S E O – if you have any technical web abilities you already know that SEO stands for Truth, Justice, and Freedom – wait, I’m sorry, that’s the Justice League. SEO actually stands for Search Engine Optimization and if you listen to anyone who’s talking about SEO, you’ll quickly find out that this is THE thing that makes your website work … without it your website is a desert wasteland that even your grandmother can’t find. (That’s a terrible example, you could probably type in the URL and tell your grandmother to hit ‘Enter’ and something would go wrong).
To save you the trip, here is the first paragraph from Wikipedia on Search Engine Optimization:
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in search engines via the “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results. In general, the earlier (or higher on the page), and more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users
Has your head exploded yet? Sorta..? Stick with me just a little more and everything will be all right.
I should admit that I am not an expert in SEO …some things just seems obvious once you know they exist (isn’t that the secret to just about everything?) and I haven’t ever used an expert on my site. While that might seem obvious to some of you, it’s important to acknowledge. I also haven’t bought any books on SEO, so my process really is similar to man’s first attempt at cooking with fire: “What happens if I do this?” Everything I attempt on this site is a continuation of my original goal of simply trying to learn something new and have some fun along the way. Except for the time the results from “what happens if I do this? resulted in the deletion of half the content on my site. Good thing architects know the value of backing things up and keeping copies.
The Proof of the Pudding is in the Eating
I’ve read some posts that list the keywords that people use to get to that site – normally they focus on the bizarre – like “hillbilly broke chicken” which doesn’t happen to often on my site. Some of the search engine terms (or keywords) yesterday that people entered into Google that led them to my site included: super hero, library book, glass blocks, Gandhi and hippie. I’ve actually written about those things so it’s not really that surprising.
Top Keywords All-Time for my site:
- life of an architect
- life as an architect
- the life of an architect
- architect blog
- bob borson
- architect life
- architects life
- life of an architect blog
- construction management fees
- lifestyle of an architect
- modern fences
- residential modern
- bob borson homes
- volunteer dallas architect
I’d say that considering what my blog is, these are pretty good returns. But how did that happen? The short version is that there are 3 important considerations for you to consider when creating your blog post.
The title of your page – or your post – is really important. I don’t try and be too clever with the titles so I generally name them something that succinctly identifies what the page contains. If it makes sense, I will try and name the post something that I think someone will enter into a search engine – like ‘SEO for Dummies’.
In WordPress, you can enter in a description of what this page is about. Search engines like Google will only look at the first 160 characters of a description so keep it brief and on point. For this post I will enter:
proper search engine optimization techniques that will help people find your site
This is the spot where you enter in … that’s right – the keywords. These are the same sort of words someone might type into their search engine when trying to find content – but only use words that are represented in the content or you might get penalized by those search engines. For this post, I think I’ll use these keywords: SEO, optimization, SEO for dummies, website traffic. If I didn’t talk about Justin Bieber or Selena Gomez, I won’t add their names to my keyword entry with the thought that I would get a lot of traffic. The main reason I don’t is that I’m not trying to trick anyone into coming to this site when they are actually searching for information on Justin Bieber or Selena Gomez … those folks don’t want to be on this site.
I keep that information on my other site…