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Top Search Engine Ranking Tips
 
Search Engine traffic is one of the best kinds of website traffic. Targeted traffic is pre-qualified traffic that’s already interested in your website content. In other words, they see your site on a list of results because they were searching for information about the subject of your website.

These are strategies and are not guarantees that I have used with my own websites with success. To increase your site visitors’ leads and sales; implement these simple search engine techniques to rise to the top:

1. Register Your Keyword Rich Domain Name – Use your keywords or a keyword phrases in your domain name. It creates brand awareness. Use these resources for your wholesale priced domain names.

2. Learn Basic HTML – A lot of search engine optimization techniques involve editing the basic HTML code. At least you should be able to view the source code of any page and understand what it all means, and basically edit it as necessary.

3. Create a Top Notch Page Title: Title tags are key because all search engines give the tag a lot of weight. Put your keyword phrases into this tag. Avoid using extra words linking, non-descript company name or home page. Think of this tag as the “Title Keyword Tag”. It should reflect exactly what your page is about. Focus on using the keyword phrases people might be using in the search engine to find your company.

4. Description Meta Tag. Some search engines will include the description below your title. Carefully choose 20 of your most important keywords and write a 200-500 character sentence about your site. Don’t just repeat your title but write with different keywords. Some search engines prefer just the description Meta tag and some will use both title and description tags.

SEO TOOL TIP: Here are a few tools:
http://www.instantmarketingsecrets.com/keyword.htm
http://www.smtek.info/cgi-bin/keyword-tool.cgi
http://www.goodkeywords.com

5. Keyword Meta Tag. Since keywords you or I think might be great keywords for your site may not be what people are actually looking for. To find the best keywords for your site, look for the highly searched and target keywords/keyword phrases related to your site and put them in a list.

Power Marketing Tip: Leave out the commas between your keywords, so the search engine can group the words into any phrases someone is looking for. This way your words take up minimum space with maximum combinations.

6. Keyword Density. The ratio of keywords on your page to non-keywords is called Keyword Density. For example, you have 100 words on your page and three of those words are “piano” or “pianos”, then you will get a keyword density of your text for the word “piano”. Aim for a keyword density on your site from 3-20%. This will offer you a good range.

SEO TOOL TIP: You may analyze your page density by using this online tool:
http://www.keyworddensity.com/

7. Header Tags. Search engines place emphasis on the header tags so make sure you have your H1 tag on your web page. Use CSS (cascading style sheets) to avoid the problem of your text appearing too large when using html for this tag. Use the other header tags (H2, H3, and H4) throughout your web page.

If you want long lasting traffic that will come back for more again and again, implement the above simple SEO tips. Aim for a simple clean look and design for your web site. Develop your site with premium and keyword rich copy, according to how it will benefit your visitor. Use these powerful but simple SEO tips and rise to the top to get the best traffic.
 
How Important Is Website Design?
 
In this article I will be writing about Website Design, how it affects sales, and how it compares in importance to other aspects of Website Management. Lets list the different aspects of owning or managing a Website.

Domain Name: How important is the domain name you choose for your Website? Many people say it is not important at all, yet I have number one listings in Google, Yahoo, and MSN for the key phrases that exactly match my domain name. It matters a lot.

You need a domain name that matches keywords and phrases you will also use in your Website that people are searching for. Many people think their company name should be their domain name. If you have a lot of money for advertising to make your company name something people search for, I agree with you. If you do not have that ad budget, then you need a generic domain name that is a phrase people already search for.

Web Hosting: How important is choosing the right Web Hosting Service for your Website? Again, this is important in many ways. You need your Website to load fast. If your Website loads slow, people will leave without buying anything. You also need to choose a Web Hosting Service that gives good tech support. There are a lot more things to consider when choosing a good Web Hosting Service, but make sure you rate this high on your list of things that are important to your Website.

