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SEO in 2011

Search Engine Optimization, SEO. The ability to ensure that your website ranks high on the first page based on keyword searches by web users. Within the top 5 on that first page of search results is the optimal location, and business owners have been implementing tactics to hit that spot for years.

So, you’ve invested in keyword research, done your homework, and maintained your META, Title, and ALT tags. Your website is populated with original content regularly either from an offsite blog, industry-related RSS feed, or another content source. You’ve maintained a solid position somewhere on the first page for most search engine searches, but you’ve noticed that your competition is starting to creep up on most pages.

So, what is a business to do when you’ve managed all the tried and true methods to enhance your Search Engine Optimization?

As web marketing becomes more the norm than the anomaly in most industries, the competition becomes fiercer to obtain a top 1-5 ranking in web search results. While this poses a unique concern, innovative approaches to SEO and web marketing allow companies that are willing to think out of the box to breakthrough in search engine results. With the recent changes to Google’s algorithms, which partially determine SEO locations, 2011 poses some new options for companies who want the top slots.

It’s About Give and Take

Social Media has taken its seat as a necessary factor in a web marketing plan and with that comes the benefits of backlinks, pings, and click-through’s go links in blog content, tweets, pages, and posts.

  • When posting content, adding links within the text will allow readers the option to click through to your website or wherever the aforementioned link lands them. This process is referred to as back-linking.
  • Click-throughs happen when a reader clicks on the link and
  • Pings to your blog happen when the post URL is shared with a search engine, through bookmarking or database submissions.

All of these options allow for extended reach for your blog content and increase the visibility of, and potential interaction with, your blog. Businesses will benefit by focusing on the user experience within their Social Media Interaction as well as by making their websites more user-related, in lieu of the informative and industry-driven websites of recent history. Today’s web shoppers, whether they be businesses or consumers, are much more discerning and know how to use the web to their goals. Be sure your business profiles, pages, and site focus on their needs and interests. Your page rank will benefit.

Along with user focus, Bing has changed its search criteria to consider Social Media signals and Google is considering their importance as well. Backlinks, click-through rates and pings, like buttons, tweet popularity, and other significant social media metrics will play a part in search engine ranking as well.

Another way to give and take? Blog commenting continues to rise in popularity, with businesses investing time and research into finding solid, industry-related content to comment on.

  • Blog commenting is the practice of researching and following industry-related blogs that cover topics important to your target market and posting a comment from your brand to the current posts while including a link to your website or blog post to build brand recognition. (See the screenshot below)

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This is not the link-building tactics of the past, with bought links, and link farms in the mix. This is thought-out, content-heavy blog commenting to build a company’s reputation as a thought-leader and innovator in their industry. Including a backlink is almost an afterthought, but one that packs serious SEO punch.

When entering the realm of SEO for your business, the key points to remember are to keep your content fresh, insightful, and targeted to your audience. Include links to your website, and you will see your page rank rise over time.

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