Easy SEO Guide

Jon Cooper - easy seo guide

Introduction

It will take you less than an hour to read this entire guide and once you're finished, you'll have a good understanding of what SEO is and how to get started.

This seo guide started out as a PDF that I gave my clients before starting any web project. It helped my clients understand Search Engine Optimization so I didn't have to spend a lot of time educating them. It has also helped me be transparent with my clients because I knew that after they read this guide, they could comprehend what I was talking about.

SEO today is not what it used to be and in order to get to the top of SERPS (search engine results pages) in a competitive market, you have to be damn good! You have to be unique, relevant and trustworthy. You will be competing with people who are years ahead of you and may have invested thousands of man hours and dollars to get where they are.

There are many ways to reach your online goals and every successful website became successful in its own way. But even though the odds are against you, don't lose hope because the internet is an endless space and success stories are born every day.

How search works

First I want you to watch this short video on how Google's search works.


Google holds the major share in search, in the neighborhood of 90%. Bing and Yahoo are very far behind as you can see in the graph below.

There are other search engines like Blekko and DuckDuckGO (ddg.gg) for people that want something different. Blekko relies less on link based authority and is open and transparent about their search algorithm while DuckDuckGO is focused on user privacy. Both are trying to provide results with less spam and less advertising but it's important to note that the majority of people are using Google.

seo guide - search engines

Source: StatCounter Global Stats - Search Engine Market Share

From the image above, the answer is clear, Google optimization should be your priority. It just makes sense and that's why I will focus mostly on Google optimization. The other search engines are secondary. Bing and Yahoo also look for similar optimization techniques so just make sure to submit your site to Bing Webmaster Tools. This will get you indexed with Bing and Yahoo.

For more detailed information on how Google search works. Read the full story.

What is Google's algorithm?

Google's algorithm is a procedure of calculations that Google uses to determine the importance and relevancy of your content on your website so they can decide where to rank your web-page in the SERPS.

In February of 2011, Google launched a major algorithm update called Panda. This major update was aimed to help people (users) find “higher-quality” sites by reducing the rankings of lower-quality content on search results pages.

Google will continually update their algorithm until they can provide the best search results for all users. It only makes sense.

Update: As of August 20th, 2013 Google changed the name of their algorithm from "Caffeine" to "Hummingbird". SEO Consultant Gianluca Fiorelli gives us some clarity on this new algorithm. Click here to learn more about how the new algorithm has changed.

To learn more about Google's algorithm history and updates visit moz.com.

Web-spam

The spammers have saturated the internet and it's hard to tell the good stuff from the bad. In order for Google to provide the best results, they must get better at weeding out the crap.

This crap is called web-spam, it's the junk or low quality sites you sometimes see in search engine results. These websites cheated their way into higher positions and have violated Google's search engine quality guidelines.

SEO is constantly evolving

The algorithm is always changing and nobody has the “exact” answers. That’s why there’s so much misconception when it comes to how to do SEO right. In the past year alone, Google has updated its algorithm over 500 times and will continue to make improvements to provide the best search results for its users.

What I'm sharing with you in this beginners SEO guide is what has worked in the past that still works in today's search strategy. In order to have a long lasting on-line business, you have to do it right. More hard work, more patience and less cheating because Google "might" catch you sooner or later.

There are some "grey" areas where you can cheat depending on your business model but you'll be walking a fine line. I will not go into these techniques as they aren't considered SEO.

I also understand that all traffic doesn't come from search engines alone and for some people search engine traffic is not that important. But this is a beginners SEO guide, so I will stick to the topic. My advice is to just do it right and focus on the long haul.

Step into Google’s mindset for a better understanding

Amit SinghalAmit Singhal, Senior VP at Google: We aren’t disclosing the actual ranking signals used in our algorithms because we don’t want folks to game our search results; but if you want to step into Google’s mindset, the questions below provide some guidance on how we’ve been looking at the issue.
        
  • Would you trust the information presented in this article?   
  • Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow in nature?   
  • Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?   
  • Would you be comfortable giving your credit card information to this site? -Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?   
  • Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?   
  • Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?   
  • Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?   
  • How much quality control is done on content?   
  • Does the article describe both sides of a story?   
  • Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?   
  • Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?   
  • Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?   
  • For a health related query, would you trust information from this site?   
  • Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?   
  • Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?   
  • Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?   
  • Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?   
  • Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?   
  • Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopedia or book?   
  • Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?   
  • Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?   
  • Would users complain when they see pages from this site?
As you can see, it takes a lot of work to become a quality site. To date there are over 200 measurements in Google's algorithm and I'm sure it will keep growing as technology grows.

Many people believe that these points above are impossible for an algorithm to compute and maybe that's true today but Google is working with hundreds of "human search quality raters" to determine what kind of sites appear to be of higher quality. These raters don't directly influence the algorithm but you never know when that might change.

More on how Google uses human raters from Search engine watch.

What is SEO?

Search engine optimization is the way you process your website for search engines. This process uses techniques that maximize your potential to receive quality search engine traffic. These techniques make your website search engine friendly and help give your user the best experience possible while visiting you.

What are meta tags?

Meta tags are information tags about your website. These HTML tags are inserted in the Head section of your website page for search engines to read but are not displayed in the front end design of your site. They might be pertinent information about the page or instructions. If you're a blogger, you can insert these tags accordingly by using the HTML tab in your blog editor.

These meta tags consist of:   
  • Page title: Main title of your content also shown as the title in your browser/tab.   
  • Description: Short description of your content. Also shown in Google's rich snippet in search results page.   
  • Keywords: Today Google does not use the meta keywords tag in ranking so there's no point in using this meta tag. Google will crawl your page to find keywords on its own.   
  • Noindex: Prevents the page from being indexed in Google. This could be a back-end page that you don't want visitors to find in search results or a page that might be a duplicate but you use it for another purpose.   
  • Nofollow: Prevents Googlebot from following links from this page or a specific link. Use this when you link to untrusted sites, paid links and links to internal pages that are not indexed.   
  • Nosnippet: Prevents Google from showing rich snippets in search results.   
  • Noodp: Prevents the alternative description from DMOZ from being used.   
  • Noarchive: Prevents Google from showing the Cached link for a page.   
  • Noimageindex: lets you specify that you do not want your page to appear as the referring page for an image that appears in Google search results.
You need to know HTML or have some programming knowledge to insert these meta tags but If you use WordPress I recommend using an SEO plugin to insert your Page title and Descriptions. WordPress SEO and All in One SEO pack are both easy to use and free plugins.

If you just want a meta tag plugin without all the other SEO features, Add meta tags lets you add the page title, description, noindex, nofollow and noodp meta tag to any page or post in your self hosted WordPress blog.

More information on how Google reads these meta tags, visit Webmaster Tools.


As Matt Cutts, head of the Google webspam team explains. The most important tags are the Title and Description meta tag. These two tags are important because it gives a user the first impression of what your page is all about. Make sure it's compelling and click worthy.

Page titles
: Brand your titles on every page of your site, example: . Every page title should start with your site name: Page title.

Description
: Make sure to clearly describe what the content of the page is about. Accurate meta descriptions can help improve your clickthrough because in many cases, this description is used in the search results rich snippet.

Rich snippets
: This is the additional lines of information that appear in your Google search results. Spend some time creating compelling titles and awesome description meta tags. Google in most cases will use this as the rich snippet in your SERPS.

Rich Snippets

You can use Google's rich snippets testing tool to see what your page will look like in search results. It's hard enough to rank high in SERPS but if you manage to get there, make sure to give them a reason to click on you!Important: If you write all your articles, make sure to Link your Google+ profile to the content you create. This gives you Google Authorship; credit and a picture in search results for all your articles. You just have to set this up once.

Winnipeg SEO - Google Authorship

rel="nofollow": The "Nofollow" meta tag provides a way for us to tell search engines not to follow a specific link or page. There are some pages on your site that don't need to be indexed in the search engine. Many people use this as a tool to prevent passing PageRank to external links. I don't think we should be too concerned about micro managing every link we create just to conserve our own PageRank (more on this below).

Use the "Nofollow" meta tag for what it was meant for:   
  • links to un-trusted content that you cannot vouch for.   
  • Paid links - Google requires you to use "Nofollow" to prevent paid links from influencing search results.   
  • Opt out - Some pages like a subscribe page, payment page, log-in page etc... don't need to be found in search results. Any links to these types of pages could be "nofollowed". Any links pointing to "Noindex" pages could also be "nofollowed". Matt Cutts has mentioned that todays algorithm is pretty good at realizing this so opting out is optional.
Here is an example nofollow tag:

No follow example

Robots.txt: Robots.txt is a text file located on the root domain of your server. Website owners use the /robots.txt file to give instructions to web robots/spiders. In this file, you can disallow robots from crawling certain pages that you don't want indexed in a search engine.

