Rainham Website SEO

Basic SEO Techniques Rainham :

A few basic SEO techniques:

  • View Google’s cache to see your page the way a search engine sees it. If you can’t see an element of the page in the cache, the search engines can’t see it either! This means that content isn’t gaining you any search traffic.
  • Be sure your page is reachable. Crawlers don’t perform searches, they travel by links. This means your page has to be viewable by clicking on a link on another page or crawlers won’t see it and it won’t be searchable.
  • Be sure you don’t have metaframes preventing your page from being crawled. Many Rainham webmasters use metaframes to prevent rogue bots from crawling their page and don’t realize that these metaframes will also prevent search bots from crawling their pages!
  • Don’t let your links get lost in a sea of links. Pages with hundreds or thousands of links may not get crawled thoroughly in order to prevent spam and skewed rankings.
  • Use specific keywords. General keywords will have lots of competition. By using more specific keywords, a webmaster can reduce competition and increase rankings.
  • Don’t abuse keywords. Use your keywords in natural speech. Optimize your page for one or two specific keywords that searchers might use when looking for information available on your page. Be sure your keywords are relevant to your content.
  • Don’t use keywords in link anchor text pointing to other pages on your site. (This is known as commiting keyword cannibalization.)
  • Be sure your keywords are plain text HTML. Add ALT text for images, transcripts for videos and audio clips, and put captions with java or flash plugins or images. Although crawlers are improving, many are unable to process anything besides plain text.

Be Aware of User Experience

Increasing the usability, accuracy, and visual design of the website will also increase your search metrics. Search engines use search metrics and backlinks to determine the popularity and user-friendliness of your page. These factors play an important role in SEO. Always seek to create content that is pleasing for your reader.

Search Engines use Engagement Metrics to determine user satisfaction. Time spent on a search result means the user found the result much more helpful than a user who immediately hits the back button to look for another search.

The Panda update allows google to use machine learning to rank websites on quality and user friendliness. In 2011, human evaluators ranked thousands of websites based on quality and then implemented machine learning that mimicked those evaluators. This update changed more than 20% of search results.

Selecting Keywords:

Things to consider when selecting keywords:

  1. The Keyword’s relevance to your page. Will the people using that keyword in searches be satisfied with the content on your page?
  2. The Keyword’s specificity. Would a narrower keyword or keyphrase attract an audience that is more interested in your content than the audience of the broader term? On the other hand, is your keyword so specific it won’t be searched?
  3. The Competition on that keyword. Can you compete with the current top ranked websites for your keyword?

Where to Put Keywords:

 

  1. In the Title: as close to the beginning as you can put it
  2. At the Top of the Page
  3. Several times throughout the body of the page
  4. At least once in the ALT text
  5. In the URL
  6. In the Summary or Meta description tag

Optimizing Title Tags:

  1. Titles should be between 45 and 55 characters long. Titles that exceed 55 characters in length may not show properly in google searches.
  2. Keywords should be placed near the beginning of the title
  3. Consider putting your brandname at the end of the title
  4. Don’t sacrifice readability and emotional impact for keyword optimization

Visit https://moz.com/learn/seo/title-tag to see how the title and summary of your page would show up in a google search.

Constructing URLS:

  1. Keep them short
  2. Be sure your reader has an idea of what he will find on the page when reads the URL
  3. Use plain text links
  4. Use hyphens to separate words
  5. Use keywords

How Links to your Page Effect your SEO

  1. Are a wide variety of websites created by a wide variety of webmasters on a wide variety of topics linking to your site?
  2. Are many sites on similar topics linking to your site?
  3. Are the ranking sites for your keywords linking to your site?
  4. Are sites linking to your page using your keywords in anchor text to link to your site? (Anchor text is the blue text that shows on a webpage instead of the URL to the link)
  5. Are you getting links from trusted sources?
  6. Have you refrained from linking to spammy or poor quality websites and websites that link to your page?
  7. Have you been accruing new links?
  8. Is your page being shared on social media?

If you can answer yes to the eight questions above, links to your content are doing their job and helping increase your rankings. If you can’t answer yes to each question, devise strategies to remedy your answer.

