What To Avoid When Choosing An SEO Company
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a growing business industry. Website owners are realizing that they need help to get their websites ranked well for buying keyword phrases. But what do they look for in a search engine optimization company? They are getting emails promising #1 ranking in Google. Every website owner wants the coveted #1 spot – but not all can have it. In fact there is only one company that will get the #1 spot – that is the facts not a guarantee.
Watch Out For the #1 Spot in Google Promise
Any company that will promise you the #1 spot in Google should not be considered as a contender for your SEO business. Google controls the process for ranking sites – not your SEO company. Even if you make it to the first page of the search results, Google can change how they are ranking sites tomorrow and your site could suddenly be buried several pages into the results. Another problem with this promise is the quality of the keywords that you are ranking for. You can be in the number 1 spot of Google but if no one is looking for that keyword phrase – who cares? You will not be getting any clicks from traffic that does not exist. If you are approached with a #1 ranking in Google – RUN!
A legitimate SEO company will sit down with you and plan out an online strategy with realistic goals and expectations. They will perform keyword research to discover what the buying keyword phrases for your industry are and give you a realistic expectation of how you will be ranking for these keywords. Often times you will discover that ranking really high for a less popular keyword phrase will give you better qualified traffic that is ready to buy – not looky-loos.
There is no magic SEO formula
– if you are told there is then the company is not legitimate. The world of Search Engine Optimization is always changing. As more information on how people search becomes available to the search engines like Google they then change how they rank sites. The ultimate goal of a search engine is to deliver the most accurate and closest result for the user. The happier the searcher the better the search engine has achieved its goal. As the website owner it is your job to make your website relevant to what your customers are looking for. All of these things are changing and flexing – SEO is never static and it has no magic bullet.
Quality SEO companies will evaluate your website, do keyword research, give you a realistic plan and strategy, and help you follow through with the plan. They will also provide progress reports and make adjustments to the plan as needed. SEO is a long term strategy not a short term fix.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Basics
Business owners know a few things about Search Engine Optimization ~ it is expensive, difficult, and needs to be outsourced. I am here to tell you a secret – are you ready? Are you listening? SEO is not hard, not complicated, and not beyond your reach. It is actually easy, just time consuming. The most basic concept is this – use keyword phrases that you want search engines to index for your company. That is it – the whole concept. Now for the strategy ~ where do you use these keywords? Here is a rundown of several places where keywords need to be utilized:
- Website Title
- Page Titles (each page needs to be different)
- Article Titles – These titles need to be Header1 or H1 tags
- Articles need to use subtitles – Header 2 – Header 6 – like an outline
- Anchor text (the link that is actually clicked is the anchor)
- Near the beginning of each page’s first paragraph
- Bold keywords have more weight
- The last phrase on the page
- Picture alt and title tags
- Meta tags
Let’s explain a few of these. Continue reading
What does Organic SEO really mean?
Organic search engine optimization does not mean chemical free. It simply means search engine rankings that are not paid for by a Pay Per Click program of any kind. It is referring to “free” traffic. “Free” is a loose term – this is traffic that has been earned not bought. Earned by hard work and learning what to include in a website and how to include it.
There are 2 main categories of Search Engine Optimization – On-site and Off-site. Onsite is anything actually done to your website and offsite are all the efforts made outside of your actual website. There are so many different methods of obtaining Search Engine Placement – and the first page is the main goal. Above the middle of the first page is where the “gold” is at – here are some ideas to get your site listed and ranked highly in Google and the other search engines.
Onsite Search Engine Optimization Basics for any Website
- Research a list of keywords that are relevant to your target market – and use them throughout your text.
- Use titles and subtitles that contain your keywords
- Create links that contain your keywords – called archer text.
- Make sure your Meta data (keywords and description) is filled out. I am always surprised how many websites do not contain any meta tags.
- Make sure the title of your website is keyword rich
- Use images and make sure the titles and alt tags of your images have keywords. It is useless to call your image 001 or any other number that is irrelevant to your keyword list. Many Content Management Systems take the name of the image file and create alt text automatically.
- The fist paragraph needs to contain your keywords – and they need to be in the first part of the sentence to get optimal weight.
- Your web pages need to use the Header Tag system. Think of header tags as an outline. H1 is at the top and H6 is last. H1 has way more importance to a search engine than an H6. There can only be 1 H1 per page and the heading order needs to be ascending.
- Internal linking on your website is important for SEO and user friendliness.
- Create content that other websites want to link to so they can share the wisdom with their readers too.
- Include a Blog on your company site if at all possible.
Offsite Search Engine Optimization Basics for any Website
- Get your site listed in as many Online Directories as possible with dmoz.org as the first directory submission you make. Many directories are free, some require a link exchange and many are paid.
- Build back links by commenting on other blogs, exchanging links with other sites, and creating profiles on Social Sites.
- Create a Google Profile and fill it out as completely as possible.
- Get your Google Business Listing and submit your business to Google Maps.
- Create your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and BizNik accounts and fill out the profiles completely and make sure your websites are listed.
- Create deep-links into your site. Do not always link to the home page but link to interior pages whenever possible.
- Use Squidoo, HubPages, and Articles to get more content out into the hands of your readers and to create more back links. Linking through a website as a link chain is also useful. An example of this is to create a HubPage. Make a Tweet that links to the HubPage and link the HubPage to your website. An article at EZine Articles can link to a Squidoo page that then links to your website.
- Use Social Bookmarking sites like Digg, StumbleUpon, and del.icio.us
- Create Press Releases
- Use Forum Signatures to create backlinks.
- Create Videos related to your business and post them on Video sharing sites like YouTube.
The number of off-site ideas out there are only limited by your imagination. Be creative. The above lists are a great place to start. If any of the ideas presented above are a mystery to you then consider joining the training side of this site. Get your hand held while you are learning the whole process of Search Engine Optimization and website marketing.