As there is ALOT of info online about SEO, I thought that a lot of people might benefit from some basic tips! Here they are below, and feel free to add your own tips...
- Select 5 keyword phrases that describe the products or services that you sell. You should use keyword software for this process to find out high-traffic keyphrases with low competition. Try to make your keyphrases quite specific, because the less general you are, the less competition you will have for those particular words. Also, when your phrases are specific, you will be able to source some very highly-targeted traffic to your website.
- As an example, a business selling t-shirts with crazy dog cartoons on them should select such phrases as: ‘funny dog t-shirts’, ‘humorous dog t-shirts’, ‘t-shirts with dogs on them’, and ‘dog cartoon t-shirts’. Make sure that you don’t try to optimize for overly-broad phrases, like ‘t-shirts’, in this case. Although it seems logical to go after the millions of people searching ‘t-shirts’ in Google every day, that would be a very difficult task without paying out a lot of money. There would be an extreme amount of competition, and only a very small percentage of people searching for ‘t-shirts’ would be interested in ‘funny dog t-shirts’ anyway.
- Once you have selected your 5 keyword phrases, insert them into your website page HTML titles. Use your most important phrase at the beginning, followed by the other 4 keyword phrases and then your business/brand name. Also remember keyword variations, these would be phrases like ‘tees’, ‘tee shirts’, ‘t/shirts’ and ‘t shirts’ in our example.
- For your H1 header tag within the page HTML, make sure that you contain the same keywords that are in your title.
- Also use descriptive sub-headers (H2 or H3) with your keywords in them before every few paragraphs. This improves usability and helps the search engines to know what the page is about.
- Use bullets, italics <em> and bolding <strong> for your keywords to break up your site content and make it easier to read.
- Write your website copy for humans. Make sure you don’t overuse your keywords just to get high search rankings. Search engines don’t like pages that look ‘spammy’, so make sure you write naturally.
- Add lots of quality on-site content. Forums, blogs and articles are all good things to have on your website as they constantly add natural text to your site containing several good keywords related to your types of products or services. The more pages of human generated content that your site has, the more chance you site has of pages appearing in the search results. This will also get you links from other sites, as people will begin to find your content useful.
IMPORTANT: Link Building
- Once you’ve properly optimized your website pages, you can start looking at the most important part of SEO - link building. By finding ways to get other quality and relevant websites to link to yours, you can boost your search engine ranking by hundreds of positions at a time.
- Find websites that are closely related to yours (same keywords), and email them asking them to link to your home page in return for placing a link on your website to their home page.
- Whenever you can, try to make sure that your keywords are in the link text of any links pointing to your pages.
- Look for places where you can get free, high-quality links to your website like local business directories, website directories and any kind of industry directories.
- Write relevant, keyword rich articles about your industry with a link to your site and submit them to several article directories.
- Comment on other sites like blogs and forums with useful, relevant and helpful information and include a keyword rich link to your site in the signature or at the end of the comment.
- Issue online press releases about your business with links to your site. Sponsor charities, blogs, or other websites related to yours in exchange for links.
- Link to your site from your MySpace or Facebook page, or any other similar sites.
- If you have any interesting articles, pictures, videos forum or blog posts on your website, submit them to social bookmarking sites like Digg.com with your main keywords in the headline.
- Each of these tips will go a long way towards helping you to get higher search engine rankings, so they are well worth your effort. Note that many quality links into your site will boost your rankings dramatically, so be sure to spend some time on link building. It’s also worth mentioning that any new SEO changes to your website can take up to 30 days (and sometimes longer) to have any effect on your search engine ranking - so remember to be patient!
Hope this helps a few people!