I’d like to optimize my website so that it comes up with searchengines but I don’t know the best way to approach this. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
This isn’t a trivial undertaking, and involves an understanding of some of the ‘geeky’ parts of how the Internet and search engines work.
Also, before you do any of this, you should make sure you site is being indexed correctly in Google. Google owns the majority of the search market so I use them as my example. If you do things for Google, the other Search Engines will also index/rank you.
So let’s see if you are indexed. Follow the instructions and examples below.
First see how you are doing:
How many pages indexed, type this in Google using your URL
Results 1 – 10 of about 76 from hypnosismarketingtips.com
So my blog has 76 pages indexed in Google
Now, how many links to your site, type this using your URL
Results 1 – 10 of about 59 linking to calbanyan.com
So Cal’s blog has 59 sites linking to him.
If you aren’t showing up in google, you will be wasting your time with SEO. Go to Google’s webmaster central and they will help you get your pages indexed with the tools there.
Once you are indexed, Then for SEO, I’ve outlined the basics below.
There are a couple of main tasks you’ll need to do:
1. Decide on a key topic for each page (note: search engines don’t index ‘sites’ they index ‘pages’).
Important: going for 1 word and even 2 word key-word phrases is folly. You need to narrow it down.
A rule of thumb is, people are doing research when they type in one or two words. At 3 words and above they are looking to buy.
Jamaica beaches (research)
Kingston Jamaica Beach Cabins (buying)
Also, you need to narrow down your target or the really big sites will own the first page of search results. If you don’t get on the first page you are wasting your time.
Example: Keyword: hypnosis
Results 1 – 10 of about 10,500,000 for hypnosis
Minimum page rank is 5
minimum back links is 2,200
To get in the top 10 for this keyword would be all but impossible for an individual Hypnotherapist. Besides, you have no idea what people are really searching for, they could be looking for hypnosis products, or to find out what hypnosis is, etc.
A better choice is to use a search phrase that narrows down to a specific result.
Example: Keyword phrase: hypnosis stage show training certification
Results 1 – 10 of about 109,000
Minimum page rank is 2
Minimum back links is 16
FIrst, notice the difference in results, 109,000 vs 10.5 million for the keyword hypnosis.
It wouldn’t be too hard with good SEO to end up on the first page of search for these terms.
2. The most important thing for SEO is links back to your page (not site).
More links is better, but the must be from relevant sites.
Warning: you can get blacklisted if you use a ‘link farm’ to cheat the search engines.
The key here is ‘natural links’. It’s not natural for a site on bear hunting to link to a hypnotherapy site.
Also your links should contain your keywords you want to get ranked for. This is where many people make a big mistake.
3. Optimize each page for the keyword or keyword phrase.
Do not just use the words as much as possible, this is called keyword spam.
Again the secret is to use the words naturally. If you page is really on the topic, you almost don’t have to bother with the text.
It’s important to have related syntactically related words. Google checks these to determine relevance.
Example: a page about hypnosis would talk about trance, hypnotism, and hypnotitc states.
You can see how this works by typing this into google
All syntactically relevant words will be in BOLD in the search results.
IMPORTANT: Meta tags are mostly useless these days, however the description is shown in search listings so it should have your keyword in it.
SECRET: use your keyword in the page title. Google puts a lot of weight on the page title matching keywords in the page text.
SECRET: Use the keyword in the headline and use the H1 tag. Search Engines look for that too.
4. Pick Your Battles Wisely
spend a lot of time on keyword research. Look for the low hanging fruit where it’s easy to get ranked quickly.
Example: This blog.
I picked these keywords as low hanging fruit, and as an experiment to see how fast I could get on the front page of search results.
Hypnosis Marketing Tips
Do a google search on those and you’ll see this blog is the #1 result.
I got the number one position in less than 2 months!
5. Consider outsourcing this task
After having done SEO for myself and some clients, I’ve realized this…
It’s tedious work and requires constantly keeping up with search engine algorythm changes. You can screw up by using tricks and end up black listed for months.
While I totaly advise hypnotherapists to learn and do their own marketing, this is one area where I believe it’s better to pay someone who knows what they are doing.
I know going forward I’m not going to do it for myself or my clients. it’s a full time profession to really do it correctly.
Check on elance.com, I’m sure there are indepenant contractors who can help you with SEO optimization.
6. Use Pay Per CLick first
I also think it’s more valuable to buy PPC (pay per click) traffic first, so you get instant results.
- You get instant traffic
- You can test keywords and keyword phrases
- Google has a damn good keyword research tool
- You can find out quickly what the market wants
- You’ll get experience that will help you decide what SEO strategy will work best for your business.
Also for hypnotists who have only a local business, Google allows you to buy local traffic which is much less expensive.
Yahoo is cheaper in general and accounts for about 1/3 of search traffic
Start there before implementing an SEO strategy, this is what I advise my clients to do.