You are constantly hearing people speak about search engine optimization (SEO) and although you may have a basic understanding about what SEO is and how it works, you may not realize that you can use it in an extremely pointed, customized manner for optimal results.
Looking at your keywords and choosing the most effective ones
The truth is that SEO, which is an amazingly effective approach, does not always produce the results that you want for your business. You may use several different keywords and then discover that those keywords for which you have a particular affinity did not make it to the top (or near the top) of the search engine’s pages. That must be incredibly frustrating for you. Well, that means that you have less control over your content once it is posted than you may have thought. However, there are measures that you can take to swing the results in favor of your business.
You need to understand that there is such a thing as over-optimizing your content for the search engines. If you over-optimize your content, it may produce results that are the opposite of what you are trying to achieve. However, here are some suggestions that should help you to achieve the results that you want to achieve.
- Determine your baseline rankings: The first thing that you need to determine, before you do anything else, is exactly where your business appears in the search engines. You will have certain keywords in mind so that is exactly what you need to check. Figure out where those keywords factor into the rankings and if the performance is not what you want, you will take steps to make that happen. Your baseline is extremely important in this situation. You must crawl and then walk before you can run. If you don’t have your baseline in mind, exactly how are you going to measure your other successes? You won’t have anything to compare them to. The easiest way to begin this process is by searching for your keywords in the search engines (Google, for example). If you don’t want to do it manually, there are several tools that allow you to determine your rankings and you can automate that process. Of course, you will need to be patient. Your rankings will probably not jump from a low position to an extremely high one overnight. However, you will see positive changes and your baseline is essential because you need that jumping off point.
- Examine the differences: When you enter your keyword into the keyword tool, you should pay attention to two particular things. First, you will want to pay attention to how many different ways your keywords appear. The other thing that you will want to notice is how your keywords rank against other similar keywords that your competitors have posted. Doing the background work is extremely important and is a big contributor to your success. It will allow you to understand if your keyword is too complex and it will give you an idea of other possible keywords that you can use instead. Once you have entered your keyword, you should take note of the other keywords that the search engine has suggested as alternatives. They will fall right under your keyword. Finally, you should pay attention to the related searches that appear at the bottom of your page.
- Examine the results that you expected and revise, if necessary: There is a possibility that the expectations that you set for your keyword results are too high or unrealistic in some other way. The fact is that if your keyword appears at the top of the search engine page, there will be a lot of other keywords (and competitors) that will try to knock your keyword down from its position. Not only should you look at your keyword on the search engine page but you should also pay close attention to the other keywords that are around your keyword. Click on those other keywords so that you can compare the content to what you are saying and what you represent. This is part of your research and you will find that it is well worth the effort that you are going to put forth. You will find that, when it comes to the effectiveness of your keywords, your perception may be completely different from how the search engines view those keywords. Unfortunately, it won’t do you any good if you ignore the search engines because they count for a lot.
Keywords and key phrases are extremely important in your content. Your keywords must be relevant to what you are doing and what you represent. You will want to pay attention to increasing traffic, the importance of back links, and increasing trustworthiness and credibility. However, be careful not to over-stuff your content with keywords. That will be almost as bad as not having keywords in your content. Learn how to achieve an effective balance that will work well for your business.
Michael Cohn is the founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications. He has over 25 years of experience in IT and web technologies. Mr. Cohn spent a significant amount of time at a major telecommunications company, where his main focus was on initiating and leading synergy efforts across all business units by dramatically improving efficiency, online collaboration, and the company’s Intranet capabilities, which accelerated gains in business productivity. He also reduced company travel and travel costs by introducing and implementing various collaboration technologies.
His expertise includes business analysis; project management; management of global cross-matrix teams; systems engineering and analysis, architecture, prototyping and integration; technology evaluation and assessment; systems development; performance evaluation; and management of off-shore development.