Surprise, there is no mystical panacea to boosting your rankings. You’d be amazed by how many people are suckered into believing and buying into these ‘snake oil’ solutions towards Search Engine Optimization (or SEO).
Look, I've been there. I “didn't have the time” either, so I hired someone. They kept sending monthly reports from Alexa and Google Analytics but truthfully I didn't even really understand what I was looking at. I thought Ling Ling died? What the hell is Panda? or is it Penguin? I might as well have had the words “SUCKA” tattooed across my forehead.
So, about 8-months into my SEO-Odyssey, I turned to my partner and said “brace yourself we're going to have to read”. This is what we learned from spending a relatively small amount of time educating ourselves on the subject.
- No ONE can or should promise you #1 Organic SEO Rankings in Google
- NO ONE has a proprietary software tool that can infiltrate Google’s alogorithm
- NO ONE should be submitting your web site to 293,481 directories and link exchange farms to get your rankings higher
- NO ONE is a sub-contractor for Google with a direct link to get your web site indexed quicker
- NO ONE should be able to tell you what your Key Words should be without your input
Below please find a list of resources that we have been using since firing our last SEO expert. Since our relaunch 3-weeks ago, Project Eve has risen to a top 14,000 site in the U.S. and a top 100,000 site globally (as per Alexa). I really encourage you to get your hands dirty with this stuff. I think you will feel much more in control of your own destiny (and wallet) when you do.
Google Analytics lets you measure your advertising ROI as well as track your Flash, video, and social networking sites and applications. I kept clicking around until I finally figured out how to set this up. I watched you-tube videos, read how-to articles. Do not pay anyone to set this up for you. You are better than that.
Alexa Find and evaluate businesses worldwide with Alexa's web analytics. I love Alexa.com. It is easy to set up and incredibly satisfying.
Considered by many to be top SEO plugin available, WordPress SEO by Yoast offers a broad range of features to help you take care of technical optimization aspects and to also write better content. The plugin forces you to choose a focus keyword when writing an article to populate it throughout the content. The robust list of features for this plugin include: snippet previews, page analysis, automatically optimizing and inserting meta tags, link elements, XML sitemaps, RSS optimization, breadcrumbs, editing your .htaccess and robots.txt file, social integration, import & export functionality, Google News SEO module and much more.
Google XML Sitemaps generates an XML sitemap supported by Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask. Sitemaps make it much easier for crawlers to see the complete structure of your web site and retrieve more efficiently. It also notifies all major search engines every time you create a new post. You can either choose to write a normal XML file or a zipped file. In case of any errors, you can rebuild the sitemap manually. As a remark, Pingomatic can be used to ping your blog to multiple search engines and other specialized services.
404 SEO plugin gives you a smart, customized ‘Page Not Found(404)’ error message and automatically displays links to relevant pages on your site, based on the words in the URL that was not found.
SEO Friendly Image This plugin helps in making your images SEO friendly. It automatically updates all images with a proper ALT and TITLE. ALT acts as a description for your image and TITLE is the tooltip text displayed when the mouse is over the image. These attributes are one of the important part of SEO.