Friday, June 19, 2009

Search Engine Optimization and new Blogger

Much is talked about the dark art of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). But the actual substance of it is usually kept behind locked doors. Pay me a shed-load of cash and I will work my magic on your website, making it appear nearer the top in Google searches.

But (as always) the advice on this blog comes to you free!

There are people who believe SEO is just a sprinkling of common sense dressed up with the smoke and mirrors of a conjurer and the hype of a good marketing machine. There are also people who believe that a good SEO consultant will boost the volume of traffic attracted to a website by one or two orders of magnitude. As with most things, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.

So here is one little observation to add to the mix. Having just reformatted from the old Blogspot templates to the newer system, I notice this blog coming out lower in Google searches than it was doing last week. I don't know whether this change happening at this time is coincidence or not. But I thought I'd share it with you anyway.

The common list of other things to do in order to boost the number of people finding your site from Google, Yahoo and others includes:

Research commonly searched for phrases. (Google, YouTube and others have helpful predictive text which flashes up lists of the phrases people most commonly type in as soon as you start to type.)

Use key phrases in the title of the site, the title of the page, the title of the article and the first line of the article.

Include captioned photographs.

And most importantly - get other sites to link to yours.

Do please add suggestions to this list. Especially if you are an SEO consultant or have had an SEO consultant work on your site. :-)

4 comments:

Rod Duncan said...

Immediately after posting a link to this article on Twitter, I received a Tweet response showing me the way to the follwing helpful webpage:

http://www.searchenginejournal.com/55-quick-seo-tips-even-your-mother-would-love/6760/

So much for my statement that no one will reveal SEO tips.

It also goes to show that not all spam is useless.

Emma Lee said...

Here's another helpful website: http://www.seomoz.org/ especially the blog - a helpful friendly community.

I've also blogged on this as I had too many comments to fit in a comment slot at http://emmalee1.wordpress.com/2009/06/20/basic-search-engine-optimisation-for-writers/. I'm in-house SEO for the law firm I work for as well as a writer so find the topic endlessly fascinating.

Search Engines such as Google are not going to tell anyone how they rank sites or how to make your site rank better because spammers and people selling dodgy products/services will try and game search engine results pages to make their sites rank higher. Unfortunately there's no qualifications or regulatory body so anyone could call themselves an SEO Consultant so check any SEO advice is coming from a legitimate source - recommendation, caution and research.

Rod Duncan said...

Hi Emma,

Many thanks for this. I'll head off and look at those links.

You have taught me such a lot about poetry over the years. Little did I expect that you would also be teaching me about this.

:-)

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