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SEO SERP

Search Engine Optimization Lands Websites at the Top of Search Engine Results Pages


Of the nearly seven billion people on the planet, more than two billion use the internet. With such an incredible amount of people surfing their standard bookmarked sites, the same amount use the internet to simply search for new information, services or products. Whether the individual is in the United States or Taipei, they receive the same information on a single page called a search engine response page, or simply “SERP.” The results provided on this page are derived from websites that apply search engine optimization tags, data and keywords into their programs, to help insure they are displayed at the top of the list of search results. Appearing at the top of the results page increases the likelihood of the searcher clicking on their link, and obtaining the preferred traffic to their website.

Understanding Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is an important portion of the design and build of a website, which will allow it to be viewed at a higher ranking during search results. SEO is developed in several ways, one of which is the use of keywords in the copy portion of a website. For example, when individuals search for something as simple as “gutter repair” it would behoove any maintenance company that provides that service to include the keywords “gutter repair” in the website’s copy. When the criteria is searched using those keywords, the search engine will provide results whose websites contain those words. It is important to maintain an appropriate frequency of keywords, so as not to appear as a spamming site to the masses. This delicate balance of keywords usually runs around two to three percent of any current page view on any website.

Keywords are not the only important portion of an SEO function. Using easy to understand verbiage, along with clear and concise URL links, helps visitors know exactly what they are linking to, without confusion. For instance, if the search for gutter repair for single family homes only takes the searcher to www.gutterrepair.com/tenbdoajrksf, it contributes confusion to the memory, and quite frankly, the logic of site’s link. Should the result be www.gutterrepair.com/singlefamilyhomes, or something similar, the information is submitted to the searcher in clear, easy to digest terms, instilling confidence in where the link will land them. Moreover, all website content should be applicably written for possible search engine results, including captions and pedestrian site information such as contact advisement.

Equally important as keywords and phrases are the links listed on a website; or even better, a link to a site from someone else’s. When adding a new article to a site, or updating information on a website, linking to past information will help spur interest in previous articles, thereby increasing the time visitors spend on the site. Also, something as simple as a link to contact a company representative can be added wherever the interest is written. If there is copy on a website that states, “Contact us today for more information” the words “Contact us” should be hyperlinked to an email address or the overall company contact information page. Companies should never underestimate how important an easily maneuverable website is to consumers. It is also important to note that only words are picked up by search engines; bells, whistles, graphics and images are not. Additionally, partnering with customers, vendors or affiliated companies by providing shared links on one another’s website is a practice in synergy that helps everyone’s site receive more traffic. Certainly, no one wants to link to a competitor, but there are industry related sites – no matter the industry – that can benefit the visitor, while providing a friendly, free, search optimization strategy for the site’s owner.

Crawling with Spiders

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Seo Serp Web Crawlers

Search engine optimization, starting with keyword implementation, strong link appearances, and functioning site maps, begets better search engine results for any company who subscribes to the ideology.

The process by which this takes places is called “crawling” or “web spiders.” Simply put, web spiders are enacted when an individual types words or phrases into a search engine. The crawling begins by separating the information for review by popularity, links and updated information. Keeping content refreshed as often as possible, will help the internet spiders select a website for top billing, allowing for a better ranking on the search engine results page. One way to accomplish this practice is by creating, maintaining and updating a blog on a website. Blogging allows for real time information to be updated on a website, while providing interaction between the writer and reader, and most importantly updated content for spider detection.

Search Engine Results Page (SERP)

A search engine results page is the page that appears once a word or phrase has been entered into a search engine. For instance, if an individual types “gutter repair” into a Google, Yahoo!, Bing, AOL or any available search engine, the return page will list several websites, with links and a splash of information about the company or individual. A standard SERP will list ten to 12 companies and their information, before providing links to additional pages at the end of the first results page. Appearing on the first page, nearest to the top, is the ideal position for any company. Outside of paying the search engine to the be the “sponsored link” – which is to be premiered at the top, typically enclosed in a box, or highlighted in a different color – free SEO opportunities can net the same results. When a company appears at or near the top of the SERP, it is more likely that their link will be chosen for review, before another company that appears lower or on one of the additional pages.

