Searches use the meta tags in your web page (code that isn't seen when you view the site)
So, your business could be Peter's Plumbing and if you have cake in your meta tag, it would show on a search for cake.
I have no idea how to do any of that^^^^^^^^ and I just talked to GoDaddy about another issue and he tried to get me to sign up for something that submits my stuff to all the top 10 search engines for $250+. My mind went numb and I tuned out. Can I do this for cheaper? or free?
I started another thread after seeing this in another name thread [/quote]
I'm not the most knowledgeable in this subject. Hopefully Jason will see this.
It is my understanding that you must have content to support those words. Google is not esily fooled.
The going rate for SEO is about $250 per month, but you don't need it indefinitely. I have several books on SEO and started it when my mom got sick. Now I haven't touched it in two months. I have an advantage that my site was professionally set up with SEO in mind, but I chose to do the work myself, only because my husband has it done by the same company and they are getting behind.
If you read a book or two, then ask someone once you understand the concept, then yes, you can do it yourself. It will be some trial and error. But it is hard to know if the person you are paying is actually doing the work. My husband has been through a few in his different companies. They are great the first month or two, then they seem to slack off but still take your money.
Just look for a top-rated book on SEO and make sure it is one that you can understand. Some are for computer experts.
IMO, if you have a shop that serves a local area you probably don't need SEO (search engine optimization) as long as you have relevant content on your web site. Google and other search engines automatically pick up relevant results based on context and backlinks -- they don't rely on meta tags (keywords hidden in the HTML code of your web site) much anymore, acquiring legit backlinks by having your site listed in popular vendor directories will do much more to help your search result.
There are several options that can probably give you a better ROI than SEO (especially considering SEO is a moving target as Google changes the rules at will) -- Google AdWords, Yelp ads, Facebook ads, networking with venues and planners, etc. Even a properly structured Groupon deal would probably do more to bring your business more exposure.
It really pays to research - I spent alot of time reading up about SEO and google rankings and I'm now ranking 1st on most relevant key word searches. I'm no expert but reading up on things gave me a little bit of understanding of the subject. Google SEO tips, SEO tutorial, the info is all out there also google webmaster is a good free tool.
I make my own website so I'm a little familiar with this. Unless you ship your products, there isn't much need for meta tags and enhanced visibility. The only tags I have are my business name and location so people specifically trying to find me might have an easier time. The other problem with paying for meta tags is search engines are constantly changing to try to refine their searches. Just because your #1 on Google today doesnt mean youll stay there. You will be constantly chasing your proverbial meta tag tail..
Youll be a lot better off convincing other local business to link to you (and be reciprocal). I link to some photographers, caterers, florist, etc. and they link back to me. I place my website URL on business cards that I put in every order box. HTH!!
My SEO understanding was that the links are important. This is what I learned through study.
My particular situation needs some SEO help because my home base is not my main market and it is more difficult to rise naturally without justifying the out of area positioning by content. I also am trying to get into an off-topic category that will take time.
And on my home area searches, I am behind pages of unlicensed bakers who have had their sites up forever.
This is where Adwords has been gold. I am everywhere that slightly pertains to sugar. We don't have Yelp here, so Google is it. In Adwords, I had 1800 local exposures last month. Not clicks, but my name was everywhere. I spend about $140/mo. for the clicks. I can't afford more than that and eventually, I will cut this amount down.
If any of you guys and girls prefers digital learning to reading books (I do), there's a place with lots of the best videos for learning. I get a yearly membership. It's not cheap, but I do get my money's worth. (It's playing on the background the whole day on my laptop at work.) I learn everything from graphics to photography to (sometimes) business.
For some people, it's easier to have things explained this way. There's a month-by-month membership too.
Google is cracking down on companies that pay to bump people higher in the search rankings. It's frowned upon and they are constantly looking for ways to stop it. My advice is if you are paying for SEO, stop because you are waisting your money.
You need Google Webcrawler, which is code that you add to the metadata of your webpage telling Google keywords to index when it caches your webpage, and Google webmaster so you can track your traffic. Both applications are free and easy to set up.
The key to understanding SEO is understanding what Google looks for. It looks for traffic, hits, and popularity when putting together your relevance ranking. Any webpage you put together will never compete with Facebook, Twitter, Picasa, Wordpress etc. in relevancy. They always pop up first.
So, the easiest, fastest and free way to do your own SEO is by having a webpage that is basically a portal to social media websites. Get a Facebook and constantly pimp for fans. Doesn't matter if they see your posts or not, doesn't matter if they are in Hungary or Zimbabwe, the more fans you have the more relevant your Fan Page is, the higher it will rank. It's a numbers game! Tweet. Get followers and follow people. Post a status update at least once a day. Blog, and link to as many outside sources as you can, especially other big name blogs or products, using as many phrases relevant to you as you can. As soon as you publish it, an email goes to the site owners saying you are linking to them. If they are cool, they will link back to you. Have a public online photo album like Picasa and link to it as much as possible.
It takes a bit of work at first, but once you get in a groove it's easy.