How a webpage gets rank # 1 in Google
(an introduction to the internet and all its acronyms)
The way the major search engines rank content has evolved over the last half a decade, making it mandatory for web- masters to stay abreast of new algorithms and protocols.
Understanding how search engines rank content is vital to the success of any website. In the past, pages on the internet were ranked for apparent content alone; however, as unscrupulous site-owners learned how to game the system, a method of scoring based on community perception became an important part of the ranking process.
The method involves other pages on the internet connecting with your own, and is called ‘linking’. Each ‘link’ to your site acts as a vote of confidence, raising the value of both the individual page receiving the link and the website the page is part of.
Naturally, getting links is now a main part of what is commonly called ‘search engine optimization’ or ‘SEO’. Becoming involved with and attuned to the needs of the internet community is the first step n any optimization program, and to involve yourself you first have to understand just what you are involving yourself in.
The Internet (formerly known as the ‘world wide web’)
The Internet has made information on every topic available at an individual level. Millions of people all over the globe use the internet on a daily basis, to communicate, handle business, shop and update themselves on the news of the day. Traditional media is struggling to keep up as the web becomes the primary source of information sharing, with more people participating to spread the word and large companies gaining the ability to communicate in real time, with their fingers on the pulse of the public.
Due to the accessibility of the internet and it’s unique ability to be leveraged by nearly anyone, the terms ‘business’, ‘marketing’ and ‘advertising’ have taken on completely new connotations. The standards that apply to print and televised media simply don’t apply to the internet, and it becomes necessary to make sure we all know what we are talking about when we use certain words.
how does a webpage got ranked number one in google
Marketing vs Advertising
The differences between marketing and advertising are often blurred on the internet, leading to less than optimal results. In its simplest form, ‘marketing is the technique or process of promotion; the nuts and bolts of selling and /or distributing a service or product. Advertising is the emotional appeal you connect with that service or product – the selling points, in other words.
Advertising is a large part of marketing, but is still only one facet. Marketing should consist of the additional facets of branding, public relations, customer service and advertising as well as a host of lesser components to ensure lasting success.
SEO, SEM, SEA, PPC and LP
The first thing that strikes most people about the internet is that it has nearly as many acronyms as the military! SEO of course stands for search engine optimization. SEM is search engine marketing, which is a part of SEO, and SEA is search engine advertising, which is a part of SEM.
One form of SEM is PPC, or pay-per-click advertising; we’ll address that later on. Last but definitely not least is LP, which stands for link popularity and is an integral part of all of the above. Let’s take a look at SEO more closely.
Your primary goal in any SEO campaign is to convince the search engines that particular pages on your website are the authority source for a particular topic. Keywords and keyword phrases embedded in your content tell the search engines what each page is about, and increase your sites’ value. In the past, entire websites were focused around one or two keywords, and all traffic funneled through the home page. Now each page can rank independently for a different search term, and there can be many points of entry (or ‘landing pages’) on any given website.
There are various segments on each page that hold importance in the eyes of the various search engines, and although Google, Yahoo and Bing (the three giants of the search engine world) may differ slightly in their chosen algorithm, if you optimize for Google you will likely rank high on search across the board.
The three main points of interest on your web-pages include the title of each page, the meta description, and the visible text. Meta keywords play a small role today; although they used to be considered more important, the trend in rankings is always striving to be more dependent on user relevancy, and meta keywords are less transparent than the actual text visitors to your site will see.
The Importance of SEO
The competition on the internet for consumers’ attention and dollars is incredible. Search engines were designed to filter the glut of information flooding in from thousands of websites on any given topic, and present results in coherent form to the average searcher – preferably as fast as possible. In stark contrast to early search engines, the giants of today can deliver results in mere seconds.
The goal of all competing websites is to make the front page of the search engine results pages, or ‘SERPs’. The front page shows ten results, with the first five being ‘above the fold’ – meaning the viewer doesn’t have to scroll down to see them. Being in the top ten, five, and ultimately first place should be the ultimate focus of your website.
Where do you start?
At the beginning, of course – which means research. You can use third party sites to discover which keywords are ‘hot’ – meaning what the current trends are as far as people sitting down and typing words into a search engine. You can also discover how many times each day, week or month searches with specific keyword phrases are performed, and find out how your competitors are leveraging that information.