Creating good, quality content that related pages will naturally link to is one of the best ways to get links. Another great way, is through Manual Outreach. Don’t under estimate the traffic that a well placed link can generate itself. Target specific websites who cater to similar audiences, preferably websites with few links, high credibility and high rankings for your keywords, and invite them to link to your page. Be sure to explain how linking to your page is a benefit for them, and not just an act of charity for you. You may also use this tool to see your competitors’ backlinks. Finding sites who have linked to the top ranked sites for your keyword gives you a list of sites that whose links would be of value to you. Avoid self-created links on lower quality websites. While they may help rankings a little bit, they may also hurt your rankings. If you pursue this option, proceed with caution.

 

Search Engine Webmaster SEO advice

SEO advice from the major search engine webmasters includes:

  • Be sure all pages can be reached by static, plain-text links. (Links of the form: , as opposed to links buried in images, java or flash.) These links are easier for crawlers to find.
  • Don’t “cloak” your work, or try to present different content to the search engine than you present to the user. Make sure your page is optimized to be found by a search engine when a user searches a relevant query. Don’t try to cheat the crawler’s and their index.
  • Use accurate, descriptive, clear language with appropriate keywords in your titles, subtitles and ALT text. (ALT text is text that appears when an image cannot be displayed.) On hubpages, photo captions are ALT text and are therefore an extremely important part of search engine optimization.
  • Create content filled with relevant keywords.

Check for Errors

To check for crawl errors see Google’s Webmaster Tools.

17 Essential SEO Strategies for E-Commerce Sites

Web Seo

SEO is constantly changing. It's changing because Google wants to improve the user experience. This past January, a core algorithm update was quietly implemented. It's now March and people are still not quite sure what this update did and how it's going to alter the SEO landscape.

It made me think about how SEO has changed and how it will continue to change going forward. I approached Scott Cohen, the CEO of 180Fusion, to talk about this issue.

AJ: Thank you for taking time out of your schedule to speak to me. Before we launch into SEO, could you tell my readers about what 180Fusion does?

Cohen: 180Fusion is the leader in performance driven digital marketing that specializes in helping companies increase sales by driving online traffic in a profitable way. The platform and services support all aspects of SEO/ SEM, including local SEO, content marketing, PPC, and Enterprise SEO campaigns. Our goal is to help our clients go from being "in business" to "succeeding in business online."

AJ: To start with, what do you think is the general trend hitting SEO today?

Cohen: I think the trend is exactly the same as it has been for some years. Google wants its results to reflect relativity and genuine popularity. First of all, if you are not opting for completely white hat SEO techniques, you are making a massive mistake. Even if you are using grey hat techniques, Google is going to catch up with you one day.

But genuine popularity is the key. If you can produce content that people actually want to read, as opposed to just generating a link, then you are going to achieve incredible success.

AJ: You mentioned relativity. What do you mean when you say 'relative'?

Cohen: Relativity has changed. Previously, it was about making sure that you are being ranked for the right keywords. Google has made it practically impossible not to rank in the correct category because their technology has come so far.

Relativity is about laser targeting your audience through using long-tail keywords. Over half of searchers are using search strings that are more than four words to get the right results.

It goes further than simply using long-tail keywords. Local SEO has become prominent because of Google's habit of providing personalized search results. This means that two people can search for entirely the same thing, but get two sets of results based on their geographical location. There's also the potential for hyperlocal SEO to become a thing as Google's algorithms become more accurate.

AJ: Moving on to the mobile revolution, this can be quite confusing for people who are new to the SEO arena. How would you make sense of this?

Cohen: I would say the newcomer to the field needs to keep in mind that they absolutely have to be optimized for mobile searches. The customer experience is the most important thing here. Take this statistic as an example: 55% of customers would pay more for a guaranteed good experience.

You can give them that good experience without them having to pay more. Responsive design is a must because it impacts the user experience directly. It's why Google has used the Mobilegeddon thing to penalize websites that don't cater to mobile users.

You should go even further in catering to mobile users by creating content specifically to them. This is what I mean by relativity in SEO. The way people access the Internet is changing.

AJ: What would you say the state of content marketing is?

