SEO (Search Engine Optimization) both the bane and boon of many a person’s existence. It’s a known fact that the best way to get traffic to your website is by simply having your site show up in the first page or two of the major search engine’s results. Visitors that come in from those search engine results pages (referred to as SERP) have two main things going for them. They are more likely to buy, and they didn’t cost you any money to get there. Getting your site onto those first two pages can be a struggle, and people are always watching what you are doing and gunning for the top spot. You have to keep aware of all of the latest tactics and methods and measure yourself against your competitors.
Yes, competitors. Many people aren’t aware of the competitive nature of SERPs positioning, but it is. Keep in mind that you are ranked in comparison with the other sites in the results. If the search engine thinks that your content is more relevant, then you rank higher, if it is determined that your content is less relevant, then you fall in the results. If they know what they are doing, the other sites showing up for the searches you wish to rank high in are watching you, and the other sites on the first two pages to see what they are doing, and if they are rising or falling.
So how do you ensure that you can rank well against the other sites out there and rise in the SERPs? Well, for starters, let’s assume that there are only three search engines, because frankly, Google, Yahoo, and MSN (in that order) represent the majority, the vast majority of searches. And Google represents the vast majority amongst those three. For the purposes of this article we’ll focus only on Google. If you do right by them, what you do will be good for other search engines as well.