Tech - Web Marketing
By: - at February 27, 2013

Top 10 Tips to Improve your SEO Skills

SEO for free traffic!!SEO, or search engine optimization, is the means of being able to improve your website so that search engines will like you better, this ultimately gives you higher ranks in search engines. Since I starting marketing online a few years ago I was pretty unskilled in this area, but over time I started to get the picture of what search engines like to see in a site.  I also learned a lot by reading eBooks about SEO, as well as 10+ years of experience working on multiple websites.  If you are completely new to SEO, then you can click here to read why SEO is so important.

So if you had to learn the basics to get started to become an SEO expert (although it may take awhile to actually become an expert), then here are some basic, yet very important SEO tactics you and every serious webmaster should know about:

1)  Unique Content - The more unique your content is, the better.  Search engines (especially Google) want to see content that is unique, and not duplicate content that is found on other websites.  I have learned the hard way that duplicate content simply does not work.  So learn from someone that actually tried to use duplicate content and failed, and stick to unique content!

How do you check and see if content is unique?  There are 2 methods I personally use and recommend:

  1. Copyscape.com
  2. Simply copy and paste a phrase from your article in quotes into a Google search and see if it finds any results.

2)  Useful Great Content - Your content should also be very useful for people.  Having really good content means that people will naturally want to share your content with others, which is the secret to getting massive amounts of traffic from search engines as people will be naturally linking to you everywhere.  Getting links to your site is the next important step in improving SEO.  But this can naturally happen for you if your content is great.  However, most new websites will have to be jump started regardless by getting links yourself, which can be a tedious process.

3)  Obtaining Backlinks From Other Sites - This is probably one of the most important aspects of getting a highly ranked website on search engines, and it can take a lot of work as well.  A backlink is simply a link on a site (other than yours) that points to your site.  Search engine robots crawl the internet through links, and that is how your site gets indexed in the first place!  The more incoming links you have to your site, the better ranking you will get.  Also, not every link is considered equal.  Links from similar sites are important, also the PageRank of the site that points to yours is important as well.  So learn everything you can about page rank and link building.

search query title tags4)  Title Tags - A Title Tag is simply the <title></title> tag at the top of an html file that indicates what the title of a page is.  This is very important because this will become the search result link you see when you do a search on a search engine (such as Google pictured on the right).

This is obviously important for ranking pages higher with certain keywords.  So take your time with each Title you write out, as it can dramatically effect the traffic you get to that page overtime!  You can help yourself come up with titles by using Google's Keyword Tool, that will help you come up with highly searched phrases that people search for at Google.  You can use those phrases to help you come up with titles that will give you insane search engine traffic.  Just remember, you still want to use titles that describe your pages clearly to humans.  You want visitors to read content that your title is referring to, otherwise they will leave immediately and look elsewhere.

5)  Keep Things Basic - With the recent Panda and Penguin updates, Google is looking for sites that have fewer ads and clutter.  So keep things as simple as possible.  I found that sites that have a lot of "stuff" going on, tend to do no better than very basic sites that just have the SEO foundation down. Try to keep your HTML tags as few as possible by using proper CSS with simple templates.  Keep your content (text, images, and videos) as your key focus in a site.  A lot of people can get turned off going to a site that has a bunch of links scattered everywhere, bunch of ad units, and tables upon tables of nonsense, etc.  This stuff just confuses the web surfer and they will most likely leave.

6)  Internal Link Structure - The link structure of your site is very important, especially if you are trying to get all the pages of your site well indexed in search engines.  Internal linking simply means linking to another page of your website within an article on your site.  There is actually a few above on this article here for example of what I mean.  Here is a chart that describes how it generally works:

Internal linking improves the ranking of your pages via the anchor texts used for the internal links.  Anchor text is the text that resembles the URL for the link you are clicking on.  These keywords will then get ranked higher for those pages you are linking to.

7)  Use of the Header Tags - This is something not very many people consider or even think about, but the use of Header tags, specifically the <H1></H1> tag is very important and should be on every page of your site (generally for the title, before the article).  This indicates what the main focus of that page is about, so it gives search engines a better understanding where to rank that page in search results.  Although there is <H2></H2> tags and h3, h4, etc.., they are not nearly as important as the <H1> tag.  I do recommend using h2 tags, but they are not necessary.  By simply bolding other headers in your articles, I think those are just as good as <h2> - <h9> tags.

Other useful things you can use throughout your content include bullets, sizing of fonts, images, tables, etc. Just try to make things look good so humans will appreciate your content better, that way they have a better chance of sharing your content with someone else.  Remember, word of mouth advertising is the key to any successful business!

Keywords

8)  Keywords Throughout Your Content - It's important to understand that in order to get ranked higher for certain keywords, to simply make sure you have those keywords in your content.  You will be surprised to see how many people fail to do this.  Make sure you have the proper keywords in your content so more people searching for things can find you.

9)  Keywords In Images - Did you know you can get more search engine traffic simply by making sure your images are using an ALT tag for text?  It's true. Google images scans these texts and that will allow you to get more traffic from the Google image search.  This also helps for getting regular web search traffic as well.

10)  Learn from others - I will finish this article up by saying that you can learn a lot of SEO advice from watching what other people do, and reading in-depth eBooks on the subject.  That is where I have personally learned most of my knowledge of SEO.  I do not consider myself an expert in this field, but gurus like Brad Callen (you can check out his famous SEO ebook here), and many others have plenty of valuable SEO advice that you can learn from.

Conclusion
These ten tips are probably the most important tips you should know about SEO.  There are literally hundreds of more tips on this subject with new strategies developing every day.  Search Engine Optimization is extremely important to know and understand if your goal is to bring in massive amounts of free search engine traffic to your site.  So I would learn everything you can about it from all different sources.  There is a gold mine on the internet to be tapped into and learning SEO will drastically improve your chances of getting your hands on some of that gold.


 

 

 

 

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