Whenever you are building a website or writing content, you should always think about the human being who will use that site before you think of the search engine bots that will index it. In 2017 keywords and keyword density will still be the way that Google and other search engines interpret what your website is about, but the information that your site contains and how that information is presented will become even more important.
Some SEO experts in Orangeville talk as though Google is the enemy, but it is not. All Google wants to do is present the best and the most informative websites that are most likely to answer the question that someone has asked, which means that it will favour websites with good, well written content that people will be able to understand and enjoy reading.
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When it comes to the success of digital marketing and finding new customers via the web, keyword optimization is one of the most important tools you can bet on. Keyword optimization or keyword research is the act of researching, analysing and selecting the best word or concept of great significance to your product, services or campaign in order to target and drive traffic from search engines such as Google to your website and other digital platforms.
Getting your website or blog on the first page of search engines can be a daunting task if you do not understand the fundamentals of optimization. Although this tutorial is not guaranteeing you the first place in major search engines, it does point out what one needs to do to be in the Search Engine Optimization game.
It is much easier than you think and this article is to guide, help and provide you with the basic and key for successful search engine optimization:
Step 1. Choose the right keywords
It is tough to be the best at everything and that includes Keyword Optimization. The first step of reaching the top of search results is identifying the right keywords. It can either be a single or multiple words or entire phrases. As you might already be aware of, most searches on the internet are made in the form of a question. Therefore, before you start writing down the keywords, you need to decide which keywords you want to focus on. These are the words people would type into the search engines in order to find your page, blog, website or product.
It is very essential that the word you choose as the keyword is broad enough for lot of people to search for on the internet, but narrow enough that you have a decent chance of getting a high search rank for it on the search engines and results.
For example, the word "shoe" is way too general. However, "Where can I find cheap shoes online" is a pretty good one. Similarly, the word "Europe" is way too general and Wiki sites will normally dominate these top spots. So, "the best holiday destination in Europe" is a much better phrase to focus on.
Here are my top tips for choosing the right Keywords:
1. Start with customers
Think about who your target audience or customers are. What are they likely to type into the search bar when they are looking for answers where your services can help them? Why not ask existing customers what they would search for?
2. Weigh up the competition
Although it is important for you to choose words that many of your target audience might be typing into search engines, they should not be words that bigger companies with the most muscles and bigger budget will compete for.
3. Use Google tools
Guess not only. Google has several good tools which can aid you find what is popular to search.
On Google Trends, a public web facility based on Google Search engine, shows how often a particular search-term is entered relative to the total search-volume across various regions of the world, and in various languages including a list of popular searches. You can also enter keywords and see how popular they are, compared with other phrases and ideas on similar terms - in order to choose the one that most are looking for.
You can also find keywords using Google's ad tool AdWords. You do not necessary have to advertise, you can just create an account and select using the "Keyword Planner" under the "Tools" menu.
Step 2. Customise Your Content
Once you have successfully chosen your keywords, there are a few other things you need to do in order get your site ranked high on search engines. One of such things is content creation. You have to create and distribute relevant and valuable content (such as speech, writing, photograph or any of the various arts) that attracts and engages your well-defined target audience. Content marketing helps us to attract new customers and build loyalty with existing customers.
For existing customers, this could also mean they take part of the relevant content that creates additional sales by learning more about your offer, and is more expensive products/ services than they have done previously. The following are few tips to consider during content creation:
1. Working actively with texts
Use keywords in the title and preamble of all the pages. Also, include the keywords in the body, the much higher up it is in the text, the better it is for your ranking.
However, be careful not to use your keywords too much. Google may interpret your site as a nonsense page which is only trying to attract traffic and you go down in search results. A rule of thumb is that your content should feel natural and interesting. Which of course is also important for your visitors.
2. Do not forget your photos!
Rename even your photos with your relevant keywords. This will make it possible for search engines index them and you can get hit even in image search. If you have the opportunity to enter an alternative text for each image, do not let go of such an opportunity.
Step 3. Get visits and links from others
The most important thing for search engines is to deliver good and relevant results, remember that's their primary business. Therefore, priority is given to websites that Search engines deems others rate high or think is good. An example is sites with links and many visitors who stay long to engage with the site. Therefore, this is really important to:
1. Make sure to get a lot of visits to the page
Ask family and friends to visit your website. Get the link or URL out there as often as possible, for example, you make a video, put it up on YouTube and the links there - but incorporate all the content on your site and link to it there.
