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Working hard?… But is it hardly working??

So now you have a shiny new website and you know you need to get it found. You even know how to blog or write SEO pages, GREAT! You have listened to good advice and you know that in order to start getting found, you HAVE to add content regularly to the site….. and you are more than willing. So you studiously set to work writing content and you grow and grow.

Fast forward several months and countless articles later and…. wait a tic, your inbox is still empty. How can that be? Surely you are ranking well for numerous searches aren’t you? But WHAT is it that you have been writing about all of this time and does it even come close to matching HOW your customers would be searching for your services?

Don’t feel bad, most people miss this all important part of SEO. In fact, in our industry its actually a fun little game to play with a perspective client. Lets say you have an auto dealership in Atlanta. In our first conversation I would ask you what you want to be found for, what are your customers going to search that you would absolutely want to show up for? Inevitably you would tell me something like “car dealerships”. Sounds reasonable doesn’t it? Now, think like your customer for a second. WHERE is your car dealership? Do you specialize in a certain make? Do you sell new or used cars? This is a step you cannot afford to forget… after all, if you are going to put the work in towards helping your website show up for different searches why on earth would you not make sure they are searches that are ACTUALLY being done?!?

Finding out how people search and what the most popular (and profitable) search terms are isn’t as hard as you think. There are many tools available online and if you happen to implement a Google Adwords campaign, you can get search traffic numbers straight from the horses mouth. If you haven’t gotten to that stage but you still need a little advice on what the most popular searches are, simply go to your Google search bar and start typing in a search for your town and your area of business. As you are typing, Google will give you suggestions in an effort to help you find what you are looking for. These results are based on what the most popular searches are …. voila, you now know where to put your efforts.

You cannot be expected to become an SEO writing genius right out of the gate and if your budget permits, a wise course of action would be to combine YOUR efforts with someone who IS and expert. At Appnet, we have many clients who write two pages for every one that we write for them. Not only are they getting one heck of a boost from a professionally written SEO page but they also can use what we provide them as a sort of map or cheat sheet if you will. To put it another way, if every weekend you found yourself in a foursome with Tiger Woods and every weekend you followed his tips and tried to mirror his swing, how do you think your golf game we be in six months… or a year?

On a side note, if you ACTUALLY DO have a car dealership in Atlanta and you ARE looking for help, do yourself a favor and check out our Atlanta SEO page.

Who NEEDS to be the #1 Salesperson with Your Company?

You MAY be surprised at the answer!

SEO ConsultantsOkay the image that appears to the right or that prompted you to click and read this BLOG may have already given the answer away. However, the content of the rest of this BLOG may be thought-provoking enough to warrant the read. (Hope so. Also if you think one of your business-owning friends could benefit from this post – please pass it on via email.)

Let me explain HOW Google is the Biggest, Baddest Sales Rep on the Planet and HOW you’re probably not using them in that fashion. I’ll also detail a hint at HOW to do so.

Before I get too far into this BLOG, let me go ahead and place credit where credit is due. You can Google all day long and I don’t think you’ll find it ANYWHERE else but right here – where we are referencing a change that is needed in your thinking as it applies to Google being your NUMBER ONE SALES REP. (Go ahead and Google it. We’ll wait.)…okay, you’re back and you didn’t find anything where any other SEO firm is referring to Google as THAT guy or gal that you need to hire to your sales staff. The second bit of credit that I need to give out…is the fact that the genius who came up with this concept – is/was NOT yours truly.

I’m going to go ahead and put this out there on the “interwebs” that Matt Snyder, of AppNet New Media Studio developed the idea of Google as THE NUMBER ONE SALESPERSON ON THE GLOBE on February 25, 2014. Prior to that, I’m pretty certain that all of the rest of us not-so-brilliant, SEO Consultants had not really portrayed Google that way. However, let me elaborate.


Would You Pay Me 10-20% Commission on Sales that I Make for you?

Before you answer, let me set the table a little. I am one HELL of a good salesman. I’ve been in sales in one form or another since I was still a wet-behind-the-ears, young man in 1972. I went to work for my dad – who was the General Manager of a nationally, well-known insurance agency. That experience parlayed into forays into other sales arenas where I somewhat successfully sold mobile homes, furniture (retail and wholesale), magazine advertising – before finally (in 1996) I settled into website sales, development and digital marketing.