In addition to keyword research, there are other tools you can utilize to increase your knowledge of your niche and how people search the web. The most important factor is keeping an open mind and not getting bogged down in one particular method, The fluid nature of the internet makes it absolutely critical to be able to embrace change instantly and readjust your thought process to stay in step with alterations in policy.
Two important things to keep in mind:
You can’t dictate how people will search for your site. SEO companies or gurus may try to entice you to let them optimize your site to rank for your company name or an obscure keyword combination, but if your company is named “Billy Buzz’s Bee Removal” and you are a brand new company, then the chances of people searching for you by name are nearly nil – meaning it doesn’t matter if you are #1 in Google for your company name.
In addition, you have to look at the competition vs the search volume. Sometimes less is more – it’s better to rank third for a search phrase with only a few thousand searches per day than thirtieth for a search phrase with millions. A large piece of a small pie can be more filling than a sliver of a big one!
Remember, you don’t have to pick just one or two phrases – you can cover your bases with pages optimized specifically to land traffic for any number of keyword matches. If you have fifty web-pages each bringing in four customers a day, you have achieved the same result as having one page getting 200 hits.
The best SEO will include tinkering with HTML, which is the basic code used to write web pages. You don’t have to become a geek and join the math club – just learn enough to customize meta tags, image descriptions, title links and correctly formatted text.
Rule of thumb; ensure your HTML code is verified as being W3C compliant; in the past, the limited number of browsers available made this a minor point, but there are a dozen major browsers now inn use and it would be a shame to lose traffic simply because your page won’t load properly for potential customers.
If your website contains large amounts of Flash animation and frame designs search engines will have difficulty evaluating its value. Tables, outdated coding and broken links can throttle your website, so make sure if you have an old site that you update it, and that any new sites you create are built using the latest most cross compatible methods. A good test is to have a stranger test-drive your site, and ask how easy it was to navigate. If it was hard, it’s time to revamp your site structure.
Your website should allow visitors to reach your business objective in a smooth progression from the landing page through which they enter your site. A call to action should be present on every single page.
Meta data includes titles, keywords and descriptions, emphasizing the relevancy of your website to your niche. There are more meta-tags than these three, and all should be utilized for maximum effect. Having unique met-data for each page will increase the value of your site to search engines and users alike, so come up with direct, informative tags for each page that pinpoint their uniqueness and avoid duplicate content.
Well structured, grammatically correct and perfectly spelled content on your web-pages will make them user friendly as well as search engine friendly. Never be tempted to ‘keyword stuff’ to trick the search engines into thinking you are more relevant than you are – all that does is turn what traffic you do attract away, as users don’t appreciate text that is ‘optimized’ to the point of unreadability. Make your website the go-to resource for information in your niche, and your visitors will be impressed – which is just as important as impressing the search engines.
Link Building 101
Back to linking – the interconnection between sites. Creating back-links to your website is like gaining votes in a popularity contest; you can’t stuff the ballot box, but you should campaign vigorously to promote yourself as the best candidate out there. This can be accomplished in several ways, most of which involve creating additional content and posting it in various venues on the web.
Again, the point is to increase the number of links pointing back to your website. This gives you more popularity with the search engines, and sets you up as an authority on your topic. You will also gain the added benefit of increased traffic; there is every probability that your content on the web will be read and visitors will click on the links to come to your website. This is a great way to boost traffic while you are still struggling up the SERPs ladder.
You can post five basic types of content around the web. Articles may be submitted to article directories; press releases to press release sites; videos to video sharing sites; photos to photo sharing sites; and all of the above in link or snippet form to social media networks, a personal blog, or bookmarking sites. What you do NOT want to do is submit your page urls to any sort of link building ‘service’ without a thorough reconnaissance – so called link farms simply consist of pages of links interconnected to each-other, and are worthless at best and downright detrimental at worst.
You want highly relevant content to link to your home page, specific content deep linking to inner pages in your website, and interlinking between pages in your website as well as between your content out on the web. This ensures that anyone who stumbles on any of your links will find their way to the ultimate destination – the page on your site that specifically deals with their question or dilemma.
SEO is not a quick fix. It takes time, dedication and patience, but yields solid, long lasting results that beat out any other method available. If you plan for your website to be around for a good long time, SEO is the best public relations and long term advertising tool you can have. Once you have optimized your site correctly and started building links, you can settle into a routine that allows updating every few days in the form of another piece of content added or another link created. If you measure your results constantly and analyze the resulting data on a periodic basis you can refine your technique and make your website even stronger!
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