Most people these days know that search engine optimization (SEO) is the key to improving a website’s ranking. Your site showing up higher in search results means more people seeing your link and visiting your site, but search engines work differently than they used to. Black hat tactics such as key word stuffing and utilizing low quality link farms are no longer beneficial and can actually hurt your ranking. The following are some legitimate techniques for improving your rankings with the various search engines:
When it comes to SEO, it matters who your friends are. Chances are someone in your circle of friends has a successful website. Their site may not have anything to do with the subject matter of your site, but what matters most is their ranking. People often don’t mind including a hodgepodge of “recommended links” or “links of interest” on their website, so it doesn’t hurt to ask. Any high ranking site linking to you is beneficial, but if their website somehow ties in with your genre, that’s even better.
Relevant backlinks are even more valuable, so consider asking someone in your specific niche to add you to their link list or blogroll. Many won’t want to oblige if they don’t know you, but the law of numbers is on your side. Ask enough webmasters to link to you, and a few of them probably will.
Although some forums use something called a “no-follow attribute,” which keeps a site you comment on from pointing to you, posting a comment will usually contribute to an increased number of backlinks pointing to your site. Since other bloggers know this, avoid being too obvious by adding general comments such as, “Great post!” Instead, make a thoughtful comment, which shows you genuinely appreciated the content they provided.
When a blog post doesn’t pertain specifically to something you’ve posted, simply include the link to your main homepage in the comment form. However, you may want to take your commenting to the next level by searching for posts similar to content you’ve already posted on your site. Once you’ve located a post on a topic you’ve covered, post an interesting comment, and leave a link. Instead of linking to your homepage, you will want to link to your comparable post. This can increase targeted traffic, which means new readers will likely be interested in your post when they link over.
Keep Posting Content
Everyone knows that content is king, so don’t get so wrapped up in your efforts to get backlinks that you forget to produce quality content. Create a profile in your mind of who your target audience is, and write to that them. Even if you aren’t trying to drive traffic to a daily blog, don’t let your website become stagnant. Search engines will be forced to crawl your site more often if content is regularly updated. The primary purpose of search engines is to help people find sites with relevant content, so make sure your website is updated often enough to fit that bill.
SEO is a balance of factors including content, backlinks, and site age. Give it some time, and while you’re working on improving content and backlinks, your website will also be aging, which will go a long way in increasing its rank.