Updated: Jun 15
Sadie Graham - www.whatboxcreative.co.uk - Zest4life Designer
Everywhere you turn, there's advice telling you the best way to get to the top of Google’s rankings. I don’t know what you think, but I find it all unnecessarily confusing! So here is a jargon-busting blog all about search engine optimisation (aka SEO) for nutrition businesses... but first, a little about me and what qualifies me to give you all this info!
My name is Sadie Graham, and I’m a freelance Graphic & Brand Designer based down in the sleepy countryside village of Upper Beeding in Sussex, where I live with my partner and dog. I’ve worked with 100s of Nutrition Practitioners, helping them build their brands, websites, marketing materials and business marketing structures.
I’ve worked in the design and marketing industry for 14 years, and have designed for a variety of different industries as a freelancer. I’m the lead designer for Zest4life and am responsible for all of their branded materials, including e-books, websites, forms, quizzes, challenges, logos, badges and everything in between. I work closely with the directors to ensure that all of the materials you get are top-notch. In this blog post I’m going to break down SEO from the very beginning. I’m going to tailor it to the nutrition industry, and to your websites – without overloading you with heaps of information that you don’t really need to know. Enjoy!
The different types of nutrition business websites
There are different categories of website depending on what you’re offering and your target audience. You will more than likely have a portfolio site, which means it’s all about you and your products and/or services.
The other main types are:
Editorial / Blog - magazine & newspaper sites
E-commerce - clothes shops, online store sites
Directory - Facebook, Gumtree, search sites
Then there are subtypes such as ‘educational’ etc.
Each main type of website will rely on different things to achieve ultimate search engine optimisation. There are a lot of very specific aspects that you need to cover in order to achieve what we call ‘domain authority’, which essentially means a website that Google trusts as a good, informative site. Everyone wants to achieve domain authority, and although the steps aren’t hard, there are a lot of them and it demands as much time as you can give it!
Let's talk about keywords
What is a keyword?
A keyword is a word that you strategically pop into the text on your website to describe what you do. They are also what you type into Google to find something.
So, if I type in ‘vegetarian restaurants Brighton’, to find vegetarian restaurants in Brighton, any veggie restaurant will want to make sure they have these keywords in their website. But this is just me, someone else might type in 'meat free restaurants near me’ - so they would also be keywords!
How many shall I put in?
In all honesty, as many as you can, in both your text for your site and your blog or recipe posts. Editorial sites rely heavily on keywords for their SEO - we are talking anything from 30,000 keywords per article, and articles posted every hour!
For you, with a portfolio site, keywords aren’t the be-all-and-end-all of your SEO. There is a greater variety of things you can do to give yourself domain authority (make Google think you’re important) than a standard editorial site. Simply try to put in as many as you can, and filter them through your text across your website, as many times as possible.
Here’s an example for you with the keywords highlighted! At the same time, try to cut down any text that doesn’t get straight to the point (highlighted in red).
Do you often feel overweight, or struggle with anxiety over how you look and feel? Do you suffer from diabetes, or regularly find you’re having trouble with your hormones? Are you yet to discover how the right balance of nutrition and lifestyle can change your health and life? The one size fits all diets simply don’t work. I specialise in creating bespoke nutrition and lifestyle plans built around you and to a budget that you can afford.
Optimise your nutrition business blogs
Make them regular!
To really make an impact with your blogs you’ve got to keep up with them. Ideally you would be posting recipes, news and/or articles at least twice a week. In addition, for SEO, ensure that any words in your blog that relate to what you do - for example the word ‘nutrition’ - are linked back to your homepage. Or, if you write ‘weight loss’ in an article about something, link it back to your programmes page. These are called internal links, and Google likes them!
In addition, make sure you’re breaking down big streams of text with titles and loads of photos. Photos can be given an ‘alt tag’, which is essentially the name of the photo. If you have the capacity to change the alt tag to match the title of your blog, definitely do it!
Top tips for making blog posts easy
1. There’s oodles of content on the Zest4life Hub - pick out articles from e-books,
newsletters and recipes to use as your blog posts
2. Use www.unsplash.com for photos if you’re struggling - they are free to use commercially and used by some of the top international brands. Original photos are always better for SEO though!