Cohen: The state of content marketing is always an interesting subject because there are always groups who say that it's dying or already dead. I smile because every year content marketing is stronger than ever before. As the saying goes, content is king because users crave good quality content. Despite the importance of social media, there's still room for long-form content.

If you are answering commonly asked questions and directly addressing the issues of users, you are going to win in the SEO race.

Google has said many times that it wants companies to cater directly to the needs of users not SEO. Companies that have heeded these words have been rewarded by Google. By creating relevant content on a consistent basis that customers actually want to read, they have seen their rankings skyrocket.

It can take some time to build up a solid content marketing base, but when you do you are in a great position for success.

AJ: I would like to thank you for taking the time to speak to my readers today about the direction SEO is moving in.

How to Learn Search Engine Optimization, Online Advertising Article - Technology.Inc.com

Seo And Online Marketing

Search engine optimization (SEO) is fast becoming a must-have body of knowledge for business owners. Nearly 91 percent of all Internet users resort to a search engine to find information, according to a recent survey by the non-profit Pew Internet and American Life Project. The question is: how easily can they find your business?

You already could be making costly mistakes, such as a home page that is almost all images and little text, causing your site to have unnecessarily low rankings and little traffic. Or worse, you could be using hidden text and winding up with an every more onerous problem because some search engines ban sites that use tricks to improve rankings.

Whether you are a do-it-yourselfer or you use an outside SEO firm, the more you know the more effective and successful your business can be online. I’ve assembled the five best categories of resources for business owners to learn about SEO and search marketing. To help with this article, I interviewed Jennifer Laycock, editor-in-chief of Search Engine Guide, a website designed specifically for business owners and entrepreneurs. 

Conferences and seminars

Attending search engine conferences is the fastest way to learn because it immerses you in the subject. When you are starting out, choose events designed to give well-rounded instruction in basic principles, such as Jill Whalen's High Rankings seminars.

Don't go to advanced events intended for industry experts until you first learn the basics -- trust me, you will just feel frustrated.  However, there is one good reason for a newbie to attend events targeting industry professionals, such as Search Engine Strategies conferences.  That’s to find and interview SEO vendors.  At no other venue will you find so many search professionals in one place at one time. 

Books

There are a few excellent eBooks -- downloadable PDF documents -- suitable for beginners.  The best eBooks typically come with a package of extras, such as lifetime updates, private forums, sometimes even money-back guarantees. 

Aaron Wall’s SEO Book  is widely acknowledged as one of the best.

Laycock’s own Small Business Guide to Search Engine Marketing is another I would recommend, because it focuses on SEO from the perspective of a business owner who is not a search expert. 

Printed books, another possibility, are less expensive ($15 -$30 for printed books versus $75 - $100 for eBooks). The disadvantage is that printed books can get out of date quickly because search constantly changes. Tactics accepted several years ago, such as doorway pages, today may get your site dropped by search engines. If you opt for a printed book, make sure it is reasonably recent.

Newsletters and blogs

One of the great things about the Web today is that we are lucky to have so many excellent free newsletters and blogs on search.  Among newsletters, Jill Whalen's High Rankings is notable, because she answers real-life questions from readers. 

Among blogs designed for business owners, a particularly helpful one is Small Business SEM.  Carston Cumbrowski also has a helpful page of resources for SEO beginners.

Search Engine Land  featuring search guru Danny Sullivan, is a good one to add to your reading list later on as your knowledge builds. It is industry focused, but has the advantage of experts who write on specific topics such as link-building and contextual advertising -- not to mention its excellent blogroll of search sites to explore.

Discussion forums

As you begin to learn some of the basics of SEO, you will have questions.  Head to discussion forums to get answers.  Discussion forums are excellent sounding boards to bounce ideas off of others. Try Webmaster World and Digital Point Forums.

When you first approach a new discussion forum, read and observe for a while before jumping in to participate.  Every forum has a “personality” all its own -- make sure you feel comfortable.  Observing also helps you learn which participants’ advice to trust. Some participants are more knowledgeable than others.

