All websites need to optimise their homepage for search engines because it is crucial. Be it a corporate website, e-commerce store, or even a blog; you have to SEO your homepage even if you do not expect high rankings from any of the pages. To do this, you will need an SEO agency, and you still have to know how vital a homepage SEO is.
But why should you SEO your homepage?
A lot of reasons exists why you should give more time to your website’s homepage. Most of the time, it is the first page users get to see, especially if it’s a corporate website and it is inevitably one of the pages users will visit even if they are linked to any other website pages you have.
People who visit your website will take a peek at your homepage to know more about your business or blog.
A great opportunity to grant Google insight about your website is through SEO. This is done through your website title, description, and content. Google will use this available information to create an entry for your website in the SERPs when people seek out your domain name.
Your search piece needs to be exact, attractive, and official. Sometimes, your homepage can take the peak position for highly competitive keywords as it carries all the energy and page rank from other pages.
At DubSEO, you can learn more about how best to optimise your homepage.
Take a look at these examples:
- contentmarketinginstitute.com – This homepage stands out for content marketing because the website has several articles linked to content marketing.
- socialmediatoday.com – This homepage is all about social media because it has a wide range of content linked to social media marketing
You will need anSEO agency to optimise your homepage professionally, but the process involves some steps.
To achieve a successful homepage optimisation, it does not only require technical SEO but also include other factors that need to be considered, which you would see as you read on.
Remember, SEO is not only applicable in search engines but also for users and functionality. DubSEO also provides a frontier insight on search engine optimisation for websites. You can contact them for technical support.
There isn’t much difference in homepage optimisation and that of other pages of the website when it is viewed from an SEO point of view.
Use these homepage SEO clues to enhance your homepage completely:
- Improve the Homepage Title
- Enhance the Homepage Meta Description
- Optimise the H1 tag
- Homepage image SEO
- Improve your logo
- Include Adequate Structured Data Markup
- Homepage Content SEO
- Improve homepage loading speed
- Look out for Mobile Friendliness
- Include an SSL
- Revise the Structure and Navigation of your site
You can skip the theory if you want and do a more practical homepage optimisation. Apart from the SEO factors, consider other essential components of a highly optimised homepage. Contact an SEO agency if you don’t feel confident enough to improve your website homepage.
Improve the Homepage Title
Go beyond using your website or business name as the title of your homepage to be more innovative by providing more information about the core content of your website to search engines and users.
Make use of all the 60 characters at your disposal to fuse in keywords and business details in a single sentence.
Take a look at some examples of SEO optimised homepage title:
When you look at the Google Ads homepage, you’ll see the position of the prime keywords PPC Online Advertising in this page title: Google Ads – PPC Online Advertising to Reach Your Marketing Goals
Another example is from MOZ. One of their important keywords, SEO Software, is placed immediately after their business name as follows Moz – SEO Software, Tools & Resources for Smarter Marketing
Rules of Homepage title SEO
- Maintain a 60 characters title
- Avoid using your brand name but add keywords that contain information about your website or business
- Ensure that your target keywords are positioned at the beginning of the title
- Avoid adding too many keywords in the title so as not to confuse Google. Add keywords that would stand you out
- Avoid stuffing keywords, for instance, don’t do this ‘Mini importation I SEO I Social Media I Links’, instead, do this ‘Cheap Mini Importation Services by (Name of your website)
- At the beginning of the title, add your business or domain name
Consult DubSEOfor more help with your homepage optimisation.
Enhance the homepage meta description
Another vital thing is the homepage description. This is what users will see in the SERPs as such; you may have to think through it. While doing this, bear in mind that Google may decide to use their description instead of yours.
This may occur if you have a very short description, perhaps it’s less than 130 characters or too long, let’s say above 154 characters, or in other cases if it contains so many keywords.
Optimise the H1 tag
The H1 tag is another thing to improve. Every single page, including your homepage on the website, should have ‘only one’s H1 tag. At the top of the page is where the H1 tag is normally placed and a lot of themes are configured to show the page title within the H1 tags.
Should you have a choice set of the H1 tag for your homepage, ensure that you add some related keywords or, contact anSEO agency to give you technical support for good results.
How do you check your homepage H1 tag?
In the browser, open your homepage and right-click anywhere on the page.
Select ‘view source.’
Click on CTRL -F (to look for a phrase) and search for H1
It’s normal for you to see just one opening <h1> tag and one closing </h1>.
Should you see more than one active sets in your HTML code, consult a developer to help you take them out and keep just one.