Know What Works

Assuming a website is built with all of the search engine optimization prowess a team can muster, including new content imported daily, and a site map that provides the easiest way to maneuver from one end of the operation to the next, it is all for naught if it is not proven to work. The basic principle is the same for everyone: Get as much traffic to the website as possible. The results of all search engine optimization outcomes are based initially on how many times a URL has been used – directly counted when an individual types in the exact company URL into their toolbar to reveal the site intended – or indirectly counted through a search of something similar (i.e., typing in .com when the actual site is .net), then clicking on the link provided. Secondly, keyword searches that led to the traffic visiting the site, followed by the actual traffic on the site. Traffic reports will provide information on what portions or pages of the website are searched, and what information is retrieved by the visitor while they are on the site. Lastly, and the absolute tell of a website’s functionality, are orders and revenue produced through the site.

The best way to get traffic to a website, causing an increase in the company’s exposure to prospective customers, is by engaging in search engine optimization, which will, in turn, land the site at the top tier of the search engine results page. Let us know what is working for you to increase traffic.

 

SEO for Mobile Devices

Implementing SEO for Mobile Devices Mobilizes e-Business Success!


SEO for mobile searching has become a very hot virtual business commodity. Google’s recent announcement that mobile search rates are quickly surpassing stationary-based queries by leaps and bounds has significantly fueled the fires of popularity.

Mobile more common among consumers

Another major research study showed that roughly 60 percent of consumers located their desired brands via mobile searches. A whopping 49 percent of these mobile searchers made subsequent purchases within the six months immediately preceding the study. As numbers never lie, these figures contain an undeniable fact that virtual marketers cannot afford to ignore: Optimizing SEO for mobile devices is not optional.

Untapped Potential

Mobile searches have expanded 30-fold in the past three years. Incredibly, however, most web-based business sites are inaccessible by smart phones, ipods, and other electronic devices. Ignorance of the unlimited mobile marketplace potential is the probable cause.

What Is SEO for Mobile App Advertising?

Mobile applications (“apps”) include all interactive technologies capable of affecting active user engagement via mobile devices. Although this basic definition encompasses many high-tech tools and enhancements, the huge array of mobile applications may be reduced to four categories.

Which Mobile App Is the Most Apt?

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Mobile Device Apps

Identifying the best mobile app for your business is the first step in formulating an effective marketing strategy of SEO for mobile devices. Making this determination is mandatory to realistically assess a particular app’s probable effectiveness. The following in-depth discussion of the four fundamental mobile app types greatly assists this analysis:

Branded utility

This type of mobile application may be regarded as an extension of preexisting brand presentations. As such, branded utility formats usually offer the best overall business results. Mobile banking is a prime example.

Branded utilities like online banking software offer users convenient access to a necessary financial service while simultaneously promoting a bank’s brand. Practicality and brand promotion is the powerful combination that accounts for the phenomenal marketing success of branded utility mobile apps.

Content-based

Mobile apps that are based upon highly-coveted or proprietary content fall within this category. Content-based marketing allows merchants to devise and deliver commodities that would be impossible without mobile application availability.

Online sites operated by major sports brands that offer live sporting event coverage and up-to-the-minute stats is a common example. Fans may partake of the action in real-time from anywhere.

Entertainment-based

Marketers without popular proprietary content often use entertainment-based mobile apps to spread the word. The main drawback of this approach is a limited lifespan of mobile app utility. This is due to the rapid fade of public interest after an event or specific campaign concludes.

Breaking into the upper echelons of entertainment-based marketing is difficult unless your business already owns a gaming or entertainment brand. Current market saturation renders this mobile marketing approach remunerative for very few virtual businesses.

Straight utility

As the term implies, straight utility apps offer practical solutions to ordinary incidents of life. Examples include loan payment calculators, business directories, and other useful tools.

At present, software firms have a virtual monopoly within the straight utility mobile apps market. Unless your firm is involved in software development, victorious infiltration of the straight utility mobile app virtual territory will be hard-won.

