SEOThursday

Blog covering a variety of Search Engine Optimization topics.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Arise Fair SEO, Arise

I wanted to let everyone know that I'm still here . . . been boarding in Colorado the last week or so and celebrating the holidays (Xmas and B-day) - didn't mean to neglect my growing blog, but you know how it is. I've been keeping my ear to the SEO grindstone the whole time I assure you.

Who's pumped for 2007? Who needs some inspiration? Who's not sitting down? There have been mucho posts regarding the year that was and the year that will be, SEO or otherwise, and people have some lofty goals. ('Um, I like want to work out more and stop taking on bad clients'). My main goal is to turn this blog (which I might rename) into a highly-trafficked and well-respected source on SEO and SEM in general. I plan on being very active on the big boys blogs and to hopefully do some things that draw as much attention as the PubCon Drinking Game did. Maybe even get to speak at SES or WMW.

Forget me, though, you're here because you care about bettering your situation by maybe getting some kind of insight about SEO/SEM. This life is all about "I", and I'm not gonna waste your "I's" time. You want to improve on your organic rankings in 2007, so here's 7 things you should do everyday to make sure on 1/2/08 you're sittin' fat with some cash:

1. Add content more frequently to your site. Content is so cliche, but in general, if you were to add twice as much content in '07 as you did in '06, your organic rankings are going to benefit from it. Whether it's through the long tail keywords or your $ keywords, keeping things fresh is key to search engine health and also forces you to think about new features that may differentiate you from others in your vertical.

2. Know your competition. If you're in the top 10 in a given SERP, you better well know not only the other 9 sites up there, but also keep an eye on the next 90 below you. You want your site to be better than everyone else's, and to do that you first must know your competition. Like when Iceland crushed the Ducks in the opening round of the Junior Goodwill Games. Coach Bombay didn't know anything about Gunner Staal's affinity for the glove side heading into that game. But seriously, knowing your competition can help you to add a feature that no one in your industry has - foresight is essential in this industry, and it is fed by "monitoring".

3. Refresh your titles and meta to be more "ad" like. Our financially-strapped friend over at SEOmoz beat me to the punch on this one, but going through your pages maybe 1 per day and considering if the titles and meta (whatever part Google is showing in your result that is) are worthy of bringing in visitors is something you should do. There is a fine line to toe with optimizing your page for both organic ranking and CTR, but 90% of sites could improve in this area. If your PPC ad is killing it, see if your organic result is as strong. Like Rand says, a top ranking site should worry as much about organic CTR and conversions as the PPC team does.

4. Brainstorm link bait ideas. It's only going to get more and more important as time goes on to create link bait. Break free from mindless link acquistion circa 2003 and be compelling. Tools, contests, pictures with drinks and hats - those have been done, but they also seem to work. Try a few. Go beyond that and really be bait worthy. I rank really well for "pubcon" and never proactively tried to. It's the power of the link bait baby.

5. Regain focus on your core $ maker. Chances are you have a site that you've been pounding away at for years and is doing well. "Old faithful" you may call her. Just because she's boring and you like you're new site better, don't forget who was there in the early days. Introduce a new feature, generate a new type of lead, give that old hag a face lift . . . focusing too much on newer ventures can have you missing out on what you already have established.

6. Keep up with the industry. Read blogs like SEOmoz, SEOBook, Stuntdubl, Jim Boykin and all the others. WebmasterWorld. There is an amazing "community" of SEO/SEM people that have blogs. You may not learn something every day, but just reading other SEO's posts can get your mind going and can help you progress with your sites and your skills.

7. Read SEOThursday. You're goddamn right this is key to success in 2007. I'll keep it fresh for ya, I promise. You just make a stop by here everyday to see what's up. And if I end up 301ing to a prettier site with a prettier name, you can say you knew that kid back in the day when the site was a shitty blue blogger template and it had some goofy premise of only posting on Thursdays, a day when most people are planning out how to avoid Lumbergh on Friday.

Let's Go Blues.

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