Roundbrix SEO – Being #1 on Google has its Perks !

Ever since the beginning of the search engine, the coveted prize is in being ranked at the top or very close to it. You see, when folks search for something, more often than not, they won’t scroll down three to five pages to see Google results numbered 30 through 50. Today’s searcher really wants to know how close they can get to what they are looking for without having to go to another page or scrolling down as well! Realistically, I find that folks are a little challenged – as I too had to do some soul searching to figure out what makes sense for my business. So here’s what we have learned:

Select Terms that are not overpopulated. If I search for ‘wine’, I have to wade through 910 million results. If I select ‘red wine’ I pared the field down to a mere 294 million. Wow, that’s a two-thirds reduction!  Now I type in ‘Tempranillo’ (the noble grape of Spain equivalent to the Cabernet Sauvignon grape) and I am down to 7 million results. If I now ask for what I am really looking for ‘tempranillo match‘, I am down to a mere 311 thousand results. Here, I find a site called winematch.com rated #1 that is displaying a number of Tempranillo wines, which was really my end goal.

Here’s the lesson. People are thinking more and typing in more words than ever into search engines in an attempt to narrow their field of search as much as possible. They are looking to find what they can on the first Google results page visible to them. Finding things on the first page greatly reduces our time and frustration factor when looking for stuff. After all, it’s far easier to search through 311 thousand results rather than 910 million.

You can use Google’s Keyword Tool to plug in all the common terms you think people will use to find a business like yours. The tool will show you all the keyword phrases and what kind of traffic in general each receives. Also, it will suggest other phrases along with their traffic and competitiveness on which you might want to also focus.

Page optimization is critical. How each page is optimized is important, but it needs to be built that way. Are those important keywords sprinkled on each page generously without it looking like you intentionally planted them to cater to the search engines?  Remember, you have two audiences here – the people that read them and the search engines. Your site needs to have links that go down to page levels that reinforce what you’re all about. It is allowable to have some redundancy. From a best practice standpoint, mention of a keyword three times on each page brings search engine benefits.

Roundbrix made the decision to build our website based on SEO perspective from the ground up. This enables the website to show up #1 on google for about 20 different phrases because the website was built specifically to get high on the search engines. For example, we did not use any tables. It is recommended to use CSS only so that the search engines have a lot less html code to look through when spidering your website. Also, we enable quite a bit of cross-linking. As an example, from the home page you can access our HP Partner page while at the same time you can also access it under our DATA page and several other pages.

Title importance is most often overlooked. I go to so many sites, and the title is just plain wrong or worst yet empty. A web designer is not a search engine optimization specialist! Remember this – the first sixty (60) characters of the title is what search engines care about the most. Also, the more important keyword phrases should be on the left part of the title. So pull up your web site, highlight over your favicon in the toolbar and see if that agrees with what you believe folks will type into a search bar to find your business. We also find that adding location, like ‘Irvine’ or ‘Orange County’ also helps quite a bit.

Getting a potential new client to your site as an initial introduction is the most important thing. Some websites use something more unique in their title that allows someone to find you, like perhaps an item or service more unique to your business than to others. This increases your odds of being found whereas just using a keyword that is too widely used in your area of product line or service expertise might make the competition a bit too great.

 

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Top 10 Secrets to Getting Higher on Search Engines

#1 – Use The Right Tools

Tools you can use to help you out (same ones we use):

      Google Analytics – free and very high quality traffic analytics. See what pages are popular and what methods users used to find your website to evaluate how well your site is being found. (free software)

http://www.google.com/analytics

      Google Webmaster Tools – Gives tips to guide you through how to fix problems with your website and ensure your site gets indexed by the search engines most effectively. Looks at performance, html errors and other factors affecting how the site gets indexed. (free software)

http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/

•      WebPosition – Allows you to continually track your progress with certain keywords to show how high you are on the different search engines for the keywords you have. Also provides tips on how to get higher for those keywords. (small monthly fee)

http://www.webposition.com/

      Keyword Tool – Tool to let you see how much traffic your keyword currently gets and offers suggestions on other keywords that may provide substantial traffic for. (free)

https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal

#2 – Identify Corrent Keywords and Keyword Phrases

Establish what you are going to use for your target phrase, which is what your site or page is primarily about. Use similar keywords to your target phrase.

i.e. “avaya ip office in orange county”, “infastructure moves in orange county”

Select relevant keywords that apply to your website topic. Use phrases of at least two words in your content and use them frequently to increase your chances of search engine crawlers picking up the content.

#3 – Put These Keywords in Your Web Page Properly

Place these keywords in the HTML title tags for a better chance of recognition. The Title is probably the most important place for these keywords.

Only use two or three phrases. More is not always better for keywords. Place the keywords close to the top of the page.

#4 – Create a Sitemap

Create a site map for your page — a page that includes all the links on your website in one, easy-to-find location. A search engine can easily pick this up and index all the linked pages. Use your keywords in the site map as well, ensuring that the links use the terms as much as possible. Use relevant words. Avoid using terms that have absolutelynothing to do with the content on a page simply for the link text.

