SEO tips for large websites in 2019

    In this blog, Matthew Creswick, Group Marketing Director at The B2B Marketing Lab, shares his top SEO tips for enterprises looking to optimise their large websites. 

    Search engine optimisation (SEO) for large enterprises comes with a bunch of challenges – from managing content on multiple websites to ensuring consistency of information.

    Making sure all of these elements are optimised is key to ensuring website performance. Failure in one area could be catastrophic in another!

    That said, it doesn’t have to be difficult. We’ve compiled our best SEP tips for large websites managed by enterprises. Check them out below.

     

    Build links internally and externally

    No SEO strategy is truly complete without an internal and external link building programme. Internal linking is all about building connections between your pages so that readers (and search engines) can find those pages easily.

    Internal linking helps to establish your site’s hierarchy and ensures that your most important pages aren’t buried deep in your website.

    External links, on the other hand, are links that point to websites other than your own. These links are good for establishing credibility (i.e. you might link to another article on a website to support claims in your own article) and can direct readers to other information.

    Both internal and external links have a number of benefits – check out the below:

    Internal links

    • They make your site easy to navigate and use
    • Search engines will better understand the relationship between linked content assets
    • Link equity will be spread amongst pages
    • They enable you to streamline the buyer's journey by moving visitors to other content assets

    External links

    • Make your site a more valuable and authoritative source (your thoughts don’t exist in a vacuum)
    • Brings links back in over time

    Make sure you set some time aside to work out how you want to link your content assets internally, as well as the key publications/websites and media outlets you want to target for external links. 

    You can find out more by reading our blog on internal and external links

     

    Translate your content

    Most companies start with one website in one language. As these businesses grow and expand into new regions, they set up new websites to support activity in that region.

    What’s crucial in this process is that the new regional websites have exactly the same content as the main website. Therefore the content from the main site needs to be copied, translated and pasted onto the new regional websites, this will ensure consistency throughout.

    Having these pages translated by a professional is crucial because automatically translated pages don’t always make sense (or may use phrases that are not defined in another language) and may be viewed as spam by search engines.

     

    Optimise your content for different locations

    As well as copying and translating the content from the main website, you also need to think about optimising your regional websites for regional branded and local keyword terms. For example, if your company has a German website, you would optimise your homepage for your company name + Germany. Include the location in the H1, meta description, URL and so on to ensure it's served to the right people.

    You would also need to use href lang tags to let search engines know you have different versions of that web page in different languages.

    You can find out more about how to use and insert hreflang tags here.  

    With proper hreflang tag implementation, you’ll avoid duplicate content issues and cannibalising search results.

    Lastly, you need to fix your listings on Google. For example, let’s say you have an office in London and one in Chicago. You wouldn’t want to show your London office details to people searching in Chicago now, would you? You’d also be missing out on potential business enquiries if people can’t get in contact with the right office.

    At this point, you should set up a Google My Business (GMB) account to manage your company’s online presence. It’ll enable you to add the locations of your offices and define how your company is shown on search results (and maps).

     

    Make sure your NAP information is consistent

    NAP stands for Name, Address and Phone Number. When Google performs a search, it cross-references your NAP information with a variety of websites to see if your business exists and is legitimate. As it’s incredibly unlikely that a fake business would have consistent NAP information, Google filters out these results. This means that if your information is inconsistent, some of your regional sites may not be shown. 

     

    Create URLs based on language and region  

    When it comes to optimising URLs, best practice is to have all of your languages on a single domain. If one page in one language does well, the others will benefit.

    This is the best approach:

    www.website.com/en_us

    www.website.com/en_ca

    The pages are sitting on the same domain (website.com) and the individual language variants are sitting within a subfolder. This makes it easier for searchers (and search engines) to understand your website’s structure.

     

    Create content at scale

    To build your website’s influence and authority – across multiple regions – you need to be creating content at scale and per region.

    But instead of just creating blogs and optimising those blogs for individual keywords, you should think about creating a topic cluster.

    But what is a topic cluster?

    Good question. A topic cluster is where a single pillar page acts as the main hub of content for a specific topic. Multiple sub pages (cluster content) related to that same topic link to and from the pillar page.

    Think of a topic cluster like an eBook laid out as a web page. It focuses on a specific topic and has several sections (or segments) that broadly talk about aspects of that topic. The difference with a topic cluster approach is that those sections/segments then link to detailed blogs that address what each segment talks about.

    For example, you might have a topic cluster on cyber security and within it there’s a segment on threat detection. The segment would talk broadly about threat detection, but you would then have a comprehensive blog on threat detection that you link to that segment. The blog would be optimised for a long-tail keyword term (ensuring targeted traffic). These blogs are your cluster content and because they link to (and from) your pillar page, search engines see the pillar page as an authoritative source of content.

     

    TopicClustersImage

    (Source: HubSpot)


    Over time, as more and more people find your cluster content and pillar page, the value attributed to pages is shared evenly amongst the cluster, resulting in improvements in search engine rankings.

    Search engines will also be able to understand the connections between content and serve your cluster content and pillar page up for the right search results!

    Topic clusters represent a more strategic, data-driven and structured approach to content creation. Think about the questions your prospects have and how you can answer them in depth. It’s all about creating all the necessary content your prospects need to make informed decisions!

    Want to learn more about topic clusters? Click here.

     

    Those are my top SEO tips for large websites. Optimising your website(s) will be a challenge – that’s certain – but it isn’t unmanageable.

    Follow the SEO tips outlined in this blog and you’ll be well on your way to improving the performance of your website(s).

    Looking to optimise your website further and turn it into a lead-generating machine? Download our free eBook below and find out!