Search engine optimization (SEO) is the task of improving your site to rank higher in the search engine result page for some specific search keywords. Even though the way a search engine ranks your site and the methods it uses to compare one site to another is a closely held secret in the industry, it is possible to follow some simple techniques to better placement in search engine rankings.
Experts have been trying to decipher the mysterious search engine algorithm for years and even though certain aspects of it are constantly updated and adjusted, some basic criteria are core to the way a site is ranked. Knowing what the basic ranking criteria are is essential to improving your ranking, and ultimately your traffic.
One of the main considerations most search engines have for a particular site is the concept of keywords. How many times a keyword is used on a site, and where on the site it appears is important to the search engine in its ranking of the site.
So when you are setting up the site initially, think carefully about the name you choose and be sure to include the keyword in the site address or the domain name. You must make sure to have your site indexed or “crawled” by search engines on a regular basis. This can happen naturally, or you can make it happen by submitting your site to the search engines directly. This will cause them to index your site faster.
Because the search engines care about sites that update their content regularly, and will rank them higher, you should update your site contents regularly with fresh and original contents. If you are using pictures and videos, use texts to describe what those pictures and videos are about.
If you update your site’s contents regularly, the search engine will notice this and will normally index your web pages more frequently. This indexing frequency is another key factor in your search ranking. So it is a good idea to keep your site fresh.
Another major factor in search engine rankings is the number and quality of links that point to your site. Having a lot of these links, especially from other sites that are ranked high is very important. The more links you can establish the better your chance of ranking higher in the search engine result page.
There are a few easy ways to get these links and most of them are free, but it takes a little effort on your part. Next to having the relevant website name, getting a lot of links for your site is the single most important factor in improving your search rankings.
There are a lot of techniques for getting these links established for your site and some work better than others. One easy way is to submit your site to website directories, especially to Open Directory Project. Submit only to high ranking general purpose directories or niche specific directories.
You should create your profiles for your site in two dozen Web 2.0 sites like YouTube, Flickr, Hubpages, Squidoo, Mixx, Digg, eHow, etc. Post links pointing to your sites in those profiles. You should also create relevant contents and submit those contents, with links pointing to your site, in those Web 2.0 sites.
Another great place to get your link building started is by visiting and posting comments on a group of blogs covering the keyword you are trying to target. Usually if you post on these blogs, you can add a link back to your site and have it counted in your favor. You could easily post on several blogs a day and establish an impressive collection of links as a result.
You should join forums related to your site topic and have your web site link in the forum signature. When you start an original thread or reply to an existing thread, your forum signature will be automatically appended to your contents.
Another great technique to build link is writing articles and submitting those articles to popular article directories like ezinearticles, goarticles, etc. These articles should have an author’s bio paragraph at the end of each article where you can leave links to your web site.
You should always use keywords as anchor texts in your links, instead of a plain HTML link.
All of these techniques are fairly easy to implement and will have a very positive impact on your search rankings quickly. Some of these are more effective than others and take a little time to work. The trick with improving your search engine rankings and traffic is to use a variety of techniques to help your site rise in the ranking.