July 19, 2010
In this modern age, it is increasingly important to make sure your websites are optimized for the major search engines through the use of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices. The current top three search engines are Google, Yahoo and Bing. Let’s face it though; Google is the major player and they set the standards when it comes to the Internet search industry.
There are a few basic practices you can follow to make your site more friendly to the search engines and thus rank higher for certain keyword phrases when users search for them. You just need to make sure you are conducting these practices properly. Being at the top of the search engines for your target keywords is a make or break factor for the success of your business.
There are millions of websites in existence and there could be thousands competing for the keywords you are trying to rank for. The Internet is a very competitive marketplace so it is vital to stay on top of the current SEO trends. Not being recognized by the top search engines can be very frustrating, especially after putting a lot of work and money into creating and designing your website.
Each search engine uses a different algorithm to conduct their searches. These algorithms are kept secret by the companies and are always changing. However, there are numerous people whose jobs consist of attempting to deconstruct these algorithms to figure out how the engines rank pages.
In order to increase your web page’s rank in the search engine results, take the following advice into consideration:
- Remember that content will always be king. Fill your web pages with relevant information that will help visitors – search engines love this.
- Fill your content with your target keywords but don’t overdo it by stuffing keywords into your pages. You need to keep your keyword density to no more than one anchor text keyword hyperlink per 100 words of content. If the pages of your site contain relevant keywords to a searcher’s search phrase then your site has a higher likelihood of appearing on the results pages.
- Be specific with your keywords. If you are selling “Men’s Nike Air Jordans” target that phrase not “Michael Jordan shoes.”
- When choosing keywords, put yourself in the shoes of the searcher. What would you search (WWYS)?
Meta Tags (Title, Description & Keywords):
- The title tag is the description of the current page you are on that appears on the top bar of your web browser. For SEO purposes, you need to use your first targeted keyword at the beginning of your title and try to describe what your website is all about In 10-15 words.
- The keyword tag consists of the list of keywords you have put together in your market research. Search your competitors websites and see what keywords they are using then rank them in order of relevancy from first to last.
- The description tag is a short explanation about the content of your website and its topic. Keep this under 20-25 words and try to use at least three to four target keywords. This is what users will see on the search engine results pages under the link to your site.
- For the best SEO results, edit the meta tags for each page of your website to match the contents of that specific page.
Submit Your Site to the Search Engines:
- It is a quick and painless process to submit to the top search engines. Simply visit the websites of the major search engines and fill out the corresponding submission forms.
- You should also submit your website to the DMOZ.org directory. It can take a few months to get listed but it is a great SEO technique and most sites listed in the directory get higher priority in the search results over sites that are not listed.
- Patience is a virtue when it comes to submission. It can take days or weeks for the search engine spiders to actually crawl your website and get indexed.
Build Links by Submitting Your Site to Directories and Niche Websites:
- The more meaningful links from high ranked websites linking to your site, the higher your search rating. However, this does not mean you should practice “link farming” or paying for links. This is considered a negative practice and can actually have a negative impact on your results rating and can even get you banned from the search engines.
- The best way to be featured in directories is to make a profile with a link to your page.
- Article marketing is another very valuable SEO tactic. Write articles with keyword hyperlinks pointing to your page. Other sites are happy to have quality content and you obtain linkage, so both sides win! You will also see direct traffic from these links which will help your site gain popularity.
- Link building is a time-consuming process that can take long periods of time to see real results, so again – be patient!
By following these simple SEO tactics, you can raise your ranking in the search engines!
Forrest Yingling is the Marketing Director for WebNet Hosting, Premier Miva Hosts since 2004 offering fully PCI Compliant Miva Hosting with 100% uptime at the industry’s most affordable prices.