Sunday, November 23, 2008

5 Search Engine Optimization Tactics

Search Engine Optimization is not as difficult as you might think although it can be time consuming if you try to do it all yourself.

The Goal of search engine optimization is getting your content listed in all the top positions in Google, Yahoo and MSN for your target keywords. When someone does a search for your particular subject or niche, you want your site or content to be at the top of the pile.

Here are five of my favorite SEO tactics for you:

1. Great Content is the number one factor for getting high rankings and keeping them. Search engines are businesses who supply a product just like any other. The product for a search engine is information and any website that offers quality and new information to the search engines customers usually does well in the rankings. Quality content is vital for SEO success.

2. Keywords are the number one tool for achieving great rankings. Keywords are those words that people search for when looking for products and services. The best keywords are actually phrases that narrow down the search for potential customers.
For example, if you have a site selling toys, you might think ‘toys’ is a great keyword. Wrong! The competition is too great and you would be better looking for something like - ‘toys for girls’ which narrows down the search. So how about ‘toys for girls age seven which narrows it down even more. True, you will have less people searching but those that do will surely be more likely to buy. So do your research into what people are searching for. Amend the text etc on your website to reflect this and watch the sales fly in!’Long tail keywords’ can be enormously profitable if used correctly.

3. On-page Factors and site design will play a big role in the indexing of your site and it’s content. Make sure that all your pages can be reached from your homepage and that no pages are more than three levels away from it.
Ensure that you have all your Meta tags such as title, description, and keywords optimised. Your page title and description should be keyword targeted but remember to make them draw and entice your potential customers to your website. You never get a second chance to make a first impression!

4. Google is the big beast of search engines so concentrate most of your SEO efforts on them. I am not saying that you ignore Yahoo! or MSN, just that you be realistic about which company is the biggest in this market.
Use Google’s Webmaster Tools to fine tune your pages for Google. Google Alerts are also useful to keep up on niche keywords and for comment link-building on any newly created pages that Google has indexed.

5. Link Building is the most effective way to boost search rankings. Make sure you get back-links from other sites related to your market and make sure the ‘anchor text’ is related to your keywords. The anchor text is the underlined/clickable portion of a link.
Don’t forget that linking is a two-way street. Impress the search engines by linking out to high ranked relevant sites in your niche.

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