How SEO is Like Cooking

There is no one recipe for success. Tasty dishes are made from fresh ingredients, measured within reason, cooked at a specific temperature for the prescribed time and artfully presented. Create enough dishes using this “recipe for success,” and you’ll have a great meal. But if you’re looking for ONE recipe or one road to a successful dinner, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. There are many roads to a successful dinner.

SEO Success

Search engine optimization (SEO) success is similar. There is no one strategy that guarantees success. A successful SEO campaign is made up of several ingredients, including on-page optimization, link building and social marketing and networking. Even though people use different recipes for their SEO campaigns, many achieve tasty rankings.

If you want to achieve success in search engine optimization, you need to test your SEO recipes. Recipe authors take notes each time they make a recipe, and they tweak and tweak until they get it down pat.

Ingredients for SEO Success

Invest time to stay current on best practices. Learn from the top SEO chefs. Work with their proven strategies so that you don’t have to spend unnecessary time and energy on trial and error. Read constantly to stay up-to-date on SEO best practices. Just as you season savory foods with salt and pepper (because even the best recipes fall flat with them), there are a few “givens” that you’ll need to incorporate into your strategy so that your SEO efforts don’t fall flat: proper keywords, great on-page optimization, properly worded text links, and fresh-baked content.

Combine Successful SEO Ingredients

While best practices change from time to time, the bread and butter of SEO remain constant:

Keyword research – You’ll base many things such as title, meta tags, etc., on your keyword research. Lack of research can lead to half-baked results. Limit yourself to a few keywords per page. Once you settle on a few keywords, integrate them into the content naturally. Resist the urge to pile on the keywords.

On-page optimization Another important ingredient is your websites on-page optimization. This includes proper URL structure, optimized images, meta tags, sitemaps, fixing errors and so on.

Content – Content is king and without fresh-baked, high-quality content, you can’t attract visitors. Update your content frequently. No one visits stale websites, and that includes the search engines.

Social marketing and networking – Choose the right avenues for your niche. For example, musicians tend toward MySpace while most everyone else uses Facebook. Everyone uses Twitter, and professionals also develop online contacts through LinkedIn. Draw on the expertise, research and findings of experts you meet in your online travels. Interacting with others can lead to organic links.

Optimize – Continue to tweak your keywords, link text, etc., even after you’ve published the URL.

Continuing education –The more you know about your niche, the more credibility you’ll give your site. The more you research and apply legitimate SEO techniques, the better chance you have of reaching the top of the search results.

 

In Summary

There’s no way to cut corners and nuke your website to the top of the search results. Play by the rules, and whatever you do, don’t try to get cute with Google. SEO takes time. Apply proven SEO techniques, publish compelling content several times a week, tweak and wait.

 

About the guest author: Gino Orlandi is an SEO strategist with many years of experience. Contact him if you are in need of SEO consulting or services.

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Right Ways to Structure Your URL

Stemming from the field of search engine optimisation is the proper use of URL or Uniform Resource Locator in your websites. Basically, the proper structuring of URL is one of the most disregarded aspects in website optimisation having no knowledge of the way URL construction affects the website standing in the page results of search engines.

In fact, SEO companies and SEO consultants agree to the fact that URL structuring is one of the salient points in effectively achieving a higher page rank. That is why, in your SEO campaigns, you should not take URL structuring for granted because it really helps your site a lot in gaining better visibility compared to other sites that does not utilise effective techniques in structuring URLs.

With the above premise, the question is how will you structure your URL in such a way that it is SEO friendly? What are the right ways in developing right URLs? If you are new to the field of hosting a website, then the following techniques on how you should weave out your URLs are deemed important.

1. Keep your URL concise as possible

Structuring your URL is basically a simple task as believed by SEO companies and SEO consultants. You don’t have to be an expert in SEO for you to be able to structure your website address correctly. What you must do is to simply formulate a URL that is concise and brief. You can do this by avoiding placing your webpage into several sub folders since it can just make your website address very complicated.

When you can shorten your URL in such a way that it can easily be memorised by your visitors, then that would be a better option. Take note, you have to make your URL user-friendly which means that your visitors can easily locate your site the next time they want to visit your page. This can only be done when your URL is easier to be printed in the mind.

