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SEO and Why You Should Care

SEO and Search Engine Logos Imagery

The last five years has seen SEO practitioners and website gurus hype Search Engine Optimization as the determining factor of whether a website will become a resounding success or not. Yet even though SEO is at the forefront of every website owner’s mind, there are a vast number of people who are still unsure just what Search Engine Optimization really means. There are those who think, even in this day and age, that SEO is the cyber equivalent of snake oil potion.


To help clarify just what SEO is about and why it’s vital to the survival of your website, we need to understand what it really is. When a person needs to look for something online, that person usually searches through a search engine. Google is the number one search engine on the Web so it's Google that often sets the standards for search engine optimization. Google sends out crawlers to the millions of web pages that it indexed, going through a page's content to look for the searched keyword. The results are then displayed on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP ).


The goal of Search Engine Optimization is to give your web pages a fighting chance to make it to the top of the SERPs. Obviously, the first page of Google is prime real estate. Think about it - when was the last time you checked Google’s Page 10? So, the next question is - how do you get to Google’s Page 1? In connection to this question, how do Google and other search engines rank Web pages to determine whether or not they make it to the highly coveted first page? Google is very secretive of its search algorithm but there are several known elements that can either positively or negatively affect a page’s ranking.


  1. The Age of your Web Domain

    Google loves old sites. It's probably because older sites mean that they've been around for a long time and are already established. Newer domains are typically sandboxed by Google for 2 to 8 months just to test their mettle.


  2. Location of Your Hosting Server

    The place where your website is hosted can make or break you in terms of search engine ranking. If you're located in the United States but have your website hosted in Europe, that can cause people to doubt your business' legitimacy resulting in a slip down Google's rankings. So when setting up your site, make sure to ask your hosting company what continent or country will house your online portal.


  3. Stay With The Right Company

    We're not just talking about staying with the right hosting company. While doing business with a reputable hosting company is a given, you also have to consider the other websites that will be in the same virtual server you're in. If your company's website is placed in a server with businesses marked a spam, there's a big chance that you'll be labeled as one too. So make sure that your hosting company puts you in the right company.


  4. Keep Your URL Format Clean

    A clean URL directory indicates legitimacy in the eyes of people. If your URL directory carries a lot of symbols or characters, both your visitors and search engines might not consider your website as a safe and legitimate online portal. This can lead to a decrease in traffic which will result in a drop in the page ranks of today's top search engines.


  5. Put a Premium on Content

    Content will always be king because it's what your visitors will look at when they visit your website. If you have nothing useful to provide, expect a decrease in the traffic coming to your website. Keep your customers by ensuring that your content is worth reading. Avoid keyword stuffing too since this will alert readers that you're just using content solely for optimization purposes only. Remember that people like to get something in return for their visit and good, reliable content is one way of giving something back.


  6. Use Internal Links Properly

    Nothing is more frustrating than a website where you can't find what you're looking for. So to keep your visitors from dealing with this, it's important to have a working set of internal links. When your pages are connected correctly to one another, visitors will have a better user experience whenever they visit your website. Search engine crawlers will also be able to crawl and index your pages properly when your internal links are interlinked and working. .


  7. Build Trust with Your Visitors

    Trust can be earned through time. The older a website is, the more people tend trust it. Of course, there are elements that you can put in your website to earn some “trust points” from Google. One way is by making it easier for customers to contact you. Be sure that your phone number, email address and other contact information on your website is up-to-date, with someone on-hand to receive the customer's call or email.


  8. Use The Right Keywords

    Keywords can help you get noticed but the right keywords will help you stay relevant. So be sure your web pages are given keywords that are appropriate for their content. If you're business involves selling jewelry, your website should not have keywords about lumber, fishing or sports. Your images and ALT tags should also contain the correct keywords so that search engine crawlers will index them properly.


  9. Outbound Links - Connect To Websites Of The Same Industry

    Outbound links plays a role in optimization because they help bring in Referral Links. However when using outbound links, always remember that “relevance is very important.” This means you should only link to websites that are in the same industry as you are. Linking to a website that does not offer the same product and service can make people think that you're just fishing for traffic and brand you as a nuisance company.


  10. Don't Be Tempted To Buy Links

    Don't buy or exchange links. More often than not, these links may lead your visitors to bogus websites. Market and promote your business online to build visitors and direct traffic to your website over time. If you do, then the relevant links will follow.



 

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