Keeping a Promise – SEO Secrets

Ah, I remember a while ago that I made a promise. A promise to show you how I got to the top of the search engines.

The first thing that I did was to optimize my home page with my main keywords: HYIP Scripts

So what does optimizing the homepage include?

Well, you have to get your hands a little bit dirty and start playing with the HTML code.

First off, the TITLE TAG which is very very important. Too many people do not enter a title for their page name. Just do a quick search on Google to find that there are over 116 million web pages out there with no title.

Choosing your title is very important too. The more words you use, the less effective your title becomes. Therefore it is imperative that you do not use unnecessary words like “and” or “Welcome To My Site” (using “Welcome To…” is such a waste, do you really think someone is going to search for “Welcome To…”).

It is becoming common practice amongst SEO geeks to use the pipe symbol “|” to seperate keywords in the title – you don’t even need to mention your website name! Use your three main keywords in the title, seperated by the “|” symbol.

You can add your meta description and meta keyword tags in the HTML header part, but the major search engines largely ignore these as they have been abused in the past.

The next step is to use the <h1> header tag. This tag tells the spider what the website is about and is the 2nd most important tag in the HTML (the title is first).

By default the <h1> tag makes the text really big and can distort or ruin the appearance of your website. It is always good practice to use CSS to help you control the look of your <h1> tag.

As an example of how CSS can be used to change the <h1> tag, have a look at my HYIP Monitor site. The text at the very top which says HYIP Investments | HYIP Forum | HYIP Rating is a <h1> tag but using CSS to control the look of the text.

If you view the source code for this site, you will see:

<h1 class="sitename">HYIP Investments | HYIP Forum | HYIP Rating</h1>

The CSS code simply tells the browser how to format the <h1> text.

The third most important thing to consider when optimizing your website is the navigation/menu system.

This is an area all too many people don’t do correctly because they don’t understand how spiders and search engines work.

For a start, where ever possible, use text for the links rather than images. This is because you can use keywords in your anchor text which actually helps your search engine ranking, because each link to a page counts as a “vote” which in turn increases your pagerank. If you had a big enough website (10,000 pages) and no inbound links other than on your own site, it’s very possible to have a PR of 5 or maybe even 6 (as long as all those pages are indexed).

Instead of using the word “home” as the anchor text in the link, consider using your main keyword. This all counts towards your SEO and backlinks. The same method applies for all your other links. Where ever possible, use your keywords for the anchor text.

Another important factor to consider is to use the rel=”nofollow” attribute in your links on non-essential pages such as the disclaimer, privacy policy, TOS etc. This stops you from passing on page rank to non-essential pages and increases the page rank you pass on to the important pages.

My final top tip for optimizing your website is don’t put your copyright information as the very last think on your page. Many search engines (especially MSN and sometimes Yahoo) tend to use a combination of your title and the text at the bottom of the page for the site description in your search results.

Although you should include a copyright notice, make sure the last block of text at the end of your page contains one or two sentences with your main keywords in it.

Of course, there are lots of other website optimization methods, such as naming your images with keywords, using the title and alt attributes, considering your keyword density etc. But these are all secondary to what I’ve discussed above.

I’ll give some more SEO tips later on this week.

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