Interactive tools

No article on search for newbies would be complete without mentioning some of the excellent free or low-cost tools available.  I have learned a great deal simply through using tools such as:

  • WordTracker keyword tool -- Using relevant keywords in your site content and when purchasing search ads can make all the difference in attracting visitors who actually buy. You may already know the obvious keywords, but WordTracker helps you broaden your choices to identify non-obvious terms. A free trial or a single day’s subscription costs around $8.
  • Analytics programs -- These help you understand which parts of your site visitors use most, such as which navigation links they click on most. Armed with that knowledge, you can make changes to your site to emphasize the most important elements to increase sales and newsletter signups. Google Analytics is a robust free analytics tool.  For those who run Google AdWords campaigns and do not like the idea of giving sensitive site data to the same company you purchase ads from, ClickTracks is an alternative.  ClickTracks offers a free version called ClickTracks Appetizer.
  • SEO Moz page strength tool -- This interactive tool gives you a quick snapshot of some of the factors search engines consider when determining site rankings.  Don’t take it as the complete word on ranking factors, but do have fun with it.  

Anita Campbell is a writer, speaker and radio talk show host who closely follows trends in the small business market at her site, Small Business Trends.


Essex

 

Rainham SEO Specialist

Basic SEO Techniques Rainham :

A few basic SEO techniques:

  • View Google’s cache to see your page the way a search engine sees it. If you can’t see an element of the page in the cache, the search engines can’t see it either! This means that content isn’t gaining you any search traffic.
  • Be sure your page is reachable. Crawlers don’t perform searches, they travel by links. This means your page has to be viewable by clicking on a link on another page or crawlers won’t see it and it won’t be searchable.
  • Be sure you don’t have metaframes preventing your page from being crawled. Many Rainham webmasters use metaframes to prevent rogue bots from crawling their page and don’t realize that these metaframes will also prevent search bots from crawling their pages!
  • Don’t let your links get lost in a sea of links. Pages with hundreds or thousands of links may not get crawled thoroughly in order to prevent spam and skewed rankings.
  • Use specific keywords. General keywords will have lots of competition. By using more specific keywords, a webmaster can reduce competition and increase rankings.
  • Don’t abuse keywords. Use your keywords in natural speech. Optimize your page for one or two specific keywords that searchers might use when looking for information available on your page. Be sure your keywords are relevant to your content.
  • Don’t use keywords in link anchor text pointing to other pages on your site. (This is known as commiting keyword cannibalization.)
  • Be sure your keywords are plain text HTML. Add ALT text for images, transcripts for videos and audio clips, and put captions with java or flash plugins or images. Although crawlers are improving, many are unable to process anything besides plain text.

Be Aware of User Experience

Increasing the usability, accuracy, and visual design of the website will also increase your search metrics. Search engines use search metrics and backlinks to determine the popularity and user-friendliness of your page. These factors play an important role in SEO. Always seek to create content that is pleasing for your reader.

Search Engines use Engagement Metrics to determine user satisfaction. Time spent on a search result means the user found the result much more helpful than a user who immediately hits the back button to look for another search.

The Panda update allows google to use machine learning to rank websites on quality and user friendliness. In 2011, human evaluators ranked thousands of websites based on quality and then implemented machine learning that mimicked those evaluators. This update changed more than 20% of search results.

Selecting Keywords:

Things to consider when selecting keywords:

  1. The Keyword’s relevance to your page. Will the people using that keyword in searches be satisfied with the content on your page?
  2. The Keyword’s specificity. Would a narrower keyword or keyphrase attract an audience that is more interested in your content than the audience of the broader term? On the other hand, is your keyword so specific it won’t be searched?
  3. The Competition on that keyword. Can you compete with the current top ranked websites for your keyword?

Where to Put Keywords:

 

  1. In the Title: as close to the beginning as you can put it
  2. At the Top of the Page
  3. Several times throughout the body of the page
  4. At least once in the ALT text
  5. In the URL
  6. In the Summary or Meta description tag

Optimizing Title Tags:

  1. Titles should be between 45 and 55 characters long. Titles that exceed 55 characters in length may not show properly in google searches.
  2. Keywords should be placed near the beginning of the title
  3. Consider putting your brandname at the end of the title
  4. Don’t sacrifice readability and emotional impact for keyword optimization

Visit https://moz.com/learn/seo/title-tag to see how the title and summary of your page would show up in a google search.

