June 10, 2011
Getting to the top of a Google search result can bring tremendous amounts of traffic to a website. Websites that make it to the top do not get there by chance. They are there because their web pages are optimized. To optimize for Google, website designers must follow several key steps. Each step is designed to relay to the search engine some information about the web page. By performing this optimization, website owners increase their chances of making it to the top of a Google search result. To understand how the process works, the following information lists several of the basic steps that website designers need to follow to produce an optimized website.
The first step to getting a high ranking in Google’s search pages involves choosing the right keywords. But it is not only about finding the keywords – understanding their profitability is important as well. This is assessed by determining the level of competition for these keywords.
There are many commercial vendors that provide services to determine profitability and other aspects related to keywords, but to start, any website operator can use Google’s keyword tool to get a list of general keywords.
Shorter keyword phrases have the most competition and the most profitability and that is why it is harder to achieve high rankings for them. Because of this, many website owners look to rank for long tail keywords. These are keywords that contain the main keyword along with other words. Even though they are easier to rank for, long tail keywords are less profitable, which is why website owners typically look to rank for multiple long tail keywords.
After the keywords have been chosen and analyzed, website owners need to know about where to place the words on the web page. The first part of this optimization process involves placing the keyword in the title of the page. The title tag, located in the head section of the HTML code, is the first tag that the search engine spider analyses.
The header tag, h1 is the next important tag. This tag typically contains the name of the article, which, at the minimum, should contain the complete keyword. Additional words may be included with the keyword to help improve readability, but the words in this tag need to contain the entire keyword phrase.
Another important aspect of web page optimization is link optimization. These links or anchor texts help to indicate to the search engine spider what the web page is about. An anchor text should be a related keyword of the main keyword of your title, and the anchor destination should be a page that is related to the keyword in the anchor text. Leading to a page of unrelated content will not help with website optimization. So, to get value from the anchor text, make sure that it leads to a page related to the anchor text.
To optimize for Google also involves repeating keywords a certain number of times. Although there are different views amongst SEO experts as to the optimum keyword percentage within content, many writers generally aim for between 2 and 3 percent keyword density.
In addition to optimizing the article content, web designers should also optimize multimedia, such as images or videos. For example, if appropriate, the name of an image should also contain the keywords. If the keywords are not appropriate for the image name, web designers can use the alt attribute in the image tag to write a description of the image using the keywords. In fact, the alt attribute should always be used for optimization and also to ensure usability and access standards are followed.
In summary, if web designers follow and include all of the preceding on their web pages, they will be well on their way to optimizing their websites. These are the basic steps that they must follow if they want to get near the top of Google’s ranking for their particular keywords.
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