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Sunday, 10 October 2010

Don't Get Trapped Thinking All the SEO You Need is the Non-Tech Easy Organic SEO Based on Content

Internet can be daunting for brick and mortar businesses. Small companies feel they don't have the time to learn all of this technical stuff. They may even feel pressured into getting a website for international business. All they want to do is provide the technical geeks with the content for the website and let the business roll in.

Many small businesses end up paying a web expert to set up their website. The website usually stagnates, until the information on the website becomes obsolete, or the small business becomes frustrated with the lack of sales and wants to get more out of it.

Organic SEO

Only then do small businesses usually hear about Organic SEO. They understand web content must be written for both their human prospects and the invisible search engines.

They normally understand that content is good for both their human readers and the search engine "readers" or spiders. These spiders pick up their website and list it when their prospects are searching for their products.

But then most small businesses often come to the conclusion that the mysterious technical SEO is an expense and all they want to do is add the one ingredient they can:

their content. After all Organic SEO is said to be good. Very good in fact.

Best Type Of Website For Organic SEO

A small business just creating a website today should seriously consider creating the company website on a blog platform. Why?

There are many free website templates or blog themes available that can easily look like a standard brochure website.

The technical aspect of putting your information on the "blog" platform is easy to grasp. There are also little tools certain website hosting companies offer that make it very easy to grasp - "Fantastico" is one. And with a blog platform you have the added advantage of putting up content regularly in a blog format with all the added business benefits of having a blog:

Creating a community with your prospects

Actively promoting your products and services

Getting valuable feedback from your prospects and clients

Establishing your company as a leading authority

Boosting your SEO value even further Organic SEO for your website becomes more powerful, with the more valuable targeted content you put on it. Using a blog platform gives you the option of looking like an ordinary brochure style website in the beginning and adding a blog when you are ready.

You can then add even more content - fantastic Organic SEO power.

Content Needs A Minimum Of SEO

This is where most small businesses still drop the ball. Content targeted at your prospects is great. They will pick up the value. But you still need a tiny bit of that technical SEO.

It's simple. Your content has titles, sub-heads, categories and it makes sense to your readers.

WordPress is the most effective blog software to use for organic SEO. There are a few very technical reasons for this. But even WordPress software needs a little tweaking.

Well, you need to change the automatically generated titles for your content or blog posts for the search engines to list your company under the correct words searched by your prospects.

It really is not that difficult to go in and adjust this technical language in WordPress. And what a difference it will make on your search engine rankings.

Of course you will get better results: you just gave the search engines the headlines, sub-heads, categories and other valuable explanations it needs to place your website correctly and align its technical language with normal English.

Simple Permalink Adjustment

In technical language, to enhance the Organic SEO value of your blog post titles on a WordPress blog, you need to change the "permalink" codes it generates automatically for each of your entries:

The default way each blog post or entry is named after your .com/ has a question mark followed by p= and a number.

Your 128th post will default to - the 128th page. Logical. Clear. Translates into any language that recognizes numbers.

Absolutely no use for readers, nor for search engines unless I happen to be searching for ?p=128.

Just for info Google list 1.3 million ?p=128 results and Yahoo over 2 million. That is how many times people have not taken the time to change this.

Customize Your Permalink Structure

Which of these two links tells you something about the topic of the post that is presented on the website? Both get you to your destination, but the top option - the default - does nothing to help a reader understand what this content is about.

The second option puts a new set of keywords into your SEO basket. If someone does a Google search for "information products" or "slow economy", you are actually giving Google the tools to help them find your site.

This setting can be changed in WordPress 2.5 by going to Settings and selecting Permalinks and in earlier versions of WordPress by going to Options and selecting Permalinks.

Types Of Permalinks

The WordPress Codex is the online information manual for WordPress. It defines Permalink types as follows:

There are three basic types of WordPress permalinks:

Default: "Ugly"

mod_rewrite: "Pretty Permalinks" or

PATHINFO: "Almost Pretty" The available tags in your Permalinks can be:

%year% - the year

%monthnum% - the number of the month

% day% - the day of the month (not Tuesday)

%hour% - the hour using a 24 hour clock

%minute% - the minutes

%second% - the seconds

% category% - the category under which your content is posted

%author% - the designated author which is useful if multiple writers are providing content

%postname% - the name of the content

%post_id% - the unique ID for each content entry or bog post The unique ID # of the content referenced in this article, for example is 128

For most organic SEO purposes, it is best to change the WordPress code for each blog post entry. Don't keep the standard setting and keep the "?p=number" code.

You Have Options

The blog title or %postname% is often chosen as the best option. This will give you organic SEO for the words in the title of your blog post. So if you chose your content titles wisely, you can have Google working for you on each of those words.

But you can also choose to categorize some or all of your content under a category called "Weekly Favorites" for example. Then you either include a date in your title or add in %year% %monthnum% %postname% so people can ID what week is in question.

This can be an option for a monthly content series for example. Each monthly content post would have the permalink code with the year, the month and the title on your blog post.

It is difficult to imagine using the permalink code to specify minutes.

Having the unique ID number for each post and the content title (%post_id% and %postname% ) would give this using the previous example would appear as It looks a little too odd for humans and the search engines do not need to use the ID number here.

WordPress Suggests

The WordPress codex suggests using the following to identify each of your blog posts:

/%year%/%monthnum%/% day%/%postname%/. - year, month, day, post title.

The Good, The Bad...

The good news is that when you go into your WordPress software you set it up once and it works for all of your blog posts.

The bad news is:

If you keep changing your settings you will lose the visitors to your pages who are getting to you through old links.

And if you already have a WordPress blog all of your old post links will become invalid. Everything is changed on your website - the old blog posts and the future blog posts. So if you have many people who have bookmarked individual blog posts, they will lose that direct link. Established WordPress blogs will want an experienced person to make this change. It is possible. It only needs to be done once. But if you don't want to cut your links off it is a bit more complicated.

Your boat, you go float in it.

...And The Great

You can decide which words you would like your prospects or readers to find you with.

You can only give them the option of finding you with the name of your website.

You can also give them numerous other options: they can find your website through the different titles you give to of each of your blog posts. This gives you more key words to rank high on the search engines.

The businesses that opt for a WordPress platform have a huge Organic SEO advantage over any other type of website.

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Cindy King is a Cross-Cultural eMarketer & International Sales Specialist, aligning businesses with different cultures. She has over 25 years field experience in international business development and helps mid-sized business owners create international business development strategies that shorten time to profitability.


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