That’s Organic!

Do you know what organic traffic is?

Just as organic produce is made without additives, organic traffic is traffic that finds your site without direct interaction from you. Or, in other words, traffic that comes via the all-powerful search engines!

The process by which the search engines discover you and your content fall under a couple of basic categories.

Sitemaps

You, or your website developer, will notify the search engines that your site exists so that they can start checking it out! This is generally done by submitting your website sitemap directly to the big search engines. The sitemap is essentially a list of the pages (& posts) which make up the website. We recommend using a plugin which re-generates the sitemap each time you publish new content. This way the search engines know what new information you are providing to the world!

Before submitting your sitemap to the search engines, you should verify that the contents are what you expect – that all your posts are included and that nothing which is to remain “hidden” is included. If the sitemap doesn’t accurately reflect what you want the search engines to see, it doesn’t help you get to the top of the search results!

Meta Data

In short, meta data is a bunch of hidden information on each of your website pages. It is additional information that the search engines can read. This is the space where you can affect what a potential site visitor sees when they find your site in the search engines.

We build all our websites using the Headway Themes framework, which has built in Search Engine Optimization. This functionality gives the post author the ability to handcraft how the post will look on a search engine results page and highlight key concepts for the post.

If you use another theme, there are plugins available to add this functionality. The most popular free ones are probably AIOSEOP, Scribe and Yoast while there are others which and others such as SEO Ultimate and Simple SEO.

There are commercial options too!

Overwhelmed yet?

We’re talking organic today, so just as the farmers have a long list of dos and don’t when it comes to organic produce, we want to leave you with some tips to generate organic traffic.

  1. Submit your sitemap to GoogleBing and Yahoo <– these are the big ones and the process to submit them is fairly straightforward
  2. Use a Search Engine Optimization plugin (or built in) for every post!
  3. Handcraft the description that shows up in the search engine results window
  4. Setup your SEO tool to automatically use your post tags as keywords
  5. Don’t do keyword stuffing – realistically, your blog post is only going to center around one topic or general theme, limit your keywords to 8 or fewer

What are some of your favorite ways to improve search engine ranking?