Practicality and affinity

These two concepts are the keys to straight utility-based online marketing success. In addition to serving some useful purpose, straight utility apps must be relevant to your company’s specific offerings. For instance, a food service vendor might incorporate interactive calorie counters into its site to help mobile customers calculate the exact nutritional content of fast food meals or popular menu items.

Caution is highly advised

A well-devised marketing strategy that includes SEO for mobile devices can give your e-business a formidable competitive edge. Carefully consider whether mobile apps have sufficient relevance and financial feasibility for your overall commercial objectives. Do not be taken in by the emotional and aesthetic appeal of many popular mobile apps. Test the waters with thorough market research before taking the plunge. If you ultimately conclude that mobile apps are a good fit for your business, you may confidently proceed to dive into the deep end of e-commerce success!

Optimizing Photos

Boost Your Content by Optimizing Photos

 

If you want to get the most out of your SEO efforts, you might want to give a little extra attention to the images on your site. Rather than leave your images strictly as visual interest pieces on your website, taking the time optimizing photos with the appropriate keywords can add a significant boost to your readership. More and more internet users are turning to image search engines as a way to cut through the clutter of online content; optimizing your images for search is a great way to get your share of this increased traffic.

There are a number of different ways that you can optimize your images for search engine crawlers. The most common way is to give all visual content on your site accurate descriptive titles. Think of the keywords that an online searcher would use to find your content and image; then work those keywords into your descriptive title. If you are able to create your own meta tags, then try to work complimentary keywords into your <alt> tags for maximum impact.

If you include video on your website this is another opportunity to put your search engine optimization talents to work. By adding descriptive titles to your videos, you not only increase the chances of your videos being found but of converting viewers into content readers. (Do not forget to start your comments section off with an optimized comment also). This is a prime opportunity to increase your click through rate as readers stay on your site longer and navigate their way to various aspects of your website. An engaged reader is a reader that is likely to return. The more rewarding they find your site the better the chances are that they will return again and again. If you deliver information that they not only find useful but engaging too, the chances of them returning greatly increase as well as increasing the odds they will share your information. Shareable information is key to an increased readership.

Optimizing Photos and Podcasts

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Optimize Podcasts Too!

Podcasts are another opportunity to optimize your website for searchable keywords. More and more websites are including both podcasts and vodcasts on site as a way of communicating with their audience so it only makes sense to add as many descriptive keywords as possible to make these added extras more searchable. Whether you post an audio only podcast on your website or you add video to your podcast, make the most of your efforts by optimizing them in order to find an even larger audience.

Descriptive titles are not the only way to optimize your images for search. Another terrific way to make the most of your digital images is to tag your photos. Tagging is not strictly just for friends on Facebook. With the abundance of image tagging resources available online (i.e. www.stippleit.com), you can now tag everything from places and landmarks to recipe ingredients or auto part components. While it may take a little longer to optimize your images this way, the likelihood of seeing greater conversion numbers is well worth the effort. Rather than have a reader simply view your image online it only makes sense to tag that image with as much descriptive text as possible. Not only does this tagging make your images easier to find for search engine crawlers but it also significantly increases the chances that your viewers will engage more readily with your content.

Optimizing Photos Worth the Effort

Optimizing images can initially seem like a great deal of effort but with practice and persistence it will soon become second nature. You would not consider adding a post to your website or blog without adding a title; that same automatic response will soon apply to any visual data you add to your site. Take the time to make the effort; the results will speak for themselves.

Top 10 Errors of Link Building

Proper Link Building Takes Business Platforms To New Plateaus!

 

Adequate link building is vital to long-term virtual business success. Much like baking cakes, building links requires a recipe of sorts. It is imperative to include the appropriate quantity of each required ingredient. The omission or disproportionate inclusion of any given element renders the entire recipe ineffective.

This basic rule of competent cake creation applies equally to commercial marketing campaigns. To avoid winding up like inept bakers with a bunch of unsaleable bread, web-based entrepreneurs must abstain from the cardinal link building sins listed below.

Common Errors in Link Building

1. Building links to bad sites.

Linking into inferior sites of ill repute is fatal for online marketers. Incoming backlinks equate to external site endorsements. Thus, building links from illegal or unethical shyster sites drags your own search engine rankings down.

