Andy, this is sure to attract numerous opinions about what matters, and what doesn't, when it comes to SEO. Many claim to be "experts
" and "gurus
" who can get you Top 10 rankings easy, according to the email messages we all receive every week.
It's a word game really, combined with lots of quality content and inbound links from reputable sites which help boost your rank plenty.
For me, I listen to SEO advice direct from the Horse's mouth :
(1) YouTube Google Webmasters Channel
, Matt Cutts, head of Google’s Webspam team : http://www.youtube.com/user/GoogleWebmasterHelp
And another guy who IS an SEO guru recognised worldwide :
(2) Bruce Clay
, Global Internet Marketing Solutions : http://www.bruceclay.com/
Interesting that Bruce still recommends the inclusion of the <meta name="keywords" content=" " />
tag, because he says "... optimizing a page to build ranking is an overall effort. Using the Keywords tag might just give that extra tie-breaking boost in the rankings.
" And he explains more reasons for using the Keywords tag here : http://www.bruceclay.com/design/advanced/metakeywordstag.htm
"That extra tie-breaking boost
". What is the difference in the search engine algorithm score between Rank 30 and Top 10 ? Maybe not very much at all ! The competition is so hot these days that we must do absolutely everything possible to score Ranking points, no matter how small the difference, it all adds up.
> Descriptive Title
and H1 Heading
tags, main target Keyword up front (word order does
matter), a Headline that attracts attention, different
to your opposition (do a search, see what they entered, think and write better), 65 characters optimum length ... use them up.<title>Scanner, professional 300 dpi hi-res full color, incredible speed</title>
Whoops, I cannot use a "-" dash in the title tag with the new ECT dynamic URL feature.
tag, again different
to your opposition, No Duplicate Content
copied verbatim from your supplier's website. Make the effort to write original content. 155 characters is optimum length, but longer does not hurt.<meta name="description" content="Looking for a top quality professional scanner? This 300 dpi high resolution flatbed model scans photographs and documents fast with accurate color reproduction." />
> A useful tool
to Check Your Title Tag and Meta Description Length : http://www.metalength.com/
> Decent amount of text
on page for information of the website visitor (your customer) to convince them to buy, and for indexing by Search Engines. Write all original content. Often see Heading, photo, 1 or 2 sentences and price ... not good enough. Insufficient keyword density.
> H2 Heading
tags can help repeat and emphasize the key topic of the page to search engines and visitors. Also an opportunity to add extra keywords not in the main <h1>
heading, or change Keyword order.<h2>Flatbed Scanner Professional Features and Specifications</h2>
> Descriptive filenames
for every image, lowercase-with-no-spaces. You might be amazed how many visits you get directly from image search alone, and how many websites just name images with obscure codes of no benefit whatsoever.scanner-300dpi-high-resolution-full-color.jpg
> Alternative Text
tag for every image. Search engines do not have eyes. Another opportunity to add extra Keywords, or mix Keyword order.<img alt="Professional Photo and Document Scanner, 300 dpi high resolution" .... />
> Meta Tags in all document download files
. If you offer Brochures and Catalogue pages (particularly pdf), don't forget to go into the file properties and enter Title, Short Description, Author and even Keywords. Many don't bother, and thus miss out on another SEO opportunity. Yes, these docs all get indexed just the same and get listed in Search results. And ... descriptive filenames for all download docs as well.
> Build Backlinks
from high PageRank websites. Google in particular places high importance upon the number of backlinks your site has. Yes, Facebook - Twitter - Google+ - YouTube
are the obvious places to start. You can also submit articles about your business or products to various other websites.
you need to tell search engine robots about "disallow" folders you don't want indexed, and to specify location of your sitemap.xml
file ... a list of everything you do want indexed. Many software tools available to auto-generate a sitemap.xml
, but for advanced features like "lastchanged" date, "changefreq", page "priority" scores and filters ... A1 Sitemap Generator
is wonderful. http://www.microsystools.com/products/sitemap-generator/
> Open an account with Google and Bing
. Use their Webmaster Tools
to submit your sitemap. Get reports about any indexing problem identified. Check for broken links and fix. Use the Keyword Research tools.
> Use hit counter tools like Google Analytics
(free) to monitor your website visit numbers, see if they are increasing, find out where your hits are coming from, and if your Rank is improving.
> Don't use BlackHat techniques
like keyword stuffing with white text on white background, participate in link farm exchange schemes, etc.
> Update your website often
. Google loves fresh content.
> Add more content
. More fishing rods in the search engine river, each with a different bait, will help catch more fish ... visitors and potential customers for you.
And that is what I am trying to do right now with my new business and website. There is my 2-bob's worth, and I think this gets me another backlink !
I.T.ZAP Website Design Works