November 1, 2007
The search engines play a crucial role in sending traffic to your website. In fact most of the websites depend on the search engines for their staple dose of traffic although these days it is advised that you should target other websites, blogs, social networking websites, three article directories, online directories, and online forums too.
In order to derive maximum traffic from various search engines you need to make your website search engine friendly and properly communicate to their algorithms what key phrases and keywords are important to your website. Let us quickly go through a few steps that can help you make search engines fall in love with your website.
Write for the people and not just for the search engines
Some people have this misconception that you need to manipulate text in order to rank well on the search engines; partially this is true but most often it is not. The best way to fair well in the search engines is to write and organise your content in such a manner that it is best suited to human reading. The more human-friendly content you have the more search engine friendly content you have. The search engines want you to write relevant, well-organised content so that they can present quality results to their search engine users.
Research your keywords in the beginning
You should be very clear about what keywords you want traffic from the search engines; focus on the wrong key words and all your effort will go to waste. If you’re not sure about what keywords to focus upon them go head and hire a consultant but never underestimate the importance of keyword-research. Don’t postpone the selection of your key words until the completion of your website because during many stages you will need to know what relevant keywords your website is trying to target.
Organise paragraphs under headings and subheadings
Headings and subheadings quickly tell your human readers as well as the search engine crawlers what your pages all about. The headings and subheadings often represent the gist of content so be careful what words you use when you formulate your headings and subheadings; preferably use your keywords and key phrases when writing them.
Emphasise your important words
When you highlight or emphasise your important words it conveys both to your readers and the search engine crawlers that these words are important to understand your message.
Give distinct titles to your web pages
Just as your name is important to your existence, the page titles are important for your web pages. Never have a single title — your company name, for example — for all your pages. Your page title should a property represent your web page and in fact use the central sentence of your web page as your page title. Avoid creating esoteric and confusing titles although they may seem attractive. Always use a title that clearly defines the message of your web page. Preferably use your keywords with creating your title but make sure you don’t unnecessarily stuff the title with all your important keywords: this will end up spoiling the effect of your title. Organise your keyword-distribution carefully Although he shouldn’t manipulate your content for the sake of search engines you can arrange your keywords without seeming spammy. For instance, use your main keywords a new title, in your headings and subheadings, twice or thrice in your first paragraph and then at least once in every paragraph, highlight your keywords once or twice on your web page, use your keywords as hyperlink text when you link to other pages of your website and when you are organising your thoughts using bullets then use your keywords did to.
Submit your link to niche directories
There are online directories available to all niche markets and some of these online directories are highly trusted by the search engines, that is, if your website appears in one of these online directories than it automatically gets a higher ranking in the search engines. There are many business and consumer directories; very carefully select the most appropriate category and then submit your website under that category.
Publish a blog
Not having some blogs is so passé; a blog is such an effective marketing, branding, combination, awareness and SEO tool that it is highly recommended that you have a blog for your business. Highly targeted blogs are quickly indexed by the search engines and whenever you post your blog posts they get the text quicker than your normal web pages. Also somehow the blog posts get ranked higher than the normal pages for the same sort of content. There are many other numerous benefits of publishing a blog but here are just talking in terms of SEO.
Use bread crumb navigation
Bread crumb navigation is a system that you often come across on category-based websites. Take for instance a directory listing: initially ago on the homepage, then you click one of the categories, then you click one of the sub-categories, then you click one of the sub-sub-directories — and so on — until you arrive at the desired page. On top of the page you will see something like Main->Clothes->Shirts->Men->Large->Striped. This type of navigation system allows you to click on a parent directory and immediately move to another section of the website. This is good for your SEO.
Search engine friendly URLs
You get an SEO boost when your URL contains some of your keywords. The search engines don’t appreciate dynamically generated URLs much; they prefer URLs that make sense in the real language. For instance, doublespark-seo.co.uk/search-engine-optimisation/ is always better than doublespark-seo.co.uk/page.php?p=34. Manually it is easy to achieve but if you are using a content management system that make sure that your content management system generates search engine friendly URLs and not dynamic URLs that require a parameter to access a page.
So these are a few things that you can do on your website that will make the search engines fall in love with it.
Author: Gary Mattoc-03 is the CEO of Doublespark Cambridge SEO Services, a Cambridgeshire based Web Design Peterborough and SEO consultancy.