Understand Why Your Search Engine Optimization SEO Organization Shouldn’t Pay Many Dollars to PR Agencies.
In the realm of website optimization, numerous questions, ballpark estimations, and insights are drawn from personal and collaborative experiences. Major search engines like Google, Yahoo, and MSN keep their ranking system algorithms undisclosed. While they share information on factors influencing search results, optimization methods, and recommendations for specific situations, achieving positive results is often a product of hard work. Like other SEO experts, I’ve gathered information from various sources, constantly working to enhance results for clients. I believe in adhering to “White Hat” (or more appropriately, “Dark Hat”) principles.
The Site Disclosure – What Owning a Site Means
As an Internet developer and SEO specialist, I interact with numerous site owners seeking to change or improve their sites. I also deal with individuals looking to establish their online presence with a new site. Through these interactions, a common theme emerges—a misunderstanding or misconception. I call this a “confusion of reality” as the perception of how the web can benefit businesses often differs significantly.
It’s often assumed that merely owning a domain and having a site built and published on the web will magically attract thousands of people who will visit and buy products. The notion of “If you build it, they will come” should be eliminated from the vocabulary to align with the underlying search technology. In the real business world, success doesn’t come effortlessly, so what makes the web different? Perhaps it was the tech boom or the hype that led to a temporary surge in tech company stock prices. I can imagine the thoughts of small investors, “Surely this can be replicated for my business.” In response, I would agree, “Yes, it’s unlikely, but you should be able to achieve some results over time.”
When undertaking a project like SEO for a website, it’s crucial to understand the need for long-term commitment. It’s not an easy task, and sufficient resources must be allocated. Delivery deadlines should be carefully considered against required changes to meet customer expectations. Key to the success of the SEO project is understanding that significant changes occur at the beginning and during implementation, but changes don’t cease after implementation. There are continuous ongoing refinements to the design and framework over time. In this regard, it’s essential to manage expectations and set realistic long-term goals for what a site can achieve and in what time frames those goals are expected to be met.
So, what should be your goal when delving into SEO for your site? Well, everyone’s goal is the same: improve page rankings, increase page visits and hits, and ultimately generate sales through the site.
When it comes to SEO and achieving these goals, you must have principles, and my main principle is, “Good websites get good ratings, and bad websites get bad ratings or none at all.” With the evolution of search engine technology and the refinement of search engine results, this statement becomes increasingly true. I believe in results through “white hat” (read: “Dark Hat”) principles and methods.
What are “white hat” principles? I would liken it to doing things the right way and the correct way without taking shortcuts. So, build a good site, promote good links, have informative content, and continually work on it, and then you are on your way to good rankings through “White Hat” principles.
Now, why should you do things the “white hat” way? Well, search engines do have some form of artificial intelligence. They quickly catch on to websites spamming or linking to sites with no relevance and poor cross-linking. It’s about being smart for the long term and believing that your business should grow organically.
So, how do I improve my site and make it optimized for search engines naturally? Well, that’s why you’re here! Let’s go through a few things you should do on your site at a fundamental level.
When choosing a domain name, pick one that is relevant to the product or service you will provide and is as straightforward as possible. Considerations of branding and product/service should go into this decision. Collaboration with your SEO proficiency is valuable. Take some time and choose wisely. Keep it simple and easy to remember; often saying it aloud will determine if it can be understood by a layperson.
It is a widely held belief among many SEO experts that buying an older domain, one that has been around for a while means it won’t be sandboxed by Google. What’s the sandbox effect? It refers to how Google treats a new or relatively unknown site or domain. Google’s Sandbox effect often relegates a new domain to inferior attention in search results. Regardless of the site, optimizing it lowers the site’s relevance and ranking for the searched term. If you can use your old business domain name, consider this important.
If, however, you are buying a new domain name to keep it relevant to the product or service being sold or presented on the site, keep it close, relevant, and simple. Relevance is crucial.
Domain-Specific or Global Domain (.com or .com.au)?
I think websites are better, mainly because they promote universally. But if you want to keep it domain-specific and tailored to your region, then consider purchasing all similar top-level domains—yourdomain.com.com and yourdomain.com.au, if possible.
Choosing a Host:
Fast, reliable, and provides everything you need. Ideally, it provides a unique IP. Again, some SEO experts believe this can also hurt Google rankings, but from my experience, it sometimes does and sometimes doesn’t. I have had some sites come in with high PR rankings on shared IPs, and for others, when I moved to a different IP, the PR of the site jumped. So, this is still somewhat of a mystery regarding research rankings. I guess an idea.
When choosing your host, ensure the plan you are on can be expanded so that any new increases in traffic can be accommodated properly.
There are several key considerations when changing or designing a site.
Flash has been popular for a few years now, and I genuinely believe it has its place. It’s a great way to display many products or services in a small area, has excellent visual effects when done properly, and can set a good friendly tone for the site visitor. Having said that, I also dislike Flash; it can be an absolute nightmare when it comes to search engine optimization.
What you should be aware of is Flash; it can’t be read by a search engine as the search engine can’t read the text or the images held within it, nor can it ever decipher what is in the pictures being displayed.
When it comes to Flash, I would suggest not making your entire site Flash. If you are designing a new site and you want to incorporate Flash, then use it in high-impact areas to capture the attention of your target audience but use it sparingly. It is essential to ensure that as much text content