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Part 5: Start To Finish - Building A Website And Profiting
This part will cover on page optimization.
A lot of people think you can just build a few links online and then your website will rank for the most difficult keywords in the world. A common thing I hear from clients is "Well I've been paying you $95 for the last 3 months and I'm not ranked #1 for all of my keywords yet. Are you a scammer!?!?!" I hear this a lot because I tend to get client from seminars, flyers, referrals, and off line types of advertising. I do get a decent amount of clients from adwords and other advertising platforms, but it costs a lot to do it that way and I've found that offline cost much less to acquire a client. Basically I have clients that sign up because they heard that SEO was great for their websites and they'd make a lot of money from it, but they want and instant ROI, and that's never the case.
If you'd like to skip ahead to a section you know you need help with, use these links:
Part 1: Domain Registrars
Part 2: Hosting Companies
Part 3: Web Design
Part 4: Advertising
Part 6: Off Page Optimization
Part 7: Client Relations
And Here, We, Go!
I'm going to be covering on page optimization in the part of the guide because doing both on page optimization and off page optimization posts would be pretty lengthy and you may get overwhelmed while reading. So two posts it is!
On Page Optimization
Optimizing your pages for the search engines is known as on page optimization and everyone should be doing it. You need to focus on your titles, descriptions, headers, content, keywords, alt tags, etc. There's a lot that goes into this, and you don't have to keep re-doing this month after month. Once you find a good setup, stick with it.
Your titles are the first thing people see when they find you through the search engines. So if it's the first thing they see, then you should make sure it's a catchy title and I have a few tricks for that ;)
- First: You should add your main keyword into your title for SEO purposes, having your main keyword in the title will help with SEO benefits a little bit. It basically gives Google, Yahoo! and Bing a better understanding of what your website is about.
- Second: Try to get a number or symbol in there in order to draw attention to your listing. This is a trick used for a while now and it will help increase your click through. More click throughs = More traffic and more traffic = More sales, readers and subscribers ;)
- Third: If you're trying to do some branding, you'll want your domain in the title just so it shows up prominently. When placing your domain name in the title be sure to separate it from the rest of the text with - or | and absolutely DO NOT USE AN UNDERSCORE!
- Fourth: When typing up your title you will want it to be 69 characters or less. Anything longer than 69 characters will get cut off in Google and not provide any benefit to you or your website. You can make it longer if you want because it will fit in other search engines like Yahoo! and Bing. But if you're targeting Google, and you should be, you don't want to go past 69 characters.
Descriptions are the text you'll see underneath the title that shows up in your listing on Google, Yahoo! and Bing. These are little snippets of text you can add into your header to show the search engines what exactly the page is about. Having an optimized title and description alone can get your ranked for long tailed keywords.
- First: When typing up your description you'll want it to be legible but optimized. You'll want to get your main keyword in the description twice so you gain an SEO benefit and hopefully rank for your keywords.
- Second: The text in your description will most likely be what Google uses in their search results so you'll want it to be eye catching and pull people in to click through to your pages. To do this you'll want to add a few numbers into the description if you can. People tend to click more on listings that have numbers in them because it has something to do with our subconscious and wanting to click on a number because it reminds us of money. People will see the number, read the listing, and click through if they like what it's talking about.
- Third: You have to write your description for the people reading it, not the search engines. You can't just jam a dozen of your keyword into your description and think it will rank higher than everyone else, it doesn't work like that. Write what you want it to say and then go back and optimize it.
- Fourth: You'll have to limit the amount of text you put into the description. You don't want to go over 156 characters because anything more than that will be cut off in Google. It'll show in Yahoo! and Bing, but Google has the most traffic and searches so you'll want to target their search results.
Header tags are pretty strait forward. When using a header tag you're basically saying "Hey Google! This is what this section on my website is about!" and that's all. People use header tags wrong all the time and it can actually hurt your website.
- First: When using a header tag you'll want to keep is short and sweet. If you can use only your keyword to identify what the text following is all about, that's perfect. A lot of times people will have to use a short phrase in order to convey what it's about, and that's ok too
- Second: In your headers you'll always want to get your first, second or third main keyword in there because it will help you out with your SEO and rankings.
- Third: You'll want to use the tags in order, up to 6. You don't want to have three <h1> tags and ten <h6> tags. Use only one of the tags and then move on to the next. If you have to use more than six header tags, your page is probably too long to begin with and you'll need to look it over and do some edits. No one likes extremely long pages ;)
Alt tags are a way of showing the search engines what your images are trying to convey. If your image shows someone scuba diving but the alt tag says "image820348" then Google won't know what that image is about. But if the alt tag says "Scuba Diver" or something along the lines of what they scuba diver is doing, then you're all good.
Alt tags are another way of showing people what an image was suppose to be if it does not load correctly. Have you ever been to a website and seen a broken image with text next to it? That text is the alt tag ;)
Content and Keyword Density
Your content and keyword density will be one of the biggest factors when it comes to on page optimization. Not optimizing your content will just hurt your website in the long run and you'll be kicking yourself later.
Now this is only post 5 of 6 or more in my "Start To Finish - Building A Website And Profiting" guide
- First: When getting content for your website you'll want it to be at least 600 to 700 words long. Content that is 5,000 words long may just be overkill and you wasted a lot of time writing that up or paid more than you needed to for a writer to make you content. Some people will say you're good with 400 words of content, but play it safe and go for 600 to 700 words of content.
- Second: When writing the content you'll want to make it readable. This means you'll have to write it yourself or pay a writer to do it for you. You definitely do not want spun content on your website beause that's never going to end well. Spun content is when someone takes 20+ articles and mashes them together to make 100 articles that are somewhat unique. The search engines are catching on to this and just play it safe by writing your own content or paying a writer.
- Third: Us your subpages to target all your keywords. Don't let your homepage be the only thing bringing in traffic. Write up a good article and post it to a subpage. In the title and description of the subpage be sure to get your keyword in there that you're targeting and you'll be good to go. You'll have your keywords in the titl, description, headers and content.
- Fourth: When writing your content, or when someone else is, you never want to go over 3% keyword density. Some people are saying you can go as high as 5% but that seems too risky for me. I stick with 3% and that means for every 100 words of content, I have my keyword in there 1 to 3 times