2. Neither a buyer, barterer, or seller be

Paid backlinks are highly tempting and very high-risk. Buying backlinks can seriously backfire by getting your site banned from all search engines.

3. Non-follow backlink usage

Good one-way follow links are few and far between. Settling for their non-performing non-following fellows is not only a costly error but a major time waster as well.

4. PR pays

Building links to a bunch of sites with pathetic pageranks (“PR”) is pointless. Put your time to much better use by building links to a handful of high PR sites – rather than a lot of low-PR platforms. For best link building results, select sites with PR values of four or higher.

5. Irrelevant material is immaterial

Building links to sites with little relevance to your own is useless. While other site operators will not object one whit, they are a total waste for you. Highly productive backlinks originate from sites within your same or similar market niche. For instance, online dating service operators would obviously want to omit political site backlinks. Whereas, link building via teen-oriented sites is appropriate, as that age group has great interest in social interaction. Teen sites are also more likely to touch upon dating-related topics.

6. Use solid anchor text

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Anchor Text Link Building

On-page anchor text plays a crucial role in online marketing success. An ideal approach includes article keywords within anchor texts of key hyperlinks. Avoid low-value generic terms like “click below.”

7. Spamming for backlinks

Backlink spamming is inefficient and causes search engines to banish business sites. Posting curt, superfluous comments on any blog bearing the remotest resemblance to your own is time-consuming and takes you nowhere fast.

8. Going for a single keyword

Internet surfers do not use identical terms to find specific items. Do you offer tennis shoes, sneakers, or gym shoes at your virtual store? Many consumers use similar product labels interchangeably; each term has a different meaning for others. Insufficient keyword diversity defeats the whole point of internet marketing.

9. Honing Too Hard on the Homepage

Most visitors initially arrive at a site‘s homepage. Do not let all incoming backlinks lead to landing pages, however. Develop high quality backlinks to other product-specific sub pages. Prospective customers save time by not having to look all over your landing page to learn more about your wares.

10. All links are not created equal

In the context of link building, discretion is definitely advised. Mere backlink availability is insufficient. You must also maintain good value for both you and prospective customers. Be discerning; two good links are far better than twenty bad ones.

Penny “Wise” = Pound Foolish – High Quality Linkbuilding

Link building yields little or no immediate income. Accordingly, online business owners often wonder whether it is worth their time and energy. The answer is a resounding “Yes.” High-quality backlinks are a precious commodity of unquestionable value.

In the link building realm – like elsewhere in life – everything that glitters is not gold. You would not invite just anyone into your home; exercise equal discretion when building links to lead others into your business platform. An ideal blend of prudence and progression builds bridges into virgin territories of virtual business success!

Alexa Rank

Learn about Alexa Rank

Alexa Rank is often talked about in the SEO circles but its value is widely debated. Alexa is often mentioned in the same breath as PageRank, but as the latter has obvious connections with the world’s most popular search engine, it’s often the one that’s favoured as people try to increase their site’s rankings.

Alexa, owned by internet giant Amazon, has been around for a long time ranking websites and their various features. Site members install a toolbar to their browser which sends data back to Alexa HQ about viewing habits and the types of sites visited. Alexa then notes which pages are popular, which are related and which are going through a topical surge. Based on user activity, a site gets a rank: at the moment Google, Facebook and YouTube top the leaderboard.

In return, the user is offered all this information as well as ratings of each site in the database as well as the opportunity to see past versions of the site they’re visiting as well as looking at the search terms users put in Google to find the site.

The problem with this, is that it’s not fully representative of the web’s user base – indeed, Alexa acknowledges a leaning towards Chinese sites because of the toolbar’s popularity in the Orient – with many marketing, SEO and webmaster tools getting ranked highly. With a relatively small user base it’s possible to see huge swings in ratings with only a minor change in weekly or monthly traffic. However, in these circles Alexa rank can be influential and can help you network, guest post and advertise in relevant and popular places.

Alexa Rank Tips

If you want to increase your Alexa rank, there are a few simple ways to do this.

