Why should indie developers care about SEO?
TLDR: Should game developers focus a lot of their time on SEO? No. Your time is limited. Stay focused and on task.
- 1: Complete the game by focusing on game development.
- 2: Make the game look fun.
- 2: Make the game be fun.
- 4: Sell the fun!
The world of SEO is the world of content farming search engine bots. As a game developer you don't need to lower yourself to such methods when you have something even more powerful.
It's called word of mouth. Your game needs to be able to market itself. If it isn't, then one has to reconsider why they are making the game in the first place.
The only SEO things you should concern yourself with is getting your website running, presentable and directing your customers to where they need to go. But that being said, Happy New Year if you are reading this in January.
As part of my plans going forward for this year, I will be doing some SEO tidbits here and there in preparation for my next upcoming games. Oh, the irony of this article is not lost on me. It's a new year and a new Taeja, hear me out.
In the current year, getting visibility of your game before its release is important; This is what is commonly referred to as "Marketing".
At this point it's a glorified word and quite frankly, all you need to do is post to 2-3 large subreddits on reddit every week and drive traffic to the page. Which leads to what I'll be doing for the current year.
Having previous experience making websites, I thought it would be a nice insurance policy to drive traffic to my own website instead of driving it to another person's platform, Steam.
This has both pros and cons which you are welcome to debate, I have opted for the self hosted website route. As such there are a few things that needs
Page Speed / Performance
Make sure the page loads fast on mobile.
In the current year a lot of users are mostly navigating on mobile so the performance of the self hosted site is critical. This has little to do with the performance of the server but instead the website.
We can check that one off the list, our website now runs extra smooth baby! Google tells me I am a good boy!
This not directly related to game development or really for game developers.
This is a somewhat new area for me. With a lot of the backlash large companies gave Google over indexing images, Google has now given website owners the ability to attribute images to their respective owners.
Have you ever done an image search on google, tried to click the image but instead of opening the image it took you to a website? (Mostly stock images)
Well, since a lot of my images are owned by me. I thought it would be nice to get ahead of this game and make sure all our images are properly attributed.
Author Pages & Passing the love on
In order to correctly attribute images, people searching using google images need a place to find the author of the image. The easiest option is to direct them to the individual author as not all images are directly made by me.
But, to have better control of the presentation I thought I would take the time to make author profiles where possible for anyone that has helped me along the way this year.
This has the added benefit of the wonderful people who help me do what I do, being able to show where you can find them as it changes over the year. Some of them have twitter accounts, ko-fi or other social media.
What is your marketing strategy after the game has been finished?
Normally, I would follow my own advice and focus on the game. This year I am opting to build up a presence, identity and get my product out there into the world before it's even been made.
I've already built some proto-types and demos. With the help of other fantastic creators I was able to narrow down the pitch of what P For Pistol will be. At this point, the game sells itself.
The right image, presented in the right way has consistently been getting clicks across platforms when posted. The question is will this interest continue into the new year as I actually make the game?
Let's find out together, The world shall have a picture of a dick dude and they will enjoy it!