Every business with a Web site should make Search Engine Optimization a priority and try to get your site as high up as possible on Google and Bing search-results pages.
This is part of a marketing growth strategy to acquire more leads and potential customers.
At its most basic, "SEO" means finding ways to increase your site's appearance in in search engine results' so potential searchers can find your business easily.
This generally means more traffic to your site, while intense SEO can involve complex site restructuring with a firm (or consultant) that specializes in this area, there are a few simple steps you can take by yourself to increase your websites search engine ranking.
All it requires is a little effort, and some re-thinking of how you approach content on your site.
Here are some tips to get you along and make the best of SEO in this age;
1. Monitor your websites position on Search engines
You won't know if your SEO efforts are working unless you monitor your search standings. MarketingVox suggests that you keep an eye on your page rank with tools like Alexa and Google toolbar which can be downloaded to your web browser (Google chrome or Firefox).
It's also important to check your referrer log regularly to track where your visitors are coming from and the search terms they're using to find your site, according to PC World. This will help you understand what to focus on as to keyword research.
2. Keywords, keywords, keywords
You should be conscious of placing appropriate keywords throughout every aspect of your site: your titles, content, URLs, and image names.
Think about your keywords as search terms, how would someone looking for information on this topic search for it?
The title tag and page header are the two most important spots to put keywords, PC World notes.
BEWARE: Write only unique helpful content. Putting ridiculous amounts of keywords on your site will get you labeled as a spammer, and search engine spiders are programmed to ignore sites guilty of "keyword-stuffing."
Be strategic in your keyword use and implement it based on proposition.
3. Link back to yourself
There is probably no more basic strategy for SEO than the integration of internal links into your site, it is an easy way to boost traffic to individual pages to increase the link juice flow within your website.
You should make it standard to link back to your archives frequently when creating new content and all anchor text should be search engine friendly, so your website can be properly crawled by search engines.
"The more relevant words pointing to a page, the more likely that page will appear in search results when users run a query with those terms when searching on google or bing."
As with all other SEO approaches, be sure your links are appropriate, and be careful not to cross the line into excessive linking, you don't want your visitors to get annoyed.
4. Create a sitemap
Adding a site map to your website, a page listing and linking to all the other major pages on your site can make it easier for spiders to search your site. Fewer clicks increase usability and makes it easier for people to stick around and research.
5. Search-friendly URLs
Make your URLs more search-engine-friendly by naming them with clear keywords. For instance, it’s easy to understand what ‘www.backlinkfy.com/promotions-for startup’ would contain.
It’s less easy to understand if the in-house classification system of the business is used, for example ‘www.backlinkfy.com/564839/s3041.htm’. Make sure to update this predicament as soon as possible as to benefit from your website being ranked higher.
6. Avoid building your site with Flash
Flash might look pretty, but it does nothing for your SEO. According to the Search Engine Journal, "Frames, Flash and AJAX all share a common problem – you can’t link to a single page without your web pages breaking. Don’t use Frames at all and use Flash and AJAX sparingly for best SEO results."
If you happen to use flash on your main page as a splash page that is all Flash or one big image, place text and navigation links below the fold.
Image description Spiders can only search text, not text in your images, which is why you need to make the words associated with your images as descriptive as possible.
Start with your image names: adding an "ALT" tag allows you to include a keyword-rich description for every image on your site. Perfect Optimization explains an easy way to do this.
The visible unique text for your website images is valuable for SEO: Adding captions to all your pictures and being descriptive with the text in immediate physical proximity to your images.
8. Content Strategy
Your content needs to be fresh and updated regularly, it is crucial in increasing web traffic to your website. The best sites for users and search engines, are full of updated, useful information about a given service, product, topic or discipline.
One way to ensure that your site gets new content on a frequent basis is to integrate a blog an utilize frequently.
9. Social Media Distribution
Distributing links to fresh content on your site across appropriate social networking platforms. Whether displayed on your company's account, or recommended, re-tweeted, and re-distributed by someone else, this strategy exponentially multiplies the number of places where visitors will view your links and potentially click to see what you can do to help.
10. Link to others in your industry
An easy way to direct more targeted traffic to your site is by developing relationships with other sites.
PC World suggests that you personally ask the webmasters of well-respected sites if they'll include a link to your site on theirs.
Be sure to return the favor so everyone becomes a winner!
Make certain that your partner has a good web-reputation and rankings with search engines, so your efforts are validated, instead of getting tied to a "link farm" whose bad SEO habits could bring your website down a rocky path.