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07 July 2010

Search Engine Optimization Techniques Everyone Needs to Know

Since the emergence of Search Engine Optimization (SEO),– developers have had dozens of theories about the correct way to implement it. The truth is that there isn’t a single method to guarantee an instant spot on the first page of search engine results, although there are factors that can certainly boost your chances, like having a keyword-rich domain name and title. Since large search engines such as Google and Yahoo! are constantly changing their criteria and algorithms for ranking, we can only rely on the methods that have been tested and have worked for the greatest number of sites over a long time.

The following are the SEO techniques that have been known to work for experienced web designers and webmasters. Keep in mind that SEO is an ever-changing experience, and that while these techniques will work for you today, they may not be the same a year or two down the road.

1. Google AdWords: This technique is considered to be quite cost-effective for achieving good search results for your website. It works by allowing you to state the maximum amount that you are willing to spend on a daily basis on your chosen keywords. This can be changed monthly as you witness the results that the Google AdWords SEO technique brings you. For a lot of companies, this ensures an ad spot on Page 1 of Google, even though their company website might not rank that high.

2. Overture Keywords: Similar to Google’s AdWords, you can choose the keywords you want, however, you cannot limit your daily spending, so this may be an issue if you’re on a tight budget. However, it has been found to be quite cost effective when balanced against the number of new visitors and active customers created.

3. Yahoo! Regional Directories: It is free to submit your site, and it’s a valuable asset to be listed in an established directory like Yahoo. Online directories are what the “Yellow Pages” used to be, and a lot of people use them to find the goods and services they’re looking for. A good way to increase your visibility in the SERPs is to submit your site to as many directories as possible.

4. Keywords, Site Descriptions, Alt-Tags, Title Tags, Meta Tags, and Page Content: These are the most important elements in optimizing websites. Unless you are truly confident that you know what you’re doing, it is crucial to hire a professional SEO company to ensure that you’re including all of the right elements, and doing it properly. Make sure to optimize your content and meta tags before you submit your site to the different search engines. Of these, fresh and original content will be the one that takes the longest time to develop. Don’t add all of your content at once, but add something new to your site everyday. Google and the other SERPs like to see consistent growth over time, and can penalize sites for link-building or adding content overnight. Grow slowly, and your search engine rankings will improve as your site matures.

5. Online Directories: Submitting your website to free online directories gives prospective customers a greater chance of finding you. Many are free, and others include a nominal charge to submit your link. Never pay for a “site submission service” or for a directory link without researching first. There are a lot of scams disguised as legit SEO offers that aim to coerce businesses into paying for something that should have been free in the first place.

6. The Open Directory Project: This directory is entirely maintained by humans – that is, every site submitted is reviewed and indexed by a person, not a spider. This does mean that it takes additional time to have your site indexed, but it is well worth the wait.

7. Blog: Blogging is a fantastic method for continuing to attract new and repeat visitors to your website. It gives you a platform to interact with your visitors, and if you can manage to write a few new posts a week, the fresh content will be looked upon favorably by the search engines.

8. Make It Great: Search Engine Optimizing (SEO) is only as good as the website it supports. Have you heard the phrase “Content is King?” It still is. If you have a sub-standard website, applying all of these techniques won’t make much of a difference. But if you have a site with valuable content, these tweaks can ensure that your site stands out more in the eyes of the major search engines.


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About DS

DomainSushi's love affair with domain names and web development dates back to 1998, and she is passionate about educating the tech community, small business owners, and laymen about domain name strategy.

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