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Search Engine Optimization The Easy Way - Part 1

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The major reason people fail online (apart from not actually doing anything) is that they can't get visitors to their site.  This series of articles on search engine optimization will guarantee you targeted traffic if you apply the techniques we discuss.  With targeted traffic comes cash

May aim over the next few articles is to give you a grounding in the art/science of search engine optimization.  By the end of this series of articles you should, even as a novice, be able to make changes to most websites that will shoot it up Google's rankings.

If you have any questions, or would like more detail please post a comment at the bottom of the page and I will try to answer your question.

As I've told you before I was able to move one of my sites over 243,000 places in Google within 3 weeks of performing some simple tasks.  Within 8 weeks I was number two on Google and after 14 weeks I was number one.  This obviously increased my visitors and more importantly money in my pocket.

This first article will give you a grounding in search engine optimization and what it can do for your business.

Search Engine Optimization or SEO is a huge topic that has thousands of sites devoted to it and even more companies willing to charge you for their "expertise".  Many of the SEO consultants out there charge masses of cash for little return, but that's a whole other topic that I will return to in a future article.

WHAT IS SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION?


SEO is simply a set of actions you can perform to increase the number of TARGETED visitors to your site from the search engines.

Now many of the terms that web builders or SEO people use are a little intimidating.  They are jargon  that can scare the novices  like us away.  But you don't need to know the in's and out's of HTML code to get real results.  You will also find some of this jargon is simply the name for a box that you type a description in to.  Sometimes I wonder if they create these complicated names just to sound clever.

WHAT IS AN ORGANIC OR NATURAL LISTING


Organic or a natural listing is the same thing, a listing you have not paid for.  In the diagram below you will see Google PPC  ( Pay Per Click) adverts on top  and on the right hand side.  The paid listings can cost anything from a few pence to $50 for every time a searcher clicks on them.

Click On Image To Enlarge

SEO organic vs Paid listings

The listings not boxed off in red are natural listings.  Basically Google deems these to be the most relevant search to the users query.  Our aim is to get Google to promote us to the top site for our keywords in the natural listings.

WHAT IS A KEYWORD


Selecting your keyword terms is vital, it will define your success.  I will return to this with a separate article to cover the topic more thoroughly.

A keyword is a word or phrase that a user may type into a search engine.  A very broad keyword could be "used cars".  Now "used cars" would probably drive a lot of traffic to your site but perhaps not targeted traffic if you're a local dealer.  A better keyword for a local dealer might be "used cars Cambridge" or even more targeted "used Nissans Cambridge".

As you make these keywords longer (known as long tail keywords) the search volume drops, the traffic gets more targeted and it becomes easier to get a high ranking in the search engine.

WHY SHOULD I OPTIMIZE MY SITE?


The simple answer to the above statement is easy... for money!

If you're selling an eBook or a DVD or even a business opportunity what would it be worth to be the number 1 listing on Google? 

Even if you're not selling something directly off the page having a number one listing gets you exposed to thousands of customers, who are interested in your actual service.  And remember you get this traffic for free!

If we go back to my hypnosis example that I have used previously over 2.2 million people a month search for the term hypnosis.  If you offered hypnosis clinics, sold hypnosis DVD's and taught people hypnosis, what would the number one listing be worth?  Hundreds of thousands if not millions in revenue a year.

If you were to use Google Adwords, Google's advertising programme, for the term hypnosis at the time of writing the average cost per click is around $1.50, so to get 5,000 visitors to your site every month it would cost  nearly $110,000 per year in advertising costs.

If you get in the top two or three listings you can get more traffic than this absolutely free!

HOW MANY PEOPLE WILL CLICK ON MY LISTING


This question has too many variables to answer accurately, including how good your description is below your listing. 

In terms of number of clicks generally 90% of all clicks come from the first page (20% of searchers don't click on anything), which is perhaps no surprise. 

What might shock you is that on average 80% of the clicks on the first page are from the natural listings and over 50% of the natural clicks come from the first two spots. So if you rank number 1 or 2  for hypnosis you could receive up to 400,000 visitors to your site a month just from Google. 

If you had 400,000 visitors a month do you think you could make money? Damn right!

Now realistically we would want to rank for something more niche than hypnosis, a longer tail keyword. 

If we were selling a self hypnosis DVD  perhaps the first phrase we would want to optimise is "buy self hypnosis DVD", the advantage of this phrase would be very targeted traffic (people searching for that phrase are likely to want to buy a self hypnosis DVD) and it would be fairly easy to get to number one in the rankings.  The major downside would be that very few people would search for that phrase.

How to select the best keyword will be covered in a later module.

Hopefully this has shown you some of the power of SEO and the cash it can bring you.  And remember even as a novice I was able to top the charts for two good volume keyword phrases in a matter of weeks.

Part 2 will begin to show you in simple terms how to shoot up those rankings.


Until next time, be happy.

Joe



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Paul Grainger (leeds)
 

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