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There's No "Trick" To A Search Engine Friendly Website

May 24, 2008
Having worked online as a Web marketer since 2005, I've seen just about every trick and gimmick imaginable for improving a page's standing in the search engines. Naturally most of these suggested tactics are unethical, and therefore end up contributing to the creation of new strictures within the search algorithms.

The ironic thing is, you really don't need any trickery to get the search engines to like you. All this black hat nonsense is just a big waste of time and it ends up causing more problems than it solves.

The pattern works as follows:

Every couple of months a new set of childish tactics is hailed as the next big thing for faking out the search algorithms and getting a page to the top of the rankings. Thousands of marketers who either don't know any better or just aren't capable of quality Web development climb on the bandwagon and for a couple of months all participants enjoy improved search engine position.

Invariably, the minds behind the Web's leading search engines catch on to the hoodwinking, adjust their algorithms and level severe penalties against Webmasters caught using the most recent black hat techniques. Sometimes this will result in a domain being chucked completely out of the search index.

This is especially tragic when otherwise honest site owners have been given bad advice from so-called SEO experts. Generally speaking, there is no process for appeal once your site has been banned from Google or otherwise flagged as a black hat operation.

The good news is you need not worry about this sort of trouble if you simply resolve to steer clear of all suspect SEO strategies. Be sure to do your research and check in with the Web's more reputable search marketing authorities before executing a new technique.

It's really not hard to spot a black hat trick. Your gut will tell you if the method is questionable, and again if it's above the radar you'll certainly find info about it on any number of honest marketing blogs.

To help you avoid some of the guesswork, I'm going to give you some standard advice on what makes a good, search engine friendly piece of Web property. These rules of thumb haven't changed since 2003 and it's unlikely they'll stop working any time in the future.

First, you need to understand that search engines are looking for exactly the same thing on a page that a human user is looking for: quality! Keep this in mind as you build your pages and set up your blogs and you can't go wrong.

The most important onsite element for good SEO is your title tag. This needs to include one to three solid keyword phrases. Your title is not only crucial to feeding the search spiders, it's also the heading that will be displayed when your site appears in the search results.

Next is your META description tag. There is some controversy as to whether the major engines still look at this tag, but I'm telling you right now Google does. Not only will a good application of your main keywords help your ranking, you should know the META description is the text that shows up beneath your title in the results listings.

Within your main page content, be sure to exercise good keyword placement with your H1, H2, and other heading tags. Also experiment with putting relevant keyword phrases into strong, italic, and underline tags to let spiders know where important terms are on your page.

And don't forget to name your images, links, and other files as keyword phrases. This little-used tactic allows you to slip a few extra keywords into a page without stuffing your content.

When using a blog, be absolutely sure to insert several relevant tags into the appropriate field with all your posts. This function is incredibly effective at getting the attention of the search engines and can result in your posts being indexed literally within minutes.

It's also a smart move to put together a simple site map. This is essentially a linkage index that allows the spider bots to crawl your entire site quickly and easily. There are a number of sitemap generators online that make this process quick and easy for you.

Taking the above tips into consideration, remember to keep it natural! If you go to absurd lengths to add excessive keywords into your page content you'll be flagged as a search spammer and end up getting the dreaded slap for it.

If you apply this simple formula for building your pages, you'll have search engine friendly Websites every time. The only thing left to do is acquire lots of quality back links and watch your ranking improve over time.
About the Author
Tim Whiston is a professional entrepreneur who enjoys helping other entrepreneurs achieve success. He would love to help you build your own Website with his comprehensive Website Creation Course.
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