You don't need one if you want every page indexed. You need one for login pages, secure payment processing pages and private pages you don't want indexed. This is one of the first things to check when trouble shooting why a page has not been indexed. Learn more about Robots.txt.

Sitemap.xml
: It's simply a list of the pages on your website. Why is this important? When search engine robots crawl your blog or website they might not visit every page, especially if some of your pages are not linked to internally or externally.

Submitting a sitemap helps search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your complete site.

You can create a sitemap free with many 3rd party tools. Here is a list of Sitemap Generators. If you use WordPress Google XML sitemaps is the best and easiest to use plugin I have found. The sitemap is another tool that helps SEO's diagnose the sites architecture and the if the content available on a website is structured properly with categories and sub-categories.

rel=”author”
: This allows Google search results to highlight the author with a picture and description. You need to link your content to your authorized Google+ profile. For WordPress users Yoast has a a complete set of instructions.

What are Keywords?

A keyword or keyword phrase is what you type into a search engines search box.

Winnipeg SEO - Keyword Phrase

Why is this important? These words are what people search in the search bar and is what we are competing for.

Example: if you're an insurance company, you want to rank on the 1st page of SERPS for the keywords "insurance", "best insurance", "cheap car insurance", "best insurance in New York" etc...

Keyword research is a method used by SEO's, writers, bloggers and developers to find out statistical data about what people are searching for within a search engines database.

You need to know what people are searching for, how they are searching and how many people are searching. It is important to know these things or you may be writing something or creating content that nobody at all is searching for. If no one is searching for your keywords, you will receive no traffic from a search engine.

Live example: This guide is on the first page of search engine results when you do a local search from Canada and USA using the keyword phrase "easy seo guide". Go ahead and try it if you are in local Canada or USA.

There are many keyword research tools available on the internet. At first, you should learn how to use Google's Keyword Planner. It's a keyword tool that requires you have a Google Adwords account. This tool has replaced the previous Google Keyword Tool.

The Google Adwords Keyword planner is part of the Adword CPC - cost per click advertising system but it's free to use by anyone and is the most popular keyword tool used by SEO's, developers, writers and bloggers.

How do I insert keywords into my website?
Google doesn't care about the keyword meta tag anymore because over the years, people have abused the right to key in your preferred keywords. Now Google spiders automatically pick up what Google thinks is an important keyword or phrase from your title, url, description and the text in your article or page body. More on this below in On Page Optimization.

Advanced keyword researchers want more options and more detail. Here are some of the best keyword and search position monitoring tools you will find on the net.   

What are long tail keywords?

Long tail keywords are specific keyword phrases usually 3-6+ words in length. It's a non-generic keyword phrase that is specific to a certain product, service or piece of content.Examples of long tail keywords:   
  • 2005 like new blue Nissan Pathfinder   
  • Lord of the rings box set blu ray   
  • How to SEO your WordPress site
Examples of short tail keywords:   
  • Nissan Pathfinder   
  • Lord of the rings   
  • WordPress SEO
There is a time and place for short and long tail keywords. Sometimes called "narrow" and "broad" keywords. Most beginners are more likely to focus on short tail keywords because they usually don't have a focused goal in mind when they start a blog or website. They are more interested in just getting as many visitors as possible.

Advanced internet marketers and SEO's have a specific goal and are more interested in getting a targeted reader. Less people search long tail keywords but the people who do are looking for something specific and are more likely to buy than a non targeted reader.

Take for example the long tail keywords above "Lord of the rings box set blu ray". Anyone searching for this is probably price shopping and ready to buy. Anyone searching the short tail keyword "Lord of the rings" is probably wanting information only and is less likely to buy at this moment. You will be inserting both short and long tail keywords in your content but it really depends on the goal of your specific web page.

To learn more, I recommend you read this article by John Doherty on Easy Keyword Research for SEO.

What's Pagerank?


Pagerank was named after Larry Page (Co-founder of Google). Pagerank is Google's opinion of the reputation on your individual web pages. It’s a mathematical algorithm that rates an individual web page from 0-10 and 10 being the best possible score.

In its simplest form, it measures the amount of links and the quality of those individual links that point to your web page to give you a score. Think of links as a form of endorsement. Each site that you link to is receiving your endorsement and vice-versa. It's like a "Facebook like" or a "thumbs up". The more links pointing to your page, the more reputation your individual page has.

Today Google is more interested in quality than quantity. Receiving a link (endorsement) from a highly reputable (higher PR) site is more important in Google's eyes. But thousands of legitimate links is also important, it means your popular and therefore also very relevant.

