Every experienced online business owner knows that having higher search engine rankings always translate to higher sales. This is the reason why everyone is looking for ways to improve their rankings through good SEO practices. It usually goes like this. Aside from trying to learn how to start a blog, they also study SEO through books or hire an online SEO expert. They make sure that their website is properly optimized by looking at an on page optimization checklist and then build backlinks through the usual back linking practices. Some go to the extent of creating link structures – wheels, pyramids, you name it. But the pressing question is ‘Is it really effective?’
1. Create Kick-Ass Content
Let’s face it. If your website does not contain kick-ass content, you will need to quadruple your efforts just to see your website graze the first page. You can try following every SEO book on the planet or gaming your way through the system by buying high PR links, but it will take you quite a while to see page 1 if you don’t focus on your content.
Trust me. I have been there. Some Internet marketers make it sound easy but you’ll know what I mean once you fall flat on your face as you see that your campaigns are not going anywhere.
As most webmasters agree, content is king. It keeps your site updated in the eyes of the search engines and it gives you lots of free backlinks. However, this will only happen if you have kick-ass content. Try it. Try to create content that your visitors would like to share and link to and see what happens.
2. Target Long Tail Keywords
Another great business skill that you should learn is to know when to fight and when to back out. Most business owners will agree that if one thing is not profitable enough or it has too much competition, then you should look for another idea.
The same concept applies online. If you want your website to reach the front page of the search engines, then fight for keywords that are profitable but does not have too much competition. These are called long tail keywords.
Long tail keywords are search terms that is comprised of 4 or more words. For example, ‘curtain’ is a keyword but ‘pink polka dot curtains’ is a long tail keyword. ‘Laptop’ is a keyword but ‘Compaq Presario CQ40 laptop’ is a long tail keyword. You get the idea.
The key is to target these keywords because (1) they have extremely low competition and (2) they are highly profitable. They have very low competition because there are simply too many long tail keywords on the planet and it is impossible for all Internet marketers to cover them and they are highly profitable because people who will usually search for these terms in the search engines are people who are looking to buy that particular item.
The concept is simple. If you want your website to rank quickly and almost effortlessly, then try to rank for long tail keywords.
3. Always Check your Onpage Factors
Website optimization does not mean that you should ditch SEO altogether. Don’t be the website owner that loses a few rankings only because the other website is more onpage optimized than your website. The great thing about this is that you only need to do it once. Do your share of onpage SEO by following some of SEOMoz onpage optimization tips.
Always include your keyword in your title tag. You can customize this on Wordpress by going to Settings > General. Make sure the keyword is in the URL. If you’re using Wordpress, you can ensure this by editing permalinks in Settings > Permalinks. Go to custom and put ‘%postname%’. Always put some alternate text on your images. Include your keyword. Discuss the main keyword all over your content. Do this in a natural way and refrain from stuffing. Manage your links. Have a navigation bar that links your pages together. It’s quite simple right? Go ahead and check your onpage factors now.
4. Utilize your Connections
Let me show you a way on how you can get some free but targeted links.
Contact all the providers that you have been working with right now. Contact your writers, designers, programmers, editors and virtual assistants. Ask them to put your website in their online portfolio and link to your website.
Ask if you can specify the anchor text. Most of them will add your website with your desired anchor text and those are some free links for you.
As your website grows, try to expand your connections. Connect to other bloggers in your niche and try to have some JV partners. Ask these people to link to you too. Ask them to promote your content as you promote theirs. Help each other. Form a community. Get free backlinks.
5. Promote your Content
Don’t be lazy and always promote your content. Always link your website to popular social media websites like Twitter and Facebook and promote your content as you post them.
Get active. Promote your content on forums and comment on related blogs. Also, create amazing content and ask if they can be posted in other websites. Try to score a guest post in the most popular blogs in your niche.
Do this and watch your website’s rank soar. The best part is that you get more than rankings. You also get real traffic. These are real people who are willing to follow you and have the potential to buy your products.
As you may have observed, these tips are pretty solid but it requires hard work and dedication. You can only increase your rankings if you do your content and promotions with passion. There are no short cuts. There is only hard work.