How to market your website or DIY SEO

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How to market your website /  be your own SEO. 
I am working on a project right now that demands high profile publicity and being the sort of guy who doesn't trust the local mechanics to fix my car I don't trust an SEO to give his all.  So I decided to educate myself.  I watched numerous videos. Strike that, I tried to watch numerous videos and didn't find one that was in any way useful. Too much filler and not enough facts for my tastes. I don't have the patience to watch an hour to get one or two nuggets of information. Time to try the old fashioned reading thing. I looked at numerous forums and all I found for the most part was spam from one guru or another looking to sell me more DVD's. Seriously, the Algorithm’s the search engines use are not so complex that they require 10 DVD's.  Finally stumbled across a couple of concise and to the point books which I am going to boil down into a couple of essays. I will be using this website as an example of what not to do http://mrfaeces.wix.com/shitewebsite - !home/mainPage


It's not my intention to make you a subject matter expert in a couple of pages. This is to make you competitive and know what to search for to make you an expert. I will present these little nuggets as bullet points that you can use to implement an online marketing campaign. I am not going to get it all done in one day so bear with me. I will use the jargon so that if you run into a pro you can speak the same language and also so you can research further.
1. On page optimization and Off page optimization. As the terms imply you have to take a hard look at you current site and your competitors sites and analyze them for search engine readability which is your on page stuff. You also need worry about off site. Essentially how many quality links you have pointing at your site. We will start with the on page stuff first. Which is the harder stuff if using any sort of code gives you chills. Don't worry I'll provide examples which you can cut and paste.  Disclaimer... don't use screwtapefiles.blogspot.com as an example of an optimized site :) we could optimize further but we can't do it because we don't want to.
2. Keywords: When people are searching for something they tend to use phrases and words over and over. These are referred to as keywords. So in order to get up in the rankings you have to cook the books a little and tell the search engines what you are selling. So think like someone surfing the web and ask yourself what would I search for to find my site? Would it be "small evil looking creatures", "Gold database" or "Gold Analysis. To get the answer go to https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal and start hacking around in there. Pay attention to the number of hits certain keywords get. Those are the search engine words you want to grab traffic from. You also need to look at the top ranked sites that google returns by searching those terms. So now that you have a shortlist of keywords and key phrases we can move on.
3. Diagnose your site. Go to http://www.google.com/webmasters/ and plug in your site. Noodle around in there and it will tell you of any problems google has with reading your site. Then go to http://www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster and do the same thing. Yahoo is now tied at the hip to Bing so you kill two birds there. Essentially follow all the tips and hints they provide there like uploading a site map etc.
These first three tips are the research and planning part now will move on to the doing part.
4. Meta tags inform the search engines what you are all about and who should be visiting your little corner of the web. Here is and example of what this website should be doing for a start
<title>We sell shite | Fresh Shit</title>
<meta name=“Description” content=“Fresh Shite delivered to your neighbors door. Shit of all colors and textures”>   
<meta name=“Keywords” content=“Shit, Shite, Fresh shit, worlds oldest Shitery, A really shit website.”> <meta name=“Robots” content=“all”>

If you search for "Shite" and "Shitery" this website should come up to the top but it doesn't for a number of reasons which we will get to.
(Basic rule of thumb here is no more than 65 characters in your title tag otherwise google truncates it) (make sure your keywords are in here)
(the robot reference simply tells Google etc to drill through the site)
But if it did come up it would look something like this in the search engine results:

We sell shite | Fresh Shit
Fresh Shite delivered to your neighbors door. Shit of all colors and textures
Shit, Shite, Fresh shit, worlds oldest Shitery, a really shit website

What does come up is this:
OK, I lied. Nadler does not come up but he should.

5. URL's I will only say this on the subject. It's better to have a good URL related to the subject matter than not. Something with a keyword in the domain name is better than not. If you don't hae one it's not the end of the world. Obviously Screwtapefiles.com is better than screwtapefiles.blogspot.com . www.goldnews.com would be hell of a lot better than both of those. If you don't have the cash or inclination to upgrade your domain name that's what all the tags are for. If you are just starting out give it some thought. Give some thought to buying an existing domain with links already going to it. That will give you a head start in all these games.

6. Formatting and Content this is the most important thing you can do for the on page optimization. Whether it's a store or a blog you need to keep it clean. Get as much code off the main page as possible. If you are using wordpress, style sheets, flash, java or whatever keep the code in directories not on the home page if you can.  The search engines read from left to right and the want to see text not code first. They want to see, as high as possible, ratio between text and code. So take a peek at what I am talking about .. on your browser right click on this page and "view source". I'll assume you are using Firefox. If not download it because you are definitely going to need it later. 
If at all possible have your navigation buttons and widgets below the first lines of text. Google does rank on speed etc so make it as easy as possible for the robots. So instead of example 1 below try and do example 2 instead.
Example 1
{Nav Buttons} {text, text, text}
Example 2
                        {text, text, text}
{Nav Buttons}
Basically make sure the text starts before the buttons wherever you put those buttons
To validate you are sticking with industry standards run your site through this http://validator.w3.org.
For example I should have started this article and stuffed it full of keywords pertinent to this post or more precisely what the main subject matter of this website is about.  So I should have put sentences with references to Gold, Gold bugs, Silver, Silver bugs etc. I should have inserted those words in the first 25 words and the odd Bold on these words helps things along because it tells the algos to pay attention.

