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Agile Computing Authors: Liz McMillan, Zakia Bouachraoui, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Maria C. Horton

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Get To The Top of Google in Five Easy Steps

Learn how the professionals get their web pages to the top of the search engines

Here's the five steps the pro's take:

1. Choose your keywords

2. Make sure you're in the search engines index

3. Get Ranked

4. Get clicked

5. Convert on your site

1. Choose you keywords

You've chosen or know your target market, now you have to get inside their heads and think about the types of keywords they might type in to a search to find your product/service.

Remember, there are several stages in the searchers path to a sale. They may start with trying to find some information on the subject, then once they know a bit more they may move into a mind set of trying to find the best deal on the category they've decided on, then they may move into a buying mind set.

What words would your target use when they're looking for information in your field, what about when they're looking to choose between providers? Do you have a specific model no: or something they may type in when looking to buy?

Don't choose keywords that are 'Too Hot' or 'Too Cold'. Choose keywords that are 'Just Right'.

Too Hot...

The keywords 'love' gets about 80,000,000 hits a month so it would be a great one to be at the top of right? Wrong.

It's to ambiguous and too broad. People may be looking up 'Love Love Me Do', ''does he love me?', 'love advertising' or any other thing to do with 'love'. Now if you're trying to sell a 'love seat', what do all these other searches have to do with that? Nothing at all.

So a keyword that is too hot is a waste of time and effort.

Too Cold...

These are keywords that no one is searching for. It may be very easy to get to the top on Google for 'technology for ducks and geese', but if no one is looking for it, there's no use in it.

Just right...

Keywords that have at least some people looking them up, are fairly specific are just right. Focus on these.

Make a list of all possible keywords in each step and whittle them down until you're happy.

2. Make sure you're in the search engines index
There's no use in doing anything unless your website and it's pages are in the search engines index. It's a lot easier than you may think. The search engines spiders are very advanced. Here's what Google say:

"Inclusion in Google's search results is free and easy; you don't even need to submit your site to Google. Google is a fully automated search engine that uses software known as 'spiders' to crawl the web on a regular basis and find sites to add to our index. In fact, the vast majority of sites listed in our results aren't manually submitted for inclusion, but found and added automatically when our spiders crawl the web."

All you need to do to check if your page has spidered is do a search and see if it comes up. Just type in the full url. If it isn't, then make a link from one of your pages that is spidered and it will be found.

3. Get ranked
Now you've chosen your keywords and you're in the search engines index, you want to get placed high within that index for those keywords. Very high.

First...Optimize landing pages for keywords... There was a time that you could just put the keyword in your web pages copy a million times and you would get a high rank. Those days are gone thankfully. Now the optimum level is having the keyword you've chosen appear about 7% of the time in that page.

And, the words are ranked in importance in this order...title, headline, sub head, first part of copy and then the 'sign off at the end.'
So sprinkle the keyword in there at about 7%, and make sure it's in the title and headline.

Next...Get links
Get as many links as you can, but not all links are created equally. The more prominent and respected the source the better. A link from a mates page that has no real standing is almost of no use but a link from CNN is of great use.

Here are a few thought starters...Get in directories, they're good links. Yahoo Directory, Open Directory/Mozilla and all others. Basically you have to think "Why would someone want to link to mysite?" Then create content that will make them want to.

And make sure the links have the keywords that your targeting in them.

4. Get clicked
Make sure your titles and snippets match the searchers query. You can check what your title and snippet says by typing the page you want to look at into Google. You want your keywords in both parts.

5. Convert on your website
Create a great site with distinct call to actions. Depending on the goals of your website you may have different calls to action. Maybe your goal is to buy a product online, then the call to action is simply to 'Buy Now'. For more information on this please have a look at Direct Response Website Design.

It's really not that hard to get this done yourself. I actually learned all I know with the help of The SEO Book. It's a very famous way to learn how to do this and I found it really easy.

More Stories By Peter Crean

I am a 33 year old Internet marketing professional with a specialty in assisting small businesses. I have over 10 years experience in Internet marketing and have worked in offline advertising and marketing as a writer and later an account manager working on some of the largest companies in the world.

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