  1. Although seen as ‘gaming’ the system, installing the toolbar and setting your own blog or site as your homepage means you’ll add a few extra visits. If you have a few employees, get them all to do the same to boost your rank slightly. This leaves the door open to full scale spamming and abuse of the system, which is one of the main points opponents attacks.
  2. Create link bait for webmasters and affiliates. These are two of the biggest groups of users, so if you target them you’re likely to increase your visits, and your ranking. If you don’t have an affiliate scheme, adding one is sure to get people visiting (and may even increase your sales) or if you have one in place give it a revamp, add a promotion or set up a competition where leading affiliates get a prize.
  3. Although the toolbar is the main way Alexa tracks data, it’s not the only way. Adding the Alexa widget to your site is another way for users to register their visit to your site. Add a link to download the Alexa toolbar near this and if people install the toolbar they’ll return to your site automatically which counts as a vote for you.

Once you have an Alexa rank to be proud of, you can start to use it to your advantage. Mention it on your advertising page and you can afford to up your fees a little bit. Use it to show others that you’re popular, successful or, if nothing else, you’ve been around a while and that you’re dependable and trustworthy. With that in your armoury you may be surprised at the doors that open for you as a webmaster. Be warned, though, that not everyone puts much faith in the system, despite its age and reputation in some quarters, and if you brag too loudly about your ranking it may put some people of you and your site permanently.

SEO Website

Constructing an SEO Website

One of the most important considerations when creating an online entity for your business is to create an SEO website with all the basics in place. Having a properly organised link structure, unique and well written content with a collection of backlinks from high quality sites will have a huge effect on your site’s popularity in the search engines.

When you’re first implementing SEO techniques on your site, it’s useful to place a few AdSense ads to get a bit of coverage for your pages. AdSense won’t have any direct effect on your SEO, but it does place your name and site on the top page of the SERPs. Once your SEO kicks in and you’re ranking naturally, you can begin to remove the ads as you’ll be receiving hits through your organic listings.

Natural Rankings

To appear in the natural SERPs, you need to make sure your site matches Google’s algorithm wishes. There’s no quick fix for this and you must be prepared to wait, sometimes months, to see effective results. If you try to gain results too quickly your site will see a spike in results which is normally due to a breach of Google’s rules. This will trigger off alerts and could lead to sandboxing or a ban from the major search engines.

To make sure you’re onside with all regulations, make sure you read through Google’s Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide to see the definite dos and don’ts of promoting your site.

Proper Linking

On area where many webmasters fall foul is through excessive or spammy backlinking. To increase the popularity of your site you need to have links – or votes – from other, preferably related, sites. So long as the content you’re linking to on your site is unique and interesting, you’ll attract both search engine spiders and visitors. Some people, however, try to build their link count in a sneaky and unethical way – whether it’s with link farm directories, worthless re-spun articles or by leaving spam comments on blog posts. Luckily search engines, as well as blogging platforms, are getting better at discarding these link types. Make sure everything you put online, on your site and others, is of value to the community and worth people visiting – whether that’s informative, educational or (actually) entertaining.

What you’re linking to is also important. Make sure your content is a draw to visitors and gives them something of value. Having well-written copy is vital and getting someone inhouse who isn’t a natural wordsmith or, worse still, a cheap freelance option who may not have an adequate handle of the English language. It is possible to get free web content, but this is widely advised against, because it’s often poorly written and duplicate content, something that Google really doesn’t like.

Quality and Orignal Content is Key

As well as having well written, original content, it’s important to keep your site updated regularly. The most popular ways to do this include having a company blog or an industry news page. Be sure to write well on topics that will be of interest to visitors, and make sure you’re not overly promotional. On each page, make sure you have accurate title tags, keyword boosting headers and appropriate alt tags on all pictures, as image searches can be a huge source of traffic.

Make Sense

Make sure all your pages are laid out with a logical hierarchy and search engine friendly URLs. Not only does this add keywords to your web addresses to show spiders what’s where, it also adds to usability as visitors can backtrack through URLs to get to relevant sections on your site.

Setting up an SEO website to please both users and search engines is a relatively easy task and there’s no need, like some webmasters feel there is, to ignore one to please the other.

SEO Guide

Free SEO Guide

Getting into search engine optimisation can be a tricky task as you wade through all the blogs, SEO guides, SEO guide and other instructional articles available online. Knowing what’s what can take a while, but there are certain terms that everyone with a website should know.