2. Ask others to link to your site
Ask friends, business partners or customers to link to you, perhaps in exchange for a link back or share interesting tips in your field and let others get put up pieces of contents with a link to you.
3. Share your site on social media
Sharing your website and contents on social media (not forgetting Google+ Google for obvious reasons) is extremely important. It can provide visits to the website, more traffic, attention and higher rankings
4. Get visitors to share
Get others to share your site and contents on social media, using "share" buttons. AddThis is a one of the free tools allows you to instantly share or bookmark pages with one easy-to-use tool. AddThis can also get statistics on how much your content is shared.
Step 4. Revise the technical
Even how your site is built technically is important for your rankings. Here are some things you can do:
1. Use Google Webmaster Tools (Now Google Search Console)
The Google Search Console (aka Google webmaster) is an amazing tool which offers many tools that will aid you to thoroughly analyse your site. From this analysis, you can work on problem areas to make your site rank better on Search engines especially Google
2. Make Your Site Mobile Friendly,
With a good percentage of the world's population owning mobile devices these days, it makes sense to make sure that your site is mobile friendly. Mobile users also expects good mobile experience when they visit site.
If your site is not mobile friendly, it may rank lower in searches from mobile phones. Google recently Google released a significant new mobile-friendly ranking algorithm that's designed to give a boost to mobile-friendly pages in Google's mobile search results, therefore you can't go wrong with this offer.
3. Make sure the page is fast
A site that takes a long time to load will rank lower on search engines. Google has indicated in the past that site and page speeds is one of the signals used by its algorithm to rank pages.
Page speed is also important to user experience, the slower your site/page speed the more likely you will have high bounce rate and lower average time on your site. Some of the great tools which can help you with your site speed is Google Pagespeed Insights and GTmetrix. This are tools that empowers you to make decisions that increase the performance of your website.
Step 5. Use Web Analytics Tools
Use analytics to measure the outcome of your efforts or to determine which areas of your site are doing well. Google Analytics offers free and enterprise analytics tools to measure website, app, digital and offline data to gain customer insights.
Example: Google Analytics enables you to track the visitors to your store, and generates reports that will help you with your marketing.
Under the "acquisition" in Google Analytics select "all traffic" -> "Channels" -> "organic search" so you can under the "keyword" to see which keywords drive the most traffic and the "source" which search engine. Using Google webmaster tools, you have access to them in Google Analytics under "acquisitions" -> "search engine optimization".
Step 6. Use Google AdWords
Business regardless of size, wants to be found on the first page of Google. Getting seen by customers at the exact time they are looking for your information, products, services, deals or location is intent marketing (marketing based on someone intending to find your products), and it's profitable.
Many businesses use Google AdWords to archive these by creating highly effective advertising campaigns to market their products and services, drive traffic to their website, and ultimately, increase sales.
I hope this article has given you an in-depth view of keyword optimization and you find one or more of the above tips useful.
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First, let me say that Search Engine Optimization is a broad topic. There is no way I can effectively cover all aspects of the subject in this small article. However, I am hoping to speak to those who have NO idea of what it is or why it matters. Maybe they will be encouraged to at least take the first steps to having a successful website.
Internet marketing is rough. You are up against millions of other internet businesses. It is a constant education and re-education to keep up with the Joneses all over the world. They are all doing everything they can to make their site better than yours, and only the best will wind up at the top of the heap.
You see the letters SEO around a lot these days and also SEM. SEM simply means "Search Engine Marketing", and SEO means "Search Engine Optimization". You do SEO to your site so you can do SEM more effectively. Search engine optimization is what the words imply when applied to your web site. They are the things that can be done to make search engines aware of your website and give it as high a ranking as possible.
WHY IS SEO IMPORTANT?
Well, we can probably agree without even knowing why that it may be in the best interests of an internet business to approach a search engine with the most effectively designed and organized website. While it is somewhat self evident that a well designed and effective website may be a good sales tool when dealing with humans, it might not be so evident why you have to be so concerned when dealing with a search engine.
Let's start with the fact that while we are trying to display our internet business to human eyes, it is the spiders of the search engines which must first be appeased. After all, according to whose figures you believe, up to 85% of all websites visited are found through search engines and directories. When you consider all the people looking around the internet for all kinds of "stuff" you can begin to grasp the power search engines have in the online marketplace.
