?
This might come as a shock but there are thousands of other people out there who do what you do. People need you for a reason and being your most authentic self in your online real estate is the best way to help them know that.
The third must have page is probably a no brainer. It’s your services page. If people don’t know what you’re offering, they can’t buy.
Your site needs these 3 pages at a minimum, but you still have to follow SEO best practices to make these pages matter.
750 is the magic number of words on a web page that Google’s Virtual Spider Man likes to bump up. Anything less than that Google brushes aside as content that doesn’t go deep enough to matter to users.
The SEO Journal is quick to remind us that word count alone doesn’t make or break SEO, and priority should be given to user experience over meeting a word count for the word count’s sake. While I agree with their assessment of causation versus corelation, if you’re not taking the time to be detailed and specific what kind of a user experience are you actually providing?
Yes, you should make your words count, but I still think word count is a good guideline to ensure you’re providing enough value.
Page length is something most people understand, but nonwriters often struggle with it. “How can I write 750 words about myself or my business? Don’t I just sound like I’m bragging?”
Probably not. Everything you’ve accomplished and what your business doesn’t seem like a big deal to you, because you know about it. You were there for the story. The rest of us weren’t, and before we can do business with you, we need to know what you’ve accomplished.
Internal & External Links
An internal link is just linking to another page or blog post on your own site. An external link is linking to authoritative site in your industry. Google hearts .gov and .edu sites for this purpose. You need 2-4 of each.
Believe it or not, links seem to freak people out. When it comes to internal links, they may think they don’t have anything worth linking to. Don’t worry about this. The purpose of an internal link is just to show the thing you’re trying to be known for is something you actually talk about a lot.
“Okay, but why would I send someone away from my site?” On a sales page, I’d probably agree with you, and this is a legitimate concern. I won’t tell you there’s no chance someone leaves and never comes back. That’s possible.
But if your site is engaging enough, and your offer is strong enough, this shouldn’t be a real concern. You also need to ask yourself is the goal of your site SEO or conversion?
Obviously conversion is a factor either way, but if the main goal of your site is conversion that means people find you through another means and you send them to your site. In this case, the site’s almost the last stop. They’re coming to check out.
If the goal of your site is search engine optimization, you’re focusing on making it easy for Google to send people to you. You want good copy either way. You want urgency, for them to understand and recognize a need for your offer, and ultimately to click the buy button. But if you don’t have your own pipeline, SEO is the best way to go. And Google wants to know it’s sending people to legitimate sources.
Use these rules and structure your page correctly, and your SEO will rank.
SEO in and of itself is complicated. If you’re not a writer, creating compelling copy is hard and lacing it with SEO is even harder.