7 Winning Search Engine Optimization Tactics
Search engine optimization should always be considered long before your website structure, colors, layout, and overall site design. But, the majority of people usually get caught up "in the moment"... thinking of riches instead of "how" they're going to attract more website visitors. This article is meant to get you back on track, and provide you with 5 winning search engine optimization tactics.
1. The single biggest mistake that most business owners make is trying to think of a "cool name" for their website, when they should have chosen a keyword-rich site name like 'prevent-corporate-bankruptcy.com' instead of SmithLawOffice.com' (as an example). Your potential customers search for keyword phrases... not business names... unless you're already a household name like Wal-Mart, eBay or Apple. Facing reality, many business owners gave up on websites ever helping their business a long time ago... usually because of a poor website name choice. And, it doesn't have to be this way.
Simply, discover what terms people are searching for. Identify the "action" keywords and phrases that people are actually using when they are searching Google, Yahoo, MSN or any of the other major search engines. I highly recommend looking for keyword phrases that incorporate the following keywords: buy, want, need, order, download, etc. I'm sure you're getting the idea now. Then, you need to purchase website names that are centered around the most popular keyword phrases. And, redirect these visitors to your current website. And, I promise that you can setup a website redirect in less than one minute... even if computers scare you. You just need to have access to your website hosting interface, with cPanel being the most popular choice.
Optimizing Your Web Page
2. After identifying a minimum of 10 keyword phrases, I recommend optimizing your current website pages' title tags, meta tags, image "alt" tags. You need to start using these keywords within your webpage content in bold text, underlined text, and as text links. Do not overuse these keywords though. These keywords should only comprise 4-6% of each page. So, if you have 500 words on a webpage, limit your keyword usage to 20-30 words. Most of the major search engines index every word of your page and compare them to your title META description and META keywords. So, you should never hide or add non-related keywords to your webpages: like Anna Kournakova, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, etc. This is a "black hat" tactic and should never be used, unless your want your website to be permanently banned by the search engine directories.
Most of the major search engines don't even consider the META keywords anymore, which is why the actual content of your webpages is becoming more and more important. Excessive repeating of keywords is considered as spamming, which will get your website penalized with a lower ranking. And, be sure mix your keywords in different combinations throughout the page and in your ALT tags, instead of using the same phrase over and over again.
3. One of the most important factors to achieve a high ranking in the search engines is link popularity. The overall number of links to your web site is important, but the quality of the links are even more important. All the search engines are very fond of "on topic" links. Links from sites that contain your same keyword content and are focusing on the same topic as your site, are known as "on topic" links. Three of the best ways to get "on topic" quality backlinks are to comment on other industry-related blogs, make comments in industry-related forums, and to submit articles to article directories. Just make sure that you're adding comments or articles to high pagerank sites, avoiding low page rank sites.
4. Adding misspelled keywords within your META tags can also boost your website traffic, because many people are likely to misspell your keywords when browsing the search engine directories. As an example, here are several popular misspellings I found people making when they searched for a site submission service, as follows: "free search engine submision", "sumit", "subit", "search egnine submission", "submition", and "saerchengines".
Add Fresh Content
5. Adding fresh content to your website on a regular basis is another key factor that plays a critical role in your search engine rankings. Adding new content regularly gives your visitors a reason to come back. Search engine robots will also visit your website more often, once they notice that you update regularly. This is one of the main reasons why WordPress blogs are so popular right now. When visitors leave comments about blog posts you have made, the search engine bots see this as new content. And, it really helps your site rankings when a visitor makes a comment with a permalink back to their high pagerank site. This helps website owners save time, by allowing website visitors to create content for them.
Don't Kill the Search Engine Crawlers
Avoid using flash intro pages where it says "Click Here to Enter Site", because the search engines have a very difficult time indexing (seeing) anything beyond the intro page... unless you've submitted every webpage of your site to the search engine directories manually, which is very time consuming. Even if you use the alt attribute to specify alternate text for flash images, that text will not be anywhere near as important as real text on a main index page.
Provide Relevant Title Tags
7. Making your page titles simple, descriptive, relevant and "keyword rich" makes it easier for search engines to know what each page is about. Keyword rich titles help the search engine directories provide consumers with more relevant search results, helping them determine whether your website contains what they are trying to find. The title description is the most important element of your website design, after you have chosen your website domain name.