#5 – Associate with Websites with Similar Content

The goal here is to get your website links on as many other relevant websites as possible. This will increase your “Google PageRank” and give you better search engine rankings. Associate yourself with individuals who have websites with similar content. Join groups or message boards that relate to your topic. Contact other site owners through e-mail or a forum message and ask them if they would be interested in a link exchange, where you place a link to their website on your page and they do the same for you.

#6 – Submit to Search Engines Manually

Submit your completed pages to each search engine manually. An automatic detection may be easier but increases the chances of mistakes happening. Only submit two or three main pages on your site or you may get targeted for search engine spamming and be penalized heavily. Most, but not all, search engines have a site where you can submit your site link to be listed with them through a simple form.

#7 – Submit to Directories & Verify Listings on Ratings Sites

Submit your site to DMOZ.org. This is an open source directory which is used by the large search engines for their directory. It takes 3-4 months to get listings on here and there are no guarantees, but it helps a lot with your search engine rankings if you can get listed on this site as several sites use this for their directory.

Also, it is a good idea to submit to directories related to your company. For example any wine directory sites you find (“can type wine directory on Google”), you should make sure you have a listing. You may want to make sure you are listed correctly on Yelp, Yahoo, Google local search, yellowpages.com, CitySearch, TripAdvisor.

A lot of you are probably already listed here, but you may want to make sure your address and information is completely filled out properly to enhance chances of people finding your company.

#8 – URLs for Specific Pages Within Your Website

Another factor is the URL. If you have a page with 1970 chevelle parts an optimal URL could be like the following one http://www.opgi.com/c/chevelle/1970/parts.html which places all of the words for this search in the URL.

#9 – Properly Coding Your Website

Avoid tables, which can push relevant content further down the page. Tell your developers you want to use CSS instead of tables.

HTML adds a lot of code within your web pages that causes the search engines to sometimes overlook valuable content. It also pushes the keywords further down on the page to them and the higher on the page that your keywords can be, the better.

Also, for images make sure you include “ALT tags“. This is a way to describe the image to the search engine and the search engine factors this into the rankings.

On a web browser page, you can right-click on the page and click “view source”. Then do a search for “img” and make sure your images have the “alt tag” included as below.

If you are familiar with HTML, it also helps to have your keywords in the header tags < h1>, < h2> and in text throughout the page.

However if you go overboard with putting your keywords too much throughout the page, search engines will see this as trying to trick them and penalize you.

#10 – Social Media

Posting links related to specific pages of your website on FaceBook and Twitter are helpful. You can post a link for example of an upcoming event you are having on both sites and this gives people the opportunity to “like” the event and also gives the search engine .

You can also optimize your FaceBook presence by focusing on search engine optimization for that. Read this:

http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?uid=86945032176&topic=7268

We suggest you post things daily to your facebook/twitter accounts to let people know what is going on with your site and keep in close contact with your audience.

If you need help with your website design or search engine optimization, contact Roundbrix at 949.273.5200.

Ed

What’s New, What’s Hot and What’s Not

It seems that what could be taken away from my 25+ years in technology is simple. I worked the aircraft circuit, Northrop, Rockwell, Douglas Aircraft. Then I worked on oil rigs in the North Sea, the Government of Australia, Unilever, and Yamaha. What I learned here is that companies come and go, as do jobs. The key here is flexibility and adaptability, and knowing what makes business sense.

What is new are technologies. What may be tough is figuring out which ones give you the most bang for buck, obsolescence protection, and total cost of ownership. That’s where we come in.

* Move to Server 2008/Windows 7 64-bit soon. It lets you break the 4GB RAM barrier. It’s time!

* Deploy Server 2008R2, not Server 2008. You cannot upgrade from Server 2008 to Server 2008R2, but R2 is where you want to be

* Exchange 2010. It just gets better with smarter archiving/retention. Like Exchange 2007, this is 64-bit only, best fit with Server 2008R2

* Smarter SEO for web sites

* Windows 7, 64-bit – Although there is a 32-bit version, take the plunge to 64-bit if possible

* Droid. Free to push Exchange e-mail

* GSM phones/Quad-band for international travelers

* E-mail marketing pushes (weekly for sales, monthly for profesional services)

* Google Analytics (free in most cases) to see how your web traffic is doing

* 3G/4G Network Devices

* Blackberry is losing share to the Droid, as the Droid integrates better with Exchange and with less points of failure.

* 32-bit apps

I thought it might also be nice to share what we’re currently working on, so you might get a better feel as to what we do. This coming month, we have two Server 2008R2 upgrades, an Exchange 2010 upgrade, some web integration with 3rd party vendors, Windows 7 compatibility testing for another client. We also recently performed two IP Office system upgrades, and are working on upgrading internet bandwidth for a few more clients as prices, specifically with Cox Communications, are coming down.

Also, if you have any technology questions, feel free to use the “Contact Us” area on our website. We’re here to help!

Ed Leard

President and CEO