7 Golden Rules for SEO

Posted on November 3, 2009

 

golden-rules-of-SEO

SEO is a rare combination of art and mathematics, meaning that a structured, ordered approach needs to be combined with a certain degree of flair and artistry. Even with something as organic and ever evolving as SEO however, there are certain rules that you must follow, rules that remain steadfast, unchanging, written in stone if you will.

Here is a quick guide to the 7 golden rules for SEO, rules that you should follow for success in your SEO campaigns and your quest to rank #1 in Google for your chosen keywords.

#1 Content is King
This is rule number one, and a rule that will always be number one. Google stays at the top of the game, ahead of lesser search engines, by being the most useful. It offers the most relevant results to users who are looking for information. If you make your website a resource for information on your industry, then Google will offer it as a solution to someone’s query.

#2 Do Not Copy Content
While content is king, copied content is most assuredly not! If you copy content from your competitor’s websites, from Wikipedia, from article directories and various other sources then your website will not be original. Google likes original websites. Google does not like websites that are duplicates because they clog up its search pages and annoy its users. Copying content is a quick way to get your website removed from Google.

#3 Always Optimise Your Title Tag
Your title tag, found between the code on your page, is the most important tag on each of your website’s pages. Your title tag should be optimised for your keywords, and it should be different on every page. Having a page title of ‘home’ or ‘untitled document’ is a cardinal sin in SEO, but one that many websites still possess.

#4 Always Have Text Based Navigation
The anchor text used on links (meaning the actual text that you turn into a hyperlink) is one of the most important aspects of SEO. Having keyword rich hypertext is essential for a successful SEO campaign, and your website’s navigation is the easiest and most natural place to do this. However, many websites suffer from image based navs or JavaScript and Flash navigation. These are very bad for SEO.

#5 Do Not Buy Low Quality Links
All search engines, including Google, place a lot of emphasis on links. The more websites that link to your website, the more important your website must be, therefore the higher it will rank. This leads to the temptation to purchase links, lots of them. However, Google is smarter than that. Buying poor quality links for your website will not gain you the rankings that you want. Instead it could very well harm your SEO efforts.

#6 Always Use Search Engine Friendly URLs
As well as the content, the title tag and the anchor text, your actual URL is also very important for SEO. Therefore, you need to have a website that features search engine friendly URLs. An example of a URL that is great for SEO is: http://www.stuckon.co.uk/7-golden-rules-for-seo-1223.html – The URL contains the keywords of the post and mirrors the page title. A bad URL for SEO would be http://www.stuckon.co.uk/?p=1223 as this does not feature any keywords. Other poor URLs could contain session IDs and database IDs. These are very bad for SEO and should be eliminated.

#7 Research Your Keywords
If a website ranks for keywords, but nobody is searching for them, does it really rank? There’s no point ranking #1 in Google for keywords if the search volume for those keywords is non existent. Before you begin any SEO on your website you need to identify the keywords that best suit your business, the sort of keywords that your website’s visitors would search for in order to find your website.

What keywords are your competitors optimising for? This is often a good place to start.

If you follow these simple golden rules of SEO you should be well on your way to a successful SEO campaign.

  • jase says:

    Good article Carl.

    Hope you’re well and business is good!

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