Maintaining Your Website's Search Position
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You invested a lot of time and money into search engine optimization to get your website in a good position. Your investment has finally paid off, and you find yourself on the first page of search results. After a week or two, though, you notice your website drops from the #5 position on page one to the #3 position on page two. Were all your SEO efforts even worth it?
Wait! Don't give up on search engine marketing yet. If your website seems to be losing ground, don't panic--get back in the web marketing game. Fight back with these 10 tricks, and keep your website from fading into oblivion.
- Update existing content. If it's been a while since you last updated your website content, now's the time to do it. Update headlines, sub headlines and body text. Remember: Search engine spiders aren't looking for just any content; they're looking for content that's fresh and keyword-rich.
- Add more content. Make sure there are at least 200 words on your main and landing pages. If there aren't, add more words. If there are, add 50 to 100 more words. Don't forget those keywords.
- Add new pages. If you're trying to optimize an image-based or small website, add new content pages. Consider adding landing pages, articles, blogs, newsletter archives, site maps, etc.
- Add internal page links. Link every page on your website to your main pages (i.e. home, about, products, etc.). Main links should appear near the top (i.e., top or side navigation) and should be repeated at the bottom of every page. Link to landing pages from within body text. Also, use your images to link to internal pages.
- Add links to your website from relevant external sites. The key here is relevant. Link from sites that matter, such as online ads, published online articles (Tip: Create a signature line; see mine below), professional groups and organizations, testimonials from client sites, etc.
- Rename pages. Incorporate your keywords into your page names. Don't just call your about page "About". Call it about_keyword.htm. For example, I'm an Atlanta-based SEO copywriter, so my about page is: about_Atlanta_seo_copywriter.htm.
- Rename images. If your images have generic names, rename them to include your keywords. For example, if you're a Houston-based dog sitter, don't name an image littledogpics.jpg; instead, name it Houston_dog_sitter_littledogs.jpg.
- Update alt tags. Add alt tags to your images. Make sure your keywords are included as part of the tag. For example, if you're a residential painter, your alt tag should read: alt="residential_painter_yourname".
- Update meta tags. Replace irrelevant keywords. Limit meta tag keywords and descriptions to the keywords and keyword phrases used on the page. Refresh your description meta tag regularly.
- Update the page title. Update the title every few weeks or every other month. If you add another page by copying an existing page, make sure your page title and keywords coincide with the page content.
SEO is an ongoing process that takes time, skill and patience. Schedule regular updates and keep those keywords and content fresh, and you'll be well on your way to holding your position. If you're frustrated because you're not getting the results you want, don't give up; it may take a few weeks before you see the results you want. If you're still having problems, consider hiring an SEO coach or an SEO copywriter.
Ayana Glaze is a freelance SEO copywriter in Atlanta, GA. Subscribe to her ezine, SEO Weekly, for SEO copywriting and online marketing tips or visit her online at www.ayanaglaze.com.