Constructing URLS:

  1. Keep them short
  2. Be sure your reader has an idea of what he will find on the page when reads the URL
  3. Use plain text links
  4. Use hyphens to separate words
  5. Use keywords

How Links to your Page Effect your SEO

  1. Are a wide variety of websites created by a wide variety of webmasters on a wide variety of topics linking to your site?
  2. Are many sites on similar topics linking to your site?
  3. Are the ranking sites for your keywords linking to your site?
  4. Are sites linking to your page using your keywords in anchor text to link to your site? (Anchor text is the blue text that shows on a webpage instead of the URL to the link)
  5. Are you getting links from trusted sources?
  6. Have you refrained from linking to spammy or poor quality websites and websites that link to your page?
  7. Have you been accruing new links?
  8. Is your page being shared on social media?

If you can answer yes to the eight questions above, links to your content are doing their job and helping increase your rankings. If you can’t answer yes to each question, devise strategies to remedy your answer.

Creating good, quality content that related pages will naturally link to is one of the best ways to get links. Another great way, is through Manual Outreach. Don’t under estimate the traffic that a well placed link can generate itself. Target specific websites who cater to similar audiences, preferably websites with few links, high credibility and high rankings for your keywords, and invite them to link to your page. Be sure to explain how linking to your page is a benefit for them, and not just an act of charity for you. You may also use this tool to see your competitors’ backlinks. Finding sites who have linked to the top ranked sites for your keyword gives you a list of sites that whose links would be of value to you. Avoid self-created links on lower quality websites. While they may help rankings a little bit, they may also hurt your rankings. If you pursue this option, proceed with caution.

 

Search Engine Webmaster SEO advice

SEO advice from the major search engine webmasters includes:

  • Be sure all pages can be reached by static, plain-text links. (Links of the form: , as opposed to links buried in images, java or flash.) These links are easier for crawlers to find.
  • Don’t “cloak” your work, or try to present different content to the search engine than you present to the user. Make sure your page is optimized to be found by a search engine when a user searches a relevant query. Don’t try to cheat the crawler’s and their index.
  • Use accurate, descriptive, clear language with appropriate keywords in your titles, subtitles and ALT text. (ALT text is text that appears when an image cannot be displayed.) On hubpages, photo captions are ALT text and are therefore an extremely important part of search engine optimization.
  • Create content filled with relevant keywords.

Check for Errors

To check for crawl errors see Google’s Webmaster Tools.

Who Are Your Online Competitors? Find Out for Free

Seo For Business

Get Paid To Write Articles Online

If you learn and improve your Search Engine Optimization then you have found the secret to getting your articles, websites and blogs read by more people.

You can then make money writing online from Google Adsense Ads

It takes time and a lot of hard work to know how to get organic traffic to your websites and blogs.

The more traffic and readers you get then the more money you will make writing online.

Once you are a good writer you really only need to learn how to optimize your chances of getting to the Google first page.and other search engines

How often do you go beyond the first page of a search engine when looking for information on blogs and websites. I very rarely do.

Rules and Tips of Google and SEO

With the internet writers have now been given the chance to showcase their writing to millions of people all over the world.

If the writer is prepared to learn and follow a few basic internet rules then it is possible for them to join the growing number of writers who earn money writing articles online.

How to get ranked higher in the search engine pages.

The top three websites on Google’s first page are the most clicked on and read so this is where you want your article to be.

How to Improve the Ranking of your Articles on Google Search Engine

  • The first paragraph in your article is important to get right
  • Whatever your keywords are they should be in your url and title.
  • These same keywords, but not exactly in the same sentence should also be in your first paragraph.

The first fifty words of this paragraph are all that Google and other search engines will see when evaluating your words for SEO.

Keyword Search Tool

Write with Search Engine Optimization SEO in mind

It can be hard sometimes to include all the keywords without your article looking like it is repeating itself.

With practice this can be achieved.

Pick two or three main keywords and use your keyword tool to see how good they are. This will be in the form of Monthly Global Searches and how much is paid.

