Search engine optimization (SEO) is a complicated field and if you want to stay ahead of the competition, your SEO skills need to be constantly reevaluated and updated. This article contains some SEO tips and ideas that will help you beat your competition’s rank in search engine results pages (SERP).
If you are looking to get a better handle on what keywords and phrases to use in SEO, first you have to know which phrases people actually use. Google maintains an AdWords program that will allow you to do this. You enter specific words and phrases, and AdWords will return how many times people have conducted searches for those specific words and phrases.
Use alt tags for images and span element titles to your advantage. Search engines look at a site’s code, not what is actually visible to a user, so if your keyword is “cat” and there is a picture of a calico cat on your site, using an alt tag of “a calico cat” for the image will expose the search engine to your keyword even if the user never sees it. The title of a span element works in the same way.
Always include a site map page in your website. A site map page ensures that your site can be crawled by search engine spiders. These spiders then index the pages of your website. Site maps also tell the spider about your site’s hierarchy and which pages are the most important.
Avoid unnecessary, miscellaneous data on your website. This strategy goes hand in hand with reducing the length of your page to maximize quality. Miscellaneous data and extraneous facts will only lose the attention of your visitor, which can lose your sale on the spot. Use vital information to your company that explains exactly what you are about.
If you are writing a blog, optimize your content by using as many heading tags as you can without depleting readability. Start with the blog title in an
tag and work down from there, with the main content of the post in an
tag. This tells search engine spiders which content you have deemed most important.
Keep your content updated. If a reader logs onto your site and reads about offers that are expired or information that is outdated, they will likely back right out of your site. Take the time to update your content quite often to keep it as fresh and up to date as possible to keep readers engaged.
To optimize your site for search engines, avoid using Flash and frames. They share the basic problem of preventing links to a single page. Spiders can’t crawl Flash, so the search engines won’t be able to see as much of your site. If you have to use Flash, be sure to include navigation links as well.
While purchasing a domain name may seem like the right way to go, many search engines do not recommend it. Some search engines have a long delay for adding new sites to their existing lists, and the last thing you want is to delay getting new visitors. Using your existing website is more feasible, since the wait time for some engines is up to a full year.
You might think that linking to a huge number of other websites will increase the popularity of your site and is a great way to get improved search engine optimization, but remember the quality of the sites you link to is very important. If you link to poor quality sites, it can actually hurt the popularity ranking of your site.
A good rule of thumb to follow for ultimate search engine optimization is to never change or retire a page URL without providing a 301 redirect to the updated page. The infamous 404 page not found error, is the worst page that can be displayed for your site, so avoid this by implementing a 301 redirect.
When you build your web site make sure that you do not use Flash for that. This is because many search engine crawlers do not understand Flash. Using HTML is the most popular option and it is the easiest to keep up with. Also remember to keep all of the flashy graphics to a minimum.
Using keywords in your domain name is important, but so is using them in your directory path and file names. Whichever software application you’re using to publish your website, ensure that it’s creating file names that are rich in your targeted keywords. Also, use dashes instead of underscores to separate your file name keywords.
By following the advice above, you can stop wasting time and money on SEO methods that don’t work and be on your way to becoming a SEO expert. Also, by using some of the SEO techniques mentioned, you can increase your website’s SERP rank and start receiving more organic, targeted traffic to your website.