Launch a search in Google and it searches more than 8 billion web pages – Yahoo, more than 12 billion. What is your business doing to make sure potential customers find you in that ocean of information?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
“Natural” or “organic” search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of designing, writing and coding the pages of a website to maximize the chance those pages will appear at the top of spider-based search engine results for selected keyword phrases.
Because SEO is an emerging and ever-changing marketing technique, there are no absolutes –only "best practices."
Our job is to help search engines index your pages and give them good rankings. We said help, not trick. The search engines are all looking for the same thing – quality search results for their users. If you aren’t ranking well, maybe you’re not giving them what they’re looking for.
The Coding of Your SiteThe manner in which a Web site is built can have a strong impact on how a search engine spider is able to read and index its content. Certain design elements can act as hurdles or roadblocks to the search engine spiders.
Keyword ResearchKeywords got their name for a good reason - they drive much of the activity on the Web. A key to your success on the Web will be your ability to define and utilize the best keyword phrases. You don’t want to use your words to describe your service, but the words your customers use to find the solution to their problem.
We will formulate a hierarchy of target search terms and keyphrase combinations that possess the greatest potential of attracting qualified searchers into your site. These keywords will then be used in optimizing your website content and coding. Choosing the proper keyword phrase is more about attracting potential customers than it is about driving large amounts of traffic.
Copy EditingOnce you have finished your keyword research and have selected the phrases you wish to focus on, it's time to start editing your copy. As the search engine spiders visit your site, they will "read" the copy and add each word to their indexes. Search engines then use the actual written copy on your Web site as part of the way to determine how relevant it is to a search conducted by a user.
Because the text on your web site is so important in determining your ranking, each page of your Web site should be viewed as an opportunity to rank highly for specific keyword phrases.
Optimizing Tags and AttributesWhile Meta tags don’t have nearly the importance they used to, it is still a good idea to make sure they are optimized. Of course, the Title tag is still a key element in determining relevancy & therefore ranking.
Website Link ArchitectureGood navigation through your website isn't just important to your users. Search engines use the links within your website to crawl and index the pages those links point to.
The more of your website the search engine sees, the more times you will appear in a search result for a certain topic. It's very important that you have text links on your website that contain keywords that you are hoping to compete for. Search engines not only follow links, they also analyze the text within them to help determine a sites relevancy
Link BuildingHaving a large number of websites that link to your site will not only drive traffic in their own right, but they will also increase your “link popularity.” Search engines use link popularity to indicate the worth of a site's content.
They consider sites with many links from other sites more likely to be relevant to a search and therefore rank those sites higher. In essence, if enough quality sites link to you, then your site becomes a quality site by association. We do want to emphasize that this is definitely a case of quality over quantity. The search engines don’t give much credit for lots of small sites linking to you; they’re looking for high traffic sites, especially ones with related content.
You can think of natural search much like public relations. First, you need a product or story worth writing about and then you employ best practices to get journalists interested. But there’s no guarantee that you’ll get great coverage.
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