3. Promote your post on social media once you’ve published it
4. Think up sharp and interest-catching headlines... For example, ‘How to slim down for summer’ isn’t as catchy as ‘5 hot tips for a summer slim down’. This suggests it’s going to be a quick and punchy read, rather than a trawl through long paragraphs of text.
Which brings us to code…
I’m not going to blind you with the flexing of pretty useless knowledge here. This is tough going and there’s no getting around that I’m afraid. Within the world of websites, are things called meta-tags and schema that are, broadly speaking, the language Google speaks. Ideally these should be running invisibly throughout your website.
It’s not the most essential thing in the world and your site will operate quite happily without them, but if you want to climb the ladder of SEO that you’ll need it. Just to complicate things further, all websites are different when it comes to putting code in! So, ask your web designer to:
1. Make sure all the page titles and descriptions are up to date and written with your keywords
2. Add your meta-tags
3. Take care of your schema (JSON-LD code) - some charge extra for this
4. Submit your site map to Google - some charge extra for this
5. Insert your tracking ID from Google Analytics - some charge extra for this
All website designers should know how to do these five things. If they give you any excuses then my advice would be to find a different one!
Set up Google Analytics
This is another supremely easy thing to do... Type ‘Google Analytics’ into Google and it should be the first thing that pops up. Create yourself a free account by following the instructions, and get your tracking code to give to your designer!
How to find your tracking code:
1. Sign into your account
2. Click ‘Admin’
3. Select your account from the ‘account’ column.
4. Select property from the menu in the ‘property’ column.
5. Under ‘property’ click ‘tracking info’
6. Click ‘tracking code’ and it will be displayed at the top of the page. It starts with the letters UA.
Clicks and sticks
What??? Okay I just made that title up, so if you tell you’re designer you’re after ‘clicks and sticks’ they’ll think you’ve been on the gin!
What I mean is, for some really good SEO, what you need is ‘traffic’, which means people clicking onto your website. Then you need them to stick around on your website long enough for Google to think, ‘Hold on a minute, this website is getting attention... it must be important... let’s put it up a bit’.
This is exactly what we meant earlier by ‘domain authority’ - where Google thinks that your website is important, so hikes you up the ranking!
How can I get more clicks and sticks?
By having a strategically designed, engaging website, with a pathway to your ultimate goal - which for you will be booking a free call. If they aren’t ready to do that, then at the very least you want them to download an e-book.
I’m sure you’ve all been on websites where you click on it, and found it too complicated or not enjoyable or engaging for one reason or another and just clicked off it straight away. This is what we want to avoid!
It’s a bit like when you go into M&S and they lead you around all the bits of the shop they want you to look at, and calmly and without you realising, you now have armfuls of candles, jumpers and a nice new, highly unnecessary centre table setting and you’re £125 down... it’s psychology.
Not only do you need highly effective design, but you also need to promote your website - you need to make sure there is fresh new content going onto your website on a monthly basis, which will give you something to promote socially and keep people engaged!
If you offer free e-books (which you should!), then swap them regularly and promote your updates and offers on social media with engaging content.
The final piece for SEO - back links
A back-link is super important and the more you get the higher you’ll climb. A back-link is simply a link from someone else’s website back to yours.
How to get back links
Sign up to as many reputable listing sites as you can, the likes of Facebook, LinkedIn, any membership sites you’re a part of, the Zest ‘find a nutritionist’ page etc. Once you’ve proudly sat back and dusted your hands of that one, then you can start working out how you can get on other people’s sites.
For example.... do you work with corporates? Can you get a link on their website? Have you asked? Are you collaborating? Ask for a link on their site, in exchange for a link on yours!
Give me an example, I hear you shout...
To the left is a perfect example... this is Magalie, an incredible nutritionist I built a website for. As you can see, she’s top of Google for her name, then she has a URL named after her, as well as a page title and description! Then a load of images come up,
which shows they have been given alt tags - ie. they’ve named the images 'Magalie Paillard - and under this you have BANT. All of these mean that she’s not relying just on her own SEO for her website.
Book yourself a free website consultation with Sadie by emailing: