5 Qualities to Look for in a Search Engine Optimization Program for Your Website

These days with millions of websites out there, you need a way to get noticed. When your company website is ranked highly in the major search engines, customers from all over the world can find your front door. suddenly, your virtual storefront becomes prime business property and you are making sales 24/7.

What can a web site owner do to make sure your site appears in the top 2 pages in any given search engine? You could buy some submission software, read some books and try it yourself. But what if you miss something and find your site's not positioned, or worse, banned. The only other option is to hire a search engine specialist.

There are alot of self-proclaimed, "SEO specialists" and "search engine submission" companies, so you need to know what to look for in the positioning program they offer.

Here are my top five things to look for in a Search Engine position program:

1. SE Optimization (SEO) ? The pages on your site are checked for the percentage of keywords you want to target, and the quality of the content on the page. Your SEO consultant should make recommendations regarding your site content to improve it in the eye of the Search Engines.

Key search engines like MSN and AOL Search still rely on metatags or html code that include keywords related to your site. A good SEO optimization of your metatags can mean the difference of a #40 ranking vs. a Top 20 ranking.

2. Pay per click (PPC) ? PPC search engines like Overture (formerly Goto.com) and Findwhat can get you targeted, fast traffic while you are patiently watching the other search engines to rank your site. Recently, Overture's top 3 keywords results show up at the top of searches on Yahoo! above the Yahoo! paid sites. For some keywords, paying for a top 3 position can be very expensive, but with careful research you can find some keywords available for 5 cents per click.

3. Regular monitoring - You should get an initial report in 4-6 weeks and then preferably a monthly report. Your SEO consultant should provide ideas on achieving better rankings for keywords that are not doing as well as you'd like to see. While a Top 10 ranking is the ideal, some Top 20 rankings are realistic.

4. Inclusion in select pay for inclusion SE indexes and directories ? Inclusions in fee based can be useful if you want to target specific search engines or directories like Looksmart and Yahoo! Depending on your budget, you may want to purchase inclusion right away or hold off until the other Search Engines pick you up first. Your SEO consultant should provide the option to help you get into fee-based inclusions, and be able to explain the benefits and differences of each one.

5. Submission to key SE directories ? To rank well on Google and in turn, Yahoo! web pages, you need to be listed in the Open Directory Project directory. Directories like ODP are human edited and depending on the category, it can take from 3 weeks to 2 months to get accepted.

Yahoo! is another key directory, and you MIGHT be able to get your site in for free still, if it's non-commercial or a very localized business to a specific city or region. Your SEO consultant should submit your site to ODP and monitor it to make sure it's accepted, and depending on the extent of your program, offer to submit your site to the Yahoo! free submit, if it's appropriate.

By Jim Lisi
Website Consultant

About The Author

From 1996 - 1999 Jim Lisi worked in the web-hosting services industry at Concentric Network, which was bought out by XO Communications. In 1999, Jim was offered the position of Director of Sales at TopTenRanking Inc, a top web promotion company in LA, California. Starting in 2000, Jim Lisi formed his own web promotion company, EzRankings.com, utilizing some of the best website promotion specialists in the industry today.

www.EzRankings.com; [email protected];
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