5 SEO Moves for More Traffic – By Aliza Earnshaw

by Colleen on October 28, 2011

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Want more site visitors? These five top SEO (search engine optimization) tactics will help you rank higher in search results and attract more customers.

1. Choose and use the right keywords.

Lots of people use insider jargon on their sites. You may think you sell “performance-enhancing stabilizers for over-pronators” – but your potential customers are searching for “running shoes.”

Google’s free Keyword Research Tool is a great way to find the keywords people actually use to search for what you sell. Use these instead of jargon terms, and more people will discover your site.

2. Write a unique, accurate title and meta description for every important page.

The title of a web page tells search engines what the page is about, so be sure each page title includes the most relevant keyword or two for that page.

The page title appears in search results as the underlined blue link to the page. An attractive title with relevant keywords close to the beginning can entice people to click it in search results.

Search engines don’t use the meta description to decide what a web page is about. But they do use the meta description as the “snippet” that appears below the title in search results. People read that snippet, so a persuasive meta description and accurate title are like an ad for your page.

3. Make sure search engines index your site.

If your site isn’t indexed, it won’t appear in search results. Ensure search engines can find your pages by creating an HTML sitemap and/or an XML sitemap.

4. Get links from other websites.

Links from other websites, or inbound links, are like getting votes for your site. Inbound links are probably the single most important factor outside your site that help it rank higher in search results.

The best way to get links from reputable sites is by creating great content that people want to link to. Then promote it on Twitter and Facebook in a conversational manner. Don’t just post links.

Because you want people to “retweet” and “like” your content, do the same for them.

5. Don’t duplicate content.

When search engines see the same content on two web pages, they regard one page as the original, and the other as a lower-quality duplicate.

Low-quality pages won’t rank well in search results, and duplicate content doesn’t help your prospective customers, either.

Duplicate content also splits link juice. If two pages on your site are identical, and people link to both, the power of those links to boost your content higher in search results is diluted by half.

If you do have two pages with good inbound links, redirect one page to the other using a 301 redirect, to concentrate the link goodness on a single page.

Google Webmaster Tools helps you discover whether you have duplicate pages. Sign yourself up, go to the Diagnostics section, and then find the “HTML Suggestions” tab. From there, you can check the “Duplicate Title Tags” section to identify duplicate content.

Aliza is director of sales & marketing at AboutUs.org, the largest index of websites.

Download the entire FeedFront issue 16 here – http://www.scribd.com/doc/69193074/FeedFront-Magazine-Issue-16

FeedFront issue 16 articles can be found here as well: http://feedfront.com/archives/article00date/2011/10

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Michael Lysiak October 29, 2011 at 12:09 am

Great article. One item I would like to add to about incoming links is that yes they are important for SEO but it is also important to take time in building them and do no pay someone who promises you thousands of links back to your site. This can actually hurt your ranking.

Kodjo October 29, 2011 at 7:01 pm

Colleen,
These are all great points! By the way, do you know of Link Assistant? And if you do, is that a backlinking tool you would recommend at that price level? i.e is it worth the price

Thanks
Kodjo

Michael Lysiak October 29, 2011 at 9:53 pm

I have personally never used them but would also not recommend them. I would be very suspicious of anyone who guarantees a first page search engine result. Anyone can guarantee a first page search result for a very targeted, specific keyword search but people don’t search that way. They are searching general keywords, for example I just started my own Web Design and SEO company and if someone was to search for Dominant Domains website design and SEO my site would appear on the first page. The likelihood of this happening though is slim to none, they will most likely search for web design in Buffalo, Ny or SEO in Buffalo, Ny and for those searches my site will not appear anywhere in the first 30 pages (yet). As for the back links, search engines are smart and like to see back links on pages that contain content that is relevant to the site they are linking to and one quality back link is worth more than a hundred irrelevant back links.

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