If you’ve been avoiding SEO like the plague, you’re not alone.
We get it - SEO can be a bit scary. The acronym alone makes it seem like an unapproachable pursuit reserved for tech geniuses. Luckily, this isn’t entirely true.
Here are the facts: SEO is critical to modern nonprofits. It’s also not nearly as tough as it might seem. Here are the top SEO optimizations you should do on your nonprofit website, even if you’re new to the online marketing world.
What is SEO?
First things first, what is SEO? SEO stands for “search engine optimization” and, according to Moz, is “the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.”
SEO encompasses many things, including but not limited to keyword inclusion, social media metrics, content, topics, links, and more.
Taken together, these elements partner up to create a dynamic and lucrative website that draws visitors on its own and helps you earn the donations you deserve.
Still wondering why SEO is important? Consider this:
Right now, 64% of all web search comes from organic traffic while only 15% comes from other referral sources. What’s more, Google alone accounts for upwards of 90% of all organic traffic.
5 Easy SEO Optimizations for Your Nonprofit Website
So, now that you know what SEO is, how do you incorporate it into your website? Here are a few steps you should take:
1. Edit Your Content for Quality
The first SEO optimization is a simple one: make sure all the content on your site is high-quality. This includes your headlines, your website copy, your blogs, and any downloadable content you might offer.
Since search engines (and users) see high-quality content as a sign of authority and relevance, proofreading your materials for mistakes, errors, and accuracy is a critical first step to ranking well and building an authoritative online presence.
2. Do Some Keyword Research
Before the internet blew up and search engines and users got much more advanced, ranking online was as simple as choosing a keyword and stuffing it into your content as frequently as possible.
It was spammy, it was fast, and it made people a great deal of money. Today, however, this is known as “keyword stuffing,” and it’s a frowned-upon SEO tactic that could hurt your search ranking.
That’s not to say, however, that keywords are irrelevant. Exactly the opposite. Instead, keywords remain essential; it’s just their ideal use that has changed.
Instead of stuffing them wherever they’ll fit, modern keyword etiquette suggests that you research them and then use them naturally throughout the content. This helps search engines to “read” and classify your content, and prevents it from sounding spammy and cheap.
3. Enhance Your Site Speed
Did you know that a site that loads slowly could cost you visitors? According to Kissmetrics, 16% of people will only wait 5 seconds for a site to load before they abandon it. Meanwhile, 3% of consumers are only willing to wait one second.
With this in mind, it’s clear that fast-loading site is essential to your bottom line. Not sure where yours ranks? It’s okay - just use Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool to check your page and get some suggestions.
4. Utilize Internal Links
Internal links (links in your content that point to other content on your website) serve three important purposes: they provide your audience with more reading options, improve your rankings for given keywords, and help Google “crawl” your site and index pages.
With this in mind, be sure to locate spots for internal links and place them throughout your content where they make sense.
5. Optimize Your Meta Descriptions and Title Tags
While meta descriptions won’t necessarily improve your rankings on the SERPs, they are essential to improving your click-through rate.
Meta descriptions (the snippets of text that appear below a search result on Google results page), help readers understand what your page is about and decide whether it’s relevant to them.
Be sure to keep your meta descriptions below 156 characters and include keywords for best results.
Nonprofit SEO Doesn't Have to Feel Impossible
Nonprofit SEO can be tough to wrap your head around, but it’s far from impossible. As you can see from these five simple examples, optimizing your nonprofit website for SEO is both essential and straightforward. What are you waiting for? Get started now!
Need some help to help optimizing your site? Contact the team at Creative Science today!