Understanding SEO in 2024 on Free Website Hosts

Understanding SEO in 2024: Tips and Tricks for Free Website Hosts

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a key driver for any website's success, both paid and free. The ever-expanding digital landscape requires you to keep in step with the shifting algorithms and practices to successfully optimize your website. This page focuses on the understanding and application of SEO practices for free website hosts especially, in the face of newer trends and continual changes observed in 2024.

Table of Contents

  1. Overview of SEO in 2024
  2. Rise of Core Web Vitals
  3. Focus on Mobile First Indexing
  4. In-depth Keyword Research
  5. High-quality Content is Supreme
  6. Page Improvement with Structured Data & Schema Markup
  7. SEO Challenges for Free Website Hosts
  8. Conclusion

Disclaimer: SEO is a very volatile and ever-changing segment. The information provided is accurate as of 2024.

Overview of SEO in 2024

In 2024, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) continues to evolve, driven by technology advancements and changes in search engine algorithms. It's more important than ever to ensure your website is fully optimized for search engines, as competition for search engine rankings has become more fierce.

Rise of Core Web Vitals

Google has emphasized core web vitals impacting page experience, which includes metrics like Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS). These are becoming crucial for SEO in 2024.

<!-- Example of how to optimize LCP -->
<img src="large-image.jpg" alt="Large image" loading="lazy">

The 'loading="lazy"' attribute is a simple trick to make your large images load faster, thereby improving the Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) score.

Focus on Mobile First Indexing

Mobile-first indexing has been a focus in recent years and it's even more prominent now. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and performance is optimized for mobile device users.

<!-- Example of a simple responsive design element -->
<style>
@media only screen and (max-width: 600px) {
  body {
    background-color: lightblue;
  }
}
</style>

In-depth Keyword Research

Successful SEO is largely driven by in-depth keyword research and understanding search intent. Using the right keywords in your content is key to driving organic traffic to your website. Effective SEO strategies also involve regularly updating content and ensuring it remains relevant and authoritative, as search engines favor websites that provide fresh, high-quality information. Analyzing competitors’ keyword strategies can provide insights into gaps in your own SEO approach and reveal new opportunities for improvement.

# Example code to extract keywords using Python and Google Trends API
from pytrends.request import TrendReq

pytrends = TrendReq(hl='en-US', tz=360)
kw_list = ['Keyword 1', 'Keyword 2', 'Keyword 3']
pytrends.build_payload(kw_list, cat=0, timeframe='today 5-y', geo='', gprop='')

High-quality Content is Supreme

Despite changes in technologies and algorithms, high-quality and valuable content remains king. Use your researched keywords to provide content that users find useful and make them stay longer on your page.

<!--Example of a content-rich HTML section-->
<section>
  <h2>Why Should You Use Reusable Bags?</h2>
  <p>Reusable bags have numerous benefits including... </p>
</section>

Engaging and informative content not only keeps users on your site but also encourages them to interact with your brand. This interaction could be through sharing your content on social media, leaving comments, or subscribing to your newsletters. Quality content, therefore, not only enhances your SEO but also builds a community around your brand.

<!--Example of a user-engaging HTML section-->
<section>
  <h2>Discover the Health Benefits of Green Tea</h2>
  <p>Green tea is known for its numerous health benefits, such as... </p>
  <a href="subscribe.html">Subscribe for more health tips</a>
</section>

Furthermore, high-quality content aids in establishing your authority in your niche. By consistently delivering well-researched, insightful articles or guides, you position yourself as a knowledgeable leader in your field. This trust factor not only retains existing audiences but also attracts new visitors who are seeking reliable information in your domain.

<!--Example of an authoritative HTML section-->
<section>
  <h2>Mastering Python: Tips from an Expert</h2>
  <p>With over two decades of experience, our Python guru shares insights on... </p>
  <a href="expert-articles.html">Read more expert articles</a>
</section>

Page Improvement with Structured Data & Schema Markup

Structured Data and Schema Markup aren't new, but they continue to play an essential role in improving the page’s presence on the SERPs.

<!--Example of structured data-->
<script type="application/ld+json">
{
  "@context" : "http://schema.org",
  "@type" : "Article",
  "name" : "Understanding SEO in 2024",
  "author" : {
    "@type" : "Person",
    "name" : "Author Name"
  },
}
</script>

SEO Challenges for Free Website Hosts

Free website hosting platforms present their own set of challenges for SEO. They often limit access to certain SEO features and control over site structure. Solving these problems requires a good understanding of your platform's restrictions and effectively leveraging what is available.

Why you normally can't use a free web host for SEO

Unless your web host lets you use your own HTML, like Raven does, you are likely facing some or all of these limitations:

  • Limited Customization: Free hosting platforms typically offer limited options for customization, impacting the ability to implement advanced SEO strategies like custom URL structures or rich snippets.

  • Restricted Access to Key SEO Tools: Users may not have access to important SEO tools and plugins that can help optimize content and track performance.

  • Slow Loading Speeds: Free hosts often have slower loading times due to shared resources, negatively affecting SEO as search engines prioritize fast-loading sites.

  • Forced Advertisements: Many free hosts insert their own advertisements on websites, which can detract from the user experience and potentially harm SEO.

  • Lack of Unique Domain Names: Free hosting usually doesn't provide a unique domain name, making it harder for a site to rank well and be remembered by users.

  • Limited Technical Support: The level of technical support is often limited, which can be a hindrance when dealing with SEO-related issues.

  • Constraints on Content and Storage: There may be restrictions on the amount of content or data storage, limiting the site's ability to scale or host a variety of content types.

  • Subdomain Structure: Many free hosts use subdomains (e.g., yoursite.freehost.com), which can limit SEO effectiveness compared to a custom domain.

  • Reduced Security Features: Free hosting platforms often have weaker security features, which can impact SEO if the site falls victim to hacking or malware.

  • Difficulty in Implementing Redirections: Free platforms may restrict the ability to implement 301 redirects, which are important for maintaining SEO value when moving or deleting pages.

Conclusion

Understanding SEO in 2024 is crucial to the success of your free-hosted website. Keeping in step with the ever-changing world of SEO can be challenging, but with these tips and by keeping an eye on emerging trends, you can position your website for success.

Note: The SEO landscape is continually changing, so it's important to stay flexible and be prepared to adapt your strategies as practices and algorithms evolve.