search engine rankings - Sitting Pretty - How to Achieve High Search Engine Rankings
by Chris Malta
How to Get Ahead
So how do you move up in the search results without spending a fortune? According to Andy Jenkins of ConvertLinks.com, the key to increasing your rankings isn't decoding a complex mathematical algorithm, but having good content and employing that content to better your positioning:
- Create your site in HTML. It's not enough to just have good content - you have to put that content in a form that's search engine friendly.
- Use RSS feeds to syndicate your content. Search engines love fresh, changing content.
- Publish your articles using a blog, and syndicate and submit them to article directories. Advises Jenkins, "As you give out quality content to other sites, you not only increase your own link popularity, but you also enhance your site in the search engines."
- Don't attempt to optimize your site around a keyword by simply cramming that word into your copy as many times as possible. The search engines will ignore this misguided SEO attempt, and your sales message won't read well to anyone who actually does stumble onto your site.
Search engines have advanced to the point they recognize and associate words that are used together often. Rather than repeating a word over and over, try using related words. If you sell pasta, for example, use words like "angel hair," "penne," "shells," "linguine," "Italian," and "marinara." The engines will recognize the relationships between the words and register your site as pasta-related.
You can take short cuts that will let you get ahead in the search results - until the next time the search engine companies change their ranking algorithms. But staying ahead requires doing things the right way: you have to create useful, interesting content and give visitors a reason to come back to your site.
You're building a business - short cuts won't pay off in the long run.
If you have an established site, you could begin to see more visitors and more sales from real, diligent SEO efforts in a very short time - sometimes even a week or less. If, however, you're just starting your online business, even with your exhaustive efforts, it may take six weeks to a couple of months before you start to see traffic trickling through. But as Jenkins points out, "The payoff is search engine positions that endure even when Google, Yahoo, and MSN update their algorithms."