SEO, Search Engine Optimization
SEO, Search Engine Optimization
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is one of the most important aspects of achieving the desired results with your website...
...in other words a great website without traffic is as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike.
Build it and they will come?
This is unlikely to happen without any sort of optimization.
What is SEO?
In a nutshell SEO is about optimizing your site so that it ranks well in the SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages) for your desired keywords.
Furthermore it is a huge subject about which books have been written although having said this it is also a dynamic science - so what works today may not work tomorrow.
Optimize Your Site With This SEO GuideWhilst this SEO guide will help you optimize your site & set it up to attract organic search traffic, it is a vast subject that this guide cannot cover in every respect.
Before you do anything devote some time to researching popular keywords for your website.
Your entire optimization exercise can essentially be rendered a waste of time by selecting the wrong keywords.
So try and choose keywords that are attainable but yet still provide a reasonable search frequency for your industry - in other words by choosing the keyword "hosting" you would struggle to rank at all in the search engines for it as it is too competitive.
You therefore need to choose a keyword (keyword phrase) that is less popular but still gets search engine traffic, for instance "affordable web hosting Denver, Colorado" isn't as popular but you are far more likely to rank well for it if your web page is optimized correctly for this term.
Your keyword phrase selection should also be targeted to bring qualified traffic to your site, so optimizing for the keyword "small blue widgets" won't be any good to you if you're selling "big red widgets" as your site visitors will be expecting a website promoting "small blue widgets".
Here are some keyword tools that will definitely make your life easier with your keyword research as whilst it is important to do, it can become quite a tedious process...
- Google Keyword Tool
This is a great free tool that offers many variations to your basic keyword suggestion & displays it's popularity in terms of the number of searches over the last month as well as the average number of searches for a particular word.
You can make use of Google's free online keyword tool here »
- SEO Book Keyword Suggestion Tool
This is another great free keyword suggestion tool which gives statistics of searches conducted on all of the major search engines, viz Google, Msn & Yahoo.
Start using the SEO Book Keyword Suggestion Tool here »
This is the rolls royce of keyword research tools...
If you are serious about the optimization of your website Wordtracker is an absolute must.
Try it out for yourself with a free Wordtracker trial here »
Use the language your potential customers would use and please, never assume.
To be successful with this important aspect of your website's effectiveness you must use a good keyword research tool, like Wordtracker, to be sure you've identified the exact words your potential customers are using so that they can find you.
- Google Keyword Tool
- The Title Tag
The Title tag is found at the top of your web page's source code just under the html & head tags.
This is the title of your site that usually appears in the actual search engine results & search engine spiders often look at the title tag first to understand what your site is about.
Therefore this makes the title tag one of the best ways to appeal to both potential visitors and search engines at the same time
It is best to place your target keyword phrase near the start of the tag and repeated again in the middle or near the end.
Three uses of your target phrase may be helpful in some instances, as long as it is not too overwhelming.
Also remember that each page on your site should have a totally unique title tag (it would serve no purpose for each page to have the same Title Tag) which should also be attractive & make sense to potential searchers ie, a non-sensical, keyword stuffed title tag may not prompt a search visitor to click on it.
So if you do only one optimization task for your website, make sure that all your title tags are relevant, unique, and contain your target phrase for each of your site's web pages.
- Meta Description Tag
The Meta Description tag is found just below the Title Tag between the head tags.
The Meta Description tag has a significant impact on search rankings and is worth your while spending some time optimizing it.
It is best to keep it short, concise and keyword rich with your target phrase close to the start and not repeated more than 3 times.
As with the title tag, each of your website's pages should have its own unique description tag.
- Meta Keyword Tag
The Meta Keyword tag is found just below the Title Tag between the head tags.
This tag has little importance when it comes to influencing the major search engines in recent times.
However it may have some significance with the smaller search engines so it is worthwhile to optimize it with your targeted keyword phrases.
Don't spam this meta tag as it may have a negative influence.
- Headline and Subheadings
By including your main keywords in your headline (h1 tags) and subheadings (other h tags) you'll be tipping off the search engines that the site's content reflects what's in the heads and subheadings which enhances your Search Engine Optimization objectives.
Furthermore by displaying your best keywords in the headline and subheadings, your visitors will see that they've come to the right place, ie your optimized webpage will be what they searched for, the second they land on your page which will encourage them to stay on your page & scrutinize it for longer.
- Keyword Density
Make sure that your salescopy is sprinkled with the right balance of keywords because the search engines crawl or spider your site looking for information about how to categorize your site and also check to see how relevant your copy is.
However don't get carried away by cramming masses of keywords into your text as you may get penalized for trying to spam the search engines - you also to be sure your that your copy reads well & actually makes sense to your site visitors.
- Image (alt) tags
Search engines can't read images, but they can read the text that you use to describe the images.
This descriptive text, called an "alt" tag, can be used to add multiple strong keywords to your site, again increasing your overall chances of being categorized for that particular term by the search engines.
Whilst this may not be a fully comprehensive SEO guide, implementing the above SEO strategies on your website will certainly start your site off on the right optimized path and also help it to rank well in the serps.
However as you can see it can be a fairly tedious task, but a task that has to be done & done properly, unforunately.
So, to make your life a lot easier in this respect, it is recommended that you use SEO Elite which can automate most of these search engine optimization tasks especially the keyword research which can be the most difficult but also the most important one.
Also, for top search engine rankings, find out here how you can get free traffic with a Top Ranking in Google »
Read this case study of how this site beat 248 Million competitors for a Top 5 ranking in Google »