Creating a Personal Resume or Bio Website
Having a dedicated website that hosts your biography or resume is a critical component of owning your personal search engine results page. Your website will be under your complete control, featuring the content and information you wish to share with the world. It will serve as a central hub that showcases your experience, accomplishments, and skills.
With strategic use of keywords and proper search engine optimization techniques, your website should easily climb the ranks in search results, and be a top 3 link.
There are three steps to building your personal website:
Register a Domain Name. The domain name should be as close to your name as possible. FirstnameLastname.com is an ideal domain format, though it may not be available. If not, consider including a middle initial or an alternative “top level domain” (the part of the URL that comes after the dot).
A quick note on top level domains (TLDs): while most TLDs will be fine, there are a few quick dos and do nots. Stick to the main roads if you can (.com, .net, .org). Most others are fine but stay away from geographic-based TLDs that are not relevant to your native country (.in for India, .uk for the United Kingdom, etc.). The inverse is also true: if a .com or .net domain is not available but you are located in a major city like New York City or Miami, consider a .NYC or .Miami domain. Google likes serving local/geographic-based content as it is generally considered more relevant: FirstnameLastname.com is good but FirstnameLastname.miami may be more relevant if the search originates from south Florida, so do not be afraid of a relevant geographic TLD. For more on the importance of choosing the right URL, read here.
Register a Web Host. A web host is where your files will be stored (our preferred host costs $27 per year). Follow the instructions at your web host for linking your domain to your web host.
Build Your Website. WordPress is the easiest to use content management system where building a website can be as easy as creating a Word document. It’s also a content platform that has a strong community that can help you out if you find yourself stuck. Most web hosts offer an easy auto-setup of their platform.
As far as content is concerned, it does not need to be a heavy lift: your website should have title that matches your name (or key search term), a brief summary of who you are and what you do, and run-down of your background. My personal website, AndrewJChapin.com, focuses on keywords relevant to my career like “product discovery specialist.”
On-Page Search Engine Optimization, Conceptually
A key building block of any search engine effort is on-page SEO, the practice of optimizing things that are directly in your control like the content, design, and structure of your website with the goal of improving your rank on search engine results pages.
Search engines rely on these elements to determine whether a page matches a user’s search intent. If the search engine decides the page will be useful to the user, it will display higher in search results.
You can think of on-page SEO like ensuring a book is legible – that it’s printed in a size that’s convenient to hold in the hand, the words are printed crisp and clear, the table of contents is ordered well so readers can find what they’re seeking.
There are Six Primary Contributors to On-Page SEO Success
- High-quality content. Create engaging, informative, and well-structured content that addresses the needs and queries of your target audience. Incorporate relevant keywords naturally into your content while maintaining readability. Read more about how search engines determine your content quality score.
- Internal linking. Link your web pages together to create a logical website structure. Internal links provide search engines with a clear understanding of the hierarchy and relationships between your pages. Read more about internal linking.
- Keyword optimization. Keyword optimization is the process of strategically integrating targeted keywords into various elements of your website, such as content, meta tags, headings, and URLs. It involves conducting thorough keyword research to identify the terms and phrases that your target audience is likely to use when searching for information or products related to your website’s topic. By incorporating these keywords strategically and naturally throughout your website, you enhance its visibility and relevance to search engines. By incorporating keywords that accurately represent your content, you ensure that your website appears in front of users actively searching for information or products related to your niche. These users are more likely to engage with your website, as they have expressed a specific interest in the keywords you have optimized for. Read more about keyword research and optimization, and how important it is to understand long-tail keywords.
- Meta tags and descriptions. Use descriptive, keyword-rich URLs that provide users and search engines with a clear understanding of your webpage’s content. Avoid long and complex URLs; instead, keep them short and readable. Read more about meta descriptions.
- URL structure. Use descriptive, keyword-rich URLs that provide users and search engines with a clear understanding of your webpage’s content. Avoid long and complex URLs; instead, keep them short and readable. Read more about the SEO importance of your URL.
- Image optimization. Optimize images by reducing file sizes, using descriptive filenames, and adding alt tags that include relevant keywords. This enhances the accessibility of your content and improves your chances of ranking in image search results. For more on image optimization, read our post on Image Optimization Tips.
Other Important On-Page SEO Factors
- External linking. It involves linking to relevant and authoritative websites from your own webpages. External links provide search engines with valuable signals about the relevance of your content. Your linking to reputable sources that add value to your content, it demonstrates to search engines that you are providing a comprehensive and well-researched resource for users.
- Page Speed. Page speed refers to the time it takes for a web page to load completely. A fast-loading website provides a positive user experience, reducing bounce rates and increasing engagement and conversions. Slow-loading pages not only frustrate users but also negatively affect SEO by potentially leading to lower search engine rankings. Therefore, optimizing page speed by minimizing file sizes, optimizing code, leveraging caching, and utilizing content delivery networks (CDNs) is essential for on-page SEO success.
- Ensure your website is technically sound. Sometimes referred to as “technical SEO,” you should seek to ensure you check all of the correct boxes when it comes to the technical structure of your website. Fortunately, quality content management systems (and their tools) do a good job of making sure you don’t get too far out of line but among the things to keep an eye on: clear website structure and navigation, mobile responsiveness, and elements we’ve already discussed like page speed, strong URL and URL structure, and XML Sitemaps/Robots.txt.
On-page SEO is a fundamental building block to your success ranking on the search engine results page for your desired keywords.
Once you’ve got a strong website built, me sure you enable the tools necessary to benchmark and track your progress.