Search Engine Optimization
SEO is the process of improving web pages so they rank high in search engines for a specific keyword phrase. SEO is divided in two categories: on-page optimization and off-page optimization. On-page optimization it refers to every method you use that change the page code; off-page optimization equals link popularity (more on this later)
Search engines are constantly improving their algorithm so they can provide more relevant results. A relevant site is one that provides quality content for its readers so after you have chosen your keyword phrases build the content of your pages around those keywords.
On page means the code page optimization so, in this phase, you should pay special attention to the following:
1. Title Tag
The title tag is one of the most important factors in achieving high rankings. A title tag is essentially an HTML code that creates the words that appear in the top bar of your Web browser. Usually, the Title Tag is the first element in the <Head> area of your site, followed by the Meta Description and the Meta Keywords Tags. These are the general rules you should follow when optimizing your title tag:
- Use in your title maximum 3 keyword phrases and 100 characters
- If possible, don’t use stop words like “a, and, or”
- Avoid spam: don’t repeat the same keyword in your title more than twice; it’s considered spam. Also, some engines penalize for using all CAPS.
2. Meta Description tag
The META description tag describes your site’s content, giving search engines’ spiders an accurate summary filled with multiple keywords. The META description tag should contain multiple keywords organized in a logical sentence.
- Place the keywords phrase at the beginning of your description to achieve the best possible ranking
- Many SE’s use this to describe your site so make sure you not only repeat each of your keyword phrases (max 3) at least once but make this a true representation of the page that the visitor will be viewing, and try to keep it under 255 chars
3. The Meta Keywords Tag
The meta keywords tag allows you to provide additional text for crawler-based search engines to index along with your body copy. How does this help you? Well, for most major crawlers, it doesn’t. That’s because most crawlers now ignore the tag. The meta keywords tag is sometimes useful as a way to reinforce the terms you think a page is important for on the few crawlers that support it. For instance, if you had a page about hotels in London AND you say the words “hotels in London” at various places in your body copy — then mentioning the words “hotels in London” in the meta keywords tag MIGHT help boost your page a bit higher for those words.
The meta keyword tag is also sometimes useful as a way to help your page come up for synonyms or unusual words that don’t appear on the page itself. For instance, let’s say you had a page all about budget hotels. You never actually say the word “cheap” on this page. By having the word in your meta keywords tag, then you may help increase the odds of coming up if someone searched for “cheap budget hotels” Of course you would greater increase the odds if you just used the word “cheap” in the body copy of the page itself. You should include up to 25 words or phrases, with each word or phrase separated by commas.
4. Body text
This is what your surfers will actually see when coming to your site. There are many issues to consider when placing keywords in the text of your pages. Most search engines index the full text of each page, so it’s vital to place keywords throughout your text. However, each search engine uses different ranking algorithms.