Improving Search Engine Ranking Tips

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Can dynamically created pages affect how search engines index my web site?

Hard code URLs into your site map.

If your site dynamically creates pages whose URLs contain a lot of symbols, these will often be ignored by most search engines. You can work around this by hard coding the URLs for most categories within the categories of different sections of your web site into your site map. As long as those dynamic links are hard coded into a site map, search engine spiders will follow them. If you have a huge site whose complete listing of pages would be too much for a site map listing, provide the main category pages for the engines.

How can I create content that is keyword-rich and also useful to a visitor?

Create rich content that is also sound content.

Keyword rich content is obviously crucial to top search engine listings, but it is not enough to just string together keywords. The content must provide some value to your visitors once they land on your site, and that requires your content to be relevant and clear. Use your own expertise to anticipate questions that your visitors might have, and thoughtfully respond to those questions. Offer your unique expertise and perspective on the market. Most importantly, organize the information, write it in plain language, and be sure to read, re-read and edit that information – after all the work you have done to get visitors to your site, it would be a shame to lose them because typos and misspellings undermined their confidence in your professionalism. If you are having trouble creating the content for your website, or are just stuck, be sure to research and read some content marketing tips.

How can I use my special knowledge to drive traffic to my site?

Provide as much rich and relevant content as you can to drive qualified visitors to your site.

It has always been true that any special perspectives or information that you can provide to your prospective and existing customers will help you build your relationship with them. In the world of online marketing, this is especially important because the quantity and quality of your online content can make it more likely that your target customers will find and visit your site. Consider enriching a basic informational or e-commerce site with tips, white papers, press releases, and even a “blog” that discusses issues relevant to your business and that of your customers. This content should feature keywords that you know your target audience will be searching for, and you can use web tracking software to understand what additional content visitors searched for and spent time looking at. There are also companies out there who offer content marketing solutions if you don't the time or expertise to do it yourself.

Do I need to pay to submit my web site to a search engine?

Create a search engine submission budget.

While free search engine submission (or registration) is still available, there has been an increase in "paid participation" programs offered by search engines. Using paid participation often speeds up the posting process, and does tend to generate more engine-driven traffic for your web site. Therefore, you ought to establish a search engine submission budget to ensure that your site is covered. This budget does not have to be extensive – Yahoo!, for example, charges about $300 for a year of coverage, with incremental charges for expedited service. Do take into consideration, however, which sites you want to have a pay to submit to. Yahoo! and Google are among the largest, but if you have a more niche site, you might want to consider other directories and crawlers. Keyword tracking, web site analysis, and your previous campaign results that your have captured using web tracking tools to gauge which directories and engines you want to target.

Should I post my site under several different site names with the same content?

Do not duplicate content.

Major search engines scan across pages within their index for long-string repeats, and degrade the rankings for sites that duplicate keyword strings or content within or across pages, and even in meta tags. Be careful not to replicate content from other URLs, and mix up your use of keywords if your want to create site metrics that optimize your site for a high search engine position.

Should I repeat keywords that are in my tags in the page's body text?

Absolutely use your keywords in the body of your text.

Many search engines look at the first paragraph of a page for Keyword relevance. Two things to try in increasing your keyword relevance are carefully crafting the text in your first paragraph to include the keywords in your meta tag, but also to limit the use of those keywords to five or fewer times on any page in the body of your text. Some engines will also check the last paragraph of text, so reiterating your value proposition using keywords at the bottom of a page can be an effective way of increasing keyword relevance without duplicating efforts. Conduct web site analysis to check the distribution of your keywords and see if it supports your search engine optimization goals.

Where should I place the most important keywords within the meta description tag?

Place most important keywords at the start of your meta description tag.

Search engines that support the Meta description tag actually shrink it to between 150 to 350 characters. Therefore, include the best portion of your description in the first 150 characters to make sure it factors in to your efforts in improving search engine ranking.

How closely related should the web design and optimization processes be?

Correlate web design and search engine optimization.

It is important that your web design is attractive and easy to use for your potential customers, and also that the design takes into account how non-human search engines will search and index the site. This might mean that some of the flashier components of site design, such as splash pages and pop-up windows, need to be omitted so that the site will not be ignored by search engines. If you are unsure whether your site design is impacting your traffic generation positively or negatively, conduct a search engine position analysis. If your rankings are lower than you would like, try revising part of the design and see if that helps.

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Sherril Steele-Carlin