You could presume – since I have made a living all these years since 1972, that I must have always been pretty decent in sales – AND that I’ve probably gotten better at it over the years. I’d put myself right “up there” with the very best salespeople that I have rubbed shoulders with – and even though we operate in a much smaller “pond” – I think I’m probably every bit as talented as some “sales gods” in our industry.

Now that I’ve provided a brief resume and tooted the heck out of my own horn. Let me ask you again in more detail. If I came to you and said something like the following:

“Hi, my name is Mike Doble and I want to go to work for you with NO salary. You don’t have to train me AT ALL. You don’t have to spend ONE moment of time bringing me up to speed on your product and services. I will do all of the “heavy lifting” myself. If I bring you a brand new sale every day (or perhaps hundreds of new sales every single day) – would you be willing to pay me a referral fee or commission? I’m flexible about how much you pay me, but I’m thinking that somewhere between 5% and 20% (depending on your product or service) is a fair price to pay to have me selling the HELL out of your company. I will represent you with integrity, honesty and your new customer will sing my praises.”


Would you hire me?

Look I can SEE you guys and I can’t believe I just saw ONE of you shaking your head no! I KNOW you’re kidding. You’d hire me in a second, admit it.

Now take MY talents and outreach and multiply that by INFINITY, take THAT to the depths of forever, and you still BARELY have a glimpse of what I’m talking about. (I stole that sentence from one of my personal movie favs, Meet Joe Black – but it applies here. Let me explain.)

I have personally spoken to THOUSANDS of clients, customers and potential clients in all of my years in sales. I really wish I knew how many thousands but if you’ll indulge me another moment:

If I had worked EVERY working day within the last 42 years that I’ve been in sales – AND if I had spoken to 20 potential clients every day during those 42 years, I would have conducted 168,000 sales calls. (Man, I’m now tired just thinking of that and of course I have not spoken to that many people.)

So, I’m probably worthy of you hiring me and paying me a decent commission per sale, right? No, I’m not interviewing for a job.


However, now let’s look at who I KNOW to Be THE BEST SALESPERSON ON PLANET EARTH:

Last year, 2,161,530,000,000 people searched Google for SOMETHING, EVERYTHING. YOUR PRODUCTS. YOUR SERVICES.

I can’t even BEGIN to spell that out in everyday language. It’s way more than my brain can comprehend. I can do it somewhat easier by telling you that they averaged 5,922,000,000 searched PER DAY. Okay, I can do that one – it is FIVE BILLION, NINE HUNDRED AND TWENTY TWO MILLION searches every single day! (The chart at the bottom of this blog is kind of interesting to see Google’s exponential growth over the years since 1998.)

So let’s get to my initial point – HIRE GOOGLE!

If after all of my pleading for a sales job – if you had given a glimmer of a “YES” that you’d hire me on a commission basis – then WHY THE HECK would you not hire THE BEST SALESPERSON ON EARTH? The truth is Google is better than me. It pains me to say it, but they are.



I’m going to give you a few, no-brainer reasons:

1. Google IS changing their business model in ways that WILL shake the earth in terms of how websites are going to found in the future. They are implementing small changes every day and we can show you how and why it is important to enact a strategy to take advantage of these changes now.
2. While I and the best salespeople on the planet have to go out and FIND new leads and customers for you – BILLIONS of people are going to Google every day LOOKING for businesses that provide your products and services. Why not let those people COME TO YOU?
3. Google won’t miss ONE DAY of work. Not one. They won’t have sick days; they won’t take time off for vacations, pregnancies and they won’t have drug or drinking or depression problems. They won’t have attitudes that you have to work around. They won’t have car problems. They will simply sell brand new clients and customers EVERY SINGLE DAY.


For those reasons and SO MANY MORE, Google should be considered as THE NUMBER ONE SALES REP on your marketing team. Too many business owners have grown complacent and stuck in a mindset that they should just put all of their efforts into finding ways (good and bad) to get to the top of Google’s organic rankings with NO thought that there are simple ways to INVEST in Google. By “invest” I mean with great content…with advertising on Google…and link building (which also plays into the Google mix).

Another way to look at it is this – I don’t know ONE business owner who wouldn’t commit to paying out $10,000 for every $100,000 that I or any other sales rep could deliver. By simply building a website and putting it out there with NO REAL SEO/SEM strategy that involves the Gorilla Marketing GIANT of the century – is simply nuts!