Web Design: How important is Website Design? Your Website needs to look professional and trustworthy in order to create buyer confidence. A poorly designed Website will cost you sales. However, and this is the part that web designers will hate me for, it is not as important as many of the other aspects of Website ownership and management.

Many web designers know nothing about search engine optimization, picking a good domain name, hosting, Website promotion, or other issues. They only know design. That is a good thing in my opinion, but they should let their customers know they are a designer and cannot help their Website be competitive in the marketplace. Yes, there are some designers that know more than just design, but many do not. Keep this in mind.

A beautiful Website that gets no traffic and makes no money might as well be an ugly Website. An ugly Website that has traffic and makes money gets more beautiful by the dollar.

Search Engine Optimization: How important is SEO to my Website? Extremely important! Again, many web designers do not know how to properly optimize a Website for the search engines. It is important to have someone who specializes in SEO to go over your Website and make sure it is ready to get crawled and indexed by the search engines.

There was a time when SEO was all-inclusive with link building, Website promotion, search engine marketing, etc. Times have changed somewhat and the search engines have become more complicated, so now many people specialize in certain aspects of SEO.

I define SEO as coding the Website properly, writing text that contains the proper amount and correct keywords and phrases, search engine submissions, and some link building techniques.

Search Engine Marketing: What is SEM and how important is this to my Website? Search Engine Marketing by my own definition is marketing your Website through Google Adwords, MSN AdCenter, and other keyword purchasing programs as well as purchasing links, ads, and sponsored listings.

Again, many people are specializing in an area they have success with these days. I am very good at SEO, but I have limited experience with SEM. Therefore, I can make your Website ready to be crawled, do link building, and write text that helps you attract good search engine rank and traffic, but I would not be the guy you would hire to manage your Adwords program.

Website Promotion: Yet another category with a relationship to SEO and SEM. How important is this category? In my opinion it tops the list. What is Website Promotion? This category includes Article Marketing, Press Releases, Link Popularity, Buying Traffic, Blogging, Forum Posting and more.

Why do I consider it more important? First, none of the things mentioned here can stand-alone. You need to consider all of the different aspects as important. However, search engines change constantly. Depending on search engines for all or most of your traffic and sales is putting your life in Google’s hands basically since they account for 60% of all searches now.

If you are comfortable with one company having that much control over how well you do on the web, then ignore Website promotion and just do SEO and SEM. You need traffic from many different sources if you want to be successful. That way if one source dies out, you are not affected nearly as much as someone who only had one or a few sources of traffic would be.

Focus on getting traffic from every source you can. Post comments in Blogs and Forums related to your topic. That means actually join the forums or blogs and actually get involved in the conversations there and post quality comments. Be helpful to people at the forums and blogs. Ask questions. No one will mind that a link in your SIG line goes to your Website is you are a real participant. If they do object at that point, find a new place to join.

Start your own Blog. You can put up two if you really want to benefit from Blogging. A Blog within your domain name or on a subdomain can help you add fresh content to your website more often. That helps with the SEO. You can build a Blog on another domain name and promote links to pages within your Website and benefit from a little link popularity while also giving customers another way to find your Website. Doorway pages used to be the way to go. Blogs on their own domain name have replaced doorway pages as the way to go.

Article Marketing means writing articles and submitting them to article directories, writing quality articles and offering them to topic-relative high-traffic Websites as exclusive content, and press releases are a great source of traffic that builds link popularity as well. The traffic you get from people who read your article are many more times likely to convert to a sale than the traffic you get from search engines.

I will get new customers and signups due to this article you are reading right now. Article Marketing and Website Promotion work very well.

I hope this article has helped you to understand that owning or managing a Website is about a lot more than just getting a domain name, designing a Website, and picking a host. “If you build it, they will come” does not apply to Websites.
 
Search Engine Optimization
 
If you are in it for the money-E-Commerce, gathering leads or advertising your offline store, your site's life-blood is Qualified Traffic.

