With all my writing about content
recently, it's easy to forget that the reason for all of that is to improve your search engine optimization (SEO) and thereby increase the number of people visiting your website.
SEO isn't a short term process; you're either in it for the long haul or you are wasting your money on get-rich-quick SEO gimmicks and promises of first place ranking. Every week, I'm seeing more and more cold solicitations from overseas companies with messages like "You are not ranking on the 1st page of Google for your important keywords." The strange thing is that it's impossible for those overseas companies to know exactly what those important keywords are without talking to you first.
You and your employees probably know exactly what types of keywords you want to rank for in order to attract the right clients. Adding content to your website and making occasional changes to older pages will help with your long term SEO process.
SEO is also about keeping things fresh, updating software, and making sure old information on your site is still accurate and functioning correctly. Part of your SEO process is about finding and fixing other issues your site might have which annoy your clients.
Here are some common things that break on websites:
* Broken links from blog posts
* Website server upgrades break functionality
* Content management upgrades cause pages to malfunction
* Employees who update the website without proper training often make mistakes
* Trained employees make content changes without realizing how it will affect the website
The last two items on that list are probably the most common issues I see, and that's why anyone who works on your website should have the training on how to make changes as well as training to understand the basics of SEO.
Employees should be given guidelines for what they can change without permission, and what they should clear through whoever is monitoring the site's SEO.
Here are those guidelines:
1. Don't change the URL of the web page without asking the SEO person to set up a 301 redirect. Some content management systems will do that for you, but if not, it's a little technical to set up.
2. Don't change the URL of the web page without asking the SEO person if it will have a negative impact on the Google ranking for that page. It's believed that the URL is one of the items used in Google's algorithm.
3. Don't change the Page Title without asking the SEO person. This will have a direct impact on your ranking and even the smallest change will help or hurt you.
4. Don't change the headline on the page without talking to your SEO person. The headline is what appears in your H1 tag. It's believed that the H1 is one of the items used in Google's algorithm, and normally you would want it to closely match the Page Title and URL.
5. You should feel free to change the content on the page, assuming you are not fully rewriting it. Full rewrites will have some effect on your SEO, but not as much as the others I've mentioned above. Changing a few sentences and adding/changing photos will also have little effect on the page.
I've listed 4 items that might seem very limiting of the changes an employee is allowed to make, but in reality, most employees are usually just tasked with changing the content of the page as explained in item 5 above.
Websites should evolve as your business evolves. As your website evolves, someone should be reviewing the overall SEO of your website on a regular basis.