Image: How to optimise a DNN website for SEO
Optimising a DNN website for SEO
A website is designed to be seen and this can only happen if a website is optimised for search. With strong competition to be found on the first page of search results, using a system which can support organic SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is important. DNN is designed to facilitate SEO and is crammed full of features to help users optimise their websites effectively. Some of these features improve a website’s visibility in search automatically – the sitemap generator for example, will add a new page to the sitemap as soon as it is published. Others require a more hands-on approach and a greater depth of understanding if they are to be used effectively.
One of the most useful techniques a website owner can learn is the coordination of SEO efforts throughout a page; presenting to search engines a unified and unequivocal message, reinforced through custom meta-data, well-written text and correctly labelled images.
Let’s say for example, you wish to create a page that will be found in search results when someone types, “How to optimise a DNN website for SEO,” into a browser.
In order for Google (or any search engine for that matter) to elect to show a page under the target search term, it first of all needs to understand that the page is relevant. Only once relevance has been established will a search engine look to assign pages with a ranking in search results. Therefore, there are two considerations when optimising a DNN website for SEO. Firstly, it is important to do the groundwork that will ensure a page is seen as valid for the chosen search term, and secondly to go the extra mile to ensure it is given priority by search engines so that it outranks the other relevant pages.
Optimising a DNN website for SEO – step one: relevance
Image: Establishing relevance is the first step in SEO
All content on the website, including articles in the blog or news section, needs to be pertinent to the website’s overall topic. If your DNN website is for a painting and decorating company, an article on paint viscosity will have a good chance of doing well.
Steer clear of attempts to hop on board the latest news bandwagon; your painting and decorating website will not become more visible in search results if you add a piece on England’s sporting efforts, or the latest celebrity Twitter spat.
Give the page a clear title, and reinforce that title by including it within the page copy as a main heading, and focusing on it within the page’s meta-data.
Add the page to the website’s sitemap. Luckily, DNN contains an automatic sitemap generator. Provided your DNN website is configured correctly, any new pages you build will be added to the sitemap without any additional action required on your part. Sitemaps are used by search engines to navigate websites and locate content. Remember, a search engine cannot evaluate the relevance of a page if it cannot find it!
Optimising a DNN website for SEO – step two: outranking the competition
Image: With relevance established, use the tools in DNN to outrank the competition
Ensure your content is clearly signposted with headings and sub-headings that reinforce and complement the keywords or phrases which are being targeted. Headings not only help end users to find their way around a page by improving the readability of the content. They also reiterate to search engines that a topic is being talked about in detail and is therefore informative and more useful to its users than other pages may appear to be.
Include images and label them for search engines as well as end users. A caption for end users is a nice touch that helps make the content easier to understand. An alt-tag is a description for a search engine and it is far more than a considerate extra; it is the only way of bringing an image into the focus of a search engine. An image without an alt-tag is invisible to search engines and its SEO value is close to zero.
Cite sources and provide links to them. End users like to know that a piece is well-researched and based on quantifiable facts (or at least respected opinion). Search engines are no different. They look for outbound links that show the author really has done their homework.
Outbound links are also likely to help to generate inbound ones. When an article is full of quality information, end users are likely to refer to it when producing their own content.
Optimising a DNN website for SEO – step three: technical advice
Successful SEO demands the same basic considerations regardless of the infrastructure on which a website is built. The great thing about optimising a DNN website for SEO is that the system makes it quite easy to carry out the necessary steps.
DNN’s built-in SEO features include: URL redirects - which notify search engines when content is moved to a new location, and therefore prevents the search engine from stumbling upon broken links; automatic XML sitemap generator; easy to edit meta-data; and custom header fields – which allow publishers to add bespoke information such as Open Graph tags and Canonical URLs.
Optimising a DNN website for SEO – conclusion
Image: DNN has all the tools for SEO it may be worth employing specialists to use them
DNN is an excellent content management system for organic search engine optimisation. It contains the tools needed to enable website developers, designers, owners and admins to gain online prominence. Of course, having the tools is not the same thing as knowing how to use them.
Ensuring prominence in search results takes careful research and a skilled approach. As the UK’s leading DNN specialists, we are adept at employing the most effective SEO techniques within the feature-rich DNN environment.
If you would like to see your DNN website become more visible in search results, please contact us.