Continuing on from Part 1, here’s Part 2 of ‘3 Ways To Improve Search Engine Rankings’. I follow a straightforward 3-Stage Approach to getting ranked high in the search engines. Here, in Part 2, is my second Stage…
Stage 2. Get Your Website Seen:
If you goal is to get high up the search engine rankings (and it should be!) then you need to get the search services to ‘see you’. This sounds an obvious statement but few people really think it through that much. In a nutshell, and avoiding all the techie jargon, search engines really want to find you, or more specifically your website. When someone types in a ‘search query’ they are looking for some information. If your website is relevant to what the person searching is looking for (we’ll talk about this later), then the search engines really want to link your website to the searcher, which they do with the search results the search engine reveals.
The key then, knowing the search engines really want to find your website, is to set up your website in such a way as to make it be easily found by the search engines. The way you do this is to adopt some basic, but very important ‘optimisation’ tricks on your website – what is termed ‘on-page optimisation’.
The interesting thing is, even though it’s really important to do what I’m about to share with you, the on-page optimisation’ methods only really are about 15% of what contributes towards your search results ranking. The 85% of where you figure in search results is dependant on the ‘off-page optimisation’ which I’ll cover in stage 3. Even though ‘on page optimisation’ only makes up for 15% towards how you get ranked, it is still crucial to carry out these basic but key steps:
a) Ensure your keyword(s) appear in your pages ‘Title tag’ of the header code of your website (if you’re not sure what this is, ask someone to show you who does know – it’s that important). This is vital because it is one of the key things that search engines are looking for – matching the words the searcher types into their search (the keywords) with the title of a website, which in turn should be relevant to the search query. You can take this a stage further by adding in a description in the ‘meta description tag’ again incorporating your keywords, and then the ‘meta keywords tag’ which simply includes all your keywords, comma separated.
The search engines don’t put so much relevancy these days on the description or keyword tags, but they’re worth doing either way, but it’s vital you include your keywords in the Title tag.
b) Make the webpage you are pointing the keyword towards relevant to that keyword. In other words don’t have a keyword like ‘dog training tips’ and then have a webpage all about horses, cats, dogs and loads of other animals with little specific relevancy to dogs or dog training – make sure the webpage is relevant to your keyword.
c) Build into your website a simple Sitemap. Understand that the way search engines search the web is they look for (crawl) words and phrases in all the code of your website – they don’t understand pretty pictures, graphics, flash animations, etc – all they want to find is words and phrases relevant to want the searcher is looking for. So make it easy for the search engines to look over your website looking for those vital words and phrases. One way to do this and make it easier for the search engines to find the info they want is by incorporating a simply site map within your website. Again, if this doesn’t make sense to you, ask your webmaster about it.