Important note:
Google's algorithm looks for naturally built links. If they think you have purchased or attained links un-naturally (cheating) for the purposes of passing or receiving pagerank gives them the right to penalize or even blacklist your site.

If your site was penalized because you were participating in Link Schemes, you can request reconsideration here: Webmaster Tools - Reconsideration request.

Many people today buy and sell links and there is nothing wrong with it as long as it's for advertising purposes only and not to pass PageRank from one site to another. You can do this by using the rel="nofollow" tag on those links.Further reading: The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine.

Paper by Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Stanford University.

Is PageRank important?

Google says to focus on building a high quality site and don't obsess over PR too much. It used to play a large role in determining your page's search engine position.

Today, Google says it's only a small factor in the overall search algorithm. They don't want people to focus on PageRank because it leads to un-natural link building techniques and the current algorithm in place has a hard time differentiating natural and un-natural links.

So back to the question, is PageRank important?


For traffic: Very little, truly nothing to obsess over.

For SEO: Yes. PageRank helps Google prioritize which sites get crawled more frequently. Google crawls higher PR sites more often to look for new content because they want the most relevant fresh content available. That's why new content from high PR sites like news sites get indexed almost as soon as they publish it.

Here's a very good video explanation from Rand Fishkin, CEO of moz.com. He explains what Google's PageRank is good for and what its not good for.


Many people will argue that PageRank is no longer important in today's search rank position and that may be true. Many sites with lower PR can beat higher PR sites in search ranking because there are so many factors in the search algorithm.

But if it helps a little, then to me it's important. If it can give you the edge on your competitors, it's important. If it helps get your articles indexed quickly, then yes again. It's important. If it's Google's opinion of your reputation, then it's a yes again.

How do I know what my PageRank is?
Well, only Google knows what your "actual" current PageRank is. The PageRank you see on any of the browser extensions and websites are always out of date and are only current on the day Google chooses to update its toolbar PR. Every day on-wards it becomes less and less accurate. The best tool I have used for this is SEO Quake.

Update
: Matt Cutts of Google recently said this to @NielsBoschh on Twitter. Google Toolbar Pagerank, might indeed be finished – at least, this year. Matt Cutts said he would be surprised to see an update happen before 2014. To stay updated on this visit hobo internet marketing by Shaun Anderson.

Back links and link building

Link building is a method used to get links (back links) from other websites. As I said above, back-links are like endorsements to your individual web pages. Anyone who links to you directly is endorsing you and you endorse anyone you link out to.

The more back links pointed to your site, the more popular you are in Google's eyes. The more quality back links pointed to your site, the more relevant and important you are and your PageRank will reflect that.

If you want to know how many back links you have and who is linking to you, make sure you have a Google Webmaster Tools account. This account will show you who is linking to you and to what pages they are linking to within your site.

A couple of premium tools to monitor your links are Majestic SEO and ahrefs.

What are the benefits of link building?
   
  • Credibility: Reputable sites that link to you definitely give you more credibility.   
  • Visibility: Imagine a link is a road. The more roads that lead to your website, the more opportunity for people to visit you. Especially if that link is from a busy site.   
  • Quicker indexing of your page: Search engines love links so when they crawl sites and find them, they index the linked sites almost immediately.   
  • Anchor text: It's this clickable text or term in your hyper link. Example: Easy SEO Guide which is linked to my main page or Winnipeg SEO. Many times you will see Click Here as an anchor text but that doesn't describe what the linked page is about. Instead, try using descriptive keywords that explain what the linked page is about.
Basic link building techniques

1. Build quality content that is useful to people: This is the best way to get consistent links over time. Every link on this page has good content and that's why I link to it. I wouldn't want to send you somewhere useless and I want to give you the best possible information I can.

2. Public profile pages: Create profile pages like a Google+ page or a Twitter account and link to your website or internal pages. When these pages earn pagerank, they will pass it to your website.

3. Blog commenting: When you post a comment you are able to enter your website for a link. Most blogs commenting system are nofollow but what you want to focus on here is to get people to want to find out who you are and get them to your website for conversion.

4. Guest blogging: Writing a guest blog gives you more visibility and a link back to your website. Guest blogging on high quality sites gives you more direct traffic plus the opportunity to receive more PR in time. Example: Write a guest blog on a high PR site and when that article increases it's PageRank, it will pass some of that PR back to your site.

