Few resources for SEO beginners:
2. SEO Book
4. WordPress SEO by Yoast
5. Matt Cutts – Google Web Spam head’s blog
SEO beginners FAQ
1. How to get listed in Google?
2. How many search engines should I get listed?
It doesn’t make sense to submit to 100s of search engines. Your most of the traffic will come from Google. So it is enough if you get listed in Google, Yahoo and Bing ( MSN Live) – the three major search engines. If your site depends on business from local, submit to popular search engines and directories in your locality and niche.
3. How much should I pay for getting listed?
Getting listed in Google and many other leading search engines is free. Don’t pay anyone.
4. How can I make my site rank in first page of Google?
If you just want to rank for your site name, and if your site name is very unique, you will automatically rank in the front page. But if your name is not unique and you are aiming for a highly competitive term, you need to optimize your site for search engines.
SEO means search engine optimization. Meaning, you need to understand how search engines work and design your site accordingly. It is the art and science of coding your site well, writing smart content and getting a reputation online. Search for “SEO” in Google and read some basic stuff.
6. Where can I learn SEO?
There are 1000s of sites teaching SEO. It is easy to get lost and confused by contradictory concepts, SEO myths. I recommend reading the following websites to know more about SEO.
* SEO Book
7. How much time will it take to learn SEO?
You can learn the basic stuff in a week. But, this is a highly evolving field and million dollar competitive industry. If you want to be a professional SEO offering SEO services, then better spend hours everyday 🙂 It is best to start SEOing your own sites, experiment and learn.
8. Should I pay others for SEO? How much should I pay?
If you want immediate results and not good at tech stuff, better get a SEO expert. The payment depends on how competitive is the term you are aiming for, what are the results you want and whom you are hiring. There are many self-proclaimed SEO experts who will offer you package services for a very low rate. Please be warned about them. There are many black hat SEO techniques (meaning it is like fooling the search engines in short term) which will get you banned from search engines sooner or later. Also be warned that some may charge you very high for simple services actually. So, study the market scenario before you decide to pay.
9. How to find a good SEO expert?
* See if he does nothing but SEO. SEO is a very demanding field. If he she does too many things and offers SEO as just one of the services, I doubt his expertise.
* See if his own site ranks well in search engines.
* Ask him examples of few competitive terms he ranked well for.
* Ask for the procedures he will apply to get you better ranking.
10. What will be the best SEO strategy?
Honest. Natural. Smart. Organic. Natural. Patient. Focus on single topic. Build friendships and reputation online.
Good luck for better SEO 🙂
How to get listed in Google?
1. Create a useful site with at least 10 pages of comprehensive, unique and useful content.
2. Use a content management system like WordPress. WordPress takes care of 80% of the SEO mechanics ( See slides 11 and 12)
3. Add a xml sitemap. If you use WordPress, Google XML sitemaps works great.
4. Link to the site by a new article from your already indexed sites. Try to get as many new article links from your friends online. The higher their PageRank the better. This is the most guranteed method to get your site indexed. I have got my newly launched sites indexed and ranking in Google just within hours of launch following this method.
5. If you are new online and find it hard to get links from others: Find forums, blogs related to your topic and leave meaningful comments. This will get you some links and help you make valuable friends who will give you links in future.
6. Read and follow Google SEO guide
Article writing with SEO (Search engine optimization) in mind:
1. Have short, to the point article titles. Place your important keywords at the beginning of the title.
2. Remove non-keywords, common words from the article URL.
(For WordPress ) In a post’s edit view, under the article title, you have an option to edit permalink. Pleas edit it to include only the keywords. You can leave out insignificant and common words like “how”, “to”, “for” etc.,
3. Always define or summarize the main theme of the article in first paragraph. The sooner you have the main keywords in the article, the better.
4. When you refer to your previous articles, link to them by descriptive text. A link saying “improve golf success” is better than a link saying “click here to see”.
5. Categorize and tag your articles well with keywords. Be liberal with keywords. But, it is better to use only one broad category.
6. Link to external useful information sources on the article topic.
7. Bold the keywords and important content. Please take care that you don’t over do this.
8. At the end of article, link to a list of related articles from the same website and your other websites.
9. Publish articles regularly with a predictable interval.
10. Pack your article with as much info you can. The more informative, exhaustive, comprehensive the better. Think if your article is worth linking by an unknown person. Improve it until you feel so.
11. Please genuinely participate, comment in other people’s forums and blogs. The more you mingle with the community the better it is for SEO.
For almost any search query, a Wikipedia article ranks better in Google. Is Google biased towards Wikipedia? No. Google itself has Knol which is a direct competitor for Wikipedia. Then, how do Wikipedia articles rank better? Here is the secret:
1. Google favours informative pages over commercial sites.
A search for web hosting in Google lists informative articles including Wikipedia in the top. See how a search for web hosting in Yahoo just lists only commercial websites. We can think of Google as favouring information. Or it may be indirectly forcing companies to buy their adsense slots by denying top search results. Only Google knows 🙂
Except the above point everything else is well deserved merit by Wikipedia.
2. Wikipedia is online since 2001. Google thinks old sites are more reliable.
3. The structure of a Wikipedia article itself is highly SEOed:
* Both the title and URL of Wikipedia pages are to the point, short, self explanatory.
* Highly exhaustive, comprehensive collection of information.
* Articles are focused on a single topic. Assures keyword density.
* Natural writing assures presence of related keywords.
* Frequent updates to the articles, addition of new articles regularly brings the search engine crawlers very often. So the changes are indexed at once.
* Copy formatting, text highlighting, sub headings, section – sub section structure help the bots clearly understand the content.
* Title definition at the very first paragraph.
* Images with description, alt tags, descriptive names and URLs.
* Presence of relevant external links., Google likes this.
4. People by default link to Wikipedia to learn more. The Wikipedia pages are heavily interlinked. This increases the PageRank of Wikipedia pages.
Wikipedia is the best place to learn SEO because it doesn’t employ any SEO expert at all and yet ranks so well 🙂