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April 14, 2008

Keywords – Kingmakers of the Web

Unless you go the paid route with PPC advertising,
keywords or rather top keyword rankings will be the
most important factor in the success of your website
on the net. Not exactly breaking news but many webmasters
still don’t understand this simple fact.

Keywords rule the Internet.

Getting top rankings for profitable keywords will
make you king. Currently, there are countless kings
on the web ruling over massive listings of keywords
in some pretty obscure yet profitable niches. Since
there are millions upon millions of keyword phrases
out there – with more being born each day – anyone
with just a basic understanding of how keywords work
will be entitled to a crown.

How lucrative a kingdom you create will depend upon
your own work ethic and your knowledge of keyword
SEO techniques.

Basic Keyword Knowledge – Keys to the Kingdom

Keywords are the exact words someone types into a
search engine to find what they’re looking for on
the web. Obviously, there are millions, if not billions,
of possible keywords anyone can use. The trick for
the entrepreneurial webmaster is to find the profitable
keywords.

First, these webmasters need to check to see the
number of visitors any given keywords receives in
a month. A keyword getting four or five clicks a
month is not worth considering unless it’s something
like “buying beachfront property in Malibu,” where
one click or prospect could lead to a sale and a
handsome commission.

Here’s an excellent site where you can some helpful
keyword research tools – including how to find the
number of searches made each month for a particular
keyword:

http://tools.seobook.com

Next you have to check to see how competitive your
keyword is. One simple way is to type your keyword
into Google and see how many pages are returned with
your keyword. It is usually in the millions. A more
precise way is to see how many of those pages have
your keyword in the title.

In Google, if you want to find competing sites that
have your keywords in the title, just use the allintitle
command.

Just type into Google search:

allintitle:yourkeywords

Professional marketers will use keyword research
software that will make performing all these steps
much more easier – I personally use Brad Callen’s
Keyword Elite. Because most of my marketing is done
with organic SEO traffic, doing extensive keyword
research is essential for getting it right, plus it
saves me a lot of time.

Mainly Keyword Elite shows me what keywords I have
a chance of reaching with any one of my sites.
High-demand lucrative keywords are usually out of
my reach, unless I want to do months and months of
SEO work, and even then it will take deep pockets
to compete with large companies who can afford to
spend anything to get that top ranking.

Google may have cracked down on paid link buying
but anyone with enough resources can still buy
their way into any top spot for any keyword.
There are exceptions – I have been trying for
years to get top billing for “Google marketing”
– but all I could manage was second place.
Wonder why?

Finally, you have to consider how profitable the
keyword is? This can be the real breaking point
for most novice webmasters. You must be able to
turn your top keyword ranking into a profit. In
other words you must be able to convert your
keyword traffic into a sale. Get your visitor
to buy from your site or from an affiliate link
on your site.

This will usually require some serious testing
on your part. You must test to see if your
landing page or sales letter is converting.
I find one of the best tools for testing your
webpages is Google Analytics. It will give you
vital information on your site that you can use
to increase your conversions or tell what is
working and what is not working.

Like any professional marketer, I find and use
‘long tail keywords’ to make most of my income.
Long tail refers to keywords phrases that are well
long (three or more words), yet very profitable.
For example, someone searching for a particular
make or model of a product usually has their mind
made up and is seriously considering buying that
product. Someone searching for “2008 v-6 four-door
Honda Accord” is a more targeted visitor than someone
searching for “cars.”

The great beauty of Long Tail Marketing: there
is little competition for these keywords and
you can usually get a top ranking in Google
in a couple of days – make that hours if you’re
using blogging techniques.

Keyword Page Fundamentals – Jewels in the Crown

If you’re targeting certain keywords, it helps
if you create webpages that are search engine
friendly. Again, very simple stuff, but you would
be surprised how many webmasters don’t follow
these basic site elements when constructing
their sites.