If you’d like to know more about how to hire Google and put them to work for your company’s sales staff…feel free to call me. I won’t hound you for a job. I’ve got one. I sell for Google!

For more information, view our SEO SERVICES page.


Annual Number of Google Searches
Average Searches Per Day









3,600,000 *Googles official first year



Is it REALLY Good Enough being Ranked in the Top 10?

Oh NO! Where’s my SEO? released an October 2013 study that showed 53 percent of organic search clicks go to the first link.

top ten search engine rankings

So let me see if I can paint the proper picture here.

You’ve instructed your webmaster to “Get my website ranked in the top ten on Google!”

Let’s say that you are ranked #10 on Google for 20 search terms that – according to Google Adwords Keyword Tool – are good for 2000 visitors a month.

On the surface, it looks like your developer did a pretty good job, right? After all, you’re now ranked in the top 10 for 20 good search terms.


If your website is now ranked 10th for all of these (20) search terms AND Google says that the 20 terms are searched for 2000 times a month – you’re sitting on easy street, right?

Not so fast. According to and others who are tracking Google’s search trends – those 20 #10 rankings will probably send around (40) visitors to your website next month!

If you were #4 for all of those same search terms, you’d see 120 visitors.If you were #2 for the same terms, you’d probably see around 300 visitors.

WANNA KNOW ABOUT #1? How’s 1,060 potential clients sound to you? Better right?


The trick these days is to win as many TOP TEN rankings as possible for as many search terms as possible. In most industries there are probably 500-1000 different search terms that would benefit your bottom line. So when you are developing an SEO campaign, you need to think about VOLUME when it comes to rankings AND think NUMBER ONE!

Read more about optimizing your website at the two sources below:

Organic Search Engine Optimization

Organic search listings are on top

The report opens by introducing the split between the two different types of listings that can appear within a Google search results page – organic and paid. The data highlights that a staggering 85% of all search listings are organic, whereas a mere 15% of listings are from paid advertising.


Launching a New Website

Here at AppNet, we just launched the newly, redesigned website. This week (February 17-21, 2014) I have literally had the opportunity to speak with three different clients (one new and two long-term) about this very subject – that is launching a redesigned website.

In all three cases when the subject of “budget” came up, I had to “tap dance” around what I felt (feel) was (is) the most important aspect of any such project. In two of the cases this week, the client had already communicated with additional design firms and in each and every case, the other agency’s “bids” or proposals came in substantially less than I had quoted each. However in every single case, the other firms had simply quoted my prospective new and redesign clients WITH NO REGARD to protecting the rankings and traffic that each of these client’s websites had built up over years of successfully growing content.

One of the client’s websites was averaging over 80,000 unique visitors per month and on the foundation of more than 890 top ten rankings on Google alone. However, when this client consulted the other firms about a redesign, the firms in question only quoted what it would take to create the new website based solely on the “wish lists” of pages and construct of the new website. NO mention was made over recreating old content and handling any redirects, relinking, etc.

We Won in the Long Run…and so will these clients.

As it turned out, once I SHOWED just how well ranked the old content was AND how much adverse effect that losing that content and rankings would be on their traffic – they opted to award us with their business.

Coincidentally we have been going through the process of a new, redesign for our and just launched the new version today. We’ll let you know how things go with Google, Yahoo and Bing – however suffice to say that we saved the old PHP pages and rewrote many…and in every case, took measures to tell Google where our old pages had “moved” to on the new website.

That’s vital to insuring that you don’t lose any traction from an existing, well-ranked website. I’ll update you guys in a couple of weeks about how the work has gone…and how Google, Yahoo and Bing has worked with us. In the meantime I thought I’d share some tips or pointers in what YOU should think about when it comes to a redesign.

So have it at and check back soon for updates.


So, Do You Already Have Some SEO Juice?

You have a great website and it shows up in search engines for your most important key-phrases. This has worked for you since you originally launched your site. But your site is starting to look a bit tired. You see your competition launching redesigned websites and yours is starting to look “worn”….really worn.

So you make the decision to do a website makeover. You SHOULD take steps to protect your “juice” In website terms – JUICE – is the productivity that your website has in rankings and traffic. You don’t want to lose that, right?


If You Redesign Your Website, Will it Hurt Your Search Engine Rankings?