6. Headings and Tags We use tags to emphasize particular text on a webpage. So in your HTML code you would wrap text containing keywords. In order of importance; <H1> <H2> and <H3> tags. Wrap them around titles of essays etc. A word of warning from the gurus; don't go nuts slapping tags on every damn thing. I'm not sure if they are correct in this or not as none of them speak to experimenting with this. "View Source" on any popular website for examples. But here is an example for those you who crazy enough to be on Windows 8 and can't figure out how to even get to Firefox never mind turn off your machine.
<H1>Windows 8 Sucks as much as Ben Bernanke<H1> OK not a great example it should say something like <H1>Gold will make you rich and Silver will make you really, really rich <H1> See, I managed to get a few some relevant keywords in there.
• Place your keywords in the title tag, description tag, keyword tag, and alt tags. 
• Place your keyword(s) in an <h1>, <h2>, and/or <h3> tag.
• Place your keywords in the first twenty-five words of your page.
• Place your keywords in the last twenty-five words of your page.
• Bold your keywords at least once on your page.
• Italicize or underline your keywords at least once on your page.
• Avoid Flash, dancing cats or any other crap on your front page unless you happen to be #1 already and can get away with it.

7. Internal links and external links on your site Slap these puppies up all over the place. Don't be shy or humble. Get them in there and everywhere. I am going to slap some random ones here. Gold bugs: 40 years in the Wilderness
Shameless link to an old article I wrote. But it tells the robots to go take a look. Something more relevant to today though would be a link to GM's latest article here http://screwtapefiles.blogspot.com/2012/10/sunday-pre-game-1021.html and link to an external quality source of trading information like Jeanne's monument to narcissi Jeanne's Trading Setups or Kid Dynamites emporium of quality porn I mean scorn. Kidding.
8. Footer Don't ignore this. That junk at the bottom of the page about trademarks, copyrights and other junk that no one reads. Well the robots read it. They can't get enough of that. Stick in links, links and more links going to every corner of your website. Make those links descriptive not just "click here" or "stuff". Useful stuff descriptions like "Site map", "Blog" etc. keep our robot masters happy.    
Part 2 of on page optimization will be up shortly followed by Off page optimization.





10 comments:

Bullion Baron said...

Some good tips here, good post.

As someone who has found their site well positioned in Google (for some search terms) without actively using SEO to achieve it, here are some things I've noticed can help:

URLs: As well as the domain name make sure the rest site generates appropriate naming convention. For example if you run a forum (this can apply to any site though), rather than allowing the page name to generate like:

www.bestforumintheworld.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=4&sid=ced8baeb600376d273fb8e6b16c45b23

Instead it should be set to generate like so:

www.bestforumintheworld.com/forums/%subforum%-%nameofthread%-%randomnumbertoavoidduplication%

Many platforms just require a setting change or additional plugin to help with this if they don't do it by default (surprisingly many platforms including WordPress don't set SEO friendly URLs by default).

Content: I've found that without specifically optimising for SEO if you are producing original content on a regular basis on a subject which isn't too competitive for keywords then you can easily move your page into the top ranks pretty quickly and will also find your site/blog is indexed faster (my primary blog www.bullionbaron.com often gets indexed within around 5-10 minutes).

Images: It may depend on the subject matter of your site, but if images play a heavy part then make sure you do a couple of things... RENAME YOUR IMAGE FILES, don't just upload a picture with the name "321414141pic.jpg", rather rename it to be descriptive (e.g. "Brown turd 2 inches long 1 inch diamter.jpg") and also where possible use captions to further describe the picture. This will assist the rank of your picture in a Google Image search and may bring in additional visitors.

Meta tags: From my reading these don't play as large a role as they used to, infact many say they are not worth bothering with at all. I am not sure the full truth to this, but it does make sense given the complex nature of Google's algorithms today versus the way sites used to be ranked.


Looking forward to part 2!

Louis Cypher said...

Thanks BB,
Forgot about the image tags. I'll add that and attribute. Sounds like you may may ordered something from the shite store. Is some lucky neighbor going to have a pleasant surprise?

Bullion Baron said...

haha indeed. Also on the list of recent purchases:

1 paper bag
1 box of matches

coin coin said...

Nice article for SEO dummies. 2 comments :

1 - Actually the Meta Keword is depracated, google does not look at it anymore.

2 - close your tags, example :
<H1>Windows 8 Sucks as much as Ben Bernanke</H1>
instead of
<H1>Windows 8 Sucks as much as Ben Bernanke<H1>

cheers

Louis Cypher said...

Thx coin Coin
will do

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, but this whole post is garbage. You complain about the poor quality of what you could find on the web so you decided to water it down with your own poorly educated version full of half truths and 'tips' that might have given you a boost 3 years ago.

"Seriously, the Algorithm’s the search engines use are not so complex that they require 10 DVD's."

Oh you're right, one of the world's largest companies with many of the world's brightest engineers have spent billions and the last 14 years perfecting search and anti spam, but it's so easy a caveman could do it right?

You want to excel at SEO? Create great content that people want to read, and share it with your friends. That's how it's designed to work and most of the time they get it right.

Kristen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kristen said...

Now a day online marketing will help a lot for a website or a business to make profit. Thanks for sharing an informative post.

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