Is Your SEO strategy on a slippery slope? When you set out to drive traffic to your website it is a multifaceted process
You need to build a sitemap, have keyword rich content and to build a clearly defined strategy. Below are some further ways to have plenty of traffic coming through to your website.
1. Produce excellent copy
Your content should be written extremely well;
great copy writing is the heart and soul of SEO. Firstly,
excellent writing is better for your users and is more likely to attract inbound
links. Secondly, Google has ways, some of them very subtle, of determining just
how good and useful a piece of writing is (see latent semantic indexing). Write
with your users in mind, with a view to giving them the best and most useful
experience possible. With regard to Google's subtle ways of assessing the
quality of a piece of writing, you should avoid using the same keywords again
and again, even if it feels natural to do so. Instead, you should use of a
variety of synonyms for every keyword. This makes your writing more readable and
interesting, and also persuades Google that your content is not run-of-the-mill
spam, but authoritative and useful.
2. Content is king
The only thing Google respects is
high-quality text with some links pointing to it. Google
considers web sites that constantly add content much more useful than web sites
that add content infrequently. For this reason you should set yourself a
realistic target for the production of new content and stick to it. Depending on
how ambitious you are, you can aim for one new page of content per day or per
week. Whatever you choose, remember that Google likes fresh
content. It has an intrinsic preference for web sites that focus on
creating new content over web sites that keep tweaking their existing content
again and again. In other words, Google wants to see that you are working on
producing new content, not on optimizing content that you already have on your
web site. The ideal word count for each page is between 500 and 1500 words.
3. Use the Google sandbox
The Google sandbox is an incredibly useful tool
that suggests keywords and key phrases on the basis of what people have been
searching recently. For example, you might type "SEO consultant" and the Google
sandbox will tell you that, in addition to searching for "SEO consultant," other
frequent searches are "SEO expert" and "SEO services." Using the Google sandbox
will give you an inexhaustible supply of ideas for the creation of fresh
content. Put simply, you use Google's sandbox to find out what people are
searching for, and you then write content that targets those keywords. The aim
is, of course, to rank highly in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for
4. Use the h1 tag
The h1 tag is one of the great
secrets of SEO. The h1 tag tells search engines that this is the main title of
the page ("heading #1"). The h1 tag is an incredibly powerful tool and Google
takes it seriously, providing it is substantiated by the page's content. In
other words, the words in the h1 title tag should also appear in the main text.
Using the h1 tag is an excellent way to optimize a page for specific
Here is how you use the h1 tag:< h1>Your
The h1 tag will make the text quite large; you
can have the benefit of the h1 tag without such enormous text by using CSS to
format it as desired.
You should also use the h2 and h3 tags for your
sub-headings, making the content of your page hierarchical.
5. Keyword density
The keywords you are targeting should appear in
the main body of your text reasonably frequently, but don't overdo it: a page
that is stuffed with keywords destroys the credibility of your web site and is
easily identified by Google as spam. Putting your keywords at the beginning of
the page, in most of the paragraphs, and somewhere near the end will be quite
sufficient. Do not forget the importance of using synonyms too, as mentioned
above. If you want to check the keyword density for a page, you can use this
keyword density tool.
6. Use bold, italics and underlining on keywords
When you bold, italicize or underline a word,
Google assumes that this is one of your keywords. You should therefore bold,
italicize or underline some of the keywords on your page.
Be very careful, because this can also work
against you: if you use bold, italics or underlining on words that are not
keywords, you will confuse Google and will weaken the effect of these tags on
your real keywords.
7. Keywords in the URL
Deciding the URL of a page is an important part
of SEO. The page should have a file name that contains your
keywords, and the page should be in a directory that also has
keywords in its name. For both the directory and the page itself, the
keywords should be separated by dashes.
You should follow a sensible rationale when
deciding what to call directories and files; it should reflect the hierarchical
nature of your web site. For example, if you are writing a page about obtaining
inbound links, a good URL for it would be:
This is a good URL for these reasons:
a) "SEO tips" and "how to obtain inbound links"
are related queries and Google knows it;
b) "how to obtain inbound links" is a subset of
"SEO tips." Google will give you extra respect for using hierarchical URLs.
Don't forget that Google was developed by two clever mathematicians!
8. Use a high content-to-code ratio
Search engines will give your page a higher
ranking if it has a lot of text relative to the amount of code. You should
aim for a high signal-to-noise ratio on your page, which means
that there should be more content than code. Open any page on
the Internet, right click on it and select "view source" (or its equivalent). If
there is a lot more code than text, search engines are not going to love it.
If you are serious about SEO you will produce
pages with good, clean HTML and will avoid anything that requires a lot of code.
A small amount of HTML code and a lot of quality text is what search
engines (and users) really love.
9. Split substantial articles into several pages
If you write an article about a big topic, it
is inevitable that the article will in fact deal with a number of sub-topics. In
these cases you should split the article into several pages: one page
for each subtopic. This has the following advantages:
a) you will be able to have highly
focused search-engine optimization that targets each specific page,
instead of trying to optimize one enormous page for keywords that are relevant
to only 10% of it. Remember that Google decides what content is about on a
page-by-page basis: this means that every page should focus on one topic - only
b) users prefer to read articles that are split
over several pages rather than articles that have the "toilet roll" format.
The links that take you from one page to the next should have the target
page's title as the anchor text (more about this later).
The page you are reading is an exception; pages
with a list of tips generally work better as a single page, even if very
10. Avoid frames like the plague
From the point of view of SEO, frames
must rank amongst the most disastrous thing you can do. Users hate
them, and search engines hate them even more. Put simply, search engines are not
able to index web sites that use frames; the most they can do is index your
homepage. For all intents and purposes you will simply not be present in search
engine indexes if your web site uses frames.