Online Advertising

Targeting SEO Keywords

There is a saying we throw around the office, target the root and devour

There are more keywords under the surface than their are keywords revealed. Leave it to most businesses to always want to go bigger, better and over the top in an attempt to conquer the most powerful or most searched keywords in a niche or take on the major players for vanity plate keywords.

Not to say that the competitive nature in most of us doesn’t get the best of us, who doesn’t want to rank higher in Google, Yahoo, MSN or Ask? The key is asking yourself about time to market, topical continuity, relevance and conversion and if you would rather keep your eggs in one basket or spread around the risk to offset the odds.

Does a visitor care how many competing page there are for the query they execute (such as 1 of 10 of 100,000 results or 1 of 10 of 100,000,000?), hardly, but does an SEO or a business targeting that keyword, you bet they do, since they have to climb that mountain to reach the top 10.

Going back to behavior, is the need to necessitate a keyword victory over a competitor really matter if the keyword performs poorly? I can assure you, not every keyword is laced in gold. The idea that as soon as you get that one magic phrase, your business is in the clear is a reality that can change.

The premise of search behavior shifting can leave a 6 month exodus of trying to achieve one specific keyword or phrase flat if people simply stop searching for that exact phrase, which leads to my conclusion.

Don’t Assume, You Either Know or You Don’t Know:

For optimal effectiveness, use different keywords and/or keyword phrases on each page of your website. Optimize each page for those keywords and/or keyword phrases that are relevant to the content of that particular page.

Title Tag

-Use keywords and/or keyword phrases as a descriptive title for each page. -Use your most relevant keywords and/or keyword phrases in your home page title. -To be the most effective, title tags should contain only keywords and/or keyword phrases. -Repeat the keywords and/or keyword phrases 2-3 times but make sure that the title makes sense. An example for this page would be: Keyword Usage, Using Keywords and Keyword Phrases Effectively.

Meta Tag Keywords

-Place all relevant keywords and keyword phrases in your meta tag…. -If possible, avoid using single keywords as they may be too competitive. Use keyword phrases instead. -Don’t repeat your keywords more than 2-3 times to avoid offending some search engines. -Separate keywords and keyword phrases with commas or spaces, not both. Example: keyword,keyword phrase,keyword or keyword keyword phrase keyword. -Use common misspellings or miss keyings. Ex: keywrod or keywird. -Use different forms of keywords whenever possible. Ex: web site and website. -Use singular and plural versions of keywords. Ex: website and websites. -Use upper and lower case. Ex: Website and website

Meta Tag description

-Use your keywords and keyword phrases in your meta tag description….. -Repeat your most important keywords and/or keyword phrases a minimum of 2-3 times. -The total length of your description tag should be no more than 20-25 words. -Your description should make sense as this is what often shows up in the search engine results page. This is your opportunity to persuade users to click through to your site so be sure your description is enticing and contains keywords and/or keyword phrases that will attract visitors.


-Many search engines concentrate on the first 250 words of your text when looking for keyword relevancy and density so concentrate your keywords and/or keyword phrases there. -Strive for 5-7% keyword density (5-7 keywords and/or keyword phrases per 100 words of text). If your keyword density is much higher than this, your copy may not make sense AND the search engines may consider it keyword spamming. -Use your most important keywords and/or keyword phrases throughout your copy but without sounding repetitious. -Use your most important keywords and/or keyword phrases in your H1 tag. To give more weight to your H1 tag, use only one H1 tag in your copy. (Your H1 tag should contain your most important statement so you shouldn’t need to use more than one H1 tag.) -Use keywords and/or keyword phrases in your image ALT tags. For example your logo ALT tag should say something such as: ALT=”keyword logo image”.

META tags are not as important as they once were as most search engines are now searching your copy when looking for keywords and/or keyword phrases. Therefore, it’s become increasingly important to have the first 250 words of your copy be keyword rich.

Sometimes, it may be better to write your content first, then choose your keywords and/or keyword phrases from the content. Rewrite your content as needed, adding keywords and/or keyword phrases that pertain to the theme of the content. In this way, you’ve chosen keywords and/or keyword phrases that are relevant to your content, instead of trying to write content to fit your keywords and/or keyword phrases.
The assumption in the heading suggests:

1) You never know exactly how search engine algorithms are going to slice and dice your pages or how many or few keywords each page can rank for. We can speculate, but organic SEO can really deliver traffic.

This means that relevance for a query can align from a keyword from the title, another keyword from the URL string, another keyword gets latched on from a description tag and yet another portion of the keyword in the body copy of the document. Even though the snippets returned in the search result is what is above the surface, you never know how deep a search query can go into your site, one page or all of your pages to assess relevance.

The point being, unless you have a crystal ball or write the algorithm (which I doubt) then such things are constantly being tweaked and adjusted to return more relevant results. So, the more narrow your keyword focus, the more of the market you potentially miss.

2) If site architecture, content and linking are implemented properly (optimized) then each page can rank specifically for numerous “exact match” and “broad match” (general) keywords and phrases with the same effort of just a few keywords. The key is each page owns a focus or range or phrases it targets, then you coordinate the pages to work as a collective masterpiece.

The takeaway is, the web is a work in progress so don’t obsess and just target 10 phrases, with a bit more energy and effort you can target 100 long-tail phrases that may collectively deliver 10 times the traffic daily than a vanity plate (common sense keyword) based on (partial) keyword research.

