Saturday, June 03, 2006

Traffic vs. Rankings

I'm an SEO specialist. I don't like to call myself an expert, because without being able to see the underlying algorithm, I can only guess at what will help.

One of the biggest boosts to rankings right now appears to be one way links to your site. In the past link exchanges were how we were able to get others to link to our site. Now, if we link to them and they link to us, it's not as helpful if they link to us. There's a few things I can think that we could use to get around this issue, but being that I'm a white hat (read "do no evil") type of SEO Specialist, I tend to avoid these thoughts of how to fake the Search Engines out so I am really just trading links. That's not useful to me. I want to be ranked higher in search engines, but more importantly, I want more traffic to my site.

An SEO campaign can take months to pay off dividends of getting to the first page of Google, and even then, it's not guaranteed that sales will go up. It sounds like I'm arguing myself out of existence. I'm not. I'm a solid believer in a two-pronged attack. Work on the SEO, but also try to generate more traffic now. The easiest way for generating traffic seems to be blogging. I recommend searching for blogs that are covering topics similar to what your site covers. Post comments to their posts and include a link back to your site. Most blogs will not count this link as a link to your site so it won't help your rankings at all, but anyone who reads the other blog may click on it to find out more about you, and find your site interesting. Find as many blogs as you can to post to. If there are some that you read regularly already related to your field then these are a good starting point. You never know when someone else reading you comment will decide that your site is interesting enough to blog about.

Just the other day, I wrote a post about the new Google toolbar. My page loads tripled because of it. I was shocked to find that just writing about google tripled my page loads. I investigated and found that the Google blog has a section of links at the bottom that shows recent links to that article. There I was, linking to the google post. In a matter of just 20 minutes writing up a post I was able to more than triple the traffic to my site. I've read many times about someone who has a neat new online game or service that doesn't work after a popular blogger links to them saying how cool it is. A site that gets linked to by a popular blog can actually be rendered helpless by the amount of additional traffic that it gets. That's why it's always important to have good, up to date content. And get your site and name out onto the web as an expert. The more places that you are known, the more likely that you will be the answer to the question not yet asked.

No comments: