Search engine optimization (SEO) is very important to any internet marketer. The primary reason is simple – if your website has high page ranking on search engines, you get large volumes of traffic directed to your website through search engines traffic FOR FREE. In other words, you can stop paying to promote your site for certain keywords or keyword phrases but still enjoy all the profits. Here are some of the essential SEO tips and tricks that EVERY internet marketer needs to know about:
1. RESEARCH AND UTILIZE CONVERTING KEYWORDS
If you’re like most marketers, you research keywords using the Google Keyword Tool. While this is a great service, what it doesn’t provide is a good view of how much actual competition you have for each keyword. In order to get real-world data about keywords you are looking to target you need to look at how many other websites are already optimized that you will be competing with. A great tool for this is the free keyword research tool from Wordtracker. The Wordtracker keyword tool will enable you to not only see the total number of clicks but also see the “all in title” results to get a realistic idea of what you are up against.
Remember that you must find the keywords that your buying customers use to search for what you sell. These keywords are usually long-tail phrases that don’t have the highest traffic numbers. They are not always visible using the Google keyword tool, but after analyzing using the Wordtracker tool, you are able to see a larger number of long-tail phrases that are highly optimized which you should consider as potentially good converting keywords.
2. OPTIMIZE YOUR WEBSITE USING CONVERTING KEYWORDS
After you have located your keywords, you want to optimize each webpage of your site for a particular keyword or keyword phrase. To do this, you need to provide relevant and keyword-rich content on your website such that your website will appear on search engines when your potential customers type your keywords. There are a few key areas that you should focus on to ensure the search engines will rank you for your keywords.
The first is the heading of the page or article – ensure your keyword phrase is included in the page title. Also place your keyword phrase into your page URL and inside your content. As a final measure, add your keyword phrase into the meta description tag as well. A couple of extra area steps you can take are to place your keyword phrase in the alt tag of images and title tag of hyperlinks. By focusing on just these key areas, you should get a good bump in rankings versus not doing these.
3. USE SEMANTIC MARKUP AND GOOD NAVIGATION
A lot of marketers use MS-Word to create page or article content and then simply cut it from MS-Word and paste it into their blog or webpage. This process grabs a lot of outdated MSO Normal tags that clutter your HTML code. This extra code makes formatting more difficult by not utilizing simple CSS styling and in addition places too many non-semantic markup language tags on the page. The best way around this is to copy your content from MS-Word, then paste it into Notepad (to remove the MSO Normal styling). Then copy if from Notepad into your HTML editor. As a final step, make sure your headings, lists, and other features are all styled using semantic markup. All the major search engines and Facebook are now placing an emphasis on semantic markup, so do this step to get maximum results.
It is also important that you use your keywords and phrases in designing and categorizing your website or blog. This can easily be accomplished by using your keywords in the page URLs. It’s also important that you make sure that the design and layout of your website makes it easy for search engines to index your content. At the same time, make sure your visitors can find their way around as well. You must design for both search engines and users – they are both important.
4. WRITE GOOD CONTENT, REPEAT, THEN DO IT AGAIN
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you have to place keywords throughout your content to such a degree that you mess up the flow of your marketing message. When writing for the web, keep in mind that you must provide compelling and captivating content for your users. Without it, they will simply click the back button and be gone before they ever get to your offerings.
And keep in mind that content is King on the web. Search engines love content, especially websites that update or add new content frequently – like news blogs. So even if you have a static page with well written marketing messages about your products and or services, you need to find a way to consistently add new content. You can do this by adding new products and services each month, or by having a blog or some other content source that will keep the search engine spiders coming back and re-indexing your site.
5. GET BACKLINKS FROM HIGHLY RANKED SITES WITHIN YOUR NICHE
You will need to obtain backlinks from other websites, but first you must make sure that your website is interesting and has high quality content so that other webmasters will be keen to exchange links with you. The most powerful link you can obtain is the one-way link so don’t spend a lot of time trying link exchanges with other websites. And definitely stay away from linking schemes that are multi-way or hundreds of direct links for a single price. Google in particular has caught on to this ploy and is more likely to penalize you for having a bunch of links from joke sites or low-ranking splash pages.
The best way to get good backlinks is actually to pay for them. You can do this by contacting a website owner in your niche and asking them for a 1-day or even a free weekend trial. Most are willing to allow you this so you can determine how many clicks and sales you will get by having an ad on their site. Once you complete your trial, calculate your traffic and sales to determine a fair market value to offer the site owner. When determining your price point remember that you are getting two major benefits with this link – search engine ranking as well as lead generation that turns into sales.
Just doing these simple SEO strategies can make your website rank higher on search engines and also maintain that position in the long term.