Evolution does not only happen to human beings, you know. Technology is one of the fastest evolving facets of society nowadays, and with it comes the glorious birth of the Internet. Knowing the potential of reaching millions of people worldwide, website owners quickly jump into the fray of web marketing.
But it’s not enough to simply upload an article and let Google do its thing. Why?
Simply put, it’s the digital age, folks! It will continue to evolve until (insert name of higher being here) knows when. Meaning, it doesn’t pay well to get left behind. So if you own a website and you’re on a quest to keep up with the times, behold your fountain of online marketing SEO or Search Engine Optimization is the process of increasing a website or webpage’s visibility on a search engine’s results page (SERP).
If you rank high on the SERPs, you’re basically king of the hill. It means you’re generating more traffic than your competitors.
Here are two ways to get those SERP rankings up:
1. On-page Optimization
On-page optimization involves applying SEO strategies with the aim of increasing the relevance of a web page’s content through its keywords, which will consequently increase its SERP ranking. In 2011, the three search engine gods — Google, Bing, and Yahoo — introduced Schema.org. Schema is the vocabulary each search engine will use to read a page’s content.
With the use of Microdata, which consists of numerous mark-ups and new HTML elements, search engines can better appraise the relevance of a particular page. Think of it as kissing the behinds of the search engines — the more mark-ups you make means the Big Three will understand you more and then present your content better through rich snippets.
- Social Buttons. Nowadays, it’s easier to Like and Share any content by simply clicking on social buttons. These are the small buttons (presented as the social network’s logos, of course) strategically placed on websites for visitors to easily spread the post through their social media accounts.
- Usability. To be straight to the point: search engines will not give a rat’s a** about you if visitors do not find your site useful. So if you’re aiming to increase the relevance of a page’s keyword, you have to study your visitors’ behavior and activity when they get to your page (e.g. top landing pages, top exit pages, top content, languages, etc.).
- Presence of links to high value external pages. If you will link to external sources within your content, make sure to use reliable, reputable, and high-value websites. Otherwise, you’ll lose the search engines’ trust and they will drop your rank quickly.
2. Off-page Optimization or Link Building
Off-page optimization involves SEO strategies that will make a website or its web pages popular by tapping on external citations through link building and social media.
- Guest Blogging. Like what its name implies, this includes submitting your content to blogs with high traffic, strong following, and those that offer high-quality content to readers. This will further build your name as an authority in whatever your niche.
- News Pitching. So you think you’ve written a great article? You can pitch it to news websites as a source. Make sure that it’s newsworthy, so that reporters will actually use it a source and link back to it.
- Submit Your Site to Key Directories. Key directories are places where your site will be listed according to category and subcategory. This will help generate more Comment Marketing. This is simply leaving a comment on news posts, forums, and blogs. With a lot of relevant comments coming from you, you will eventually establish your name as an expert in your field.
- Broken Link Building. Don’t you just hate it when you land on a 404 page? The good thing is, you can turn this around to your advantage. First, determine if the site is a good link prospect, then get a hold of the webmaster’s contact details. Search the site for broken links. Once you have them, let the webmaster know that you have a list of broken links on his/her website.
Here’s the catch: add to that email your question whether the webmaster accepts site suggestions. If this plays well, it becomes a two-way thing: you help the webmaster get rid of broken links, and the webmaster helps you by including your site on his/her resource or links page.
Social Media Strategies
Since a lot of people are probably more concerned with checking their social media accounts than eating on time, you can also use that perverted sense of reality to your website’s advantage:
- Create A Blog – If you want your content to be out there circulating the Internet, you need to post it somewhere first. Blogging is one of the ways to do this. To create one, you need to look at overall website structure. This includes choosing the design and layout, looking for the domain name, and studying the keywords list for your niche.
- Content – For the love of the Internet, please don’t bore your readers. The idea is to engage your readers to read to the end, not KO them halfway through. Look for ways to engagingly write for an online audience.
- Share the content – Use your social media accounts to share your content. Make sure you track the comments (the good and the bad) and reply to readers.
- Be Part of a Social Media Community – Online communities can be found on social media sites (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and social bookmarking communities (e.g. Delicious, Digg, StumbleUpon). Just so you won’t make a complete fool of yourself, remember these two golden rules:
- Don’t spam! Genuinely start a conversation with people.
- Make it a two-way communication. Respond to their comments as much as you post yours.
Since we’re already talking about online marketing, you can simply go the whole nine yards and also use traditional strategies:
- Promote your website on paper – When you meet potential clients, make sure to have your business cards ready. Aside from your usual contact information, you can also include the URL for your social media accounts and blogs. People usually check Google first when doing their background check. If you are promoting a particular product or service, you can also include a discount package on your business card.
- Use your phone – Include the name of your website on the voicemail and on the “hold” music of your phone. If they are calling you up to ask questions, hearing your website address may encourage them to go to your site to look for more information.
- Advertise your website on different media channels – Ask to write a column for your local newspaper or other print media. Although you’re not sure if they’ll be published, just continue sending press releases or articles to them. Better yet, make friends with the editor. If they agree to print your article, you can include your website address at the end of each article.
- Promoting on radio shows – Simply call up during a radio show and plug your website. But be sure that you have something to say that will contribute to the discussion in the radio show first, before plugging your website.
- Participating in local events as a speaker – Other website owners share their insights on events related to their niche. If you’re the type who doesn’t shake like a leaf when facing a crowd, go ahead and participate in events as a guest speaker.
- Develop a free service – Everyone loves a free service! Although developing a free service may cost you time, energy, and money, it’s an effective way to generate more traffic to your site especially if the free product/service you’re offering is closely related to your niche market.
These strategies will greatly help you promote your website. Unless you want to stay like a single-celled micro-organism in the continuously evolving environment of the World Wide Web, go and evolve into the Homo sapiens of this digital age.
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