Sometimes it is better to use a Keyword Phrase that has less searches. This is because that also means less competition.

Let's say you want to write an article about making money writing online

Go to your Keyword Tool and type in Writing Online

Writing Online - 704 monthly searches - CPC - $4.65

Writing Jobs Online - 1560 monthly searches - CPC - $1.37

Online Writing Jobs - 4320 monthly searches - CPC - $1.35

Online Writing Classes - 560 monthly searches - CPC - $12.18

Writing Classes Online - 468 monthly searches - CPC - $17.52

So now you can see what keywords to use. Do you go for the most searched keywords with more competition and less CPC or the less searches but higher CPC.

It is up to you but because you did your research before you wrote your article you now have a much better chance of getting higher onto the search engines and read more.

How To Use Keywords in your Articles

Then to let Google know what keywords you are targeting always give them a boost and make them stand out.

This is achieved by putting the Main Keyword or Phrase in a sentence in your Title and in your URL. This is a must if you are to improve Search Engine Optimization for your article.

The first paragraph of your article is next. Put the same keywords in the Heading of the first paragraph. In the next 50 words put in the lesser keywords too. But this must be done in a clever way. You should not copy the exact phrase. Write it within your sentences so that it naturally flows. You do not want to alienate your reader or Google for that matter

Google changes the rules all the time so you have to be aware that some SEO Tips can be out of date.

Putting your keyword phrase in the heading of the very last paragraph was also always a must. Some SEO experts now say this is not necessary. But I would recommend you do it anyway.

Writing the Best Article

If you satisfy the reader that your article is interesting, easy and clear to read then you have captured your audience.

So that they can see if this article is indeed what they want to read you must pique their interest immediately. They arrived at your article because they did a search for that particular subject. It is your job to keep them there.

If this is a How to article like How to change a plug, How to write the perfect CV etc then explain in the first paragraph exactly how you are going to do this.

Writing style is also extremely important.

The typical reader who searches for information on a particular subject is not an expert in this field.

Satisfy both the reader and Google and you optimize your chances of earning money from writing articles online

Writing Style is Important

Who are your targeted readers?

Each subject you write about requires a different style of approach.

How to Articles

Visitors to your site want to able to read the information in your article without having to go to a dictionary to look up the terms you use.

Clear, precise and non technical language is what they want to read if it is a How To article.

History and Political

Articles on history and politics can die a death very quickly unless you make it touch a nerve with the reader.

Make them curious, sympathetic or outraged about the subject, it does not matter as long as you stir their emotions

Health

Health and living style articles need the facts to be correct, informative and easy to understand.

If the reader is looking up articles about cancer, different types of mental illness, healthy living, diets etc then they do not want to read the facts as they are written in a medical dictionary.

The facts are extremely important with this type of article but you need to make the reader feel they are talking to a knowledgeable friend and not their doctor.

Always where possible include links for support groups on the subject. There a numerous websites both Government and community for these health issues.

Writing for a Global Market

And remember that you are writing for the world market when you write online so include the websites of as many of the major countries as possible.

The reader will know they have landed on the correct article and therefore stay with you.

Increase your Ranking on the Search Engines

The last paragraph in your article is also important to get right

There are rules for the last paragraph in your article that should be followed too in order to increase your chances of a high ranking on the search engines.

This last paragraph should include all the keywords you have used in your first paragraph.

Any good information article will have a summary of the points that were discussed in the body of the article. So you will be able to use the keywords there.

Make it read as natural as possible in this summing up paragraph.

Search Engine Optimization SEO

Once you know the rules of SEO and follow them you will optimize your chances of readers finding your articles.

The more readers you have gives you a better chance that they will click on the Google Adsense Ads on your web page.

One of the best ways of making money online is by writing articles that get to the first page of the search engines

Improve Your Search Engine Optimization

Then by making your articles, short stories, poetry and blog posts interesting and informative you will keep the reader with you. They will know they have landed on the correct article and therefore stay with you.

More readers who see your articles means you have a better chance of more clicks on your Google Adsense ads.