Add into the mix the fact that for any given search term, there are thousands, millions, or even billions of possible sites that may meet the query terms provided by the human searcher and you begin to grasp the vast competition going on at any given time for any given subject.
Out of those potentially billions of pages which may be presented to the searcher by the search engine, only about ten or so will fit on a page. Therefore, if you are not on the first page, it's almost as if you are not there at all. I don't need to explain this to you if you have ever used a search engine, How many times have YOU bothered going on to page two, and especially page three?
Another aspect of searcher versus search engine is something that anyone who has been on the internet for a week has discovered. You have to be especially specific when doing searches or you could wind up with some really worthless results.
As you can see, it becomes imperative that your page get listed in the first ten results returned by the search engine.
HOW DOES A SEARCH ENGINE DECIDE WHICH PAGES COME FIRST?
Actually, each search engine has its own method of assigning value to each website it visits and chooses to include in its listings. These determining factors are included in the instructions given the spiders which visit the sites and the software controlling the listings on the search engine site. There are often humans as well who can override the decisions of the software judges. This is what can make SEO a little difficult. What is top priority for one search engine may not figure in as strongly for another. Of course, everyone is trying to figure out how to second guess Google, but don't forget, there are other search engines also providing traffic to a great many sites as well.
If you have figured out by now that I have danced around the question, you are right. You see, not much is actually known about the exact science by which search engines, particularly Google, select and rank the pages they show in response to a searcher's query. However, a lot can be deduced by looking at some of the sites that DO make it to the top of the list.
HERE'S THE BASICS OF SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO)
1. Choose the niche target of your website. Don't just put up a site for travel. Make it a site for travel to Ireland. Better yet, make it a site for discounted travel to Ireland. Even better, make it for discounted family travel packages to Ireland. Each narrowing of the target reduces the competition.
2. Choose a domain name that relates to your target words. In the example above, I might want traveltoireland.com. Unfortunately, someone beat us to that site, so now we have to play with some ideas. Maybe we can still get traveltoireland.net. Unfortunately, someone beat us to that one too. Don't give up hope. There are traveltoireland.biz, traveltoireland.us, and traveltoireland.ws to look at. In fact, I just took a look and all three of those are available. If they weren't, maybe we could have used irelandtravel.com or familytraveltoireland.com although that is getting a bit long...particularly if we want to put it on a business card or on a magnetic sign on our car.
3. Pick a title for your website that includes the basic idea and the words, keywords, that you hope people will search on. Don't just stick up the words, however. Make it a headline. It will be the first thing the search engine and the human learn about your site. Make it a headline that will catch both their eyes...er...sensory apparatus. "Travel to Ireland on a dollar a day!"
4. Create a description that includes and expands the information and keywords stated in the title. Some search engines will display the first few words on a site, but some will display the description Meta tag. "Travel to Ireland does not have to be expensive. Learn how you can visit the Emerald Isle for as little as a dollar a day."
5. List five to ten keywords related to your subject. Make these words that will appear logically in the content of the site. "travel, Ireland, travel to Ireland"
6. Provide logical, relevant, valuable content throughout the site. Make sure your keywords appear at intervals, but do not overuse them. Also make sure they appear in the first few lines of your site. "Welcome to our site where you will learn how to travel to Ireland without breaking the bank."
These are just the first steps towards search engine optimization. There is more to learn, such as putting a statement with your keywords in headline form near the top of the page. You can find other high-ranking sites with content relative to yours who might be able to provide a link to your site, but don't hope for it at first. They usually want to link to sites as powerful as they are.
The major key to search engine optimization still seems to be quality content provided in a consistent, rational package. Even some fairly simple sites rank well because they can provide the goods. However, a ton of broken links and a lot of coding errors coupled with horrible site navigation can make it difficult for the search engine to find its way around, much less recommend the site to its users.
Above all, do not stop with this small article. There are many sites offering information and even courses on search engine optimization. There are companies that specialize in search engine optimization for a fee. To get started, read some of the articles posted at sites such as EzineArticles.com on the subject. I just checked, and they have over 8,000 articles which mention the subject. Of course, some of those might not have anything to do with search engine optimization, but we knew that. That's just the way search engines are!