The answer is yes – at least for a bit…even if you take steps to protect your website. However if you just create a new website without regard to the old content, rankings and such…your rankings WILL DIE. You can’t just put up a new, beautiful website and expect it to rank the same or better. You have to “do it right” and by “right” I mean that you have to be certain to include the content pages from your old site (recreated with the new look) AND either keep the same page names – OR if your new platform doesn’t allow that you have to do redirects properly.


What do You Have to Lose?

A LOT if you are not careful to protect that ranking. The best approach is to use a ranking monitor to find all the phrases you rank for and determine the associated pages that are creating those rankings.That can be a tedious task and should probably be performed by an SEO expert  – however IF you’re going to do it you should set goals and use your analytics and good old Excel to make the best decisions.

I did this recently by simply exporting Google Analytics data into an Excel spreadsheet. Be sure to export your most visited pages over a long period – and not just for the last month or so. Also sort by PAGES and also by KEYWORDS so that you can cross-reference and KNOW what your most important pages are…and by “MOST IMPORTANT” I mean most important to your rankings, traffic, etc.


Know Which Pages Really Work.

Sometimes you can get so caught up in what YOU feel like are the most important pages of your website, that you don’t actually know which pages are most important to your customers. When I was researching the “juice” that I wanted to push over to the new website that we were working on, I was surprised to see that some of the pages that I would have probably left off the new website – were actual well visited and ranked. If someone can still find that old page from your old website (on Google) then you’ll want to make sure that they can find it on the new one – even if that means that you need to recreate it in your new design platform (like WordPress, etc) and then redirect the old PHP or HTML page to the new spot on the new website. That was kind of “all over the place” but I think you get my drift.

In short, your newly redesigned site needs to have a corresponding page for each high ranking page on the old site, and ideally a page for every page in Google’s index.


Site Structure and Internal Links

Since I just hinted at website structure…let me throw that ingredient into this recipe for redesigning.

If your domain has juice, keep it.The worst mistake that some newbies make is to make the decision that since we’re working on a new website, MAYBE it’s time for a new domain name. OH MY GOODNESS! You can do all of the Google Webmaster “tooling” you want to tell Google that you want them to give you ranking “credit” from the old domain to the new – but Google does “weight” old domain names and new ones can take a bit of time to be respected by the search engines – enough to rank well. (I know I will get some argument on that statement, but I’m right.)

So, let’s assume we’re redesigning your website on the same domain name. For sites that have some real history and good ranking, the rule of thumb is; don’t change your URL and don’t change the URLs for the most important pages. Unfortunately, that is often easier said than done, since the goal of the redesign may be to upgrade your site platform and improve the URL structure. If the URLs must change, it is crucial to take additional steps to protect those pages and the rankings that come with them.


Don’t Forget to Redirect Your Back Links

Back links are one of the most important tools for improving your SEO. Knowing where your back links are coming from will help you create redirects to the newly create pages on your new site. You won’t be able to update links on other websites, but you can make sure they aren’t broken. Use a back link checker to list out the pages on your site others are linking to.

Research your indexed pages. Use something like Google Webmaster Tools to see all the pages that are indexed by Google, not just the ones that rank high – don’t forget those.

Now that you have a list you can create redirects to send visitors and the search engines to the corresponding new pages. Use a “permanent 301” redirect for each to new or similar page on the redesigned site. This process will help.


Prepare For The Indexing

Create a new sitemap.xml file. Sitemap files help the search engines find pages on your new site. If you are using a CMS like WordPress, there are great plugins that will create a sitemap for you. Also remember to update your robots.txt file. If you’ve added any additional functionality your new robots.txt file will be a bit different, especially if you have switched to a new CMS, added a login area etc. The robots.txt file lets search engines know what not to index.



Many SEO gurus will tell you to be sure to link from this page to that page and string a bunch of links all over your website and even some of the best SEO plugins will direct you to be very “matchy” on pages. Match your title to your keyword and include the keywords in your META titles and H1 tags and content and ALT tags, etc, etc, etc.


I’m going to advise you to keep keywords in mind in the sense that you need to make sure that the subject of each page is evident. However don’t write ANYTHING for Google, Yahoo and Bing. Write for your customers. Speak to them with your titles, content, etc. If you speak to your customers…you will get the rankings that your website deserves

…and another thing! Data tells us that we’re only going to get about 4-6-8 pages and maybe 4-8 minutes per visitor on a website. So DIRECT your visitors to the 4-6 pages that YOU want them to see. By linking all over the place you allow your visitors to drive the bus wherever they want to go on your website.

