So you have optimized your page as best as you can but you still just can’t seem to rank well in MSN or in Yahoo SERP reports? Well, don’t stress over it too much. Surprisingly, when it comes to search engine optimization it is pretty easy to rank well in both MSN and Yahoo and I’m going to give you a few tips from my experience in no particular order. Remember there are a lot of other things to take into consideration such as In bound Links (IBL’s), AdWords, paid links and directory submissions but those will be for another post. Tonight we are going to focus on just “On Page optimization Techniques”.
1. Page Titles: Make sure you use relevant words in your page titles. Yahoo and MSN put a lot of weight on page titles.
2. H1 Tags: Surprisingly H1 titles seem not to carry that much weight with MSN or Yahoo. But don’t think that means not to use them. They are important for your readers and when you optimize your page, I hope you are doing it for both search engines and for your readers. Be sure to use your keyword in your H1 titles but try only using one H1 on your page.
3. H2 – H6 Tags: Here is where the H tags seem to matter. Be sure to use your keywords and different variations of your keywords in H2 – H6 tags at least two times in your article. Seems in my experience that H2 and and H3 tags will be all the ones you need.
4. Keywords: Keywords, for those who don’t know, are the main words or phrases you are trying to be found for. Its smart to do some keyword research before you start writing your articles. That way you will be sure to know what words and phrases people are looking for and will help them find your page. Keyword Discovery is a great tool to use for this. Google AdWords has a nice free keyword research tool and Wordtrackers Free Keyword Suggestion Tool is a pretty good one too.
5. Keword Density: Keyword density plays an important role when trying to rank in the search engines. Make sure you try to stay to at least 3% to 5% but no more. If you use keywords more then that you may end up looking like you are trying to keyword stuff which search engines look down on greatly.
6. Keyword Placement: Depending on the length of your article or post, you will have to adjust how many times you actually use your full keyword. Try to keep it simple and remember that you are “optimizing for both the search engines and for your readers“. Be sure to list your full exact keyword at least in these three main places: in the first paragraph, the middle of the body and the last paragraph. During the rest of the body use partial keywords and different variations of them for best results.
7. Bold and Italics: You should bold your full keywords and a few of your partial keywords to show the Search Engine Spiders that these are important words in your article. Use italics on larger phrases or other parts of interest that you want the spiders to recognize as important too.
Keep in mind who you are writing for. Choose words and subject matter that they will understand and that they will be looking for. Also, and I can’t stress this enough, that you are writing for both your customers and the search engines. You need to take a 50/50 look at optimizing your page. There is no point in writing a great article, blog, or online ad-campaign if no one can find it; and no point in optimizing your site 100% for the search engines when people who land on your page don’t make the jump from reader to customer and you don’t get any conversions from your site.
I hope these tips will help you with your Search Engine Optimization and your rankings. I’m not making any promises considering search engine algorithms seem to change all the time, these are just some of the steps that seem to continue to work for my sites. Anyway if you have any comments to add I’d love to hear them.