What is your real goal: web positioning with top results or the ability to attract more qualified traffic to your website?Written by Fernando Macia
If placing your website within top search engine results, entering certain keywords in Google, Yahoo, MSN Search, or Alta Vista, has become your daily obsession, stop for a moment and reflect. Is achieving top search results with selected keywords real objective, or, is it perhaps developing a means for connecting with your potential customers, thus attracting more qualified traffic to your web site, what you are truly after? Besides, what are chances that your prospective clients will key in, exactly, those keywords that you chose in, precisely, those same search engines that you have targeted to locate your website within first page of results?
Now that majority of website administrators have finally accepted that online marketing applying search engine technology is most efficient strategy in long term for capturing qualified Internet traffic, companies that offer web optimization and search engine submission services have started launching aggressive campaigns guaranteeing top positions for their clients by using a limited number of keywords (typically five, ten, or fifteen), regardless of their websites’ business domain. This approach should immediately raise doubts as it is obviously much easier to position a website dedicated, for example, to dissection of butterflies, that probably enjoys very little competition, than positioning a website dedicated to real estate operating in an extremely crowded market. Therefore, one must always carefully weigh in promises made by these web-positioning firms since two different scenarios could occur:
- In order to achieve promised top search results, a web-positioning company may be forced to choose keywords that are so exclusive and specific that even if your website surfaces among first few spots, chances of a prospective client typing those exact keywords is extremely remote. - On other hand, a client may demand from web-positioning company utilization of keywords that are so generic and belong to such a highly competitive business domain that web-positioning company is unable to realize their promises even after applying all proper techniques correctly.
This raises question of whether mechanisms currently employed for determining success or failure of a web positioning strategy are adequate, or, perhaps, better alternatives exist. In most cases, web-positioning companies justify their success by providing periodic web positioning reports to their clients. These automatically generated reports show positions achieved by each of selected keywords with every search engine targeted. Software programs repeatedly launch queries once a week, or once a month, with each of search concepts using all search engines selected, capturing results and presenting them in weekly or monthly reports. The customers review these reports and apply their information as only basis for determining level of success, which brings us back to original question: Is achieving a good positioning real objective, or is it using web positioning as just another means for obtaining more qualified traffic intended goal?
From my perspective, attracting qualified Internet traffic should be ultimate goal of any online marketing strategy, from web positioning to online advertising, including email strategies, permission marketing, or pay-per-click campaigns. That is why marketing professionals should be using web traffic reports as true indicators of their online marketing success, as opposed to relying solely on information provided by web positioning reports. Even though these latter reports can offer a good indication of where a website would appear if certain keywords were used in a search engine, cornerstone for determining how well a website is actually performing comes from analyzing real-time statistics provided by web traffic reports. Let’s analyze next some of reasons that make these reports such an invaluable asset.
Ten Steps To A Well Optimized Website - Step 3: Site StructureWritten by Mary Davies
Welcome to part three in this search engine positioning series. Last week we discussed importance and considerations that much be made while creating content that will provide highest ROI for your optimization efforts. In part three we will discuss importance of site structure.
While there are numerous factors involved with search engine algorithms, site structure is certainly of constant importance. Cleaner structure that removes lines of code between your key content and search engine spiders cna mean difference detween second page and first page rankings.
Over this series we will cover ten key aspects to a solid search engine positioning campaign.
The Ten Steps We Will Go Through Are:
- Keyword Selection
- Site Structure
- Internal Linking
- Human Testing
- Link Building
- The Extras
Step Three - Site Structure
Developing structure of your website is a very important step in its overall optimization. The site structure will dictate how spiders read your site, what information they gather, what content holds most weight, how much useless code they must weed through and more. You must structure your website to appeal to visitor and spiders.
When developing your website you want to be sure not to create useless code that can confuse spiders and take away from content of your site. When developing your site I recommend hand coding as best option however not everyone has time or skill to do this so I would suggest Dreamweaver as a great option. (Though code will not be as clean as hand coding it does not create an over top amount of extra code like programs such as Front Page do.) The object here is to keep code as clean as possible! Remember more code you have more spiders must weed through to get to your content, where you want them to be.
A great way to cut down on extra code as well is to use style sheets. You can use style sheets in ways as simple as defining fonts or as advanced as creating tableless designs. There are many ways to use style sheets and biggest perk to using them is to cut back on code on any given individual page. When you are setting up initial structure of your site you want to be sure that table structure is laid out in such a way that spiders can easily and as quickly as possible get to most important content. A great way to attain this is to create your website using table structure outlined in my article "target="_blank">Table Structures For Top Search Engine Positioning". When spiders visit your site they read through it top to bottom, left to right following rows and columns. The key to table structure outlined above is little empty row. Were this row not there spiders would read through that first column hitting nothing but images and Alt tags, your navigation, until it would then move onto next column, your content area. Placing this empty cell in first row of main table guides spiders directly to your content, they hit empty row and with nothing to read move onto next column to right, where you want them. After they have read your content they will then move back to left in row 2 and read your navigation images and Alt tags, finally they will end page at your footer, a great place for keyword rich text links. (Internal linking structures will be covered in part 5 of this 10 part series.)