Homepage image SEO
Images are indispensable for every good homepage. Your homepage should have pictures! The reason is that they make your page more engaging and less boring. Most importantly, they highlight the message you are sending to your readers.
SEO wise, images can be employed to send another signal to the search engine crawlers about your homepage content.
If you are using images for your homepage, ensure the following:
- Set an ALT text that tells what the image is
- Add keywords to your ALT text in a more natural way
- Should an image contain text, do well to disconnect the image from the text. This is because search engines cannot read text with images (as in jpg or png)
- For efficient SEO, include the text using CSS and HTML and retain the image devoid of text
You can still contact DubSEO for advice and practical ways to effectively enhance your homepage for better website experience.
Improve your logo
A good website should have a unique logo! To enhance your logo, use these 2 simple steps:
- Ensure the file name of the image carries the name of your website.
- Make sure the name of your website is included in the ALT text
As an added tip, you can also try including your location in the ALT text and logo file name should you attempt to improve your homepage for local SEO.
Include adequate structured data markup
Structured data is becoming relevant in recent times though it is yet to be included as part of Google ranking algorithm. However, with time, it will be added.
But, what’s structured data markup?
Simply put, structured data is an explanation of your data to search engine crawlers. Most search engines have an agreed and common pattern of presenting different data forms such as events, organisations, companies, articles, products, etc. As a web manager, it is your duty to include all the necessary tags to your HTML code.
Structured data may be used by Google in the SERPs, including powerful snippets or knowledge graph entries, causing your entries to look more attractive to users. You will also get an increased CTR (click-through rates).
In enhancing the structured data for your homepage, make sure you describe the following schemas:
- Organisation (should you be an online business)
- Local business (should you own a shop)
- Person (should you be operating a personal blog)
Homepage content SEO
Content is what a homepage should have. What we mean by this is text content that search engines will be able to read and comprehend.
Generally, a homepage can come in 3 different forms:
- For corporate websites, details about the company, images, and links to the inner website pages will be added
- For blogs or portals, the homepage will show the recent blog posts and feature articles
- For e-commerce stores, latest products, news, offers, and links to the varying products sections will be added
No matter the style of the homepage you want, make sure there’s adequate text content on the page.
Ensure that there are target keywords or variations in your content
Refrain from having videos or images without text
Get an SEO agency to aid you in setting up your homepage to build a website that is user-friendly and smart.
Improve homepage loading speed
Research shows that 40% of users will not hesitate to go off a page should it take longer than 3 seconds to load. It doesn’t matter whether you have a unique homepage; if it loads slowly, customers and users will avoid it!
Consider these few clues to increase the loading speed of your homepage:
- Make use of a fast server from a trusted host. Should you be using shared hosting, you can consider switching to a VPS. For faster website speed, having your server is important. This is true because a VPS costs as little as $25 a month; thus serious-minded bloggers or business owners don’t have an excuse
- Improve the size of your image file. Edit any photo you need to upload to your website first before doing so. You can use photo editing software like Pixelmator, Gimp, Photoshop, etc. after which you can now export the image for the web. Go on to compress and improve the file size by using an image optimiser such as optimizilla. Should you use numerous images, try using a CDN
- Use pagespeed insights to check your website. Google uses this tool to provide recommendations on ways to enhance your page loading speed
- Use Google Lighthouse to analyse the performance of your webpage in different areas including page loading speed
- If there’s a video on your homepage, do well to host it on a video streaming device such as YouTube and embed it to your website. You may not want to host the video on your website as it will increase server resources, loading time, and bandwidth
- Update your software regularly. All CMS platforms are constantly trying to enhance speed and performance, and an updated software is the smartest way to benefit from this
Consult DubSEO today to get more resourceful information for building a brand name for your website.
Look out for Mobile-friendliness
Now, more than ever, mobile accounts for more than 50% of Google searches which is what makes having a mobile compatible homepage necessary.
Now that there is a mobile-first index, Google is using a ranking algorithm that is a little different for mobile websites. However, the primary SEO configurations like h1, descriptions, titles, etc. are the same for mobile and desktop.
Should you consider a homepage SEO, you may need an SEO agency to help you test the mobile-friendliness of your page and correct any faults. Again, ensure that the content on your mobile homepage is the same as that on your desktop homepage. A mixed-signal can be confusing to Google; you wouldn’t want to do that anyway.