To start off, you’ll need to know what SEO (search engine optimisation) entails. This is the process of trying to raise the profile of a website, by increasing its traffic through increased rankings on search engines, particularly Google. SEO is comprised of many ongoing tasks, often small in nature, but each contributing to an overall success. Many of these are detailed below.

learn seo in this guideKeyword Research

learn seo guide

SEO Guide

Your initial research should be used to discover your keywords and phrases. These are the terms that relate to your site that are most likely to draw in visitors to your site. The ideal mix is a term that gets high search volume but doesn’t have many sites competing for the search engine rankings. With small or new sites, you may want to consider long tail keywords – phrases that are longer but a lot more specific to searchers who may look to make an immediate purchase of goods or services from your site. It’s generally easier to rank well in the SERPs (search engine results pages) for long tail phrases. These keywords are important to use in your site’s copy and as anchor text in links, although keyword density (the practise of repeating keywords a certain number of times in copy) is archaic, having the keywords in the right areas is more important.

learn seo in this guideUsing Google Analytics

Finding out who comes to your site can be done using an analytics package such as Google Analytics which can show important metrics such as conversion rate (the percentage of visitors that make purchases) and the bounce rate (the percentage of visitors who immediately leave your site). This information can be used to find out problem areas on your site, such as a certain page or product that doesn’t lead to a sale, and could do with rewording or a redesign.

learn seo in this guidePagerank Does it Matter?

PageRank is often used as a judgement of how successful and popular a website is, ranging from 0 to 10 (best). This is a Google-specific ranking based on aspects such as age, backlinks and site quality. PageRank is often used as an indicator to those practising SEO as to whether a site is worth gaining a backlink from. The ranking system gets its name from Google supremo Larry Page and can be seen on every site by downloading a suitable toolbar.

learn seo in this guideImportance of Backlinks

Backlinks are one of the most important aspects of SEO. Originally, search engines used to count one link as one vote for a site so the more backlinks your site had, the more popular it was seen as. This led to link farms and Google started to attribute value to links, depending on anchor text and how trustworthy the linking site is. Link farms became popular with those who use black hat SEO techniques and quickly lost their worth. Black hat SEO regards dubious practises and if often associated with people trying to trick Google, rather than playing to its guidelines like white hat SEO followers.

learn seo in this guideLink Exchanges

Reciprocal links (or exchanging links) is the practise of webmasters linking to each other’s sites, but, like link farms and directories, this too has become less worthwhile in the algorithm in recent times. The algorithm is an unknown formula used by Google and other search engines to judge the value of sites, although various educated guesses have been made, no one outside the Mountain View headquarters knows the specific details.

Passing through editorial value was seen as a sign of trust and led to a boom in article directories, although these have recently lost a lot of power due to the panda update. Yahoo Site Explorer is one of the most popular tools for keeping track of backlinks.

learn seo in this guideInternal Linking

Internal linking is also a vital part of your link strategy, although set slightly apart from your backlinks. This practise involves creating anchor-text-rich links between pages on your site, showing search engine spiders the important terms on your pages and helps them to find all your pages, as well as keeping them travelling on your site for as long a time as possible. Make sure to use good keywords as your anchor texts rather than phrases such as ‘Click here’ or ‘Read more’. It’s also important to have header tags (h1, h2, up to h6) in your content. The most important words or phrases should be in the h1 with supporting keywords shown in the later headers.

learn seo in this guideOutbound Links

An outbound link is common in blogs and news articles, linking to relevant sites on similar topics. This again shows Google which topics your site deems as important and if you’re linking to respected sites this can be seen as a positive indication, although can also boost the backlinks and SEO value of competing sites.

learn seo in this guideGist of Meta Data and Tags

Meta Tags can relate to three main elements: title, description and keywords. The title is an important area to tell users and search engines about your content and these should change for each page of your site. There are many different thoughts to best practise although one of the most popular is to split each page into three sections: Page Specific Information | Category Information | Branding. There is a limit to characters that will be shown in search results – for a long time thought to be 70 – but this is changing all the time.