It is when they decide to click on the adverts on your page from Google adverts that you earn money writing online.

All Images are the copyright of L.M.Reid

Will New Top Level Domains Matter in 2015?

Online Advertising Agency

Printable Promotions has only had a blog on its site for a month or so. But it's already made an impact on the company's search engine rankings. 'I did a Google search on ‘reusable folding grocery bag,'' says Stacie Long, the company's operations manager. 'The YouTube video of our product that we posted on our blog came up third or fourth.'

For many small business leaders, blogging can engender feelings of envy and frustration -- envy over legendary blogs that draw thousands of daily page views and frustration from the sneaking suspicion that no one out there is reading their own postings. Search engine optimization (SEO) can change that.

'Blogging is a great way to drive users to a site,' says Kelly Cutler, CEO of Internet marketing firm Marcel Media. 'It can also help with stickiness, which is an important goal these days. It's too easy for users to bounce away from your site before they've done something valuable like sign up for your newsletter or fill out a form.'

How can you improve your blog's ranking on search engines? SEO is a complex science, but here are some principles that will help:

Make it crawler-friendly

Search engines dispatch software called crawlers (or sometimes 'spiders') to roam the World Wide Web in search of sites that might be of interest to searchers. One important SEO strategy is to have your blog be easy for the crawlers to find.

'Make sure the software is set up so that posts don't get buried ten levels deep in your site,' advises Jill Whalen, CEO of High Rankings, an SEO service. 'They should be easy to reach so search engines can crawl them.' Whalen also advises using SEO-friendly blog software. 'WordPress is probably one of the best for that,' she says.

It's also smart idea to include links in your posts, both to your own website's product pages or other information, and to outside websites as well. Why? It's links to your site, not from your site, that drive search engine rankings -- but, Whalen notes, one often begets the other. 'It's a good way to get linking back and forth,' she says. 'Other site owners usually check who's linking to them, so they get to know who you are.' When linking to outside sites, make sure the links open in a new window or tab so that users don't automatically leave your site whenever they click on a link.

To keyword or not to keyword

Since all searches start with keywords, it seems obvious that including the pertinent keyword as many times as you can in a blog entry should help bring traffic. Not so fast, experts say. 'Don't force keywords into content where they wouldn't normally be,' Cutler cautions. 'That creates a bad user experience, which means people won't use your blog, and then Google won't index your blog.' In fact, Marcel Media usually refrains from even telling client bloggers what the top keywords are for their sites. 'Blogs are usually better done without that kind of research in mind,' Cutler says.

Instead, she tries to identify blog topics where preferred terms come up naturally. 'One of our clients is a hospital and we've identified specific areas they want to focus on. We've invited doctors who specialize in those areas to participate in blogging. We're not trying to build content around keywords, but because those doctors work in those areas, we know the keywords will be used.'

If you do decide to do keyword research, Whalen recommends Keyword Discovery or Wordtracker to find what keywords your customers are searching. She also notes that Google's AdWords offers information on keyword searches that is free to use, even if you're not an AdWords customer.

But, she advises, don't just go for the top terms. 'Very competitive phrases probably have many sites optimizing for them,' she says. 'So you want a phrase that's less competitive, but still has some people searching it.' If that phrase is specific to your business's unique value proposition, optimizing on it can be a very powerful tool.

Content is king

 'A mistake I've seen a lot is that companies think Web 2.0 is like regular advertising space,' Long says. 'They treat it like a billboard.'

Instead, make sure you're providing content that will entertain, amuse, or inform your readers. One way to build traffic is to comment or react to the news of the day as it affects your particular business. 'If you're a bookseller, you might blog about the current lawsuit by J.K. Rowling to block publication of a Harry Potter Lexicon,' Cutler says. If you use this strategy, she adds, 'Keep it short, to the point, and keep it opinionated. Don't just republish news.'

Understanding the connection between blogging and search rankings can inspire busy executives to take the time to blog, Cutler notes. 'What I like about blogging is that it stays in the spirit of the Internet, but lets you accomplish SEO goals in the background,' she says. 'Content and linking are two of the most powerful Internet marketing tools --and blogging lets you use both in a non-advertising way.'


Kent