how to get google to be totally in love with you... ;-)

What we were talking about just before the class broke up today, made into a little blog post for you:

1) Good, focused, (and if at all possible) original content. This is the one and only and penultimate thing that counts! Without good content, forget it, it just won't happen. What you have on your site simply has to be of interest to others - either specialist groups or general entertainment, but it has to be really good stuff! And my general hunch with this is that specialty sites are far more likely targets to get hits, since there is bound to be more search engine activity related to a specific topic, than there will be to general chit chat.

2) A large site will have more material for the search engine to find. Very simple logic really. If you have 100 posts it is far more likely that you wrote about something that somebody out there is searching for than if you have only 10. The larger the easypeasy site gets the more search engine results we get, no doubt about it. When we had only 10 posts, we had none. Nowadays with over 100 posts under our belts we have at least 5 or 6 a day and very often many more, sometimes as many as 20 even...

3) Make sure your site is structured well in terms of navigation. Even the best content in the world is useless if folk have to work too hard to get to it, they will simply not bother and leave and never come back. And needless to say, forget about them recommending it to anyone else... Read Selim's excellent post on navigation to get more insight on the matter here >>>

4) Post often and consistently. In other words, not silence for a whole month and then 10 posts all at once, but more like 3 posts a week, and every week. Remember that you can also write a whole batch and then pre-date them. I am not exactly sure how or why this makes a difference but a site which is consistently active seems to draw more traffic, a thing which I can tell very easily from the site stats of my own blogs. 

5) Make sure your meta tags are in perfect order. More on this here >>>

6) Make sure your post title comes before your blog title. More on this here >>>

7) Make sure you have a lot of links to other sites, either inside the posts or as sidebar elements: Your courtesy to others is likely to generate courtesy in return by them linking back to you - after all, this is how the internet works...

8) Use social networks efficiently. Tweet your blog and also post it on facebook, linkedin etc. Also if your site's content is at all relevant, start creative network accounts such as on youtube, Flickr, deviantart, vimeo etc. Use the groups within these domains to put out videos and photos and link these back to your site. 

9) Finally, be patient! It will take some time for people to find you - anything up to 6 months to even a year, depending on how fast your site is growing and on how good your content is. Usually you will hit the really big visitor numbers only after one of the major portals or blogs, one that covers the same area of interest on which you are focused, spots you and blogs you. This will take time. Just keep on posting and once you have enough good stuff it will happen - count on it.