Let's start with "Qualified". To me "Qualified" for Pepsi may mean all current drinkers of that venerable drink as well as all Coca Cola drinkers. That's pretty much anyone I have ever met. In fact, even if you only drink milk, Pepsi brand building may yet convert you from a lactarian to a Pepsierian.

Incidentally, my site is likely to rank high on the term Pepsierian, given I seem to be the first person to use that term. Pity, no one ever searches for this term. More to the point, if they were to search, I wouldn't be able to sell them anything, or convert them since I would have no clue what a person searching for this term is actually looking for. Well, you get the idea.
So, for sites like Pepsi where the target is everyone and their grandparents, one measure for traffic is "Daily Reach". In the case of Pepsi it is about 150 people per million according to Alexa (http://www.alexa.com/data/details/traffic_details?q=&url=http://www.pepsi.c om/home.php ) . It's also the 13000th most visited site in the world.

By way of comparison, Coca Cola is the 9000th most visited site with just about 200 people per million. Google is 3rd, with a daily reach approaching 300,000 per million. Say, one in 3 users of internet uses Google at least once daily.
Not bad! At this point, we will ignore how easy it is to manipulate Alexa rankings and why a certain type of site ranks higher. The point is, all the rankings have to be taken with a grain of salt. More on that in a future article, when we discuss phenomena like "Google Bomb".

We will also discuss the motivation behind cheating.
Of course statistics like "Reach Per Million" are awfully depressing if your site is about the problems faced by Inuit community in Congo. That community (as far as I know) is so small that even if your site was an "Authority" on that subject, you wouldn't get very far.
The "Inuit Community in Congo" example is pretty contrived. So, how about a real site? What are the steps that we need to take to build some real traffic? Broadly speaking, we get traffic from the following sources:

1> Search Engines: The search engine displays your site as the most relevant for the search term. This can be a result of your site ranking high on the search engine due to it's ranking, relevance and popularity, bringing "Organic" visitors to your site. It could also be because the site owner pays the search engine, usually on a "per click" basis.

2>Affiliates: These are other websites that act as a front for you, or which display your advertisements, or the latest fad of "Pre sales pages". These can be banner or textual advertisements. The affiliates websites usually expect a percent of sales("Pay per action") or charge a fixed amount per month. They direct their traffic your way, and are compensated through a pre-arranged agreement. Some of the affiliate sites have lots of context sensitive contents. For example, this affiliate tickets selling site, http://www.ticketnest.com is chock full of information about various bands and theatrical events.

3> Email Advertising: This works well in some cases. However, this channel is often abused by spammers and is beyond the scope of this article.

4> Offline Advertising: This includes newspapers, TV, radio, magazine advertisements, exhorting people to visit you.

5> Offline brand: We didn't hear about Pepsi from their website. It's hard to imagine, but there was a time when we were drinking that stuff but had never heard of the world wide web. Too bad, my 11 month old son would never be able to say the same. The offline brand of WalMart may convince users to visit their website.

Let's focus on the "Organic" visitors (users that visit the site via Search Engine Optimization or SEO Efforts) . It's easy to segment these visitors in the same class as "Offline brand" visitors since there is no cost associated with them. No affiliates to share profits with, and no search engines to pay per click. There is also no "Click Fraud" or "Affiliate Fraud" to worry about. Also, many people tend to trust "Organic" results more than PPC results.

So what is the single most important factor in getting people to visit your site? To answer that question, let's turn to some interesting statistics. It so turns out that 69% of people don't navigate beyond the top five sites returned by a search engine. More importantly, 91% of the visitors don't look beyond the top twenty sites. In other words, if you don't rank in the top 5 of the keyword of your choice, it is likely that you are left to pick from just 31% of the traffic. And if you don't rank in the top 20, you are just viewed by the pickiest 9%. To convince these people to buy, you best have a very good product, price or value. The old real estate adage of "location, location, location" is just as true in the WWW virtual real estate.