Remember, this is a beginners SEO guide and these are just basic link building techniques. Jon Cooper from Point Blank SEO has a comprehensive link building strategies list that I recommend you read. It covers pretty much every type of link building you could imagine.

If you want to take link building to the next level, you need to keep track of all the places you have created, requested and earned links. Kristi Hines is a well known writer and blogger in the SEO industry and she has shared a link building spreadsheet that will help you or your team keep track of your efforts.

For some fresh, out of the box link building strategies. Visit Jason Acidre's link building blog.

What if my content sucks?

Let me ask you. Do you listen to crappy music? Eat food low quality food that tastes bad? If you answered no, then why would anyone want to read crappy content? I know this sounds harsh, but if you want someone to visit you and actually read, listen or watch your content. IT HAS TO BE GOOD! If not fantastic!

What happens when people visit your website and are sorely disappointed? THEY LEAVE IMMEDIATELY.

You have less than 3 seconds to give them an impression of what your content is about. 3 seconds and if they don't feel you, they're gone. In your analytics, it's called a bounce rate. Imagine getting 1000 viewers / day and then getting a 100% bounce rate. That's 1000 missed opportunities.

Your content is the reason they are visiting you and is part of the user experience. The user experience is a factor in Google's algorithm, whether it be your content, design, layout and the flow of your website. I have seen sites with nothing but text and it had plenty of good quality traffic. It's because the article content was that good of a read. So before all else, before SEO, before design. I would make sure you are prepared to produce quality stuff.

If you are blogging for personal fun, it's really no big deal. A blog is what every you want it to be and there are no real rules. But if you are trying to improve your exposure or start a real business, make sure you think hard about quality.

The benefits of blogging

Blogging is not new and most companies have a business blog but the truth is that most people and companies don't know what to do with a blog.

There are 2 big benefits that stand out
.

1. Fresh quality content:
Many businesses fail when it comes to delivering enough quality content. Since your blog will share the same navigation as your business site, writing relevant articles related to your business can attract more visitors from search engines that will also be keen to know more about you and your company.

2. Social proof: Blogging can provide social proof that your company respects peoples opinions and takes customers feedback seriously. Blogging allows you to engage with your customers in a human way. Writing fresh content that benefits your customers will let your customers know that there are real people behind your company and that your business does not hide behind a corporate logo.

Blogging alone can boost your seo significantly. If you are going to start a blog, WordPress hosted on your own server is your best blogging solution and Blogger is the best free blogging platform. I won't get into which one is better because they're both excellent platforms and I use them both.

Domain names

If you are a business, it makes sense that you get your business-name.com. Or you might choose the nature-of-your-business.com. It really depends on what type of business you have or are starting up.

Keywords in your domain name: Many people argue that having your keywords in your domain name is really important for SEO. Example www.flying-robot-technology.com vs www.whatever.com.

Matt Cutts, head of Google's web spam team says it really doesn't matter. What matters is the importance and relevancy of your website in regards to your topic. Take for example Facebook, Twitter and Google. They are simply easy to remember names and better for branding purposes. Some people use their own names like www.johnchow.com and my site http:manimtim.com.

I personally think that keywords in your domain is an added benefit and it works well for many people but it really depends on what you're trying to build. If your niche is about “poison ivy”, then it would be beneficial to have that keyword phrase in your domain name but it doesn't necessarily mean that site will rank better.

Dot com vs:You will have a choice between .com, .net, .org and so on but I highly recommend that you get a .com. This is the original top level domain and it's still the most popular. If you get .net, that means someone else is most likely using the .com and this can cause confusion when people are trying to reach your website and find someone else. But for SEO purposes, it doesn't really matter.

Free domain names like .co.cc have been abused by spammers and Google has de-indexed many of these domains. If you are starting a new business, why take chances? Invest the 10 dollars and get a top level domain. Get a dot com.

Is web hosting an SEO factor?

The location of your web host server is a significant ranking factor in SEO. If your business is localized to a specific country and you want to rank well for local search, it would be in your best interest to have your server located within the same country and a domain name with your country prefix like .au .fr .ca .ph etc... But If you want your reach to be international, then just make sure you use a good reputable host.

You don't want a problematic host where your site is always down or loading extremely slow. Page load speed might directly affect a users experience on your site. Read more about this below in the user experience section. As with free domains, there are also free hosting services available. Just like the free domain names, free web hosting is riddled with spammers. In essence you will be sharing a server with other spammers.