Keywords 123 – Here are some things you should do:

1. Title Tag

The Title Tag is located at the top of your
HTML page and it tells all the search engines
what your page is about. When you open your
page in a browser these are the words at the
very top of the screen. Despite its simplicity,
the title tag is crucial to ‘on-page optimization';
it should include your main keywords and it should
be 63 characters or less if you want your
title to appear in full on Google.

Many SEO experts create webpages in a three-prong
approach. They place the title (with the keywords)
in:

– The title tag – on the webpage itself – and
in the URL for that page.

Sometimes they will just pick the main keywords
from the title and place them in the anchor url
instead. For example: www. yourwebsite.com/keywords.html

2. Meta Description Tag

The Meta Tag contains the description for your
webpage. Your description will show up in all the
search engines so you must be careful to write
precisely and objectively. It should be about
140 characters or around 20 words. Make
sure to include your keywords but don’t spam
– don’t repeat your keywords more than twice,
using variations is helpful.

Keep in mind, successful webmasters make their
descriptions stand out from the pack and entice
the surfer to click their link. Remember this
is your first contact with your potential
prospect so make a good first impression.

3. Anchor Tag or URL

The anchor tag is used to form links within
websites or from site to site. Your tag should
have your title or the main keywords from your
page title to be the most effective.

Anchor text is also important to know, these
are the underlined, clickable text or words
in a link. anchor text

If you want to check Google for all webpages
containing your keywords in the anchor tags,
just type into Google Search:

allinanchor:yourkeywords

Of course, the best way to get high rankings
for your keywords is to build relevant quality
one-way links to the page that contains your
targeted keywords. Get enough of these quality
links with your keywords in the anchor text
and you will get top rankings. Again, provided
it is not an extremely competitive keyword.

Keyword Shortcuts – The Court Jesters

On the web, like in real life, there are always
shortcuts. No, I am not talking about any sneaky
“black hat” SEO tricks… the shortcuts here are
very legit and have to do with blogs.

Another way to crack the “keyword puzzle” is
simply to use a blog. I prefer the free blogging
software from WordPress since you can host these
blogs on your own site.

Blogs are perfect for keyword marketing. Only
with blogs, keywords are called “tags” but it
amounts to the same thing. With WordPress each
category will be considered a tag or keyword.
You can create a targeted page within your blog
for your chosen keyword or keywords within minutes.
Then you bookmark this page/tag/keyword in your
favorite bookmark sites like Digg, del.icio.us,
Furl, Propeller, Reddit, Slashdot, Stumbeupon…
don’t forget to ping/click your newly created
link to let all the search engines find your
keyworded page. WordPress will also automatically
ping your posts for you.

Blogging is a simple shortcut that can put you
on the fast track for earning on the web. The
great beauty of using blogs – you don’t need
to know anything about HTML or site design for
that matter, all of it is done for you. You can
pick out your template, edit your site heading,
side panels and your footer within a couple of
minutes… and you can have your blog/site up
and running in no time.

Simply tie in your blog with all these social
bookmark sites. Google likes these social media
sites; get a front page listing on Digg and your
keywords rankings will go to the top of Google’s
pages. I did manage to get on the front page of
Digg a little while back and my keywords instantly
rose to the top spot on Google. “Internet Facts”
but that’s another story for another time.

Online marketing can be as simple or as
complicated as you want to make it. I like
the complicated stuff myself, building numerous
sites, building links, building connections,
building patterns… but coming from an artist
background I am allowed to be more than a little
eccentric.

However, most people like to take the simple
route, so here’s a recent video I watched by
Nancy Andrews that explains how all this online
marketing stuff works… I hope you will notice
one important point that’s mentioned a couple
of times in the video… all this is so simple
yet there are still very few people doing it.
How true.

Always remember there are still a lot of crowns
out there going to waste. Why don’t you grab one?
Trust me, Kingdoms are so much fun to run.

http://www.liveblueprints.com/seotalk/

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