In other words, the easiest sales are made if you rank in the top five. Sadly, this is not a secret and therefore ranking in the top 5 is exceedingly difficult for competitive keywords. Ranking the site high for some keywords has given rise to a new profession: SEO or Search Engine Optimization. These professionals called as Search Engine Optimizers sometimes treated with deference given to demi-gods and witch doctors. While, other times, when they can't produce the results they are treated like charlatans, quacks, snake oil salemen-with contempt.

The job of an SEO company is to focus on what key phrases will get you the most qualified traffic, write web copy("on page optimization") using those search terms(or keywords) , design the navigation of the site ("site navigation optimization") as well as convince complementary sites to link to the site in question. The expected outcome of all this running around is to convince the search engines that your site, and more to the point your "landing page" is the most appropriate one for certain keywords.
What are the possible problems with hiring an SEO?
Cost:

It is quite a bit of work and that unfortunately gets pricey. The formula really is quite simple: how much is the qualified traffic worth to you. Say, you have been paying 50 dollar /click through your PPC campaigns and given your conversion rates you just break even with an averge of 100 visitors a day(50 dollar/day). In order for you to consider SEO's service, the SEO should get you visitors at a sufficiently lower cost. However, the difference is that there is an immense amount of initial work which tapers off with time. The SEO fee should taper off once you feel comfortable with your position so that you are just paying a "seo maintenance fee" just to defend your position.

Lack of performance guarantee:
All good SEO firms tell you the same thing. They don't control the search engines, so they can not, and will not guarantee results. Some firms however, do offer a money back guarantee.
 
10 Most Important Web Design Tips

 

These are the 10 things which I think are most important to observe when creating a web site. They are in no particular order:

1. Red On Blue Isn't Good
Not only red text on a blue background but any color (except white) on a black background, light text on white backgrounds and dark text on dark backgrounds don't work! Especially if you have a lot of text, it is very important that it is easy to read and doesn't hurt people's eyes. Surprisingly enough, red text is used on a blue background a lot, even though it is one of the worst combinations of colors.

2. I Don't Like Your Java Clock
Don't bother putting 'Eye Candy' on your site like java clocks and menus with sounds. You might think it makes you look clever, but it doesn't (unless you wrote the software yourself of course)! Anyone can copy and paste an applet from another website and they usually don't really improve your site. Some browsers don't support them either so it really isn't worth it. Read more about deciding between Technology and Compatibility

3. Popup Window? I'm Leaving!
One of the worst things I have seen on websites, both personal and semiprofessional ones is popup windows! Even on big sites like www.123webmaster.com you get a popup window when you visit. Personally I will usually leave a site with a popup window. They are extremely annoying. If your free web host gives you the option of a banner in a popup window or one at the top of the page choose the one on the page. Even if it makes designing it a bit more difficult and you can't have as many adverts, so many people hate them it is not worth it. Don't use them for 'Top 25 ???????? Sites' either. They are even more annoying than adverts. If your web host doesn't do anything but popup adverts it may be time to get a new one

4. I Don't Wait For Adverts To Load
I have seen all too many sites which are covered in adverts! You open the page and 2 banners are at the top. Underneath is some text, then an Amazon.com search box, then some more text, then a CDNow search box, then more text, then another type of affiliate program and finally the page is finished with 4 different banners at the bottom. It isn't worth it! You will never make money that way. Although it may be tempting to have more adverts to try and make more money but just 2 or 3 highly targeted adverts will make you more money and your visitors won't give up and leave, either. Learn more about making money from your site

5. Hide That Counter!
Ask yourself this: "Why do I need to show the number of visitors I've had on my site?" Can you think of a good reason? It is extremely important to track your visitors, especially as your site grows, but showing the actual number of visitors serves no good purpose. If you have very few visitors then people who see that on your site will think it is unpopular, has no good content and will leave. If you have a lot of visitors then people won't really care about how many visitors you've had. It is better to use a good tracking service or hiding your counter. Find a good counter here.