Research the keywords.
Decide what search queries you want to show
up for. Do some research on how many people
are actually searching for your site. Many
times it is best to consult a "natural
search engine optimization" professional
during this process. There are several tools
available from Google, Overture, and third
party software developers that can make the
keyword research process easier.
Think outside of the box.
Don't just focus on your main keywords. The
first thing to realize when targeting
keywords is that it is not all about ranking
for the most popular keyword. The most
successful search engine marketing and
optimization campaigns target the most relevant keywords. For example, if you
are a realtor in a particular area, don’t
just optimize your site for “real estate."
Optimize your site for dentist, florist,
movie theaters, etc. You would be amazed how
many unique visitors will come through to
your site when "outside of the box" thinking
Focus on the end user.
If you spend too much time trying to please
the Search Engine Spiders, you may forget
about the end user. Think about what your
target market needs to accomplish their
goals, and then put it on your site so that
they can find it. The phrase "content is
king" was born about 6 years ago, and it
still holds true today. If you want to be
relevant for specific keywords, than you
need superior or at least highly competitive
content. Write about 225-300 words of copy
for each keyword and plant it on your site
each day. Grow, grow, and grow. On average,
one can target between 3-5 like keyword
phrases per page. Make it as natural as
possible and the Search Engines will reward
you with a first-page ranking.
Make sure that all the pages of the site
have custom titles and descriptions.
If your site is using the same tags for all
the pages, you are not helping search
engines figure out the subject or relevance
of your individual pages. Regarding Meta
Tags, there are 2 very important fields:
Tag - arguably the most important SEO
tag for any website. Google supports
approx. 60 characters in the title,
while Yahoo allows for up to 110
characters in the title. It is important
to target the most critical keywords in
the Title. Every page should have a
Description Tag - These were once
important but are no longer. Some
engines do display the description
defined, while others do not. Some
search engines do read the description
tag, and do utilize the content found
within in the ranking process. Google,
MSN and Yahoo give very little weight to
no weight for these.
Keep the structure, navigation and URL
structure of your site simple enough for
search engines to follow.
Remember that search engines cannot parse
your navigation if it's using flash or
HTML when it comes to Navigation. URLs with
dynamic parameters (?, &, SIDs) usually do
not perform when it comes to search engine
Create a site map that tells people where
everything is on your site.
You will get about a 1% click through rate
to your site map. However, it will do
wonders for those who know what site maps
do, and the Search Engines will like it as
up your popularity.
So now you have determined the right
keywords on the right pages, you've created
all of the necessary content, and you've
optimized all of the content to the best of
your capabilities. Congratulations - you're
now in the top 80th percentile (from an
optimization standpoint) of the websites
listed for the keywords you're trying to
target. So how do you get a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd
page listing? The answer is quite simple:
You have to be the most popular, too. That's
right, it's a popularity contest. In other
words, how many other websites know you
(link to you), and how popular are they?
This is typically referred to as link
popularity, or called PageRank by Google.
The more sites that link to your site the
better, and the more popular the site
linking to you the more value you will
receive for your link popularity. The best
types of "link building" are directory
registration, text link advertising, and
press release distribution. Try to offer
valuable information or tools so that other
people are motivated to link to your site.
Well-linked sites (that don't use spamming)
do better in search engines.