Rank high in popular search engine results.
Search engine optimization is the act of optimizing a website (in terms of code, content and links) to increase traffic from major search engines, like Google, Yahoo! and Bing.
What Do Search Engines Look For?
Search engines index content on the web with computer programs called "bots," which move through websites by "crawling" from link to link. In order to provide the most useful search results, search engines assess pages in terms of:
- Relevance: The relevance of content on a site depends on how closely it matches a search query. A site's content is considered more relevant when the queried terms appear in the title or headings of the content and HTML tags.
- Popularity: A website's importance is measured by the number of times other sites link back to it. These are called backlinks, and when they come from a highly respected site, like the New York Times, for example, they carry more weight.
Six Ways to Boost SEO
There are lots of ways to improve how high your site ranks on major search engines, and we've highlighted six to get you started:
1) Add Unique Content to Your Site
Brainstorm keywords that your audience might use to find you. Anytime you add content to your site - blog posts, product descriptions, an "About Us" section, etc. - it should be rich with those keywords. Unique, quality content also gives other sites reasons to link to you, and building backlinks is part of the popularity factor search engines pay attention to.
2) Place Keywords in Key Places
Those same keywords should appear in your page titles, headings and subheadings (in terms of content and code). However, that doesn't mean you should cram them anywhere you can. Use them where they're relevant, and if they aren't relevant in certain places, replace them with words that are.
3) Create a Sitemap
Sitemaps can improve SEO by displaying links to pages on your site that search engine bots might miss otherwise. Structure your site's pages from broad to specific, and try to keep them no more than three clicks from the homepage. Google Webmaster Tools, available via your control panel, explains how to create sitemaps and submit them to Google.
4) Add Links with Strong Anchor Text
When linking to relevant sites, tell your readers where you're sending them. The anchor text (the wording displayed in a hyperlink) should closely match the URL you are pointing to. For example, here are two ways to link to www.webdesignerexpress.com: Strong anchor text: "Check out Google Webmaster Tools." Weak anchor text: "Check out Google Webmaster Tools, here."
5) Submit Your Site to Search Engines
Included free with your hosting plan, SubmitNet's SEO tools allow you to submit your website to popular search engines. Gold and Platinum plans offer competitor analysis, meta tag generation, and more.
6) Call the Professionals
Check out the SEO solutions included in My Marketing Services. My Local Website Traffic helps raise your rankings in local search results through professional keyword analysis and strategic link building. My Website Traffic maximizes SEO results at the national level. Search engine optimization takes time, but sticking with it will help establish a strong visitor base for your site, or expand your online business through increased sales.
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