Thursday, August 2, 2007

Search Engine Optimization Tips

SEO is a big topic that comes up all the time with my clients. Everyone wants to be the number one website on Google, but don’t know how to achieve this. This article is NOT saying you are going to be able to get to number one, but it will give you some guide lines on how to increase your chances greatly.

The most important item relating to SEO is to remember that CONTENT IS KING. Without endless amounts of fresh and interesting content you will never get to the top. But it isn’t just the quality of content that counts; it is how the content is written. For example if you are selling cell phones you want to make sure your keywords appear in your text over and over again. It may seem repetitive but this is the best way to get Google, MSN and Yahoo! to notice you.

The next tips are in no particular order because they all play a similar small role, but together make all the difference.

  • Use meta tags and descriptions – This is an older html technology that is considered dead by some but is still being used. Your meta description is often the description that a search engine will use when displaying your website.

  • Wrap text in paragraph and headline tags. Using the proper tags will tell a search engine that your text is indeed content. Headline tags are given a higher priority by search engines.

  • No Frames – stay away from frames, it makes it impossible for a search engine to appropriately link to your site. In-turn a user may find your site but it may not have all the page elements attached to it.

  • Links – Using your keywords in your links is a great way to emphasize those words to a search engine. Never use “Click here” it is a wasted link.

  • Backlinks – Backlinks are links from other sites that point to your site. Backlinks are one of the primary things that Google looks for in determining rank. The best way to build backlinks is with your content. You can syndicate your content over blogs, rss feeds and general article submissions. Each time you submit an article make sure it has your link on it. Joining forums and social networks are also great ways of building backlinks but many of them frown on blatant advertisements so you have to do this wisely.

  • Use Text – It may sound simple, but actually using text instead of images allows a google bot or yahoo crawler to read you site.

  • No Flash – Flash sites are bad for SEO plain and simple. Even newer Flash techniques that allow crawlers to read the site still won’t end up at the number one spot simply because of lack of perceived content since your website is only one page.
  • Web maps – Creating and submitting a web map notifies the search engines of which pages are the most important and how often they change.Time – SEO is slow, be patient.

There are many other things you can do to increase you rank naturally, just remember do not cheat and pay for a service to do this for you.

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