Consider these examples: http://www.SEO.com/blog.php, and http://www.SEO.com/blog/2012/april/posts/blog.php. Which among the given URL is easier to remember? It is the first one, right? Therefore, as much as possible design your URL in a way that is simple to remember by your visitors.

2. Incorporate the Title of your Post in the URL Referred as Static URL

One of the basic rules in effectively structuring a URL is through the use of the page title of a particular blog post in its respective URL. For example, if a blog post is entitled as “seo strategies”, the URL of this blog post must include the terms “seo strategies” just like this way: http://www.seolandia.org/seo-strategies.php.

Basically, having a static URL is better compared to having a dynamic one. A dynamic format of a URL makes uses of special characters involving a query action which is not SEO friendly in itself.

3. For Domain Names, Make use of the Main Keyword

The utilisation of the main keyword to your URL structure is one of the points in making your website highly optimised. Compared to other website addresses which do not integrate the main keyword, keyword-incorporated URL has the greater chance to be of better visibility in the search engine page results—which is a goal in search engine optimisation.

Worth noting, as the structure of your URL affects your rank in search engine results page, it is but right that you know the basic points of developing a good URL. Should you like your site to gain great traffic, you can start by following these simple steps on how to create a good URL just as practiced by SEO companies and SEO consultants.

 

About the guest author: Vincent is a content developer specializing in writing content that are seo-centric. He loves to write topics about SEO and Web Design.

This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

How to Set Up a Business Site on a Shoestring

If you have a business, either online or not, in this day and age the one thing that you absolutely have to have is a website. Unfortunately most business owners don’t have the time, knowhow or spare cash to build one or have one built.

Fortunately, it real isn’t as difficult as you might think to bring your business into the 21st century. It is a learning curve, but this post will get you started.

Step 1

First of all, you need a domain and you need hosting. If you are not technically minded it will make your life much easier if you just buy a hosting package and domain from the same supplier (most hosting packages will even include a free domain).

There is lots of jargon to confuse you, but for a simple site all you need is linux hosting with PHP and at least 1 mysql server. Anything else can just be ignored. There is no reason for your hosting to cost any more than $7-8 per month.

It will also make your life easier if you look for hosting that includes Fantastico or Installatron. These plugins will enable you to install a website with absolutely no technical knowledge required!

Step 2

Ok, so now you have your hosting set up, log in and click the Fantastico or Installatron button – follow the steps and set up your WordPress site. WordPress is primarily a blogging platform, but it can easily be used to build a traditional website.

Once you have finished your installation that is literally it! You now have a website up and running; all you need to do is add the content and get to grips with the WordPress control panel.

Step 3

During the installation you will have entered a username and password. Go to: yourdomain.com/wp-admin and log in to see your website’s control panel (you can also go to yourdomain.com to see your actual website and watch it take shape as you add content and tweak it).

Step 4

There is a lot you can do in WordPress, this is the real learning curve. There are a few things to get started with though:

  • Themes
    currently you have the standard theme – this doesn’t look professional, so click on the install new theme link (appearance -> themes -> install themes) and search through the hundreds of free themes available. Find one you like, click install and then activate it. You can now see the changes live on your site.
  • Permalinks
    You should set your URL structure as simple as possible so that your users can easily understand and remember them. Go to (settings -> permalinks) and select custom structure, then enter /%postname%/ in the text box and save your settings.
  • Home page
    You will need to create pages for all of the content you need. Start by creating a home page and then probably an about us or whatever else you need. (pages -> add new) Write a title and then give it a simple URL and write some content. Click publish.
  • Front page
    By default the home page shows your latest blog posts. But this is a business site, not a blog, so you need to make it show your home page as the front page. Go (settings -> reading) and select show static page for home page. Then in the drop down box for home page, select the page you have just created. Update settings.

Step 5

That’s your site set up. Now you need to get to know how all of the little bits work, tweak your site settings and get it looking the way you want it. Add some plugins for contact forms and potentially SEO and tweak your navigation.

There is a lot to learn at first, but if you just invest a couple of hours a week you will soon know your way around the software and you will really be able to own your website and save yourself hundreds of pounds on web design services.

 

About the guest author: My name is Muzammil Bashir. I’m working with the Senior Editor of Net Effekt –specialising in white label email marketing.

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.