Search Engine Optmization (SEO) is a phrase that has become extremely popular with the expansion of the web over the past five years. Now that sites like WordPress, Blogger, and Typepad allow users to build a website within minutes, the popularity contest that is the Internet has a lot more competitors. It is vital to keep SEO in mind when creating a site or adding content to your site. These five factors will help to get your page ranked highly for the keywords you want.
Pick your keywords wisely
It is important to know what keywords are attainable. Trying to optimize your site for a keyword that is too general has negative effects. Lets use a blog about Web Design for example. Using general keywords like, “design”, or “blog” are nearly impossible to successfully optimize for due to the fact that so many sites contain these words. Second, if a visitor finds your web design blog when they were actually looking for a interior design blog, that visitor is not the quality traffic that you are looking for.
Instead implement the Long Tail Technique. The Long Tail Technique involves optimizing your site for more specific keywords and phrases that are easier to attain high rankings on Google. So lets add some specificity to our keywords. If we optimize for “Detroit PHP Web Designer” we have a better chance of getting a higher ranking and the visitors that come to our site are much more qualified traffic than before.
Learn some HTML
Knowing some HTML code goes a long way in helping to optimize your site or page. SEO experts will tell you that the <title> tag is the most important place to put your keywords. If you use WordPress for your site, your home page <title> tag is what you enter as your blog name. It shows up at the top of your browser window.
Acquire some link love
Gather up a list of all of your friends that have web sites of any kind. This includes Facebook, Myspace, etc. When you launch your site or make a new post, tell all of your friends, and tell them to tell their friends. Try and convince all of your friends to link to your site. As I mentioned before, the Internet and especially Google is one massive popularity contest. Inbound links (links that point to your site from an outside site) are like friends in this analogy and the more friends that you have, the more popular you are.
Publish fresh content worth reading
Keeping your content fresh and relevant is the best way to ensure that your site is always full of keywords. Also, content that is fun and interesting to read will draw visitors who will in turn link back to you making you like the starting quarterback strolling the halls after winning the big game.
Don’t take keyword infusion to the extremes however. If you do, you can suffer extreme consequences. How does being banned from Google sound? Keyword Stuffing as it is known in the SEO world is a big no-no and will for sure have you penalized by Google. If your text is difficult to read because it is stuffed with keywords you are only hurting yourself. Besides, Google puts much more weight on inbound links (harder to manipulate) than it does keyword infusion (easier to manipulate).
Track your success
Using a tracking software such as Google Analytics or WordPress Stats will show you how much success you are having with your SEO campaign. Pay particular attention to the amount of inboud links you have and do what you can to increase that number. Follow these guidelines and watch your sites numbers climb the charts of Google!
Here are some links and resources to learn more about SEO:
Search Engine Ranking Factors from SEOmoz
SEO definition from Wikipedia