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SEO Basics – Keyword Factors Affecting Search Engine Placement

SEO resultsSo, you finally figured out this business about the keywords, description and title and dipped into the old meta tank a few times - but not too much. You have finally managed to flag down Google and you are now officially cruising along the information highway. After spending three days and three nights clicking through page after page of Google results and still not showing up for any of your keywords however, Martha is still a little cranky about this project. Just then your twelve year old niece arrives — the one who is already managing a portfolio of domain names making money with Google adsense. Oh, and she also has a black belt in the ninth degree as a dominatrix at level 650 of World of Warcraft. After glancing at your web page for about a nanosecond and giving you her typical ubiquitous sneer (you remind yourself once more, it’s because of the upper lip piercing) she snarls, "You need keyword density." Hmmmm?

There are many factors which determine search engine rankings for web pages. Search engines are all different, but in terms of keyword placement within content the variables are much the same:
Relevancy + Frequency + Location + Links/Traffic = Rankings

Simply put, if you have a keyword in your meta keywords tag there should be a relevant text match in the body of your page. Using a keyword in your meta tags tells the search engines what you wish to be indexed for. The search engines need to verify that claim in the actual content of your page and the number of times you use the same keyword in your HTML body are factors "spiders" use to determine keyword ratios.

It is recommended that you integrate the keywords in your Meta Tags into the content/HTML of your page. Make sure the keywords are displayed in context, don't just throw them anywhere on the page. The rule of thumb is to repeat a keyword/key phrase about three to five times for every 250 words of content.

Where relevant text is located on your page is important. We recommend using the classic "inverted pyramid" when designing your page. Put the most important (relevant) text first, then the next most important, then the next and so on. Most "spiders" will only "read" about 1/3 of the info on your page, so the closer to the top you place your relevant information the more likely it is to be "read" by a "spider."

Links/Traffic: Besides relevant content, the most significant factor affecting page rankings has to do with the number and the quality of sites that link back to you. This is called link share or link popularity and a link back to your page is viewed as a "vote of confidence" in your website.

There is also a "Catch 22" to search engine placement - sites with a lot of traffic get better placement and of course better placement results in a lot of traffic. Using traditional marketing techniques, including advertising and paid search campaigns to begin with, will help generate traffic.

Over all, the best and only way to get your URL listed on the top search engines is to make your URL as relevant as possible. All search engines index web pages based on information. The more information you provide about your products and services and the more relevant that information is to a search engine user, the better your search engine placement will be.