Home » Posts Tagged "search engine optimization"

3 Powerful SEO Techniques Can Help Your Business

Search engine optimization (SEO) has been a moving target since its early beginnings. As search engines such as Google change the way they rank and display sites in a search result, business owners and web developers have to evolve in order to keep their site at the top. There are several techniques that can help your site improve its SEO ranking. “Today, successful SEO strategies have to incorporate diverse components including brand building, mobile optimization, content marketing and social media integration,” according to Jayson Demers of Entrepreneur.com. While that’s a big list to tackle, every business can start with these simple, powerful techniques. First, the principal rule of SEO has long been that content is king. That rule still applies today. But more than ever before, content must be targeted to your audience. Focusing content on your customers’ wants and needs is key. It’s also a good idea to think of the psychology involved in a customer searching for your site. Using a certain keyword on one page to sell a specific product may not be appropriate on another page. To maximize your SEO, learn the implicit and explicit conversation your customers are having in their own heads while searching for you and use different keywords to help them find you more easily. Second, you must be involved in some form of social media. Search engines rank sites with a social media presence higher because it tells the search engine that their content has a wider reach. The tricky part here is choosing the right social media platform for you and your business. While Facebook and Twitter have dominated the public perception of social media, there are many other choices that may be better suited to your business. Finally, linking is not dead. Having your site linked from other, related businesses is crucial to SEO rankings, since it shows you are relevant to other people. Links provide something similar to a professional reference on the web, and tell search engines and the public that you’re a trustworthy, reputable business. However, be careful about using any devious practices with links or using a third-party link building service. Links need to be used organically and have relevance for all involved parties. All three of these techniques are at the core of SEO today, and form the driving force behind getting your site found in organic Google searches. These proven methods are some of the fundamental ideas we teach in our SEO classes at the Digital Workshop. While there are many other ways to continue optimization, you can begin with these techniques and start driving more people to your site. [Originally posted in the Coloradoan on...

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Content Buoyancy: A Lesson in Keyword Density

Be it a single article or an entire website, your Web content should function like a harbor along the shore of the ocean of content known as the World Wide Web. If you have read our “Introduction to SEO” blog post, you can imagine keywords acting like a lighthouse for search engines and wayward Web surfers. Keywords shine a light on your content, saying, “Ahoy matey! Drop anchor off the port bow!” Be it rocky shoals or sandy shores, the state of your harbor is up to you, and keywords will play a large part. Searching for Treasure Like mermaids and Atlantis, keyword density is one of those myths that can lead to obsession. The story goes like this: There’s a magical percentage of keywords that should be used in Web content. Some say it’s 4%. Others swear they’ve seen 3.5% lead them to treasure. If you find that magic number, immeasurable Web traffic shall be your booty. We like tall tales, but the truth is that search engines don’t look at percentages or keyword quantity. In fact, search engines have a bell curve; the benefits of keyword usage will plateau and eventually hinder your website if you hit the status of keyword stuffing. The lesson: Don’t get greedy. If you don’t want to sink your ship, don’t stow too many keywords in your content. The best way to reel in Web traffic is to act natural. The best fishermen know the right balance of bait, luring and patience – you should as well. Placing a few keywords in your content should do the trick, and it’s always best to work keywords into content without forcing it. If need to focus on a certain keyword, make sure it fits within a sentence, its paragraph and the overall theme of your content. Keyword density might not be the best way to bring in Web traffic, but monitoring your percentage could be a good way to make sure you don’t go overboard with keyword stuffing. To do this, you can download a keyword density tool off the Web and track density to keep content honest. Hoist the Sails Where keywords are placed on a Web page can be an entire topic on its own, but it’s relevant to keyword density and should be mentioned. Search engines pay attention to not only how many keywords you have (for better or worse), they also mark where keywords fall on a page. If you are only going to use one or two keywords in a blog, for example, it’s better to place the keywords high on the page. This should come naturally, as it wouldn’t make much sense to get to the heart of your blog 400 words into the post. Another smart use of keywords is to place a keyword term in the headline. Depending on the keyword phrase, this can be a challenge, but the title is one of the first places search engines scan. So, before your content gets stuck adrift at sea, get those terms high on the page and you’ll be ready for a...

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Easy Traffic-Building Tips for Your Website

Whether it be for a business or blogger, launching a website is a commendable accomplishment. But, there is a big difference between building a website and building website traffic. Now that your website is ready for the viewing public, the website traffic marathon begins. The success of a website comes down to two things: planning and persistence. We’re happy to help with the planning part; by reading our traffic-building tips you can piece together a strategy for your site that will improve search engine rankings and page views. But, the persistence part is all you. Before learning about how to build traffic on your website, reading our “Introduction to SEO” blog will provide valuable context to the strategies listed below. Blog…Often Having a blog on your website achieves several goals: it keeps your website fresh, it generates traffic and it builds rapport with your viewers. Newspapers, magazines, radio, etc. have rigid rules for content, but blogs offer a ton of freedom. A blog can be buttoned up, personal, funny, promotional or any mixture of tone you can imagine. Sure, there’s wiggle room, but there are rules to follow. Nobody can stop you from airing dirty laundry in your blog, but you probably don’t want that kind of attention from millions of strangers. There is one golden rule: corral your content. If your website is meant to sell used books, for example, don’t blog about cats unless you can connect cats to the reading experience. Instead, create a separate cat-lover’s blog (and strongly consider using a pen name) and go bananas. At the bare minimum a website should have at least one new post per week. For more on this, please refer to the aforementioned “Introduction to SEO” blog. Posts don’t need to be lengthy, and popular topics include tips, tutorials and “top 10” blogs. We encourage you to explore with content. The more authentic the blog, the better. Take Time To Be Timeless Nothing looks worse than a web page that hasn’t been updated in months or years. The content gets stale; especially if you have dates on it. Doing quick revisions of pages will help impress search engines and keep viewers from thinking less of your site. If you don’t have a lot of updates to make, make sure to remove dates from your pages and posts. A Picture Says a Thousand Words Children like books with pictures, and let’s face it, adults do too. Enhancing content with images or videos doesn’t just offer context for readers, it gives your website an opportunity to look even more relevant to search engines. Posting a picture on its own is okay, but typically it’s best to write at least a short paragraph describing the image. If you run a business, displaying pictures of products is probably the first thing on your agenda. If it isn’t, get on it. Beyond products, posting staff and/or office pictures can help your brand. Mainly, it humanizes your company, which can help build a bond with target consumers. For personal websites and blogs, using multimedia has many similar effects as a business; you are after all, selling yourself. The added benefit is that your mind-blowing photos and videos show that you are current and relevant. The world spins pretty fast these days, and nobody wants to read yesterday’s news. Meet Your Meta This is one of the more technical activities of the list. It’s also one of the most important. Just about every content management system (CMS) allows users to fill in meta data and other descriptive information to help search engines and web surfers...

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