As people continue to do more business and research over the Internet, search engine optimization (SEO) firms are scratching their heads wondering how to achieve great rankings for their Web clients. One method of supposedly generating great search engine rankings is called linking. This technique has gained in popularity with SEO firms, but produces questionable results. Terms like, mutual linking, one-way linking, reciprocal linking, cross linking have worked their way into SEO strategy plans of Web masters. The justification for linking is “more links means more importance which equals more traffic”. Beware of this method. To presume that Google will assign or rank your site higher based on a large number of links is simply not true.
Linking Does Not Equal Ranking
If you’ve followed the linking method and have linked or traded links with 100,000 other Web sites, congratulations on the hard work. You have asked the Google bot 100,000 times to index your Web site. The Google bot is one of many search bots or spiders that Google uses to crawl the Internet. And the google bot will see your Web site link listing in the web sites or directories where you have linked. But this will not increase your ranking. You have simply asked the Google bot to return to your Web site multiple times and cache your Web site’s information or content.
Three Primary Factors Determine Rankings
Three primary factors determine your Web site’s ranking or position in Google or other major search engines is search phrase. The first and most important factor is content. Content is king. If you have a Web site that sells left-handed products, then add talking points about any and everything “left-handed”. Talk about the history of left-handed beliefs, list famous left-handed people, and write about left-handed beliefs in other cultures and countries. Make your Web site the “go-to” source for everything left-handed.
Many people and businesses do not have time to actually write their own Web copy. A professional copywriter can furnish you with keyword-rich, highly original Web content to enhance and improve the quality of your Web site with the aim of transforming more of your visitors into customers. If this is a budget buster, consider publishing E-Zines or using article Web sites, which allow you to republish articles related to your Web site or business. However, original content is best.
The second factor that determines your Web site’s ranking or position in Google for a particular search phrase is relevancy. Beware, relevancy is in the eye of the beholder. Make sure you are interpreting yourself through the public’s eye. What is relevant to you is not necessarily relevant to a website visitor or the search engines. If you are a wedding planner, your Web site may contain information, links and articles about wedding-related subjects.Information and relevant topics such as, bakeries, florists and bridal wear. Should you include jewelry or marriage advice? That’s up to you. Remember to ask yourself, “Is this relevant to my visitors?”
Search engines are machines. They compile information about the Web site content it indexes and records. If a poorly ranked Web site receives an astronomical amount of UNIQUE visits, the web site position will improve. This might happen if a little known web site was mentioned in the main stream news media.
If you, like many other Web site owners, are not that fortunate, you will have to rely on email campaigns, newsletters and networking to get the word out. Visitor traffic is not the be-all, end-all to ranking strategy, but it certainly helps Google determine where to rank your Web site in the search engine universe.
In a nutshell, there is no magic bullet to great search engine results. But using “Content that is Relevant to your Visitors” will take you a long way. Build your Web site for visitors and search engines like Google, Yahoo and BING will follow.
About the Author
Rick Vidallon is Creative Director for VISIONEFX, a Web design company based in Virginia Beach, VA. They provide services to national companies as well as small to medium businesses throughout the United States. Rick can be reached at (757) 619-6456 or www.visionefx.net.