Generally, a responsive website design is the best to use to ensure that any SEO fixes you implement on the desktop will quickly show up on the mobile. Do contact DubSEO for more information and assistance.
Include an SSL
Every website and homepage should be https. This is mandatory if you run an e-commerce store or take user information. But if you have a regular blog, it is very good to add an SSL.
Several times, Google has announced that having an SSL enabled website will put you a little over the edge. But with time, SSL will become more relevant.
If you are switching from HTTP to https, ensure that:
- You make 301 redirections to redirect HTTP URLs to https
- You use 2048-bit key certificates
- Register and always activate, all 4 versions of your website in webmaster tools (http://www, https://www, http://, https://)
Revise the structure and navigation of your site
One important website usability element is navigation. You should see to it that all your essential website pages are accessible from your menu in just 3 clicks.
Refrain from having clustered menu elements that exceed 3 levels and also consider putting the menu at the top always when the user moves further down your page. (consider how this website menu stays at the top as you scroll down the page).
Having a clear menu style will also increase the number of visits to your page and reduce the rate at which users avoid your website.
A hierarchy of pages is what your website should have. The point of interest is the homepage, and then all other pages should be classified based on their types.
Your website hierarchy shouldn’t be more than 2 or 3 levels deep; keep it simple! Avoid over-complication of site hierarchy and ensure it is accessible from your homepage in no more than 3 clicks.
Keep in mind that search engines have a pattern of visiting the homepage of a website and from there navigate other pages following the links provided. What we mean is that your homepage should be linked to all the important pages on your website. This includes sales pages and any blog posts you want people to see more than others.
Enhance for sitelinks
A homepage that has a good structure can link you up to other sites in Google Search. Domain name searched usually lead users to sitelinks. So, the best way to effect the content that pops up as a sitelink is through the structure and navigation of your site. Consider what you want to show your users when they search for your business name online and plan your homepage segments the right way.
Should you find it daunting to do the above yourself, consult anSEO agency close to you for further enquiries and help.
Other Vital Components Of A Highly Enhanced Homepage
There are other elements aside from the ones listed above that a homepage should have. They include:
- A clear call to action (CTA)
Websites homepage should have a clearly defined purpose no matter the type.
Should you be a product marketer, the primary aim of your homepage will be to redirect users to your product page, if it is services you’re providing, it will be to your services page, and if it’s a blog, to your articles page.
Users should be able to see the call to action elements as they access your homepage.
- Build trust
You have 3 seconds to get users attention and gain their trust when they visit your homepage. Contents like partnerships or achievements, success case studies, social proof, customer testimonials are things that help establish trust.
It will be erroneous to assume that users will do a detailed search on your website to know more about you and what you have to offer. Ensure you give them all they need to know at a glance or first read of your homepage.
- Checklist for homepage SEO
The full homepage SEO checklist is as follows:
- Improve the homepage title
- Maintain title length of 60 characters
- Include your domain name at the beginning
- Add target keywords
- Improve the homepage meta
- Add your target keywords
- Make it appealing
- Urge users to visit your website
- Improve the H1 tag
- Ensure that your homepage has one and only one h1
- Add your target keywords or associated keywords in h1 tag and other headings
- Homepage image SEO
- Ensure all images on your homepage carry an ALT text
- Enhance all the file names of the images
- Resize images for faster loading
- Improve your logo
- Add your business name in the ALT text and logo file name
Include adequate structured data markup to your homepage
- Ensure there is text content on your homepage
- Add your target keywords and variations in your homepage content
- Apply text content for sitelinks
Improve homepage loading speed
- Consider switching to a VPS
- Update your software regularly
- Use Google Lighthouse for speed evaluation
- Use a video streaming service like YouTube
Ensure your homepage is mobile-friendly
- See to it that the content you have on your mobile homepage is the same as that on your desktop homepage
Add an SSL to your homepage
Site structure and navigation
- Ensure that there’s a link to all the important pages from your homepage
- Ensure that in just 3 clicks, users can access any page beginning from your homepage
- Study the sitelinks provided in Google Search and arrange the structure and navigation of your homepage appropriately
CTA and trust
- Include simple ‘Call to Action’ links to enable users to access your services or product pages
- Include elements like success stories, reviews, etc. to build trust with users
A homepage SEO is vital for every type of website. Your homepage is the entrance to your blog or business and should be properly structured, load quickly, and provide users with full details and options about the purpose of your website. Contact an SEO agency today to help you with this.
You can even get more help at DubSEO to make your website one that users will always want to visit and not get bored.