When you are redesigning your website, give thought to where YOU want their focus to be and create the NAV such that they really can’t GET anywhere except where you want them to go. You can thank me later.


It’s Launch Time

Once you launch the new website, your work has JUST really begun. Now you will need to LIVE on Google analytics to check for crawl errors. Use your web tools to check for 404 errors (page not found!). Also, make sure the XML sitemap is functioning properly.

Redesigning your website does not have to be painful. It only needs to be thoughtful. Search engines and people like fresh content and thoughtfully redesigned websites. So, have no fear of redesigning your website, just keep your focus on SEO and functionality during the process. When in doubt, talk to an expert.

If you’re thinking about a redesign, whether you’re going to do it yourself or contract with a developer to handle that task for you – talk with an expert. We’d be happy to talk with you, regardless of whether you contract with us or not. After all, we’re all in this together, right?


We invite you to read MORE about Search Engine Ranking.

Editor’s Note: AppNet ranks NUMBER TWO on Google for top ten search engine ranking as well as thousands of other search terms and our clients enjoy high rankings as well. So we have a little history of success and hope these redesign a website steps post can help you on your next website redesign.

Competitive Analysis

competitve analysisWhat is it and why do you need it?

Okay you have a great website AND you say, “It’s doing pretty well, thank you very much.”

…but is it really?

How do you know? You say that you’re getting calls or emails. Your website seems to be doing pretty well for you.


Here’s a little insider information that I’ll share with you.

Our sales representatives call on business owners every day…about their websites. Sure, we get a lot of unsolicited business from clients who call us about their websites. However our sales guys cold call too. …and here’s a little secret that won’t be a secret as soon as you read it (because we KNOW you’re going to run out and tell everyone!)

Our sales guys actually perform a little website competitive analysis on the websites that they are cold calling potential clients about. Not every company does that. We personally get calls and emails (and we know you do as well) from designers and so-called SEO gurus who call or write that our website LOOKS great…but that they can help us with our rankings. That tells us two things. First, we know they didn’t take the time to look and see if we were ranked worth a darn or they would not have called us. Second, it tells us that they are calling anyone and everyone without regard for how successful a website may be.

The reason that they take that “call everyone” approach is because they KNOW that most websites don’t rank all that well.


When we cold call on a potential client, we already know that they don’t rank well and especially when compared to their competition. Yet we hear just how great a website is doing – when we know better. THAT, my friends is competitive analysis.

The question for you is, “Why have a website unless you can get your share (or more) of the leads that could come from it?”

Once you make the smart decision to GO FOR all of the traffic and lead generation – THE NEXT STEP is to conduct a competitive analysis to see where your website is currently ranked or getting traffic from and THEN compare that against your competition. THEN, armed with those answers, you formulate a plan of attack to meet and beat your competitor’s websites.



Understanding your competition in search results is extremely important. Hiring a pro is the best way to go because digital marketing companies have access to tools that we spend a lot of money for (monthly) that will provide much deeper analysis than some of the tools available for free…however if you want to do it yourself, here are some tips and suggested tools.

1.  Check the ranking of a site and sites that link to it

Opensite Explorer is an SEO tool provided by an SEO product company called Moz.   You can enter a website address and Opensite Explorer and it will display some very useful information.

Domain Authority – If you want to compete on the same search terms as your competitor and your domain rank is much lower then you are going to have difficulty.  If you want to increase your domain rank you need to start building links to your content.

Page Authority – Really good links back from many sites to your website will get you that.

Linking Root Domains – This is the amount of unique domains that link back to a site.  Google likes to see that many websites link back to you as opposed to a low number of websites linking to you many times.

It is also awesome to get your most important links to your website FROM websites that have great domain and page authority themselves. (How do you know that? By running THEIR domain name in Opensite or other tools like it. If you manage to get a link from a highly ranked source this will be hugely valuable to you and it will help increase your ranking (this is assuming that this site is similar to your site in terms of content). (See the catch?)


2. Analyze Competition for Keywords

If you are researching to see if you could rank on particular keywords it’s very useful to see the domain and page authority in search results.  Moz provides an add on for Firefox and Chrome which displays these alongside the search results.


