Build it, and they will come!
This adage does not hold true in case of a website or a blog. Good your website may be, and full of useful content, it will remain useless it if does not get visitors. It does not mater whether your website is just a labor of love – just an outlet for your creativity, or a full blown e-commerce website. Traffic is important for a website – the more, the better!
There are hundreds of millions of websites on the internet, and on any given subject, howsoever esoteric, you will find a gazillion websites competing for attention. So, how do you get the word out and about for your website? How do you ensure that your website attracts visitors, who admire your beautiful turn of prose, or spend some money or click some ads on your website?
Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the art and science of attracting visitors to your websites. The search engine part is important, as traffic from search engines is considered to be the best – especially for commercial websites or money making blogs.
Search engine optimization or SEO has rapidly evolved over the years, and is a full fledged lucrative industry. There is a whole community of SEO experts out there, and many are earning really big bucks just by consulting companies and big websites on how to attract more traffic! These experts have a lot of technical and computing knowledge, and keep tweaking the websites to attain their goals.
This does not mean that you have to hire one of these “experts” or become one yourself! Neither does it mean that all hope is lost if you are a small time webmaster. SEO is comprised of a lot of factors, some of which are very simple and common sense. Here are the top 10 SEO tips that will help you immensely, even if you are a beginner in SEO -
- Add more and more content to your website. It will help if it is unique, and it will help more if it is useful to the visitors.
- Create backlinks, both from other websites, and inside the website as well. Quantity of backlinks matters, and of course, quality is equally important.
- Use the main keywords of your website as anchor text while baclinking. For example, if I want to link to another of my articles, using an anchor text such as web hosting basics is much better than click here.
- Use the main keywords for your website in creating the title tags for your webpages. If you are targeting a rather long phrase, keep the main keywords at the beginning of the phrase, preferably the first 15 characters.
- Create a sitemap for your website, and submit it to all the major search engines.
- When creating backlinks, do not always link to the home page only. Go deeper – create backlinks to individual pages – and of course, use text anchored backlinks for that.
- In case you have a static HTML website, add a blog to it, and keep adding fresh posts to it on a regular basis. ‘Regular’ need not be daily, it can be twice weekly or weekly – but it must be consistent. You can add the blog either as example.com/blog (as a folder – preferable approach) or as blog.example.com (as a subdomain).
- Pay attention to website navigation – make it easier for your website visitors to browse through your website. A rule of thumb is – any useful content, that you want to be read, should be only two clicks away from the main page or the home page. This is true especially for simpler websites.
- If you add pictures to your website, tag them using the keywords for the webpage. Add the ‘image alt attribute’ to attract web surfers that use image search.
- Be social – add social bookmarking tools to make it easy for those readers that like your content to share it with their friends. For example, when you reach the bottom of this post, you will find a header which says – SHARE THE LOVE. Click the buttons beneath the header, and share this article with your friends on the internet!
All the above 10 SEO tips are very simplistic and very basic in nature. To be fair, there are a number of aspects to search engine optimization, and some of them are highly technical in nature, But even if you are able to implement the above 10 tips successfully, positive results for your website are virtually guaranteed!