Friday, November 26, 2010

To Blog or Not to Blog

Should you put a blog on your website or not? This is a question that many people ponder as they plan the design for their new website. A blog has many benefits. Namely it is a chance for you to express your opinions, tell folks about new products and services and create a sense of community on your website. A blog doesn't have to be full of long drawn out posts. Say what you need to say and then ask for comments.

 Another benefit of maintaining a blog is to get a discussion going on your website. This in turn creates traffic and loyal followers. This does take time so don't put up a blog and then expect to go viral within a few days. No it takes patience, regular posting, bookmarking on the major social media sites and quality content. Face it, no one wants to read crap and a blog is no different.

So get out there, put a blog on your website or sign up at a site like this one and get writing. Don't want to do it yourself? Contact the experts at The Cutting Edge Pros for a free consultation.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Keyword Research is the Basis for All Things Internet

Keywords can mean the difference between getting indexed and getting buried on the internet. The right keywords can lift your site up in ranking and get it in front of the people you want. Keyword research is key -  yes I said it - to knowing which words carry the most SEO juice and power for your site. It is more than just plugging words into a search engine and notating the amount of hits they get, it is well thought out and requires a bit of planning and time commitment on your part.
First make a list of the words you think will do well. Now expand that list into words that are related to these words. Don't forget the variables and plurals. Once you have this list go to a keyword research tool like Google's Adwords Keyword Tool. These tools don't really tell you the hits that keywords get, they tell you the expected hits that these words may get based on recent searches.

As you go through your list you'll find more words to explore. Keep a list and edit it as you find different words that will work for your site and delete the ones that are not expected to perform well. Once you have a master list of keywords you're ready to write your content.

Now, listen carefully! DO NOT use keyword stuffing! Did you hear me? No matter how tempting it may be to string a list of keywords together...don't do it! The other day I was doing research for an article and I came across an article that was almost totally made up of keywords and search phrases (search phrases will be covered in another post). Did I stay on the page, of course not! Did it rank well in the search engines...well yeah...but it was used as a vehicle for backlinks. Absolutely useless for a human visitor and in time it will be useless for the search engines spiders. This type of page brings quick results. The page was in the top 5 listings, but now long will it be there? If what Google publishes on their Webmaster pages is correct, not long at all.

When you write your content let if flow naturally. I know I've used the word, keywords, quite a bit in this post, but it isn't forced and the prose - hopefully - flows naturally. Good quality content is one of the most powerful SEO tools your site can have. If you don't want to do keyword research, it is time consuming and a tad boring, hire professionals to do it for you. If you don't want to write your own content, hire professional writers to do it for you. See the drift here? If you don't have time or don't feel like you have the talent, there are qualified professionals who do this for a living that can help you out.

So remember, keywords are key - I did it again - and using the right words can make or break your SEO juice. The right words can also move your visitors to stay on your site and become customers. The Cutting Edge Pros can help your with your keyword research and provide you with quality content to make your site rise to the top of the SEO pile. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

5 Tips for SEO Anyone Can Use

So called web experts would have you believe that SEO is akin to magic or a dark mysterious art. No, it’s not. Organic SEO is straightforward and is not hard to do for the average person. It does take work and it will produce results. Here are five things that you can do on your website to increase its page rank.

  1. Place good content on your site. Good content can do more for your SEO than anything else. What do I mean by good content? Interesting and engaging content that is well written and has the proper keywords and search phrases. Do keyword research and keep your most effective keywords and phrases near the top of your pages. Search engines read pages and sites from top to bottom and from front to back. Don’t write for search engines, write for people and keep your site up to date.

  1. Include location names in your pages and keywords. Google puts a heavy weight on locations. Include locations in your page names and in your content to get your site in front of people in your area.

  2. Do your links work? Periodically check the links on your site to be sure they aren’t broken or lead to nowhere. Search engines follow your links and penalize you if they are broken.

  1. A blog improves your SEO if you post at least three times a week. This shows the search engines that your site is active and can help to build a community on your site. Make your posts interesting and not just commercials for your products. Be creative and add images and videos. Ask for comments and join in the discussion.

  1. Post original high quality articles on article directories with links pointing back to your site. This gives you the power of inbound links and can create interest in your site. Use articles to become an expert in your field and write about a variety of subjects relating to your industry.

All of these tips you can do yourself or you can hire an experienced SEO firm to do the work for you. One other tip to add is to make use of social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. These are powerful SEO tools that can help your page rank and draw visitors to your site.