Sales and Marketing always go hand in hand and being successful in marketing has a greater chance for higher sales. In the online world, SEO is part of the major online marketing strategies that businesses carry out. Despite carrying out SEO (Search Engine Optimization) this does not determine the success of your business; it does determine the internet popularity of your website, which leads you to a bigger market, and building your brand online.
Nowadays, SEO is already the requirements of so many businesses who are establishing websites. However, the internet is so big and there are several competitions for the attention of just a few target users.
Almost every business wants to rank high in search results for as many keywords as possible, and almost every developer claims to apply and follow SEO guidelines. The chance of getting to the top ranks on search engines requires continuous commitment, search engine knowledge and effective strategies.
As time goes by the online developments grows, several new SEO ways are being discovered.
- Domain Names, Domain Extension and Hosting – These three are essentials before launching your website. The domain must describe your keywords. For example, your keyword is “accountants” and your company name is “PPB”, you can buy a domain something like “ppbaccountants.com”.
Regarding the domain extension, you need to consider the location of your target market. If you do not have location specifications, you can choose from one of the extensions, Com to specify it is international. Org for an organization. Net if its network.
However if you have a location specifications, then you can choose .ca if located in the Canada, .uk for United Kingdom and .us if in USA.
Hosting does not really affect your SEO except some risks such as downtime. If your hosting company is constantly offline this may cause your site not be recently indexed, and more so your visitors are not able to see your website, this overall is going to have an impact on your business.
- URL Nodes – As additional nodes to your domain, you may choose more specific nodes descriptions. For example, your page title is “IT Outsourcing”, you may choose a URL node like “it-outsourcing”. Each page of your site should be named accordingly such as www.ppbaccountants.com/ audit-trails.html
- Meta Tags (Title, Description, Keywords, Headers) There are three important tags that you may set, these are “Title”, “Description” and “Keywords”. These are not only being crawled by the search engines but these are also the ones being displayed on the list of search results. See image below:
BACKEND META TAGS:
Your title and description tags must always be unique. Google Webmaster Tools will reflect errors on duplicate Meta titles and descriptions and this will hinder the search engine to crawl your page as it is classified with an error.
On the other hand, using header tags like H1 is optional. Hence, you may choose using these tags on statements that describe your keywords, as these are standard tags. With Google ranking algorithm, using H1 dictates the importance of the words in between the <h1></h1> tags.
- Off Page Optimization – This process includes the contents of your website and the scripts you used. Enough and relevant contents will keep your visitors to spend time and explore more on your site. Also, continuous content updates will trigger search engines to crawl your sites.
- Link Building – It is about submission of your link to relevant websites. If you have several links on quality and relevant sites, these will give high importance to your website. However, if you are hiring link builders, please make sure that you hire those professional SEO specialists as this process may also hurt your reputations. Link Building has limitation of link backs per month, over that limitation; the search engines might ban your site.
If you will hire an SEO team to work for your marketing, hire a reputable one with proven results and do not hire another different team, as they will just do the same.
- Public Relations – This process includes press release and article submissions. Public Relations are a big help to educate your target market about your services and existence. These can also provide back links to your website.
- Pay per Click, Pay per Impressions – Advertising through pay per click or pay per impressions is also a big help like Google Adwords or Facebook Ads. These advertising providers can give you statistic reports regarding your advertisement. You can create different advertisement campaigns and experiment which keywords and descriptions are attractive to users.
- Robots – Using Robots on your website may help the search engine which page to crawl and which page to skip.
There two important tags to check in using robots for SEO. First is NOFOLLOW. Second is Canonical URL.
- NOFOLLOW - NOFOLLOW simply dictates not to follow links on a certain page. Hence, this tag is not advisable to use anymore as obviously this prevents the search engines to dig deeper the links on your website. There are also several reasons online regarding whether NOFOLLOW usage is a myth or not.
In connection, you may see Google statement below on NOFOLLOW:
“In general, we don't follow them. This means that Google does not transfer PageRank or anchor text across these links. Essentially, using nofollow causes us to drop the target links from our overall graph of the web. However, the target pages may still appear in our index if other sites link to them without using nofollow, or if the URLs are submitted to Google in a Sitemap. Also, it's important to note that other search engines may handle nofollow in slightly different ways.” (http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=96569)
- Canonical URL – This tag is used by search engines to determine the authorized page when duplication of contents exists. If two web pages on your website are totally having the same contents yet with different URL nodes, the search engines will prioritize your set canonical URL for the pages. For example, “http://ppbwebprogrammers.com/programmer” is identical to “http://ppbwebprogrammers.com/webprogrammer” and the canonical URL is set to the first link, search engine will prioritize crawling the first link.
- Link Bait – This process is the modern way of Link Building. This way describes the interaction of users like sharing your link to others and commenting your link on their blogs. This is user behaviors that even without your requests, they will reciprocate your links simply because they liked your page. It requires creativity and strategy.
- Social Media – This process is marketing on social network sites like twitter, facebook, youtube and other forum sites. As we are all aware, there are billions of users that are always active in social networks. Promoting your website on these networks in dynamic and creative way may give you massive impressions.
- Social Bookmarking – This process is similar to putting bookmarks to your favorite pages in a book, the only difference is that you are bookmarking the internet pages and tagging them with relevant keywords. Social Bookmarking is like sharing your links to the public or group of people where they can also create networks in connection to your bookmarked links.
SEO process evolves fast as the World Wide Web grows bigger. Basic SEO may fades or modern SEO may not be modern anymore in a few years. Hence, whatever the future may bring, SEO requires creativity and true commitment to gain enough knowledge and know what must be done and what must not be done in an SEO campaign.