The way you find gems like that are (1) check your bounce rates and look for semantic similarities to base your next batch of posts or articles (if you have a blog). The search algorithm sees your pages differently than you do, however the idea is to work with it, not against it.

Keyword tools can only call it as they see it, but since the majority of searches are based on the subjective mindset and search behavior of millions of unique minds, the common threads are not as common as we surmise.

For every common sense keyword or root phrase based on captured data, there are 100 more long-tail equivalents you could rank for as well with a few slight tweaks to titles, links and layout.

How to Choose The Best Web Hosting Service

Choosing a host for your web-site is no small decision. Once committed to one, it will become very difficult to move your business elsewhere – not to mention the damage that can be done to your business if you make the wrong choice. This makes it very important to “get it right the first time”. Find out as much as you can about your prospective host before making any decisions.

When evaluating your host, you will obviously be considering price. But price is, of course, not the only important factor. You will also need to take into consideration:

1. the speed and reliability of the servers and hardware
2. the features the host offers and whether these mesh with your own requirements, and, of course
3. the quality of their support services.

Let’s look at each of these in turn:

1. Speed and Reliability of the Servers and Hardware
The speed and reliability of your host’s servers will depend on several factors, including the quality of their connection to the internet, bandwidth, and the availability of back-up systems in case things go wrong. Here’s a checklist of points to consider when checking out your prospective host’s servers and hardware:

* A T3 Connection (or better), close to a primary internet backbone.
A T3 connection is approx 30 times as fast as a T1 connection. Smaller hosting providers – for example, the proverbial “garage operations” — will often use T1 connections, with no backup at all. They may be very cheap – but, be careful here, you can get what you pay for!

* Effective Bandwidth Management
In addition to having a fast connection to the internet, your host should be able to manage how its available bandwidth is used . As a guide, it should typically not be using more than 50 percent of its bandwidth.

* Backup Systems
If there is a systems, network or power failure, the last thing you want is to lose your data or to have your web-site go down for a long period. Good hosts will have back up systems in place to guard against this.

Look for a host who can provide:

* Regular, daily back up of your data
* Backup power supplies

Look for an uninterruptible power supply system (often referred to as “UPS”) – a back up power generator available in case of emergencies.

* Redundancy
Do they have more than one connection to the internet, in case one of their connections goes down.

* An “Uptime” Guarantee
These typically state “We guarantee 99% (or 99.5%) uptime”.

Here’s a sample of the kind of information that the web host should be supplying

“Our Internet connectivity is supplied by three separate diverse backbone providers: UUNET, SAAVIS and Goodnet. If one of these lines goes down, traffic is automatically routed through the lines that are still online. Our data center is supplied by multiple redundant power sources – centralized automatic UPS system with a battery-powered backup system. The batteries are also connected to three diesel power generators in the event of a power outage to the building.”

2. Features
As well as checking out the reliability of the servers and hardware you will also need to evaluate and compare the features provided by your host.

A full range of hosting features in, which compares hosting providers on both price and features. This is an excellent facility for comparing features when choosing a host – but to make the best use of it, you will need first to prepare a list of features you require.

Here’s a checklist of things to consider:

* Shared or Dedicated Server?
Depending on your requirements, you may be better off with a dedicated server than a shared server. Dedicated servers are typically used in cases where there is a high level of traffic, there is a strong need for security, or the user wishes to run their own customised software and applications rather than the standard ones supplied by the host.

* Compatibility with Existing Software and Skills
Is your host’s server, software and support services compatible will the skills and software that you (or your design team) are using? If, for instance, you are used to working in a Unix environment, then it probably makes little sense to choose an NT host.

* Flexibility and Room for Growth
You do not need a database solution now, perhaps, but you may need one in the future. Similarly, a shared hosting arrangement may be fine for you now, but what if your traffic levels explode, and you need one in a years’ time? It is much easier to remain with one host than to change. So, when choosing a host, keep in mind your possible future needs, and whether the host will be able to accommodate them.

3. Support and Service
Once you have checked out the reliability of the servers and hardware, and located a host that provides the features you want, the final task is to evaluate the quality of their support services.

Most hosts now promise 24/7 support as a standard feature — but, do they really live up to that promise? It will be a good idea to find out before committing to them! Here’s a checklist of things to consider before making that all-important decision

* Quality of existing customers
What is the quality and calibre of the sites currently served by this host? If they generally host high-calibre commercial clients, then, if you are running a commercial web-site, they may be a better bet for you than if they mainly host, for instance, or small businesses with 2 or 3 page static web-sites. (There may, of course, be cost trade-off here.)

* Opinions of existing customers
A host may boast of its popularity, the fact that it hosts lots of web-sites. However, the most “popular” are not necessarily the best — they may just be the ones with the largest advertising budget!

Indeed “popularity” can be a double-edged sword — support resources may more thinly spread, and bandwidth may be squeezed as a result of the numbers hosted.

So don’t go on numbers alone. Get in touch with some of the host’s existing (or past) customers, and ask them what they really think of the service and reliability of their host.

* Stability
The last thing you want is for your host to go out of business. So try to get some idea of how stable they are. Number of years in business is sometimes (not always, of course) a good indicator.

* Support and Responsiveness
Try asking the support staff a few technical questions of the type you anticipate you will be asking when you host with them. Then monitor how quickly and efficiently they respond.

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