Thursday, September 2, 2010

The 30 minute guide to search engine optimization.

What is search engine optimization?
Search engine optimization, generally called SEO, is the process by which you tweak your website to get high rankings in results of search engines like yahoo, google etc.

Why SEO?
The internet is a blind alley. The people surfing the internet do not know where the document they are looking for exists. So they turn to search engine for help.
Most of these people, will visit a site which comes up on the first page. If you are on the first page, its like the search engine saying, yeah this site is good.
So whether you are trying to sell something or just want your blog to be read by many more people, if you need more visitors to your site, you need to do SEO.

How SEO?
How to get a good ranking in search engines? Hmm. There is no clear answer to it. The SE(search engines) have very complex and intelligent algorithms to rank websites. And no one knows what these algorithms are. But some data about the algorithms is known. And we have to base our SEO on that.

Your first steps: Meta tags.
HTML pages have a meta tag describing the page. The content within the meta tag is not visible to the visitors of your pages. But the SE use them to find out about your pages. However these days most of the SE give very little weight to meta tags. This is due the fact that in past web masters used meta tags to fill the page with keywords. So even if the page was about buying used cars, the webmasters used "get rich quick" in meta tag, if they came to know that many people were searching for this. But still some SE use meta tags, you must use your meta tag to tell the SE about your site.

Designing your website.
The SE are bad at indexing pages containing frames, excessive javascript and based on flash. So it might be a good idea to use them sparingly. If you use them, be aware that you are taking a SE hit.

Getting linked.
The technique most of the SE use these days to find out how good your site is to find the number of pages which link to your pages. Think about it, if someone is putting a link to your site, it is as if they are saying, hey man visit this site, its cool. Also SE see, how popular a site which links to you is. If a page which is very popular links to you, you will get more benefit.
So if you want to rank higher, you will have to get links to your site. The easiest and also the hardest is to write good and unique content for your website. If your website is good other people will automatically link to it. So in essence they are helping you for free. Your various pages too should be linked together; this too increases your link popularity.
You must submit your website to the web directories like DMOZ and Yahoo Directories, for them to be indexed. SE give a lot of value for being linked in these directories.
Another method is reciprocal link exchange. In this you look for a website similar to yours, and about as popular. Then you ask the webmaster of that site if they would put up a link to yours site, if you linked to them. Many would agree as it helps them too.

Choosing the right keywords.
You must have an idea of what your potential visitors will search for when they visit your site. No matter how highly your page is ranked, if it does not have the correct keywords, no search engine is going to show it. So, if your web site is about buying used cars, make sure that this key phrase is used many times in your page. Some places which are given special importance by SE are the URL of the page, the heading of the page, bold text. But do not fill your pages with keywords excessively as some SE consider this as spam.

Submitting to SE, link farms etc.
SE have page where you can submit your site to them. However this is seldom necessary. If you have links coming to your site, it will soon be picked up by the SE. So your time is better spent creating content for your website.
Link farms are pages which let you add links to your pages free of cost. It is best to avoid them as the SE know the link farms and don't even visit them. Even if SE visit them, they are so full with links that your site does not get any value out of being linked there. So at best you do not get any advantage, at worst you are penalized.

Breaking the rules.
There are many underhand techniques used to gain SE popularity. One method used in the past was to make key word text and background as same color. Then the visitors saw something else from the SE. However today's SE can detect such underhand techniques and penalize it. So it is best to stay away from such techniques.

SEO dos and do nots.
  1. Create content rich, unique websites.

  2. Get links from similar websites.

  3. Submit to directories like DMOZ.
Do nots
  1. Avoid frames, flash etc if at all possible.

  2. Avoid underhand tactics, like text and background as same color.

  3. Avoid link farms, FFA etc

  4. Don't waste your time submitting to search engines. Let them find you.

The next steps.
SE use complex algorithm to rate webpages which is constantly changing. The ideas above are just indicators. Visit various websites to find out what the current techniques are.

Some parting tips.
1. Use link:yoururl in google/msn/yahoo search to find number of pages linking to you. Dont worry if you find only some pages linking to you, as SE these days only show a fraction of links they know.
2. Use site:yourdomain in google search to find the number of your pages indexed by Google.



Post a Comment


Complete Online Solution | Make the internet world into your hands Copyright © 2009 Community is Designed by CO5 | Web designing | Web hosting