(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – Search engine optimization (SEO) can be intimidating for a lot of small business owners. Not only are the rules sometimes hard to understand, but they often change, and it can be difficult to keep up with. In the Online Success Center we do our best to keep you updated on the newest developments for SEO, but there are still a lot of misconceptions about best practices. In this article we will try to dispel a few of those.
More keywords doesn’t always mean higher ranking. Many website owners equate having more keywords crammed into the content of the website with improving their overall search ranking. While it is true that you should be writing content around the keywords and phrases that are relevant to your business, there is a point where you can go too far. Search engines such as Google have gotten pretty good over the years at noticing websites that intentionally load keywords into the text, and typically penalize them with a lower ranking. A good rule of thumb for website owners is to include a few key phrases per paragraph of text, while still making sense for the overall content of the website. In other words, the content of each page should be easy to read for your users.
Ranking less than #1 is still okay. Many business owners feel that if even one website is raked above theirs in search results, that their SEO efforts were a waste. The truth is that as long as you are on the first page of results, your website will draw in more visitors. It is important to note that search rankings can fluctuate, and it can take a lot of time to work your way up to the top. Google takes a lot of factors into consideration for their ranking algorithms, and not all of them are in your control, such as website age. The best thing you can do as a business owner is to make sure your website has a good title, a good description, and that you are always using keywords and creating fresh content. SEO success can blossom from there.
Longer keywords are just as beneficial. Business owners tend to shy away from using longer, more specific keyword phrases on their website, because they believe that the audience searching for a term that specific is much smaller than an audience searching for a more general term. While it is true that the audience is smaller, it is important not to undervalue this smaller audience. When dealing with keywords, the more generic they are, the more competition your company will face in the rankings, meaning you are less likely to rank highly. However, a longer keyword will not only position you higher among those specific searches, but it will most likely be an audience that is more suited for your business.
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