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What is SEO?

You have heard the phrase LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. But wait, this is online! You don't have to worry about location...or do you??!! Location is everything! Let's take a moment to really think about this. You need to find something. What do you do? Most people will go to their favorite search engine and input what they are searching for. Search Engines come back with the most relevant websites for your search. However, your search for a keyword can result in hundreds of links (if not thousands). So now you begin the task of clicking one by one on these links to find the information or service you need. You may go through page one to find what you are searching for, you may go through all of page two, but did you get to the guy on page 10? If you are shaking your head No (who has that kind of time?) then you have realized how important LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION is to your website. We need to get your site located on the first page. But with so much competition how do you achieve that? Search Engine Optimization is your answer!!

Everyone wants to be listed in the number 1 spot. But most companies do not even get listed under any of their keywords because they do not know how to implement search engine optimization (SEO). To understand how to do Search Engine Optimization you first need to understand how search engines work.

What are the different types of search engines?

Let's discuss first the crawler type of search engines (like Google). They have "spiders" that crawl your website for information. They look at your page title, the content of the website (the body), and other elements (keywords, meta-tags).

Then there are the Human Powered Directories like Dmoz. Humans update the website and Humans determine if your website should be listed under certain listings.

Hybrid Search Engines or Mixed (like MSN) will take a combination of both and put them together.

How do Search Engines rank web pages?

The key is relevancy. But how do you obtain relevancy? There are also a set of rules known as an algorithm. Although all the rules to algorithm are kept a big secret, there are a few basic principles to follow.

First, understand what your keywords are. How will people find you? If your site was about dogs then your keywords would focus on dogs. How often do you use the word dog in your content? Is dog in your title? Is the word dog listed pretty high on your website? Or is there 1 mention of a dog on the very bottom?  These factors all play a role. Read more about adding content

Another way that some search engines determine your "worthiness" is by popularity. If nobody has any links linking to your site, then you must not be very important. If however your competitor has 100 people linking to his site, he is considered to be more "popular". This is especially true if people linking to your website are "similar" in content as yours. Let's use the dog as a for instance. Let's say you had websites pointing to you that were from Dog Supplies or Dog Toys. This would make you seem more "popular". Read more about Link Partnering

Click through measurement is another way that the search engines determine your worthiness. If you are ranked toward the top but nobody clicks on you, then you do not "deserve" to be at the top.

So many factors to consider when building web pages but all must be considered.

Where do you place your target Keywords?

This is were we will get more complicated. Make sure your keywords appear in the crucial locations. The title tag of course is most important. Make sure your title has the most relevant 3 top keywords that visitors will use to search for your site. Use your keywords often and make sure they appear high on your page. Tables can sometimes push your text further down the page when crawlers search your site. This does not mean you should not use tables, as tables are a wonderful tool when doing web sites. Just be considerate :) Make sure your web pages hold the content of your keywords. If you are discussing how to shampoo a dog, then make sure your web page talks about shampooing a dog. Also make sure that you are using your keywords in the meta-tags. Use meta-tag keywords and descriptions for your web pages.

Things to AVOID when doing Search Engine Optimization

Make sure you use HTML Links. Some designers want to use beautiful image map links from their home page. Although this looks great, it does not help you with the search engines. Place links on your pages to the various pages to help not only the search engines find your pages but your visitors too :)

Frames...Well this is a hard one. Not only can some people not see frames, the search engines have a hard time with them as well. Also, what if your customer stumbles into one of the pages and does not see the frames?

DO NOT SPAM. Let me repeat this again. DO NOT SPAM. Spamming in any form is wrong. Most people consider spam as only used with emails. Wrong again unfortunately. Spamming will backfire on you. If search engines pick up on the fact that you are spamming, they have and will penalize your site. Here are two examples of spam.

Content Spam
Data within a part of a Web resource designed for humans where that data is designed only for search engines to see
Meta Spam
Data within a Web resource that describes that resource or another Web resource inaccurately or (when the data should be readable by humans) incoherently

Submit Your Pages

Most search engines will get to your website but do you want to count on that? No. Submit your site to the search engines and make sure your web site is found and seen. We suggest when submitting your site manually to only submit your most important 2-4 pages. The other pages will be found this way but you made sure to get the important ones in.

Verify and Check on Your Listings

Make sure the search engines have you in their website and constantly check your rankings. When you change pages, submit your pages again so that the search engines will come back through your site.

This seems like to much work. Is there help?

Absolutely! We have two solutions to help you.

Do It Yourself.

We offer several useful tips and tricks for SEO throughout our website. Not sure where to begin? Try checking out our blog with information specifically for Yahoo Store Owners on do it your SEO techniques.

Too busy to do it yourself, have us do it. We offer low cost alternatives for you. We have customized plans available for your website. We can do it all for you or just do some of the work. Either way, we will help you figure out what is right for you. Email us today for a quote!

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