3.  Analyze Optimization of Competitor Pages

Screaming Frog is a free tool that goes through the pages of your website and gives you a view of what page titles you have for each page, descriptions, tags in images and much more.

This is very useful to compare your site against your competitors.  The page titles are very important for SEO purposes and these should all be unique and most should target in on keywords that your customers/readers search for.


4. Review keywords sending traffic to your competitors

SEMRush provides lot of useful data about your competitors related to links and traffic.  Here are a couple of really useful charts it provides.

Estimated traffic for top performing keywords

SEMRush shows the top 10 performing keywords (for free) on a competitors site.  This gives you an idea of any potential keywords that you should also target.

Ranking over time

This shows if the competitor is improving in terms of more pages appearing in search results or less.  And if they appear in search results is it in the top 5 result placing or lower?

SEMRush Organic Keyword


5. Spy on your competitors advertising

When your competitors advertise on Google it’s obviously for keywords that are important to them and if they advertise for a long period then it’s likely these are converting keywords.

Spyfu allows you to spy in on your competitor to see how much they spend on advertisements and what are the keywords they target.  You get a limited version within the free component which is still useful and then you can pay for a more comprehensive view.


6.  Check Link Distribution

Google doesn’t like it if people always link to one page on your website (e.g. your home page).  So it’s much better to get links to a variety of pages.  That’s one of the reasons why a blog with great content will help your ranking as you will get links to your content.


There’s more. No, really there is. Maybe I’ll cover some of them another time. If you have questions about how your website stands up, click here and we’ll see if we can help. Competitive Analysis

Seo Content Writing

content writing for SEOThis particular post is more about WHY seo content writing is directly related to the success of your website – than it is about HOW to write good seo content. However, I’ll cover some tips that we’ve used successfully over the years.

First, let’s get into WHY YOU NEED CONTENT.

There are tens of thousands of pages on the net about content writing for seo and what it is and why it is important to rankings for any website. Yet I still get asked about this at least every few days from prospective clients. When I’m in consulting conversations with our clients (our potential clients) the way that I attempt to illustrate the importance of it is this way:

Let’s say that you have a 5 page website about landscaping services. Your beautiful new website has some awesome images showing off just how great your work is. You have a front page, an “about your company” page, a contact page, and perhaps a couple of pages that lists your services such as tree trimming, stump removal, lawn cutting, etc.

For this illustration, let’s assume that you’re located in Charleston, S.C. and your service coverage areas (where you’re willing to travel to do the work) are nearby towns such as Mount Pleasant, Isle of Palms, Johns Island and Summerville and let’s say that you offer only 5 services such as the three I listed above and let’s add in retaining walls and driveway repair.

In the example above, you have a 5 page website with really only 2 pages that are really anything about your company or services. The contact page and perhaps your services page are pretty useless to getting ranked because you basically have FOUR cities and FIVE services that you need to be found for. (I see you’re confused!) Let me explain.

You NEED to be found for:
Mount Pleasant tree trimming
Mount Pleasant stump removal
Mount Pleasant lawn cutting
Mount Pleasant retaining walls
Mount Pleasant driveway repair
Isle of Palms tree trimming
Isle of Palms stump removal
Isle of Palms lawn cutting
Isle of Palms retaining walls
Isle of Palms driveway repair
Johns Island tree trimming
Johns Island stump removal
Johns Island lawn cutting
Johns Island retaining walls
Johns Island driveway repair
Summerville tree trimming
Summerville stump removal
Summerville lawn cutting
Summerville retaining walls
Summerville driveway repair


So there are 20 search terms that you’d want to be found for, right? Wrong! There are even more, like lawn care, lawn maintenance, etc. However for this illustration, let me ask you a question. There you have a 5 page website and you’re trying to get ranked for at least 20 search terms. One of your competitors has basically the same 5 page website that you do, but they’ve added some content pages that cover the 20 subjects that I listed above. So they now have a 25 page website.  Which website do YOU think will rank higher? If you answered the 25 page website, not only are you correct – you NOW understand how content helps a website gain rankings. Rankings equals traffic and traffic equals more business.

That was easy, wasn’t it?

Now let me share my…

Top 10 SEO content writing tips everyone should know

You don’t have to sacrifice the quality of your work in order to create content that is search engine optimized and will help improve your ranking with the major search engines. By integrating certain important elements into your website content, directory submission articles, blog posts and social media content, you can make them easy for search engines to find and improve your overall ranking.

