Webmaster Secrets for Top 10 Search Results in Google, Yahoo and MSN.
In following article, 3 simple steps that are easy to remember will reveal just how easy search engine optimisation can be once you know how. There are many websites that will complicate SEO by referring to engine algorithms, page rank formulas, key-word density or what have you. This article will not dwell anything that technical. Lets leave theorists and bloggers to do what they do best and argue till cows come home. In meantime we can work towards getting your webpage up into top 10 results at Google, MSN and Yahoo.
There are only three simple steps of SEO equation to remember:
- Choose to target search terms that are not hotly contested by competitors.
- Optimise your page content and html for those terms.
- Actively seek external, one-way, incoming links with targeted key terms as anchor text.
Let's take a look at those 3 steps in greater detail.
Choose to target search terms that are not hotly contested by competitors.
Why..? Would you rather spin roulette wheel and take your chances against high-rolling competitors, who throw tonnes of cash into professional SEO and advertising campaigns; or get qualified traffic hitting your site now? Websites targeting most popular search terms are small fish in a big pond. By targeting less popular terms with fewer possible search results, you become a bigger fish in a smaller pond.
Lets take an extreme example. Your a commercial web host and you want your site optimised for search engines. With Google, search phrase 'web hosting' returns 23 million results. That's a lot of competition; small fish in a big pond remember. How about 'commercial website hosting'? Well you have about 9 million other pages to compete with there. The phrase 'webhosting specials' only returns 1.2 million results. So how many other pages do you want to compete against, 23 million or 1.2 mil?
There are a few convenient tools around for selecting your search terms. To find how many search-result competitors exist for related terms, check out Google's keyword suggest. Once you've narrowed down a list of candidates, head on over to Overture's site and start up a dummy account. The key-word suggest tool is invaluable for gaining an insight to what people punch into search engines and how many hits these terms are scoring at Overture per month. Your looking for a sweet spot of say 5-10% of result pages that your industry's hottest terms return.
Optimise your page content and html for your new terms.
The most logical page to optimise first time round is your homepage. There are factors that play into SEO which are heavily dependant on how many external websites link to your page. The most common link you are going to score from other sites is default homepage, so it follows that this is best place to start. The most critical part of your web page is behind scenes in html. Particularly important is header and it's relationship to rest of your html.
So lets take a look at our web hosting site example. The beginning html for index page should be something along these lines;
Now header tags have set stage for rest of page. The idea is to make rest of html and content appear with 'Website specials' as most prominent topic. Search engines see tags such as <h1>, <h2>, <h3>, <strong>, <em>, <u> and <a href> as prominent indicators of topic relevancy. You want to make sure that 'website specials' appears in a h1 or h2 tag as close to beginning of your content tag as possible:
<body> <h1>Website Specials</h1><!-- this may be web page title --> ..snip.. <h2>ACME Webhosting offers competitive webhosting specials</h2>
Whatever copy or text content you have on page, you want 'website specials' to appear in bold and italic or underlined (just once will do). Don't go overboard in repeating terms throughout your text content over and over. Don't hide terms by giving them a font colour same as background. Just sprinkle term sparingly throughout copy so that it remains easily read. Remember you still have to sell product and no one likes to read spam; say a ballpark of once per 100 words of content. For first 3 images that appear in html from top of page, you want key terms to appear in their 'alt' attributes.
..blah...<strong>Webhosting Specials</strong>. <u>Webhosting Specials</u> ..blah.. <img src=mainlogo.jpg alt="Webhosting Specials Logo" />