US Government websites that are part of the .gov domain have several advantages by default. They automatically rank higher in search engine results as well as possess a lot of external inbound links on other reputable websites. Their content is also related to their website and their services, and as a result do end up higher in search engine results.
However, most of these Government sites have no inkling of best SEO practices. Most agencies assume that this is not necessary since their website names will anyway figure in the results. However, users that type in specific searches with major search engines such as Google have realized that they need to browse through a confusing maze of webpages before they can reach the desired webpage on their desired website.
As per recent government figures, there are 56 agencies that manage around 11,000 government websites. Users already feel that there are too many websites
offering similar services and it is cumbersome to locate the desired information quickly. Users want the required information with very few clicks instead of browsing through each webpage in search for links that can lead them closer to that information.
There are several key actions that can be taken by the US Government to improve user experience as well as ensure that visitors get the desired data with the least number of clicks. One way is to lower the number of websites so as to eliminate duplicate or over-lapping websites that offer the same information. This move will help display the latest and updated information to all viewers. However, webmasters will need to redirect users to these latest websites as well as remove dead and expired links to ensure seamless redirection to the consolidated website.
In addition, an expert SEO team will need to be hired to seek out high-quality keywords for each specific website and include them in the sites that best relate to matching queries. Title and meta description tags will need to be modified to please major search engines and more importantly ensure that the website appears only for related searches. Improved inbound linking will ensure higher rankings and use of high-quality specific keywords will help users to quickly browse through the appropriate landing page instead of landing on a home page that requires further navigation.
A keyword strategy that begins focusing on core keywords followed by relevant keywords while also focusing on services offered by the particular government website can help users land on relevant landing pages after a search query. Over time, each specific government site or agency has a strong potential of turning into a brand name once it begins providing relevant information and services to satisfied users.
Both Federal and State Governments need to work together to optimize their websites as well as their strategy to provide the right information quickly to visitors. Applying SEO to government sites will also encourage state governments to follow suit, which in turn will benefit all those involved.
Applying the best in SEO techniques will provide high rankings on precisely related searches as well as account for pleasant user experience at the same time. In addition, precise information related closely to search queries will enable users to quickly access the required information. Streamlining government websites and applying best SEO techniques will enable the US Government to provide relevant information and services with the least amount of effort and wastage.