On Page SEO and Keywords

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This is old fashioned SEO, but however search engines alter their algorithms, the basics tend to stay the same.

When going for a keyword or phrase on Google, or on adwords, the more general and broad the keyword or phrase, the tougher it is to rank well or afford. The more speficic and unique the key word or phrase, the easier it is to rank or pay for.

A little business insight, when someone is looking to buy, say a skateboard, they will type in ‘skateboards’ into Google to get more information. But a buyer is unlikely to buy at the site he’s getting information from. When the skateboard customer has more information, their search is going to be more specific, perhaps “Buddha Zen Buddy”, the name of a specific board from a long board company with close to regular skateboard proportions but a smoother ride thanks to broad trucks and fat wheels.

The advertiser that ranks best for “Buddha Zen Buddy” will sell more of those skateboards than the business selling the same board, but competing for the keyword “skateboard”.

People generally know what they’re looking for when they are ready to buy, and when they search, it’s for the specific item, not the general category.

Thats why it makes sense to go for more affordable and less competitive specific keywords and phases. It a;so m akes sense, when going for a very competitive key word, to promote a key phrase that includes the coveted keyword. You can rank well for the phrase and compete for the coveted keyword at the same time.

You should play around with it, figure out your key words and phrases. This site I’ve not done everything I know to do as I’ve been working on using the blog for SEO to the exclusion of most anything else, as a learning project. I am going to get this entire site SEO’d perfectly soon.

Here’s specific tips on On page SEO. This may be familiar to you, but this material has never stopped working. The thing you have to be wary of, is spamming your keywords ridiculously. Your copy needs to read well to people first and foremost, if you do anything else you’re sabotaging your SEO. The search engines want great on topic sites, not constructs trying to look like great on topic sites with key word spamming  – and the spiders have ways to determine which one your site is.

Use your Key Word / Phrase

  • In Meta keywords, it’s optional but a good habit. Keep keywords short.
  • In Meta Description. Keep the keyword(s) close to the left and in a full sentence.
  • In the Page Title, close to the left, probably not the first word.
  • In the top portion of the page in the first sentence of the first full bodied paragraph (plain text, no bold, no italic, no style).
  • In a H2-H4 heading.
  • In bold, second paragraph if reasonable and anywhere but the first usage on the page.
  • In subscript/superscript
  • In URL (directory name, file name or domain name). Don’t duplicate the keyword in the url.
  • In an image file name used on the page.
  • In the ALT tag of the previously mentioned image.
  • In the Title attribute of that image.
  • In link text to another website.
  • In an internal link’s text.
  • In title attributes of all links going in and out of site.
  • In the filename of attached CSS or Javascript pages.
  • In an inbound link onsite (preferably from homepage)
  • In an inbound link from offsite (if possible)
  • In a link to a site with pagerank 8 or better.

Other SEO things to consider include:

  • Use “last modified” headers if you can.
  • Validate the HTML! Google’s parser may miss an entire page because of a few simple errors, it has in the past anyhow.
  • An html template is all good, Google can parse it.
  • Keep pages as .html or .htm if possible, dynamic extensions are SEO risky (some shopping carts and other php programs have work arounds).
  • Keep the ratio of text to html code very high. Text should outweigh html significantly.
  • Double check your page in every browser and computer you can, Safari, IE, Opera, Galeon, Firefox…etc.
  • Use Raw HREFs for links. The simpler the link the better, javascript can screw up the SEO potential of a link.
  • Figure out that 1 referral a day to 10 pages is better than 10 referrals a day to one page – this is the real secret to getting traffic, a site worth paying attention to.
  • Don’t assume keywords in your Siter’s navigation template is worth anything at all. Google is looking for full sentences and paragraphs. Key words laying around the page are almost worthless compared to the same key word used in a sentence.

So between this post, the one on back links and the one on blog SEO you have a crash course on website SEO.

Ask questions! Please!


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