What Affects my Rankings?

Not an easy question to answer as each search engine has its own ranking criteria. However, there are some general strategies and best practices that will optimize your site for most search engines. While the below tactics are not all inclusive in terms of developing the most effective SEO program, they are a very good starting point in terms of evaluating your site:

> Avoid Flash.
> Know what your competitors are doing.
> Use your page titles to your advantage.
> Use page names with keywords in them, e.g. /internet-marketing – separate the keywords with hyphens so the search engines can read them.
> Write good meta descriptions (these are often used in the results pages).
> Use ALT tags.
> Obtain as many quality links to your site from other sites as possible – ones of questionable quality (such as from Free For All sites) are worse than nothing.
> Make sure that your pages are FULL of good, quality content related to your product, business, service etc. The search engines love copy and it will naturally contain relevant keywords.
> Add to your site’s content on a regular basis. Do not take a set it and forget it approach.
> Have your name, address, and telephone number on the bottom of every page of your site.
> If you are a local business, include a clickable phone number in your header.
> Include text links (not just links within images) on every page – without these the search engines won’t grab your sub-pages as they won’t follow links within images.
> Use social media to widen your reach.
> Keep it white hat.

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