The description can be useful for keywords and often, although not always, is the snippet shown on SERPs. Meta keywords have ceased to be useful for a long time on Google, although may still hold importance on smaller search engines, and having no keywords may be seen as a negative indicator.

There are many other phrases that you’ll come across in your SEO life, but knowing the basics in this SEO guide will help set you on the right path. Once you start to set all the pieces together

Organic SEO

There are many aspects to online marketing and organic SEO one of the most important. Organic SEO relates to getting your website to rank naturally as high up the front page of the major search engines as possible for your targeted keywords and phrases. Although aspects such as PPC and social media are important, getting natural listings is the best way to get targeted traffic to your site.

The basics of any SEO campaign are simple, but each aspect can have its own intricacies that not every person is capable or patient enough to deal with. It can often take a few months before you see any major benefits from an SEO campaign and in this time many online marketing agencies suggest running a PPC campaign to get your name associated with certain search terms.

organic seo

Mechanics of Organic SEO

The first thing to research is how the market lies at the moment. Using an analytics package you can see the search terms that attract people to your site. If these are relevant to your goals, check to see where you rank for these on Google. It’s been well documented that the higher your site appears, the more traffic you’ll receive so it’s always the goal to get to number one for as many terms as possible. A study by Optify in April 2011 showed that number one results averaged 36.4% which went down to 12.5% for number two all the way down to 2.2% for tenth. If you’re not on the first page, it’s more likely that a user will tweak his search rather than head onto the second page of results.

With a good keyword tool you can see which terms your site is well structured for as well as how competitive each one is. You’re also likely to receive good recommendations similar to what you’ve put in, meaning you can cover all bases more comprehensively. Long tail keywords or geographically-targeted phrases are easier to rank for, so if you’re a small site starting off it’s best to target these and get very specific traffic to your site. Once you’re getting a steady flow of visitors and the search engines begin to trust you, you can branch out into the more competitive terms.

Once you know what you’re going to target, you have to be sure that your site offers this to its visitors. Make sure you have pages set up to target individual words and phrases – both for information seekers and those looking to make a purchase – and that these pages have SEO-friendly URLs and well-structured content. Be sure not to stuff your pages full of keywords as this is seen as spammy by all and be careful with keyword density which is edging out of popular SEO vocabulary. Instead focus on good title tags, headers and links in your copy. The more interesting, informative and entertaining you can make the content, the better. You may want to consider setting up a blog or a news section to keep your content fresh and to make sure people come back on a regular basis. If you don’t have any natural writers inhouse, consider looking at a content creation agency to help out as poorly written or duplicate content can harm your site’s rankings as well as the user experience.

Of course, there is much more to organic SEO than the basics listed here, but without getting these right it doesn’t matter how well you’re doing with PPC or social media because of the popularity of Google’s main listings. There’s no one-off fix to SEO work and just because you’ve got your site sorted, if you don’t continue to work on it and keep up with industry standards you’ll see your rankings drop.

SEO Marketing

Defining SEO Marketing

Every man and his dog knows the value of having a successful company website and if you want to do well online then you need to make sure you have a well-planned SEO marketing campaign.

To some, SEO is an unknown art full of jargon and phrases that seem incomprehensible. Speaking to experts often makes things worse as they deliberately try to confuse what is at heart a simple, but time consuming, practice. There’s no switch to flick to boost your site’s popularity, you’ll need to plan an ongoing campaign that continues to positively support your site.

Learning the Basics

If you think you have the time and the manpower, learning the basics is not hard. There are many guides, blogs and tutorials to read online – Google even provides a PDF of things to do and avoid in order to impress its spiders – just make sure what you’re reading is recent. SEO best practices changes regularly so don’t follow advice from several years ago as it’s most likely out of date by now.

As well as reading up on what other people are doing, study what successful sites are up to. Look at the number one in the keywords you’re targeting and see if you can learn from them. Also have a look at some of the most popular keywords – Google has tools to show you what these are – and see how the best sites are getting to the top in the competitive fields.

