What Authors need to know about SEO – the Basics

Search Engine Optimisation (or SEO for short) is not as difficult as you may think. It’s really just making sure that your website is indexed correctly in Google and the other search engines so that people can find your content. To do that all you need to do is make sure that your website and the pages on your website are well laid out and that they contain the type of content someone using a search engine may be interested in. When it’s boiled down to the basics that’s really all there is to it.

So where to start? That’s why we’ve put together this handy guide for what Authors need to know about SEO. If you’re using one of our sites built in our Publish Fox Author website builder then you will already have all of this at the tip of your finger tips whenever you add one of your books or blog posts as we have ensured that our platform is SEO ready (and friendly) right from the off!

If, on the other hand, your website is developed or hosted on another platform then you may want to check these tips and make sure you’re as search engine optimised as you can be.

Here come the SEO tips for Authors:

Make sure the title of your book-page, your author-page, or your blog post, really says what the page is about.

Next up make sure your code includes a meta-description tag and make sure you fill it in correctly. This is the text that is is displayed underneath the title of your page when Google and other search engines show your link in their results.

Images are surprisingly effective for SEO

If you’re using images on your pages make sure the alt tags are completed – not only does this help with your SEO but it’s good for screen-readers for partially sighted people and for people who have turned off image loading on their devices. Try and use text in the lat tag that makes sense – describe the image, and if you can, include your page title or keywords.

What about the actual content?

Make sure your content is relevant and readable by a human being. In the old days the search engines would index any old guff and website owners would stuff their content full of repeated keywords and nonsensical phrases to help push them up teh search engine rankings. As an Author remember that how you write on your website will be seen as an indicator of how you write in your books. Be natural, be fluid, and above all, be human.

That said, you must remember to stay relevant. If someone is looking for some content and they click on your link you want them to read something that’s relevant to that title and link that they clicked on. Nobody likes disappointment!

Headers are good for SEO

Just like chapters in a book Headers signal to a reader and to Google that the page has sections of content. Even better, Google likes to look at the content of the headers themselves and use them as an indicator of relevance when ranking your page.

How to monitor your author website rankings

You’ll need a couple of things: A Google Analytics account is a good starting point so that you can monitor traffic to your site, where it comes from, and what people do when they’re on your site: which pages they visit, how long they spend on each of them etc. It sounds complicated but it isn’t really. If you get stuck and need some help reach out to our Marketing Services team for one of our Concierge service packages and we can help set you up correctly with Analytics and with a Search Console account. We’ll show you how to add these to your website and help you speak to your developers.

Of course if you’re using our platform you just hit the Search Engine Optimisation link in your dashboard and your code will be added to your site automatically.

Once you’re all setup on Google you can see how your site and pages are doing. You can take it further with checking how each of your pages are appearing for certain keywords using a tool like AWRCloud or SEMRush but that’s for a whole different article which we’ll publish here soon.

What next?

If you’re an Author you’ll need to keep an eye on your SEO. Things change, sites come and go, and pages move up and down the rankings. If you want to make sure that your site is the first port of call for your fans then a bit of housekeeping and optimisation on a monthly basis isn’t a bad idea.

Good luck, and remember to sign up to our newsletter for more hints and tips specifically for Authors direct to your inbox every month.