Are you a blogger or website owner? If yes, then you probably heard about search engine optimization or SEO and the importance of having the right keywords on your contents to increase your visibility online. You even heard about the importance of your page ranking and different tips to drive visitors into your site. And surely, you have incorporated everything you read in Google without even understanding what it means and its significance.
One of the most utilized tools to improve your ranking is White Hat SEO. Let’s take a comprehensive look about white hat SEO plus tips you can use to increase your website’s online visibility.
SEO in a nutshell
SEO or search engine optimization involves manipulating the different aspects of a website in order to improve its ranking in search engines. This includes submitting the website into various directory services, incorporating “searchable” keywords into the content or addressing the website architecture.
Let’s Define White Hat SEO
One of the SEO tactics employed by a lot of webmasters and bloggers is white hat SEO. True to its origin, its primary goal is to increase a website’s position in the search engine results page or SERP through legitimate SEO strategies, techniques and means. This can be done by:
- Making sure that the title and content URL contains the important keywords.
- Providing relevant keywords to the content on the page. However, this can often be abused so make sure that the keyword still makes sense when inserted in the post.
- Adding links and buttons that invite potential readers to the site.
- Providing links to social media accounts. This also enables you to interact with the users using these accounts.
- Posting a video content.
Unacceptable Techniques – What You Should NEVER Do
Apparently, Google is smart enough to know whether what you are doing in your site is legitimate or not. In fact, there have been a lot of unscrupulous methods employed by website owners that Google ended up penalizing a lot. To avoid this from happening and paying a penalty fee (and a possibility of getting your site shut down), here are some things you should avoid:
- Duplicate content. In other words, plagiarism is a big NO-NO
- Keyword stuffing. Again, the keywords used must still make sense when you use it
- Low quality inbound links
- Creating fake social networking accounts
- Suspicious link structure
- Page stuffing
- Low quality site design
- Undisclosed paid links
- Link exchanges
- Showing a different content to Google than to the regular readers
Different tricks to increase your website’s visibility and ranking
You may think that it will be difficult for your technique in mind to pass as white hat SEO. The truth is this SEO tactic is not rocket science and does not need a Masters Degree. When it comes to SEO techniques, here are some things you can do to increase your page ranking without getting penalized.
Web pages are categorized by search engines based on keywords. Therefore, the keywords you used in your posts plus the placement of such plays a vital role in your ranking. When it comes to keyword placement, here are some things you should remember.
- Include the keywords in the title of your webpage. If your content is about ‘Laptops,’ then the title should be “All about Laptops.”
- Place it in the headers or header tags. For example, “How to choose the best laptop.”
- All throughout the webpage that should be distributed equally.
Do not worry too much about the keyword density. Keep in mind that you are writing for readers and you want to give them information that only your site can deliver. However, be mindful when it comes to the usage of your primary keyword. To avoid keyword stuffing, or using ‘laptop’ all the time, you can consider synonyms such as ‘notebook’ or ‘netbook.’ Otherwise, your site will be flagged as ‘spam’ and you don’t want that.
One way of legitimately increasing your site’s ranking is through link analysis. This means the search engine, Google for instance, will see how many web pages link to the page being analyzed. Using the laptop example, if the search engine sees that a lot of web pages related to laptops are linking to your page, you can have a higher page rank. And if the websites linking to your site also have a higher ranking, it can boost your page further.
Link analysis can be tricky. But one way to do this is through link exchange. But this does not mean you can just trade links with just any websites. It should have a related content similar to yours since the search engines still check whether the links to and from your page are relevant to your site’s contents.
Imagine this: you are looking for information about where to buy the best furniture in Los Angeles. You came across this website that specializes on furniture and upon clicking the web page, everything else is cluttered. You do not know where to find the designs or the tab where you can contact their point person. Would you still want to visit that site? Of course not, right?
When it comes to increasing your site’s ranking, the website should be strategically structured. This means it should be pleasing and conveniently accessible to the reader’s eye. If you are just starting a website, WordPress can be useful it has a lot of free SEO-related plug-ins. If you plan to use a certain keyword, there should be a dedicated page or category for it.
Posting original content about your dedicated keyword should also be utilized. If your site is about laptops, share tips on how to choose the best laptop or make reviews for the netbooks available. At the same time, make your content “share-able” through social media. Don’t forget to add social sharing buttons at the end of each post.
This is perhaps the most important factor you need to consider. When it comes to content, make sure you only write fresh and original posts. At the same time, what it contains should be relevant and useful to the readers visiting your site. Also, pages with more content and have at least 800 words rank better than those posts with less than 300 words. And as much as possible, post new content regularly. Try to make a quality post at least once every week to encourage more users to visit your site. But if you have nothing good to write about, then don’t.
And of course, diversify your content. Too much words can be strenuous to eye. Add pictures (make sure it is not copyrighted), embed videos or organize a promo or giveaway. Think of something that will make your users come back to your website.
And equally important is the title and description tags. The title itself should be unique and catchy to entice your readers to click and be directed to your webpage. Just always make sure that the title you chose is relevant and related to the content you are posting otherwise you will be penalized.
Using and placing the right keywords on your post is effective. But don’t just rely on this. There are other ways you can do such as but not limited to:
- Forum posting
- Guest posting
- Sharing content in various social media sites
- Promos and giveaways
- If you are using WordPress, submit your URL to the top RSS directories to get back links
Thinking about how the page ranking is determined or what are the relevant keywords to be included in your site can be headache. The good news is there are a lot of available SEO tools you can use to better optimize your website. This includes:
- Google Analytics. When it comes to analyzing what happens when a visitor is in your site, Google Analytics can be a great monitoring tool.
- Google Webmaster Tool. This tool can give you information about the best performing keywords plus the click-through rate or the top landing pages. This can help you optimize your title and meta tags to boost the click rate. This will also come in handy in determining links to websites that no longer exists.
- Google Adwords Keyword Tool. When it comes to the monthly local and global searches regarding a certain keyword, then this tool can definitely help. Although your primary goal is to focus on the highest cost per click value, try to use the ones with lower search volume then use it in your post.
- Google Alerts. If you want to know and discover link opportunities and at the same time, new sites that can be relevant to your site, then this tool can be useful for you. Also, this tool can give you fresh ideas for your blog posts so it’s better to bookmark this as well.
White Hat SEO may sound complicated at first but you’ll get a hang of it eventually. Just follow these simple yet effective tips and your website can have a higher page ranking in no time. And remember, be patient.