One advantage of taking SEO into your own hands is the ability to change tact when things aren’t working or when the search engines make a major change to their ranking algorithms. If you’ve signed up to an agency you’re likely to be tied into a contract and they can continue to do what they’ve been doing, something they’ve automated so they can do it for as many clients and as much income as possible. After the panda update, even now, many agencies are still using low quality article hubs as the major link building technique for their clients because they can show past examples of it working and changing to something else might not have the positive effects demanded by their clients.

In-house vs Outsourcing

If you’re doing SEO in house you have the flexibility to change with the industry and run tests with new ideas to make sure your campaign is as up-to-date and effective as possible.

The major problem with trying to do things yourself is that it takes time. Not just to implement your strategy, but also to come up with one and to keep reading the industry thought

create a seo marketing plan

Key SEO Marketing

leaders to make sure you’re on the right path. Agencies will often have many people with a huge interest in SEO so will know what’s happening, but whether they have the influence to offer these services within a huge, often rigid, structure is another issue. The bigger the agency, the less likely you are to see cutting edge changes.

As well as blogs, forums offer a great way to keep up with the latest goings on. Sites such as Digital Point, Warrior Forum and even Black Hat World (where not all discussions are about dubious techniques) offer platforms for webmasters to discuss what’s going on with SEO, what they’ve found to work and ways to help one another. Many of these techniques, especially if they focus around one or two sites, can quickly get saturated but every now and then a high quality idea for a strategy, or the report of someone testing a technique, comes along which can be a huge help to almost any site.

Wrapping it Up

SEO marketing is a must for any company these days and depending on the scale of your site and campaign, you’ll have to make the decision of whether you want to look after this yourself or get an agency to cover this work for you.

SEO URL Shortening

URL shortening services have grown in popularity and volume in the past few years and much of this success can be put down to sites such as Twitter. When your messaging capability is limited to 140 characters, there’s no sense in using up valuable space with a large URL.

Services such as bit.ly, snipr and TinyURL have been embraced by the online world as people want to make the most of their space, but is using such a service useful for SEO purposes?

In the digital marketing world, there are two main reasons for links: to gain extra traffic and to improve the SEO rank of a page. If you’re looking for a SERP boost, there are several aspects you’ll want for your link: to link from a site with value, to make sure there isn’t a ‘no follow’ tag and to ensure you use suitable keywords in the link.

One of the first lessons you’ll be taught in SEO is to use your keywords wisely. Creating a good headline, one that grabs the attention of both the reader and the search engines, can be the difference between your most popular article and one that barely gets a look. After going to all the effort of that, why would you then create links without the same anchor text or URL structure? True, while many URL shorteners will give you the option of changing the random assortment of letters and numbers they give your link, there will still be a very strict limit on characters meaning you can normally only get one keyword in your link, which is more for usability purposes than SEO ones.

Matt Cutts has recently said that shorteners do pass on SEO juice, so long as they use a 301 redirect and not a 302 redirect. Many services do use the 301, but it’s always best to check to see if the one you’re using makes use of permanent or temporary redirects. Even if the URL shortener does pass on value, this is of little use if the site you’re using has no follows in place. Twitter, for example, has no follows on many of its core pages (although if your tweets make their way to another site or a list, then you may get value from there).

Matt Cutts’ interest in the subject came as Google released its own shortening service (Goo.gl into the market to compete with the front runners and other newcomers such as Bieber.ly and I Can Haz. One thing to be careful for, is that with so many competitors it’s possible that some, like QURL, will go out of service. If that happens, what becomes of your shortened links?

Although these sites don’t offer much in the way of SEO value, they do have other benefits, particularly for Twitter users. One of the most useful features offered is the ability to track clicks on inbound links. While your analytics package should be able to tell you where your visitors have come from, it won’t necessarily tell you the link. With a shortener’s analytics, you still get to know if your tweet was responsible even though it’s appeared elsewhere on the web. Others allow full integration with Twitter, meaning that once you’ve given away your login details you can automatically tweet a shortened linked to your followers when you find something you want to share.

Generally, URL shorteners offer little SEO value, certainly less than a plain URL or anchor text. However, with sites offering little space for full web addresses, their continuing popularity looks set to remain unabated, even if you’re not sure where a link is going to take you once you click on it. Of course, there’s always the option to create a Really Huge URL just to be a bit different.