Don't take any chances just so you could save a few dollars. For the price of a Big Mac meal, you can get hosting for a month. I have used almost every kind of hosting, shared, vps, dedicated and cloud hosting. This SEO Guide is currently hosted on a shared arvixe server. I have had a good experience with them. I also host with bluehost, hostgator and godaddy. All of them equally good.

If you have a really high volume of traffic and notice your server is loading your pages slow, give them a call and find out if you are over using your allocated resources and then decide to upgrade.

On page optimization tips

Now that you understand the basic terminology from this beginners SEO guide. I want to show you how to optimize your on page content so that you'll have the best opportunity to rank well in SERPS.   
  1. Make sure your primary keyword or keyword phrase is in your title. If possible, include your secondary keyword.   
  2. Insert your keyword phrase in your permalink: http://your-domain.com/your-keyword-phrase/ (use the trailing slash). If you have primary and secondary keyword phrases, you can use the primary keyword in the page title and the secondary keyword in the permalink.   
  3. Your primary and secondary keywords should be in your meta description. Twice if you can make it sound natural.   
  4. Your primary keyword phrase should be in the first paragraph of your content. If it's a long paragraph, make sure it's near the beginning.   
  5. Your primary and secondary keywords should also be "nicely" and "evenly" placed throughout the body of your content. It has to sound natural so don't over do it or you will get a slap from Google for keyword stuffing. Don't focus on an exact keyword density, instead make sure its in the first paragraph once, body once and in the last paragraph close to the end.   
  6. Link to another relevant page on your site if possible using your keywords as the anchor text.   
  7. Link out to an authority page using your keywords as the anchor text if possible.   
  8. Your images should have an "alt attribute" or "alt tag" with your keyword or phrase in it. Search engines cannot see pictures, it can only read your title and description.
  9. Insert a video in your content if you can. This is a ranking factor. If you can't make one, add a relevant video that's related to your topic. Video's help keep visitors on your site longer and thus helping to reduce your bounce rate.   
  10. Make your page a minimum of 750 words. These words should not be filler words. Part of creating good content is writing good copy, making every word count and explaining everything you can about your keyword phrase and topic. It makes sense that 750 words or more will be a more descriptive answer than a shallow 200 words and Google's algorithm will account for this.
You will get different results for different topics and different keyword phrases. This will be something you have to try and test on your own to see what works best for you. Some topics and keywords will be impossible to rank well in SERPS because there is just too many people who have already done it. These techniques will work best if your content is unique, well written and gives massive benefit to the reader.

Site design and the user experience

Optimize for speed. Google has incorporated site speed or page load speed as a ranking signal in it's algorithm. They say that it doesn't carry as much weight as the relevancy of your page but it is a factor. Users don't want to wait around when they can easily find something else. You know this from your own experience.

Read more about the site speed ranking signal and visit the online page speed tool to help you identify your speed issues. Design your site so that it's fast loading, good site architecture (using pages and categories properly), easy to navigate, easy on they eyes, easy to read, looks good and not too busy. Create your site and your content for the user but keep Google optimization in mind.

Social media and SEO

Everyone has a Facebook and Twitter account so common sense would mean that it's very important in today's internet marketing strategies. This is very true for alternative traffic generation and it's also true for SEO. Social media can be a match to light your fuel.

SEO and social media aren't at war, social media complements SEO and can help you get more visitors that in turn might link to you from their websites or blogs. There are many social media ranking factors that Google takes into consideration so keep this in mind. For starters, you should create a Google+ page for your business and register and verify your local business in Google places. This is free and will help you in local search almost instantly.

I won't talk much about social media because it's a separate topic on it's own but I would like to introduce you to Gary Vaynerchuk; world renowned social media expert. If you have an extra hour, watch this video below and learn how businesses should be applying social media to their brand.


This is just the beginning


This is not the end, it's just the end of my seo guide but it's just the beginning of your SEO education. I hope you gained some knowledge from this guide and hope that it has given you some insight into the depth of the seo industry. The information I have provided in this beginners SEO Guide is enough to get any blogger or writer started off on the right foot.

Final Note: Good SEO alone will not give you more traffic. You need to look at the entire picture. It's not just about keyword density and backlinks. It's about site design, content and the overall user experience. It's about learning your business and being great at it. It's about creating partnerships and completely thinking out of the box. Good SEO is just a part of building a profitable website.

By Joeal Manimtim

To learn more about internet marketing and the latest seo strategies, visit my magazine: Winnipeg SEO

 
  

 
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