Your business website is important. That’s the first step in being “found” on the internet. After that, you want to be found by your customers or clients. This requires that you understand how search engines work and how to utilize them to your advantage. You do this by learning about SEO and then putting it into practice.
SEO is the science of designing your website to be noticed by search engines. Search engines have a fairly set of procedures that they follow when they search for content, information, or a site. These procedures are generally standard across all search engines, but slight differences exist among them. These differences result in the search engines delivering different results for the same topics.
This means that it’s important that you know how each of the major search engines works. If you don’t know about them, it’s easy to be misled and to present one set of results (relevant) to the search engines and a different set to your users. When your site is searched, the search engine seeks out relevant information. When the search engine finds the relevant information, it returns it in the search results. In this way, the search engine is working hard to return the most relevant results for your search request.
Make the web page friendly to search engines
Having a site that is friendly to the search engines is critical. It’s amazing how many times you can increase traffic by making the technical aspects of your site easier for the search engines to read.
Of course, you want to be able to read the text on the page. But search engines can’t read images. For example, you’re at a press conference. An image comes up of a figure-8 splitter. The search engine can tell that the image is related to a figure 8. But the complex turtle shown in the figure can’t be read by the search engine. So you have to make it very easy for the search engines to understand the important information. For example, you can change the Alt text to read “seating”. So when someone searches for “Figure 8 Seating”, your site comes up in the search results with a title, a description, as well as a correctly coded link.
The important thing is that you build your site so that it’s prepared for the search engines. That’s known as search engine optimization. For example, you need to have a title on each page of the site that uses the keywords that you’re trying to rank for. You must then have useful content on the page that also uses those keywords. A page with 30 keywords isn’t going to rank very well, even though it has those keywords. But if you’ve incorporated those keywords (without going overboard) then you can rank very well.
The combination of well-optimized pages, relevant titles, and useful content makes your site highly visible to search engines. But what’s the key to making your site/content easily indexed by the search engines? The answer is “backlinks”. Backlinks are links to your site from other sites. You can install backlinks on your site (which is known as “link popularity”) or simply get them by having your site listed in the directories.
The more links back to your site, the more “important” the search engines will think your site is, and it will be ranked higher. For example, 1,000 links from related sites can push your rank up from 5 to 2.
Top five tools for getting links back to your site
- Google AdWords – not only is this the cheapest, but it’s also the most effective. It uses the Google algorithm to rank sites based on Traffic, Authority, and Quality.
- Backlinks by Robots – Automatically create links by linking to relevant sites on several different pages. The quality of the sites these links are on will determine the value of the links and the site’s relevance.
- Open Site Explorer – aspects of this tool allow you to track links to specific pages and get detailed information on the anchor text used on those pages.
- SEO Book’s Link Popularity Tool – This is pretty self-explanatory. This tool gives you one of the most accurate estimations of your sites link popularity, and it’s also free.
- SEOmoz – This last is an awesome way to automatically search for link partners through various search engines. The tool is also free.
That’s it! Now you should have all the tools you need to start your link building campaign. Comment away!
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