Here are some key concepts to keep in mind:

1. Content matters: It’s important to remember that no matter what your subject matter is, your content has the potential to reach a large audience and help your company beyond the SEO benefits. Website content, articles and blog posts are ways to connect your company to relevant, interesting information about your industry. Creating copy that is well-written and focuses on interesting topics in your industry will help it go beyond increasing your page rank by being linked to and shared by outsiders.

2. Stay on topic: Business writing is not the same as writing your own personal blog! There’s nothing wrong with adding some personality to your writing – this helps to keep the readers intrigued. Just make sure that you stay focused on the business-oriented topic you are writing about and avoid drifting into unrelated tangents.

3. Write compelling headings: The titles of web pages and articles are among the first things that grab the attention of a reader. Don’t use a generic, boring headline which simply describes what the article or web copy is about. Instead, think like a newspaper headline writer and develop a headline which makes someone want to read more.

4. Ideal keyword length and density: Content written for web copy and articles for directory submission should be 300 to 1,000 words in length. Blog posting and posts on social media sites can be shorter. The length of your article will largely be determined by the number of keywords you are using: a keyword for every 50 to 100 words of content is a good rule of thumb.

5. Add keywords to the bio: Biographical information given for a magazine story or an article for a directory submission is a great chance for you to enhance your credentials and also optimize your content. Make sure that you include one keyword in your bio.

6. Don’t stack keywords: Cramming keywords in an article or page of web content (such as being part of a list) looks unprofessional since all of your linked keywords will be running together on the page. Spread your keywords evenly throughout the article so they look more organic. Google suggests that you write for your readers and website visitors and NOT for Google search engine rankings.

7. Use meta descriptions: Meta descriptions are 150 character descriptions of your content and are excellent opportunities for optimization. Make sure your content has meta descriptions with keywords included. This is a great way to get Google to recognize your content and increase its value.

8. Write and tag hierarchically: In order for Google and other search engines to give your content the highest placement possible, it’s important that it looks professional and well-structured. Using the appropriate tags for your content will do this. Use h1 tags for titles, h2 tags for subtitles and so on. This concept will also help your writing by encouraging you to put your most compelling ideas first.

9. Write original content: Having duplicate content is a major no-no for search engine optimization, so don’t just “copy and paste” content from existing sources. Make sure your content is fresh and original.

10. Choose relevant images: Shutterstock and iStockphoto can help you find intriguing images that are free or inexpensive to use without risking copyright infringement. Having eye-catching images that are relevant to your content will grab the reader’s attention.

All our clients have heard us say this from day one and we cannot stress this enough. Content is key to getting found on the search engines. More specifically – fresh, updated content is the best way to get Google’s attention. Many people are excited and stay involved during the initial stages of getting a new or redesigned website, but once it has been taken live the excitement of their new site fades and they fail to revisit their site for months or even years down the road. When the phones stop ringing, many people are quick to point the finger at their website. After the prolonged neglect, they try to add pages of content to their site and are disappointed when this does not quickly help increase their search engine ranking. By neglecting the site for an extended period of time, it effectively tells the search engines that their site is not going to change, so the search engines do not bother to check back or index the site again.

On the other hand, we have seen the owners of small websites regularly update their content and add pages using the tools we have given them. In these cases, the websites are typically indexed within a few days, which helps their ranking grow steadily over time. Another of our favorite clichés around here is “To be found on the internet, you’ve got to be part of the internet.” A common misconception about having a website is “If you build it, they will come.” This is certainly not the case – the internet is constantly growing and new sites are being added every day. With this consistent increase in competition, keeping an updated website is more important than ever. In order to obtain and maintain top rankings, you must formulate a strategy to add content to your site regularly. Set a realistic goal, and then stick to it. For example, three pages a week adds up to 156 pages of content per year. In addition – having fresh information posted to your site on a weekly basis tells the search engines you are updating your site regularly, and that they need to regularly index your site to rank the new pages. And more ranking leads to more visitors, which means more customers for your business!

We cannot stress the value of fresh content enough. To get the most from your website, set aside some time each week to add articles, events, or other relevant information. Adding fresh, updated content frequently is essential for maximizing the search engine ranking for your site. Please contact us at 828-963-7286828-963-7286 to discuss how to get the best ranked website and dominate your internet competition.