What factors should you build into your website to get found online? When marketing online, it’s tough, because search engines try to keep us guessing. Every search engine has its own ‘algorithm” – the factors that weigh heavily in ranking your site for the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
But when it comes down to it, there really are only so many factors that makes sense and deliver excellent results for a given search. The marketing experts at webconfs.com have compiled a Best Practices Checklist for designing a high traffic website. I am delighted to share the summary of the top factors:
Keywords in the <title> tag
The <title> tag (or Meta Title) is the TITLE that shows up on the SERP – it’s considered the most important element that entices the searcher to click on the link to the website. You need to CAREFULLY select the 65 characters (limit) that describe the website. Use your most important keywords at the beginning.
Keywords in URL
This was more important to Google searches in the past, but is still a factor in other search engines’ algorithms. Keywords in the URL must be supported by keywords in the text.
Keyword density in document text
Use your most important keywords 3-7% (for every 100 words, use the keyword 3-7 times). Density over 10% is often viewed as ‘stuffing’, which could be the basis for LOWER ranking if used excessively throughout the site.
Keywords in anchor text
Use your top keywords in the text of your links. It is the text that shows up when you scroll over the link or other element.
Keywords in headings (<H1>, <H2>, etc. tags)
An important place – be sure that keywords in your headings are supported by those same words in the text.
Keywords in the beginning of a document
These also count, though not as much as anchor text, title tag or headings. However, they are still very important as support. They must match or the algorithm will suspect that the site is not really about those keyword topics.
Keywords in <alt> tags
ALT Tags are invisible descriptions of images. If you have images on your page, fill in the <alt> tag with some of your top keywords – about the image.
Keywords in meta tags
A meta tag is a tag (that is, a coding statement) in the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) that describes some aspect of the contents of a Web page. Less and less important, especially for Google. Yahoo! and Bing still rely on them, so if you are optimizing for Yahoo! or Bing, fill these tags properly.
Keyword proximity is applicable for keyword phrases that consist of 2 or more words. Keyword proximity measures how close in the text the keywords are. It is best if they are immediately one after the other (e.g. “dog food”) where the term ‘dog food’ is a keyword phrase.
Need SEO Background Info?
If you need more information on particular sections of the checklist, you may want to read Webconf’s SEO tutorial, which gives more detailed explanations of Keywords, Links, Metatags, Visual Extras, etc
How competitive is YOUR SEO challenge? Tell us about it.
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ABOUT Lisa M. Chapman:
Ms. Chapman’s book, The WebPowered Entrepreneur – A Step-by-Step Guide is available at:
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Lisa M. Chapman serves her clients as a business and marketing coach, business planning consultant and social media consultant. She helps clients to establish and enhance their online brand, attract their target market, engage them in meaningful social media conversations, and convert online traffic into revenues. Email: Lisa @ LisaChapman.com